Money matters. Jesus spoke about money and possessions second only to the kingdom of God. That means He even spoke more about money than about love. Money must have been an important discipleship issue!
Jesus said, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also,” Matthew 6:21 (CSB). Money can be distracting. Worrying over it and focusing on it can lead to losing focus on God and neighbor (Matthew 22:37-29). Keep in mind that when anything replaces God in our lives, it is an idol.
Paul warns a young preacher about the love of money:
But those who want to be rich fall into temptation, a trap, and many foolish and harmful desires, which plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.1 Timothy 6:9-10
Money matters as a discipleship issue!
Do we dare risk making making those we teach and disciple angry that we are addressing money? Can I be more confrontational? Do you have a personal problem with the love of money? Is that the reason we shy away from addressing it with disciples?
Money matters. It is an important discipleship issue. Jesus addressed money with His disciples many, many times. Eleven of the 39 parables of Jesus were about money. It is obvious in Jesus’ day that thinking about money was upside down. And it is today as well.
It is important to spend time when discipling on the teachings of Jesus about money. At the same time, it is important to help your disciples learn to put money in the right perspective. Help them to examine their decisions and actions related to money. Ask them, “What does scripture (or Jesus) say about this?” Then help them search for answers.
Lead them toward complete worship of God with no competing idols, including money. Help them move from distraction by and worry about money and possessions. Lead them toward contentment. Lead them to love God and their neighbor–even with their money. Help them use money as a tool for giving and ministry rather than allowing money to use and abuse them.
Money matters, especially if it gets in the way of our relationship with God and man. Take the time to get this right. It will change your discipleship. It will change your life! Make disciples!