Who wants to be a millionaire? If the powerball fever that gripped the nation in the last few weeks is any indication, quite a few people want to be millionaires. The jackpot was worth approximately $590 million dollars. The chances of winning were 1 in 175.2 million. Do you want to be a millionaire? I think we've all had times when we've fantasized about what it might be like to win the lottery. But even if you don't necessarily want to be a millionaire, being financially secure is something that we all strive for. This desire for security can be the reason you are pursuing education, a certain major, or the type of job you are looking for. Lack of financial security can cause terrible stress. But is this God's intention? Is this what God wants you to live for or to hope for?
What is money for? How do we use it for godly purposes? Today we are going to look at one of the wealthiest men in the Bible: King Solomon.
Solomon was the son of King David. David had wanted to build a temple for God but instead, God chose his son Solomon to build the temple (1 Chronicles 22). So growing up, Solomon had a great purpose set before him. One purpose of Solomon's wealth was to build a temple that would glorify God.
But after Solomon finished building the temple, he started getting bored. As his wealth increased, his ability to avoid temptation decreased. The book of Ecclesiastes details some of his struggles (Ecclesiastes 2:9). After the temple was built, Solomon lost his purpose for this wealth. And instead of dedicating himself toward bringing more glory to God, he started focusing on himself and it only made him miserable.
And later in life, Solomon's wisdom did him no good because he didn't apply it. 1 Kings 11 tells us that Solomon was led astray by his 700 wives and 300 concubines.
Why did Solomon fall so far? It could be because he prided himself on his wisdom and he thought he could withstand the temptation of wealth and ungodly influences. But he couldn't. If the wisest man in the whole world couldn't stand firm in the face of temptation and ungodly influences what hope do we have?
What lessons can we learn from Solomon's life? 1) Solomon lost sight of what his wealth was for - to glorify God; 2) Solomon was deceived - he had wisdom but did not apply it. 1 John 2:15-16 tells us not to love the world or the things of the world.
So how does God want us to use our wealth? 1) God wants us to help others with it, especially the poor (Matthew 6:19); 2) God wants us not to worry about it (Matthew 6:25); God wants us to enjoy it (1 Timothy 6:17, Ecclesiastes 5:19).
Basically this can be boiled down to three principles we need when dealing with wealth:
1) Wisdom to live simply
2) Wisdom to save responsibly
3) Wisdom to give generously
How will you respond to God today and this week? Where is God calling you to give? How is God calling you to give and to serve?