I’m amazed at how much the Bible has to say about money – especially in the book of Proverbs.
This week in my Bible reading, I read Proverbs 1:20-33 – a passage that speaks to the wise and unwise choices people make every day with regard to money:
Out in the open wisdom calls aloud, she raises her voice in the public square; on top of the wall she cries out, at the city gate she makes her speech:
“How long will you who are simple love your simple ways? How long will mockers delight in mockery and fools hate knowledge? Repent at my rebuke! Then I will pour out my thoughts to you, I will make known to you my teachings. But since you refuse to listen when I call and no one pays attention when I stretch out my hand, since you disregard all my advice and do not accept my rebuke, I in turn will laugh when disaster strikes you; I will mock when calamity overtakes you—when calamity overtakes you like a storm, when disaster sweeps over you like a whirlwind, when distress and trouble overwhelm you.
“Then they will call to me but I will not answer; they will look for me but will not find me, since they hated knowledge and did not choose to fear the LORD. Since they would not accept my advice and spurned my rebuke, they will eat the fruit of their ways and be filled with the fruit of their schemes. For the waywardness of the simple will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them; but whoever listens to me will live in safety and be at ease, without fear of harm.”
– Proverbs 1:20-33 (NIV)
Here in this passage, Solomon gives us an interesting picture of “wisdom” having person-like qualities. He says that wisdom shouts, cries and calls out to warn people from being simpleminded – from falling prey to bad decisions.
These simpleminded people failed to gain knowledge or heed warning signs. They ignored wise advice and rejected correction. As a result, Solomon tells us that they will face calamity and will have to eat the fruit of their choices to go their own way and ignore wisdom.
But, those who listen to wisdom will be safe.
In our current economic climate, we don’t have to look far to see the calamitous results of bad money decisions:
- Major financial institutions have collapsed.
- Thousands of families have lost their homes to foreclosure.
- Millions have lost their jobs and are struggling because they didn’t have adequate savings in an emergency fund.
They presumed upon the future. And their future came crashing down. Then they begged for someone else to bail them out.
I think these tough economic times, while certainly difficult for those who are struggling, remind us all of the importance of being financially wise, making good decisions, and not presuming upon the future.
Today, financial wisdom is calling out. How well will we listen?