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My Top 10 Favorite Proverbs About Money

proverbs about moneyIt’s an exciting milestone day for me as my Hidden Nuggets Series is turning 50…as in this will be the 50th post in the series I started just over a year ago. It’s been an encouraging experience for me personally as I’ve explored how verses in the Bible and proverbs about money relate to my personal financial journey and issues in the world at large.

In case you are wondering, my interest in what the Bible said about money began while leading Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University class in 2010. In the middle of a video session, Dave made an off-hand remark saying that a person could get a degree in personal finance just by reading the Biblical book of Proverbs. “It’s in there…really!” he said, and then went on with the lesson.

That statement intrigued me. For days I couldn’t shake the comment.

So I started reading from Proverbs – one chapter a day for a month. That month of reading and recording all the proverbs about money I could find so inspired me, I decided to read the entire Bible through in a year and record all the verses that discussed a money related theme. I would find over 400 passages in all…you can find them categorized here.

That exercise taught me that if God takes the issue of money and our use of it seriously then so should I.

Top 10 Proverbs About Money

To celebrate my 50th post in the Hidden Nuggets Series I’d like to list and rank my personal top 10 proverbs about money and share a brief snippet about what the verse means to me. Here they are from #10 to #1.

10. Proverbs 21:5 – “The plans of the diligent lead surely to plenty, but those of everyone who is hasty, surely to poverty.”

My takeaway: Financial freedom and success happens one step at a time. Having a plan and sticking to it with focus and discipline is what brings the victory.

9. Proverbs 10:22 – “The blessing of the Lord, makes one rich, and he adds no sorrow with it.”

My takeaway: I’m not going to bless my children with a piece of bread only for it to be moldy. Something can’t be a blessing from God and at the same time create strife and conflict in my life (like that great deal on the new car [blessing] that I can’t afford the payments on later [sorrow]). More often than not if there is sorrow going on in my life it’s selfishly inflicted through poor decisions.

8. Proverbs 23:4 – “Do not overwork to be rich; because of your own understanding, cease!”

My takeaway: To have some life balance. I will miss out on much that’s valuable in life if my sole focus is on building wealth. Plus, as verse 5 of the same chapter will say, riches are fleeting. They “fly away like an eagle toward heaven.”

7. Proverbs 22:2 – “The rich and the poor have this in common, the Lord is the maker of them all.”

My takeaway: God is no respecter of persons. In His eyes, I’m no better than another person simply because I’ve achieved a measure of wealth. His love and the gift that He offered extend to all mankind.

6. Proverbs 31:10-11 – “Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies. The heart of her husband safely trusts her; so he will have no lack of gain.”

My takeaway: A big secret to my success rests with my incredible wife. She deserves far more credit than I give her.

5. Proverbs 13:22 – “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children…”

My takeaway: The choice to provide for my own is always a right one. If done properly, my personal and financial legacy can live on for multiple generations…hopefully indefinitely.

4. Proverbs 3:9-10 – “Honor the Lord with your possession, and with the first fruits of all your increase; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.”

My takeaway: God wants the first bite of pie. I should give to Him first from the continual increase of my wealth. After all, since He created the earth, all that is in it belongs to Him anyway. I’m simply a steward of the resources He provides.

3. Proverbs 22:1 – “A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, Loving favor rather than silver and gold.”

My takeaway: In his book The Millionaire Mind, author Thomas J. Stanley noted that “millionaires rated integrity [being honest with all people] as the number one factor out of 30 that explains their economic success.” They didn’t seek after wealth first, desiring instead that personal character and a good name was the distinguishing mark of their life.

2. Proverbs 22:7 – “The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.”

My takeaway: Debt brings risk and oversight from a lender. This puts me in a subservient position and creates a lack of freedom. The ability to make choices is limited until that debt is paid off. I’d rather be free than at the beck and call of another.

1. Proverbs 14:23 – “In all labor there is profit, but idle chatter leads only to poverty.”

My takeaway: Nobody owes me. The success I attain will result from the depth of my own work ethic.

There you have it…my top 10 favorite proverbs about money. As I mentioned, there are many more verses about money in the Bible. I encourage you to take a look if you are interested in further study. Hopefully, at least these were an encouragement to you today.

Questions: Do any of these verses stand out to you? Do you have any favorite proverbs about money or Bible verse dealing with money?

Image at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Next Post: 7 Financial Hurdles to Becoming a Stay at Home Dad

Prior Post: Building Trust With Your Audience: Should a Blogger Care?  

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Comments

  1. Proverbs 22:7 is the biggie for me. Not so much the rich/poor part, but definitely the debt/servant part. When you are in debt, you can’t choose to do what you want to do. You have to pay the bills and sometimes this means working a job you dislike because it pays the bills. By not having debt, you can do whatever you want, regardless of the pay. Much more freedom by being debt free.
    Jon recently posted…Investing Made Simple: Your Guide to ETF or Mutual FundMy Profile

  2. Number 7 definitely stuck out to me. I subconsciously tend to think I’m better than those who don’t track their money, or those who don’t care about their net worth, etc. But in all seriousness, God doesn’t care about any of that. We are all His children, not matter how rich or how poor you are.
    Lisa E. recently posted…July 2014 Net Worth UpdateMy Profile

  3. Hi Brian – New-ish reader to your blog and wanted to say thank you for sharing these proverbs which I found very encouraging! I particularly enjoy #4 which reminds me of The Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-30). Honoring God with my possessions, with His blessing, is the motivation and inspiration for my blog. Like you, I want to be a steward of what He provided me with.
    Emily recently posted…Tips for Frugal Travelling in BrazilMy Profile

  4. Great selections Brian. I personally enjoyed Proverbs 22:7, because it reminds me why I need to stay out of debt and become my own master, so to speak. Of course, I’m sure that will change in the future. Once I have more money, that means I have more money to give away to improve the lives of others.
    Ryan recently posted…truly passive incomeMy Profile

  5. When I look at people that gave given themselves to their cause, like Mother Theresa and the pope, it’s amazing how frugal they live, always giving their time and energy to the less fortunate.
    No Nonsense Landlord recently posted…Multifamily Landlords Are Better Than Single Family LandlordsMy Profile

  6. These are excellent passages. I think its really valuable to reflect on these elements of the Bible when struggling with how one’s relationship with money ought to be. It can get murky at times, but these can help bring clarity.
    The Wallet Doctor recently posted…Getting kids hooked on savingMy Profile

  7. One of my favorite verses is Mark 12:41-44, about the widow giving all she had. I’ve been fortunate to know people who give all they seemingly have, not just in financial resources but in time and talents too – their humbleness and generosity is remarkable. Whenever I read this verse I think of two people specifically – Mother Teresa and an acquaintance named Tammy.

  8. You included my favorite one – Prov 23:4. Being rich is fine, but God doesn’t want us working ourselves to the bone just to get rich. It’s a reminder that there is more to life than work and we have to be careful that we aren’t working for the wrong reasons.
    Kirsten recently posted…Success Story Saturday & Good ReadsMy Profile

    • When I read that one it really hit me Kirsten. God surely doesn’t care that we get rich…we can use our wealth to bless others. However, if it’s the driving force of our life it’s probably hindering our relationship with Him. It’s not worth it if that is going to happen.

  9. Hi Brian,

    Great post! I do enjoy reading what the bible says about money, but I need to devote more time to just reading it in general. I am finding that I am quite a bit busier right now visiting family or friends, working on the blog, and just work in general whether it be the day time job or stuff to do around the house. Still never a good excuse.

    Kipp
    Kipp recently posted…Frankly Frugal Finance: Weekender Edition #4My Profile

    • “…I need to devote more time to just reading it in general.” Agreed…I think we are all there at some level. I try to make it the first thing to do in the morning, even if it’s just five minutes. If I don’t, the day completely gets away from me.

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