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||    Pope Shenouda    ||    Father Matta    ||    Bishop Mattaous    ||    Fr. Tadros Malaty    ||    Bishop Moussa    ||    Bishop Alexander    ||    Habib Gerguis    ||    Bishop Angealos    ||    Metropolitan Bishoy    ||


(H.G. Bishop Moussa)


Although money is a gift from God and has an important role in our lives, yet it is a root cause of all the recent conflicts at the individual, family, and international levels.

For this reason the Bible established basic principles for

using money to promote human happiness and serve mankind.

These principles have been defined to prevent us from making

money into another god and worshipping it. So what are

these principles?

1. Money Is A Gift

"God ... gives us richly all things to enjoy" (1Tim 6:17).

So whatever the material income we have may be, it is a real

gift from God. In fact, if God hadn't given us life we

would not have received that money and unless He had given

us scientific, practical and technical abilities we couldn't

have gotten anything. Not only that, if He hadn't given us

health we couldn't have used the different parts of our

bodies in producing what brings money to us: for example a

painter uses hands, an engineer uses eyes, a player uses

feet and so on.

Therefore, the Bible teaches us to talk to God when we offer

alms for helping the poor or the church, saying: "All

things come from You, and of Your own we have given You"

(1Chron 29:14).

2. Money Is Not Essential For Life

God said: "One's life does not consist in the abundance of

the things he possesses" (Lk 12:15), and He also said "Man

shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that

proceeds from the mouth of God" (Mt 4:4). "For in Him we

live and move and have our being" (Acts 17:28).

Hence life - and health too - is a gift from God.

Therefore, whatever we spend or however far we travel, our

own efforts to enjoy a good life and good health will end in

failure - because life is His and health is His too.

3. Money Is Not Essential For Happiness

"Better is a dry morsel with quietness, than a house full of

feasting with strife" (Prov 17:1). Happiness is a spiritual

and psychological quality which comes from a living

relationship with God: a soul at peace, a mind at rest,

knowing God's forgiveness, and genuine love of all people

whoever and whatever they may be.

From this logical concept we can see how hard it is to buy

happiness with money: in fact money has brought sadness to

those who have a great deal of it. They rest all their


hopes on investing or keeping it, but sometimes they destroy

themselves by chasing a false happiness.

4. Money Is Transitory

St. Paul says: "Command those who are rich in this present

age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but

in the living God" (1Tim 6:17).

This verse is true: money is uncertain. It may come today

and go tomorrow. You may get a fortune today and lose it

very quickly again when circumstances change. Money is a

dynamic thing. So we must be cautious of it: depending on

it could cause a nervous breakdown.

5. Money Is A Talent

The Bible commands those who are rich to "Do good, that they

may be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share,

storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to

come" (1Tim 6:18-19).

So what is required is to invest money for the glory of

Jesus Christ and the comfort and salvation of fellow human

beings, especially those who share with us in faith. "It is

more blessed to give than to receive" (Acts 20:35). The

more we give, the more we are increased in blessings. "The

generous soul will be made rich, and he who waters will also

be watered himself" (Prov 11:25). In fact some who are rich

have also been rich in faith and offered great service to


We are stewards over "unrighteous mammon" (Lk 16:1-15).

This means that money is not ours, but a gift from God.

Think of the unjust steward who used worldly wealth to make

friends. Although this money was not his, but his master's,

he used it to win friends and influence people. The unjust

steward's behavior was wrong in that he had used what he did

not have, yet God orders us to learn from "the people of

this age", to invest the money which He has given us for the

purpose of having prayerful friends. God has entrusted us

with our money so we must use it conscientiously. We use

what we need and leave what we don't to the will of God, Who

may use it in coping with an emergency.

Therefore, God warns us about being wasteful: "The drunkard

and the glutton will come to poverty" (Prov 23:21). He

encourages us to take up the pieces left over to serve

others (Mt 15:37).

6. Don't Depend On Money!

Depending on money is a denial of God. The Lord said: "How

hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter the

kingdom of God!" (Mk 10:24), or as Job said: "If I had made

gold my hope, or said to fine gold 'You are my confidence'

... I would have denied God Who is above" (Job 31:24-28).

So the problem lies in considering money as a pillar of life


and a support for the future. Yet this doesn't mean we

don't save, as saving is different from depending on money.

Saving means keeping the money we don't need and offering it

to God to use it according to His own will either for

service or for unforeseen circumstances.

So we must believe that God is essentially our sole

Supporter, but money is not: "He who trusts in his riches

will fall" (Prov 11:28).

7. Don't Crave For Money!

Those who love money fall into a lot of evils, such as

theft, embezzlement, and illegal practices, because they

want to be rich. "Those who desire to be rich fall into

temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful

lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the

love of money is the root of all kinds of evil" (1Tim 6:9-


So when God said: "No servant can serve two masters ... you

cannot serve both God and mammon" (Lk 16:13), He meant that

the love of money is opposed to the worship of God.

8. Enough Is Enough!

People are always trying to improve their personal income.

They keep changing jobs looking for a higher income, but the

main aim must be to have enough, not to live in luxury.

There is really a great difference between the two:

"Godliness with contentment is great gain" (1Tim 6:6); "Be

content with such things as you have" (Heb 13:5). "God is

able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always

having all sufficiency in all things, have an abundance for

every good work" (2Cor 9:8).

Satisfaction should be the norm: "Give us this day our

daily bread." This is what makes for a contented life lived

for the glory of God. God does not want us to be miserable,

but to be happy. He gives us the right to be satisfied.

But as for pleasure: "She who lives in pleasure is dead

while she lives" (1Tim 5:6).

And as for what people admire and run after: "All that is

in the world - the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes,

and the pride of life - is not of the Father but is of the

world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it"

(1Jn 2:16-17).

9. Planning The Budget

A Christian must plan the budget for the family. A couple

must honestly collect their money together and budget for

their needs according to their priorities:

For God: the 'firstlings' or the

first portion of everything we produce,

the tithe or tenth, and the vows.

For each partner: a suitable sum of

money for personal expenses.


For the family: its daily and

monthly expenses.

For the children: a family must plan a

better future for its children.

For the parents: when they have a

special need.

For savings: we must allow God to

act according to His will either for the

family or for others.

The spirit of understanding, love, justice and righteousness

must prevail among us. There's no doubt that a lot of

families break up because of money, even though it should

not carry so much weight in our lives.

||    Pope Shenouda    ||    Father Matta    ||    Bishop Mattaous    ||    Fr. Tadros Malaty    ||    Bishop Moussa    ||    Bishop Alexander    ||    Habib Gerguis    ||    Bishop Angealos    ||    Metropolitan Bishoy    ||

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