You’ve probably heard the expression “Money can’t buy happiness.” Personally, I struggle with that statement because I can think of a lot of things I could buy that would make me very happy! At least for a while. That said, I can also very much affirm—based on personal experience—the absolute validity of the fifth biblical principle concerning money.
- Money cannot buy life’s most valuable possessions.
It is strange how so many people live under the delusion that a fat bank account will make possible the best things in life—when, in fact, it will provide no such thing. Don’t misunderstand me. There is nothing wrong with having wealth if you have earned it honestly and if your perspective on your wealth stays solidly biblical. I can affirm the words of vaudeville singer Sophie Tucker, who famously said, “I’ve been rich and I’ve been poor—and rich is better.”
However, the good life should not be equated with “the true life,” which Paul called “life indeed” (1 Timothy 6:19). Money will only buy things that are for sale, and happiness, a clear conscience, and freedom from worry are not! Money can be used to purchase lovely and comfortable dwellings, pleasure vacations, and delightful works of art. But the most valuable things in life are not for sale. What are some of those priceless possessions?
Better is a little with the fear of the LORD
Than great treasure and turmoil with it. (15:16)
Better is a dish of vegetables where love is
Than a fattened ox served with hatred. (15:17)
- A good name, untarnished reputation, and enduring respect
A good name is to be more desired than great wealth,
Favor is better than silver and gold. (22:1)
Better is the poor who walks in his integrity
Than he who is crooked though he be rich. (28:6)
From Living the Proverbs by Charles R. Swindoll, copyright © 2012. Reprinted by permission of Worthy Inspired., an imprint of Hachette Book Group, Inc.