The Problem with Money
Money is a problem for almost everyone.
Gather a hundred hopeful 25 years olds into a room for a group photo. Now fast forward forty years into the future, and try to assemble them for a “class reunion”.
What you would find is that it would be a much different group, and most certainly, a much smaller one; smaller because almost forty of the one hundred would simply not have made it to age 65.
Of the remaining sixty, fifty would still be dependent on the government, or friends or relatives---in other words, someone or something else--- for their support.
Five would still be working, but not because they wanted to. They would still be working because they had to.
Of those five left, four would be financially independent.
One, and only one, would be considered ridiculously rich.
You have to wonder, “How, in what is still one of the richest countries in the world, does something like this happen?”
Close to the root of the problem is a cultural issue, one in which Christians seem especially conflicted over money.
On one side of the conflict is the attitude expressed by Gordon Gecko, the slithery stock broker Michael Douglas plays in the movie “Wall Street”.
“Greed,” he tells his board and a room full of stockholders, “is good. Greed is right. Greed works.”
And in a sense, he’s correct. Greed is highly effective if your primary goal is to achieve wealth, and you’re not concerned with how you get it or who you step on or over in the process.
You may not get many to publicly agree with Gecko’s pronouncement, but face it: we live in a material world. More people would be “silent partners” in Gecko’s firm than we’d like to admit.
On the other side of the conflict over money is the Spartan attitude that, not only is money not good, but neither is anything but the simplest of material necessities. You won’t get a lot of people rushing to sign up for this plan either, but it would be considered more socially acceptable.
And after all, there’s even a biblical passage that tells us that “money is the root of all evil”.
Next post: What does the Bible really say?