One of the end-time signs is that people will become ‘lovers of money’ (2 Timothy 3:1-5). There is nothing wrong with having money and building wealth, as long as a person keeps financial blessings in a Biblical perspective and gives God the glory for money earned in an honest manner. “Honor the Lord from your wealth” (Proverbs 3:9).
However, honoring the Lord with your wealth is easier said than done due to our sinful human nature. More often than not, “those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires, which plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith, and pierced themselves with many a pang” (1 Timothy 6:9-10).
The wise king Solomon said, “He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance with its income” (Ecclesiastes 5:10). Still, it seems as though people are becoming ‘lovers of money and pleasure’ more and more so each passing year, here in the 21st century we live in. This comes as no surprise to believers who read the Bible, for Jesus warned us this would be a couple of the signs when perilous times occur in the last days.
The perilous signs of the last days will increase, like birth pangs, during the lead-up to the Rapture of Christians from the earth. This will be followed by the seven-year Tribulation and then the glorious return of Jesus Christ to earth at the end of the great tribulation period, at which time He will establish his earthly reign during the thousand-year Millennium period.
This article about wealth led me to think about the ways we obtain wealth during our lifetime. The following are my thoughts on how people earn money and grow their wealth.
In this ‘me, me, me’ generation we live in, it actually appears the ‘I’s have it when it comes to obtaining wealth.
I have identified twelve ways to become monetarily wealthy. Much to my surprise, during my research, I discovered that all twelve ways to become wealthy begin with the letter ‘I.’ To become, say, a millionaire (that is to have at least a net worth of one million dollars in cash and assets), it seems the ‘I’ words hold the secret to financial wealth. I have listed the twelve ways of becoming monetarily wealthy below. There are nine good ways and three not-so-good (bad) ways.
1. Incomes—take high-salary, long-term career jobs while saving chunks of money on a regular basis.
2. Industriousness—work hard for as long as it takes until it rewards you financially in a big way
3. Ingenuity—work smarter, not harder, to obtain wealth, possibly through self-employment.
4. Intelligence—a high I.Q. never hurts in seeking wealth, but use the brain cells you do have wisely.
5. Investments—wise and timely investments can potentially make you wealthy quickly or over time.
6. Intuition—knowing early in life which assets or collectibles will greatly increase in value over the years.
7. Internet—start up the next big (.com) online business.
8. Inventions—create the next widely popular material thing to become independently wealthy.
9. Inheritance—is the easy way for a person to gain wealth. It can eliminate the need for the other ‘I’ ways!
10. Iniquitously—treating people unfairly to obtain wealth, like overcharging for goods and services.
11. Illegally—the breaking of human government laws while seeking get rich quick wealth.
12. Immorally—the breaking of God’s commandments while seeking to become monetarily wealthy.
Therefore, it appears the ‘I’s have it when it comes to being monetarily prosperous. However, at best, possessing wealth only provides momentary and fleeting happiness during our earthly life but has no eternal value whatsoever.
To possess a lasting eternal life, you need to ‘invest’ yourself in another even greater ‘I’—and that is the great ‘I AM.’
“God said to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM'” (Exodus 3:14). “Jesus said, ‘Truly, truly, I tell you, before Abraham was born, I AM'” (John 8:58). “‘I AM the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, who is, was, and is to come— the Almighty” (Revelation 1:8).
Have you read in the Bible the parable Jesus told about the rich man and Lazarus? (Luke 16:19-26)
“Now there was a rich man dressed in purple and fine linen, who lived each day in joyous splendor. And a beggar, named Lazarus, lay at his gate, covered with sores and longing to be fed with the crumbs that fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores. One day the beggar died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side. And the rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where the rich man was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham from afar, with Lazarus by his side. So he cried out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in agony in this fire.’
“But Abraham answered, ‘Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things. Now he is comforted here, while you are in agony. And besides all this, a great chasm has been fixed between us and you, so that even those who wish cannot cross from here to you, nor can anyone cross from there to us.'”
Jesus also said, “It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God” (Mark 10:25).
“Riches won’t help on the day of wrath [judgment], but right living can save you from [eternal] death” (Proverbs 11:4).
Right living means to place your belief and put your faith in Jesus Christ, who died and rose again to pay the price for all of our sins, past, present, and future. Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He is the ONLY way to Heaven.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him, will not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
Put your trust in God—not money. God will take care of you. Another ‘I,’ the prophet Isaiah recorded God’s promise.
“DO NOT FEAR, FOR I AM WITH YOU
DO NOT BE DISMAYED, FOR I AM YOUR GOD
I WILL STRENGTHEN YOU, SURELY I WILL HELP YOU” (ISAIAH 41:10).
“EVEN TO YOUR OLD AGE, I SHALL BE THE SAME
AND EVEN TO YOUR GRAYING YEARS, I SHALL BEAR YOU
I HAVE DONE IT, AND I SHALL CARRY YOU
AND I SHALL BEAR YOU, AND I SHALL DELIVER YOU” (ISAIAH 46:4).