Are Finances a Spiritual Matter?

The simple answer is yes! I know that many want to separate finances and spiritual matters like America has separated church and state. But the same is true in both instances, and if you are a follower of Christ, then your worldview is through a biblical perspective. How we make decisions on our finances are also seen through this lens, or at least it is supposed to be.

The old saying, “show me your checkbook, and I will tell you your priorities…” paints a different picture of Christians regarding finances. Surveys of Christians vs. Non-Christians show that in most areas, Christians are on par with items like charity to non-profits, playing the lottery, struggling with debt, and the goals of our financial situation improving. Christians fall behind in charity to the homeless and community involvement, which seems odd with a worldview that is focused on sharing the gospel and reaching our communities. Please understand that this is just what the survey results showed, and I am not saying that you or your church is against charity to the homeless or community involvement. The more significant takeaway is that, as Christians, our finances don’t differ from our non-Christian counterparts.

In the US, after World War II, there was an interesting culture that developed. The whole country was united, not by an agreement on a topic but by the fact that television was catching on. There were basically three channels, so everyone watched the same shows at the same time every week. The American consumer replaced manufacturing and farming as the primary source of economic growth. This culture has become so ingrained in Americans that how we spend our finances and the lifestyle, in general, a Christian lifestyle, we live have been molded by this culture. The post world war culture has influenced what we feel is necessary for our daily lives and how we compare ourselves to others. As Americans, this has become our default, and most don’t even realize it is the default. The American dream culture drives more of our decisions than a purely Christian worldview. While we may hold an American Christian worldview, it doesn’t look like we differ much from non-Christian Americans because it is a Christian-based culture.

In general, America, compared with other countries in the world, would still be considered predominately Christian. Again, this is built into our Post WWII culture. This is changing, and we must ensure we are not pulled along as Christians. Finances are a significant part of the American dream culture. Christians, especially American Christians, have far greater resources for spreading the gospel as long as we keep our worldview lens focused on Him. As culture continues to shift away from the post-WWII culture, our finances will and should differ significantly from our non-Christian counterparts. “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” – Matthew 6:24