'Tis the season to test your treasure. Not only are we on gift-expectation overload with Christmas, but then comes the year's end and that one last chance for tax-deductible charitable giving. December bids us dig deeper in our wallets than any other season.
Which may be a great annoyance for Scrooge — but it is a great opportunity for the Christian. It's a time to check our spiritual pulse, and to open our hearts to blessings from God that money can't buy.
Here, then, are five truths to rehearse for Christmas spending and year-end giving.
1. Money Is a Tool
Money itself is not evil. It is not wealth per se that is sinful, but the "desire to be rich" (1 Timothy 6:9). It is not money, but "the love of money" that is "a root of all kinds of evils" (1 Timothy 6:10), from which we should keep our lives free (Hebrews 13:5). It is "this craving" (1 Timothy 6:10) in our sinful hearts which is so dangerous.
With all the strong warnings in the Bible about how we orient toward money (like the condemnation of luxury and self-indulgence in James 5:1–6), it can be easy to forget that the problem isn't money, but our hearts. Finances, salaries, and budgets are an important part of the world our Lord created and entered into as a creature, with all its limitations of space, time, and finitude.
[Read the rest of the article at Desiring God.]