One of the things people are anxious to have is financial security. Unfortunately, economic turmoil has mean’t that pensions are unsafe and those with money on deposit are left wondering how secure their savings really are! Again, at the time of writing, around two hundred and fifty homes are being repossessed each day and one can’t imagine the emotional turmoil it must bring to lose one’s home. It appears “social breakdown” is being followed by “economic breakdown” in the UK.
It may come as a surprise to some, but the Bible has quite specific teaching on the subject of economics and finance. As we will see in a moment, just as the breakdown of society has been caused by our own disobedience to the laws of God, so likewise national economic breakdown is the result of disobedience as well. There is in fact a direct link between obedience to the laws of God and financial success and of course the reverse – a direct link between disobedience and economic meltdown. In short, disobedience to the Ten Commandments doesn’t just effect society and the moral order – it also effects economics!
One of the starkest warnings about this subject comes from Deuteronomy Ch8, “Beware that you do not forget the Lord by not keeping His Commandments, lest when you have built beautiful houses and dwell in them, and your silver and gold are multiplied that you say in your heart ‘my own power has gained me this wealth.’ You must remember it is God alone who gives you the power to get wealth.” I wonder how many people realise that all the material blessings our nation has enjoyed in the past really was a gift from God – it wasn’t because of our own power or our own cleverness and skill – God is the One who gave us this power and ability to get wealth. How a nation or society behaves and conducts itself really does have economic consequences!
The Bible also however provides comfort and security for those who, through no fault of their own are caught up in this nationwide economic affliction. A nation is made up of many different individuals and just because the majority of people ignore and disobey their Creator, doesn’t mean to say that everyone does. One of the most beautiful verses regarding this promise of “security” and promise of “Divine help” comes from Deuteronomy Ch33v27 “The Eternal God is your refuge and underneath are His Everlasting arms.” Another comes from Isaiah Ch 43 v2“You are mine. When you pass through the waters I will be with you. And through the rivers, they will not overflow you and when you walk through the fire you shall not be burned, nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the Lord your God.” What a lovely promise and what a sense of security this brings when faced with such financial uncertainty.
Some years ago a Methodist preacher was busy in his study working on a sermon. Beside him, his small son sat by the fire looking at a picture book. Suddenly the minister remembered he had a large book upstairs in the bedroom which he could use. He asked his son to go and get it. The child was away for a long time and after a while the father thought he could hear the sound of sobbing on the stairs. He went out, and at the top of the staircase he saw his son crying bitterly with the large book he had tried to lift and carry, lying at his feet. “Oh, Daddy”, he cried, “I can’t carry it, it’s too heavy for me.” In a moment the father was up the stairs and stooping down took up both the book and the little fellow in his strong arms and carried them both to the room below. A small and insignificant event one might think – but afterwards as the minister thought about it, it profoundly struck him as a perfect example of how God deals with His children when they cry to Him in their hour of need. “He carries both them and their burdens so there is no longer a need for tears.” In Psalm 55 verse 22 it encourages us with these words, “Cast your burden on the Lord and He will sustain you. He will never permit the righteous to be moved.”
Whatever economic troubles lie ahead for us personally – let us rejoice that we have a God who cares and who will never let His children be overcome.