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Proverbs 28:18-28
A person who wants quick riches will get into trouble (Proverbs 28:20).

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Read 1 Timothy 6:9-10 to see some possible negative outcomes of chasing wealth. Read Proverbs 30:8-9 to see the benefits of being neither too rich nor too poor.

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Why do you suppose the Bible says that “true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth”? (1 Timothy 6:6). Is there a difference between being wealthy and loving money?

About 30 miles outside of Washington, DC, Heather Kelly noticed what looked like “a snow globe of cash” on Interstate Highway 270. An armored truck had failed to secure its rear door, and the money was airborne. Roughly 30 cars lined the highway as motorists pulled over and tried to grab the $5,700 in bills that had escaped the truck. Kelly recalled, “People had fists full of money, fists full of dollars.”

For some of us, the prospect of instant wealth holds endless appeal. Casinos, lottery tickets, risky business deals, and even high-tech treasure hunts are the stuff of our dreams. The Bible says, however, “A person who wants quick riches will get into trouble” (Proverbs 28:20).

Trouble comes when we lose more than we make while trying to strike it rich. This happens because get-rich-quick schemes are designed to take in money, rather than to provide the promised “big returns.” And many financial ploys succeed because they stoke our greed. “Greedy people try to get rich quick but don’t realize they’re headed for poverty” (Proverbs 28:22). Need proof? Ever heard someone say, “I’m so glad I’ve wasted hundreds of dollars on losing lottery tickets!” or “My bookie has helped me achieve financial stability”?

God’s Word says that steady work throughout our years leads to financial well-being. “Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappears; [but] wealth from hard work grows over time” (Proverbs 13:11). So the clerical assistant or mail carrier who labors diligently for decades has a better chance of ending up with wealth than the guy who spends his lunch hour betting on sporting events (Proverbs 10:4).

What’s your perspective on money? Although the Bible says there’s more to life than acquiring wealth (Proverbs 22:1), it’s up to you to decide. Will you commit to a lifetime of labor, or chase the fleeting dream of fast cash?

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: Exodus 2:11-25

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10 Responses to “fast cash”

  1. Terrence Simon says:

    A perfect message for everyone!

    we keep on searching for the ways where we can make money very fast but always it ended with failures or even big mess.

    From above message I got one insight whatever God has given for you is enough to meet your need.
    Be happy with it!!

    • jennifer benson schuldt says:

      Terrence,

      Your comment reminds me of the verse that says “…give me neither poverty nor riches…” (Proverbs 30:8). Somewhere between the extremes means less of a chance that we’ll fall prey to coin counting (greed), or that we’ll be tempted to break the law to provide for ourselves. As you said, contentment is key when we think about our financial lives, regardless of the amount we have.

  2. kram4mark says:

    It really is a sad thing to see people waste thousands of dollars to win 500 and most of the time its only maybe 10 dollars.

    • jennifer benson schuldt says:

      I agree, it is sad. Could it be that people find excitement in the pursuit of the money, rather than in the actual winnings?

      It’s interesting to think about the thrill of risk as it relates to money. On the flipside of get-rich-quick endeavors, there’s the widow who, “out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood” (Mark 12:441). A risky move, but one that Jesus approved of!

  3. Gene says:

    This is a great message for the ages. The “buzz” around the country when the lotto gets into the millions is astonishing. Winning one of those usually ruins a life and the close people around them. I understand the excitement of a small group sharing a ticket, but I use the opportunity to politely decline and try to share my faith.

    • jennifer benson schuldt says:

      Gene,
      I know what you mean about the “buzz” around the country regarding the large jackpot numbers. If only we could desire God’s ways the same way we get so excited over the prospect of winning millions (Psalm 119:36)! Thanks for your comment today.

  4. tom felten says:

    Something I constantly have to remind myself of is that it’s not my money, it’s God’s. This is not only biblical, but it’s also freeing, and provides a healthy perspective for living generously regardless of how much we have or earn.

    • jennifer benson schuldt says:

      Hi Tom!

      I admit to the same struggle. It’s hard to think of “my” money as God’s money, but it is. There’s a book that does a great job discussing this concept: “The Treasure Principle” by Randy Alcorn.

  5. mlsswvr47 says:

    In my personal opinion, money is to be used wisely in living on what I earn, not to be wasted on gambling. I’ve seen the “wealthy” and they’re NOT happy!! The “working poor” do what they can to survive – the rest is in His Hands!!

  6. jennifer benson schuldt says:

    Good point. Wealth does not bring happiness according to Solomon (Ecclesiastes 5:10). Although it’s not wrong to have a lot of money, wealth doesn’t guarantee contentment. The good news is that true blessings come from trusting in the LORD and placing our hope in Him (Jeremiah 17:7).

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