Category Archives: Ethics

How We Pursue Our Finances Matters

Do not be so enthusiastic in your pursuit of profit that you neglect God’s instruction. Our Father constantly reminds us in the Bible that His ways are best. We should take care and heed His advice. Yes we are to work diligently, but we must first commit to working righteously, that is to say “do things God’s way rather than the world’s way”.

Proverbs 10:2-5

      2Ill-gotten gains do not profit,
But righteousness delivers from death.

      3The LORD will not allow the righteous to hunger,
But He will reject the craving of the wicked.

      4Poor is he who works with a negligent hand,
But the hand of the diligent makes rich.

      5He who gathers in summer is a son who acts wisely,
But he who sleeps in harvest is a son who acts shamefully.

We are to seek first the kingdom of God in determining how we live our lives. We are called to be diligent in our pursuits rather than lazy, proactive rather than putting things off to another day.

Take some time to reflect on how this applies to your life. Pray God would lead you and help you make any necessary changes in your life.

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Remember that all you have belongs to God. Manage your money God’s way. Visit GrowGodsMoney.org .

How Should We Treat Others In Business And Finance?

Many people consider business and finance to be a separate environment in which it is expected that people are aggressive or deceptive with one another in order to “get ahead”.

Is it ok to take advantage of people in business and finance? Is it ok to deceive someone to get them to buy your product? Is it ok to give poor advice as a financial consultant to sell the products your company wants you to sell?

Simply put, and hopefully obvious to you by now… the answer is “No. It is not right to take advantage of others.”

Jesus has a way of simplifying key concepts to help us remember and apply them to our lives. Many of us have heard of the “Golden Rule”, though it may surprise quite a few that it originates from Jesus Christ in Matthew 7:12.

12“In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.

This scripture matches closely with Matthew 22:37-40.

 37And He said to him, “ ‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’ 38“This is the great and foremost commandment. 39“The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ 40“On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”

In the context of Matthew 7:12, Jesus is addressing how His disciples should treat one another. He is not referring to our relationship with God. In Matthew 22:37-40, He addresses both our relationships with God and with one another.

Jesus calls us to help one another and to deal respectfully and honestly with one another whether we are at church, in our family or at work.  If we know more about a certain area than someone else (e.g. financial investing, selling phones or computers, etc.), it is an opportunity to help them. We each have different gifts and abilities. Jesus wants us to use them to help one another, not to convince them to buy the wrong product for them so we get a higher commission.

Is it ok to take advantage of non Christians? Again… a decisive “No.” What a great opportunity to show non Christians what we, as followers of Christ, are all about. Help them in matters of business and finance rather than trying to take advantage of them to make more money for yourself.

Jesus really has a way of simplifying things so we can remember. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. So simple, we can teach it to children, but the challenge is for us as adults to consistently apply it to all aspects of our lives.

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Remember that all you have belongs to God. Manage your money God’s way. Visit GrowGodsMoney.org .

Should I Put My Trust in Money?

We all face times where we feel like things are not going well, where we feel like others are against us. David certainly had times where he experienced many enemies plotting against him. Even if all others had abandoned him, he knew he could find refuge in his heavenly Father.

No matter what comes against you, trust in the LORD. Do not put your trust in oppression, robbery or taking advantage of others. If riches increase, do not set your heart upon them either, but only in the LORD. God is the answer to our needs, not money. He may use money, but we should seek Him first rather than money.

Psalm 62

God Alone a Refuge from Treachery and Oppression.

For the choir director; according to Jeduthun. A Psalm of David.

      1My soul waits in silence for God only;
From Him is my salvation.

      2He only is my rock and my salvation,
My stronghold; I shall not be greatly shaken.

      3How long will you assail a man,
That you may murder him, all of you,
Like a leaning wall, like a tottering fence?

      4They have counseled only to thrust him down from his high position;
They delight in falsehood;
They bless with their mouth,
But inwardly they curse.

        5My soul, wait in silence for God only,
For my hope is from him.

      6He only is my rock and my salvation,
My stronghold; I shall not be shaken.

      7On God my salvation and my glory rest;
The rock of my strength, my refuge is in God.

      8Trust in Him at all times, O people;
Pour out your heart before Him;
God is a refuge for us.

Selah.

      9Men of low degree are only vanity and men of rank are a lie;
In the balances they go up;
They are together lighter than breath.

      10Do not trust in oppression
And do not vainly hope in robbery;
If riches increase, do not set your heart upon them.

      11Once God has spoken;
Twice I have heard this:
That power belongs to God;

      12And lovingkindness is Yours, O Lord,
For You recompense a man according to his work.

I would encourage each of us as well, no matter how dire our situation may seem, even if we feel completely alone… trust in Jehovah. Pour out your heart before Him.

Do Not Deceive Others in Your Financial Matters

I find it fascinating as I read the Bible what I may find in what seems like the strangest places. Many Christians and churches will never venture into Leviticus in their Bibles, but we do well to remember that all scripture is god inspired and good to direct our path.

2 Timothy 3:14-16

14You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them, 15and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.

Paul was referring to the Old Testament as the New Testament was not written yet. It is not obsolete. There is treasure in there that is very applicable today.

The chapters that precede Leviticus 6 discuss various offerings to be made as part of reconciling to God for our sin or guilt. Leviticus 6 reminds of the need to also reconcile with people whom we have sinned against. It also provides a very tangible incentive to discourage the actions described that come about from greed or coveting and represent sin against God and fellow man.

We can clearly see that God does not want us to deceive one another in regards to money. He wants us to deal fairly with one another and treat one another with respect. We are to help one another rather than take advantage of others who may not know better about a certain situation.

Leviticus 6:1-7

Guilt Offering

      1Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 2“When a person sins and acts unfaithfully against the LORD, and deceives his companion in regard to a deposit or a security entrusted to him, or through robbery, or if he has extorted from his companion, 3or has found what was lost and lied about it and sworn falsely, so that he sins in regard to any one of the things a man may do; 4then it shall be, when he sins and becomes guilty, that he shall restore what he took by robbery or what he got by extortion, or the deposit which was entrusted to him or the lost thing which he found, 5or anything about which he swore falsely; he shall make restitution for it in full and add to it one-fifth more. He shall give it to the one to whom it belongs on the day he presents his guilt offering. 6“Then he shall bring to the priest his guilt offering to the LORD, a ram without defect from the flock, according to your valuation, for a guilt offering, 7and the priest shall make atonement for him before the LORD, and he will be forgiven for any one of the things which he may have done to incur guilt.”

As the Holy Spirit reveals to us our sin, we must seek to reconcile ourselves with our heavenly Father to be sure, but also seek to reconcile ourselves with those whom we have sinned against.


Remember that all you have belongs to God. Manage your money God’s way and use it for His glory rather than your own. Visit GrowGodsMoney.org .

Parental Counsel From Solomon

For those who do not know Solomon, he was a man uniquely gifted with wisdom by God. He wrote proverbs a few thousand years ago now and his observations and counsel are as valid today as they were then.

We should be very cautious when we pledge, with our money or resources to back it up, on behalf of someone else who is struggling to manage their money. (If they were not struggling, they would not need our help.) Do not risk in this way anything you are not willing to lose if circumstances do not work out.

Proverbs 6:1-5

      1My son, if you have become surety for your neighbor,
Have given a pledge for a stranger,

      2If you have been snared with the words of your mouth,
Have been caught with the words of your mouth,

      3Do this then, my son, and deliver yourself;
Since you have come into the hand of your neighbor,
Go, humble yourself, and importune your neighbor.

      4Give no sleep to your eyes,
Nor slumber to your eyelids;

      5Deliver yourself like a gazelle from the hunter’s hand
And like a bird from the hand of the fowler.

We must be diligent and take personal responsibility for our future needs. Do not rely on someone else or make excuses to put off getting started. The most important aspect of completing a journey is beginning it properly and at the right time. In this way we prepare wisely for our future and will also be better prepared to help others along the way.

Proverbs 6:6-8

      6Go to the ant, O sluggard,
Observe her ways and be wise,

      7Which, having no chief,
Officer or ruler,

      8Prepares her food in the summer
And gathers her provision in the harvest.

Sloth, or laziness, is a sure way to end in poverty and need. There are other ways to find poverty, but sloth is one that almost assures it.

Proverbs 6:9-11

      9How long will you lie down, O sluggard?
When will you arise from your sleep?

      10“A little sleep, a little slumber,
A little folding of the hands to rest”—

      11Your poverty will come in like a vagabond
And your need like an armed man.

God considers those who are wicked and perverse to be worthless. They may feel like they are “winning” and “being successful” at their wicked endeavors, but in the end they will face God’s judgment. Often there deceitful ways catch up with them in this life as well, bringing calamity without healing.

Proverbs 6:11-15

      12A worthless person, a wicked man,
Is the one who walks with a perverse mouth,

      13Who winks with his eyes, who signals with his feet,
Who points with his fingers;

      14Who with perversity in his heart continually devises evil,
Who spreads strife.

      15Therefore his calamity will come suddenly;
Instantly he will be broken and there will be no healing.

Be wise in the ways of God rather than man. Seek to reflect on this wisdom from Solomon and apply it in your life. Do not just read it and say… “that is true, someone needs to hear that”. Instead, prayerfully ask God to help reveal to you any areas that you need to address personally in your life… and go start to fix them. Then consider if there are others you know that need help in this area. They will learn more from your example than from your words.

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Remember that all you have belongs to God. Manage your money God’s way. Visit GrowGodsMoney.org .

Choose Your Own Adventure… But Do So Wisely

I remember as a child reading a style of book that was called a “choose your own adventure” book. Basically this style of kids book has a basic story line with several outcomes for each situation the characters encounter based on which choices you as the reader make for them. For example… if in the story the main character faces a choice to go into a cave, or continue in the forest… the reader chooses and turns next to the page that continues the story based on that decision. The outcome is always different based on the choice the reader makes.

The same is true in life. Yes, for each of us there are some preset assumptions for our adventure… who our parents are, where we are born, what value system we are taught, etc. However, we each have the opportunity to make choices for ourselves that influence the outcome of our personal story. This is true whether or not we choose to admit that we are making decisions that matter. Do we get up and find a job? Do we work hard? Do we show love to others? Do we obey God?

We make decisions every day. It is just that we at times overlook the importance of how even our seemingly daily, “small” decisions influence the outcome of our life.

I used to think it would be helpful to have a guide to help me choose wisely as each situation came up in those kids books. What if I had a map that showed which choices led to success and which to destruction? Wouldn’t that be great! It would help me navigate to the best possible outcome for whatever story I was in.

While no one made a guide or map for the choose your own adventure books, God did in fact provide a guide for helping us in our every day life decisions while we deal with other people and with God. While the Bible as a whole provides much value and insight here, Proverbs in particular comes to mind as providing lots of specific applications of wisdom for how we make our daily decisions. Many of the Proverbs are laid out in such a way as to contrast righteousness and wisdom to wickedness. We do well to study Proverbs consistently and apply it as God intended as the guide to help us navigate our lives to the best possible outcome.

Consider this as you read excerpts from Proverbs 17 below. Do not think of it as something old and out of date. Instead, think of it as part of an instruction manual that God has given you… yes you, specifically… for your life. Read it as if God meant for you to use it in making your daily decisions, because He did!

Proverbs 17

      1Better is a dry morsel and quietness with it
Than a house full of feasting with strife.

      2A servant who acts wisely will rule over a son who acts shamefully,
And will share in the inheritance among brothers.

      3The refining pot is for silver and the furnace for gold,
But the LORD tests hearts.

      4An evildoer listens to wicked lips;
A liar pays attention to a destructive tongue.

      5He who mocks the poor taunts his Maker;
He who rejoices at calamity will not go unpunished.

      13He who returns evil for good,
Evil will not depart from his house.

      14The beginning of strife is like letting out water,
So abandon the quarrel before it breaks out.

      15He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous,
Both of them alike are an abomination to the LORD.

      18A man lacking in sense pledges
And becomes guarantor in the presence of his neighbor.

Think of situations and decisions you are facing today in your life. Which verses in today’s reading is God putting on your heart to apply in your life to help you make the right decisions?

God may also show you through His word some examples of where you handled a situation well, even if the outcome was not what you wanted… thank Him for the encouragement!

Continue to study and apply the wisdom contained in Proverbs to specific issues in your life. Use the wisdom God provides to help your find the best outcome based on choices you make that  influence your own personal adventure in life!

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Remember that all you have belongs to God. Manage your money God’s way. Visit GrowGodsMoney.org .

A Light In The Darkness

We have probably all experienced a time when we are in true darkness. Perhaps camping in the woods on a very cloudy night? Maybe just in our house when the power goes out at night or we wake up at night and walk around the house without turning lights on so as not to disturb our family. Sometimes we can start to remember our way around if it is familiar circumstances… but how well do we do when there are unexpected obstacles (e.g. toys left out in pathways, etc.) or imagine if someone rearranged all the furniture! Usually we will not do well. We will trip or fall or gather bumps and bruises. It is really hard to get around without being able to see where we are going… to recognize clearly what are the obstacles that could hurt us and which is the safe path to travel. This is how many feel about managing their personal finances and trying to get beyond paycheck to paycheck or day to day living and into planning and strategy to prepare for what is to come in the future.

That is why God has given us the Bible! What a glorious gift to His people to have His written instruction book for life. If we choose to use it, it serves to light up our path so we can safely find the right path for living and avoid the traps and obstacles that could hurt us.

Psalm 119:105

105Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.

Proverbs in particular serves to provide timeless wisdom for us in how we should deal with our fellow man and also with God. It reminds us of what is good and what is bad. Remember, true goodness is that which is identified by God as right, not that which is identified by man as right. Man often gets it wrong. That is why God wrote it down!

Read Proverbs often, and not as if you are trying to win a race for reading quickly but rather pausing and considering how each verse is relevant not only in life today, but specifically how it may apply to your life. Then allow yourself the humility to admit where you are wrong and work to change your behavior and attitude. Those who are too proud to admit they are wrong, never get the benefit of learning to do better.

Proverbs 16

Contrast the Upright and the Wicked

       1The plans of the heart belong to man,
But the answer of the tongue is from the LORD.

      2All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight,
But the LORD weighs the motives.

      3Commit your works to the LORD
And your plans will be established.

      4The LORD has made everything for its own purpose,
Even the wicked for the day of evil.

      5Everyone who is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD;
Assuredly, he will not be unpunished.

      6By lovingkindness and truth iniquity is atoned for,
And by the fear of the LORD one keeps away from evil.

      7When a man’s ways are pleasing to the LORD,
He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.

      8Better is a little with righteousness
Than great income with injustice.

      9The mind of man plans his way,
But the LORD directs his steps.

      10A divine decision is in the lips of the king;
His mouth should not err in judgment.

      11A just balance and scales belong to the LORD;
All the weights of the bag are His concern.

      12It is an abomination for kings to commit wicked acts,
For a throne is established on righteousness.

      13Righteous lips are the delight of kings,
And he who speaks right is loved.

      14The fury of a king is like messengers of death,
But a wise man will appease it.

      15In the light of a king’s face is life,
And his favor is like a cloud with the spring rain.

      16How much better it is to get wisdom than gold!
And to get understanding is to be chosen above silver.

      17The highway of the upright is to depart from evil;
He who watches his way preserves his life.

      18Pride goes before destruction,
And a haughty spirit before stumbling.

      19It is better to be humble in spirit with the lowly
Than to divide the spoil with the proud.

      20He who gives attention to the word will find good,
And blessed is he who trusts in the LORD.

      21The wise in heart will be called understanding,
And sweetness of speech increases persuasiveness.

      22Understanding is a fountain of life to one who has it,
But the discipline of fools is folly.

      23The heart of the wise instructs his mouth
And adds persuasiveness to his lips.

      24Pleasant words are a honeycomb,
Sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.

      25There is a way which seems right to a man,
But its end is the way of death.

      26A worker’s appetite works for him,
For his hunger urges him on.

      27A worthless man digs up evil,
While his words are like scorching fire.

      28A perverse man spreads strife,
And a slanderer separates intimate friends.

      29A man of violence entices his neighbor
And leads him in a way that is not good.

      30He who winks his eyes does so to devise perverse things;
He who compresses his lips brings evil to pass.

      31A gray head is a crown of glory;
It is found in the way of righteousness.

      32He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty,
And he who rules his spirit, than he who captures a city.

      33The lot is cast into the lap,
But its every decision is from the LORD.

Challenge yourself to identify at least one, but maybe even up to three specific things, that you want to try to work on related to managing your personal finances. As an example, you might consider focusing verse 3 or verse 8.

      3Commit your works to the LORD
And your plans will be established.

8Better is a little with righteousness
Than great income with injustice.

Apply these goals to specific decisions and strategies you need to make in regards to your personal finances. If you can, share what you are working on with a trusted friend or family member who is a genuine follower of Christ. There is something for all of us to work on… we just need to admit it and then get about pursuing it!

My top pick for me personally today…

20He who gives attention to the word will find good,
And blessed is he who trusts in the LORD.

What will you work on? Remember to ask God in prayer to help you!

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Remember that all you have belongs to God. Manage your money God’s way. Visit GrowGodsMoney.org .

Resist When Sinners Entice You

There are right ways to increase your wealth and wrong ways. The truth of what is right and wrong is not determined by whether or not you gain money but rather by the standards God has provided us in His written word. It is better to be poor in finances and walk with God than to be rich in finances and live without Him.

Proverbs 1:8-19

The Enticement of Sinners

      8Hear, my son, your father’s instruction
And do not forsake your mother’s teaching;

      9Indeed, they are a graceful wreath to your head
And ornaments about your neck.

      10My son, if sinners entice you,
Do not consent.

      11If they say, “Come with us,
Let us lie in wait for blood,
Let us ambush the innocent without cause;

      12Let us swallow them alive like Sheol,
Even whole, as those who go down to the pit;

      13We will find all kinds of precious wealth,
We will fill our houses with spoil;

      14Throw in your lot with us,
We shall all have one purse,”

      15My son, do not walk in the way with them.
Keep your feet from their path,

      16For their feet run to evil
And they hasten to shed blood.

      17Indeed, it is useless to spread the baited net
In the sight of any bird;

      18But they lie in wait for their own blood;
They ambush their own lives.

      19So are the ways of everyone who gains by violence;
It takes away the life of its possessors.

Many people profess that they can help you on a path to having more money. Not all of the paths are righteous according to God’s standard. Choose carefully with the Bible as your guide. Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to help you make the right choices, even when the situation seems dire and there may seem to be no easy way out.

It is better to be poor and dwell with God than to be rich and dwell without Him. Even in matters of life and death it is better to choose the path that leads to heaven than the one that leads to hell… no matter what earthly wealth you may be promised in order for you to take the wrong path.

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Remember that all you have belongs to God. Manage your money God’s way. Visit GrowGodsMoney.org .

Find Favor With Both God And Man?

It is easy to become full of ourselves, filled with pride, when we succeed in the eyes of men. We must be careful to remain humble and serve God even in success. Many wise men, including David and Solomon, started with a close relationship with God and then drifted further from God when they had much success and power… and it was to their own downfall. When we find favor in the sight of God and man by living humbly and righteously according to God’s instruction, do not change the recipe. Keep doing the things that got you there… pray, study scripture, listen to God and obey, work hard, be patient, give glory to God for what He does through us, etc.

Joseph set a fantastic example in  Genesis 41:38-49. Joseph did not change when he was given great power and authority. He worked diligently and responsibly, maintaining his right relationship with God and he continued to experience favor from God and men as a result.

Joseph Is Made a Ruler of Egypt Continue reading Find Favor With Both God And Man?