- Solomon's observations on money
Some Bible versions says the love of money is the root of many kinds of evil or all kinds evil, whereas other versions say the love of money is the root of all evils. Which is it? If it is the former, then the love of some money is not evil. Yet the Word of God says, "of the mammon of unrighteousness" (Luke 16.9). The Word of God does not contradict itself; ergo, the latter must be true: "For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows" (1 Tim. 6.10).
Why is money, the mammon of unrighteousness, unrighteous? Because, God has created all things out of one source, Satan in turn has tried to reduce them all into one. And this one thing is money. Satan is not able to destroy God Himself, so Satan turns to destroy the works of God if he can. He tries to gain the upper hand by plucking things out of His hand, that is His creation. Satan, therefore, invents money by which to unify all things.
Though things were created by God, money was not created by God. It belongs to Caesar. Satan created money to unify all things. Because Satan can not deal with God, he tries to deal with things that come from God. And so man puts a calculation on everything, with the help of Satan, with money, valuing even the moon and the hydrogen in the sun.
Consecration is needed not only personally towards God and in the church, but also towards money and occupation. Do we work for money, or do we work to create value by the sweat of our brow? (Gen. 3.19). When we work we should do so to create value, not to accumulate money. Nor should we trade money or commodities or wealth to create more wealth out of nothing since to do so does not create value.
What value has been created by sitting around waiting for the price to rise and then sell it? You were sitting around the whole time. But, increasing the price of that which increases in value can not be considered profiteering since it is the result of selling one's labor. Value was added, then the price increase, not by sitting around or hoping it will increase despite your sitting around. Making profits off of fluctuations is not creating value. You have taken from another person which is not at testimony to the church. Or if you lose in your trade, it was in vain.
Eventually, the "souls of men" will reach a climatic price tag (Rev. 18.12,13) along with other commodities in the Great Tribulation to show the sin of money.
United States is the richest nation in the world this past century. The American Standard Version reads "For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil," not "all evil". Because of this, in USA it can be acceptable in some instances to love money. Idolatry and coveting are the same thing: "and covetousness, which is idolatry" (Col. 3.5); "nor covetous man, who is an idolater" (Eph. 5.5).
There are really only two ways of service for mankind: either a person serves God or serves Mammon (Matt. 6.24). Probably 80% of Christians in the world are serving Mammon, and perhaps 18% are serving Mammon and God. It is very difficult to find a few who are serving God exclusively. Even earning money in righteous ways is not serving God, becoming more important than God.
If there were 7 billion people in the world, and each person had $1 in his pocket, there would be $7 billion dollars. To increase the money in my pocket would require I take it out of the pocket of another person to put it into my pocket. Is this not beneath the dignity of a child of God? Hence, what we must do is increase the value of nature. All legitimate occupations seek gains from nature, not from people. But tilling the land or the produce from the sea, we increase our own money, without taking money from others; that is, decreasing their money.
We need to resist works in the realm of pure commerce. Abraham's and Isaac's work was from herds and flocks (Gen. 24.35, 26.12-14), but the increase in Jacob's herds and flocks was stealthily gained at Laban's expense (30.31-43).
The Jews were originally occupied with farming, pasturing and laboring. After their fall and dispersion, they have become some of the biggest merchants in the world. Pure commerce is a stronghold of temptation which is very hard to break. May God transform our thought.
The King of Tyre in Ezekiel 28 points to Satan. He fell by the abundance of his traffic, which refers to pure commerce (Ez. 27). Ezekiel 27-28 marks the earliest commerce while Revelation 18 marks the last: "merchants of the earth". The Antichrist will do business through Babylon. We need be concerned with not just acquiring money, but how we acquire it. Profiteers see nothing else but money.