Contemporary English Version The rich have many friends; the poor have none. Good News Translation Rich people are always finding new friends, but the poor cannot keep the few they have. Holman Christian Standard Bible Wealth attracts many friends, but a poor man is separated from his friend. International Standard Version Wealth brings many friends, but a poor man is deserted by his friend.
NET Bible Wealth adds many friends, but a poor person is separated from his friend. New Heart English Bible Wealth adds many friends, but the poor is separated from his friend. Aramaic Bible in Plain English Possessions add many friends and the poor is separated from his friends. JPS Tanakh Wealth addeth many friends; But as for the poor, his friend separateth himself from him. New American Standard Wealth adds many friends, But a poor man is separated from his friend.
Jubilee Bible Wealth makes many friends, but the poor is separated from his neighbour. King James Bible Wealth makes many friends; but the poor is separated from his neighbor. American King James Version Wealth makes many friends; but the poor is separated from his neighbor. American Standard Version Wealth addeth many friends; But the poor is separated from his friend.
Brenton Septuagint Translation Wealth acquires many friends; but the poor is deserted even of the friend he has. Douay-Rheims Bible Riches make many friends: but from the poor man, even they whom he had, depart. Darby Bible Translation Wealth addeth many friends; but the poor is separated from his friend. English Revised Version Wealth addeth many friends: but the poor is separated from his friend. Webster's Bible Translation Wealth maketh many friends; but the poor is separated from his neighbor. Because of such difficulties to earn an income in the working world, people sometimes look for an easier alternative.
Some people who are too trusting may fall prey to some 'Get rich quick' investments that promise fast substantial returns without much effort, but at the risk of losing long-term security. Those who fail to think carefully of to read the fine print at the bottom of a contract before committing themselves to some lucrative venture, have ended up living with deep regrets. With the fast changing tides of the global market today, it is all too easy to make a decision that proves later on to be unwise.
Dearly beloved, because of the many traps and pitfalls that await the unwary pilgrim on his journey through this sinful world, wisdom is needed. And one area of life that we really need wisdom in, is in the acquisition and use of money. We need to seek God's wisdom for the way to handle our finances.
And one book of the Bible that provides us with some valuable insight from God on this, is the book of Proverbs. There are many proverbs scattered throughout the book of Proverbs that deal with the acquisition and use of money. And these can be categorised under at least five headings: I. How much wealth should you have before you are satisfied with what you have?
Bible Study Spiritual Wealth
Dearly beloved, we need to be careful how high we set our financial goals. Let us look at some proverbs that can help us: Proverbs ,5 'Labour not to be rich: cease from thine own wisdom. Wilt thou set thine eyes upon that which is not? We can only enjoy them for a while. Therefore we should not set out sights on becoming rich. Another proverb tells us what can happen to us if we put our trust in wealth.
Proverbs 'He that trusteth in his riches shall fall: but the righteous shall flourish as a branch. It is known as the parable of Rich Fool. In this parable a man had such abundant harvests that he decided to build bigger barns to hoard up all the surplus for himself, thinking that he now had enough riches to keep him in the lap of luxury for many years. But God had other plans for him -- he died that very night and never had the chance to carry out his plans and enjoy his riches. Let us be warned through this, not to be like the rich fool who set his financial goals only to enjoy himself, and without any reference to God.
In contrast to this, we shall now look at Proverbs ,9. This proverb gives us the best and clearest guideline for setting financial goals: 'give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient [i. Because the writer sees that both of these conditions may lead him to dishonour the Lord. He knows that if he were to set his goal at being materially rich, he may become so self-sufficient that he would deny God. The temptations of wealth are so strong, that few are able to handle them successfully.
And the writer also knows that if he were to set his goal on the very opposite, i. And so he sets his goal at being neither rich nor poor. In today's language we would say, aim at being in the middle class or middle-income group. There is much wisdom in aiming to have a simple lifestyle with all of one's basic needs met as the proverb says, 'feed me with food convenient for me'. The problem is how to define 'basic needs'.
This varies from society to society, and even from generation to generation! A few decades ago in Singapore, it was considered sufficient to live in a 3-room flat, wear clothes bought in Chinatown, and go for a holiday once in a while to Malacca or KL. Today, this would be considered by many to be insufficient, because the norm has changed. The present generation may not settle for anything less than a 5-room flat, wearing Hang Ten or Ocean Pacific outfits, and going for a holiday in Australia!
Times have changed, and so have financial goals. How then can we know what is an acceptable financial goal? The answer is found in the same, proverb: 'give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me: Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the LORD? It follows therefore that what we should aim for, is a financial condition that will not cause us to dishonour God in any way in our lives.
The key consideration then, is on honouring God.
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And Christians in every society and in every generation then have to define for themselves what would be a reasonable financial condition to aim for, that would best enable them to honour the Lord. We should seek to acquire enough to meet our daily needs, so that all our time would not be so taken up in coping with health problems due to lack of food, water and shelter that we have no time left for God. We should also seek not to have so much wealth, that all our time is taken up in gathering and maintaining all our assets.
Proverbs says 'Better is little with the fear of the LORD than great treasure and trouble therewith. When we have set the right financial goals, the next thing we need wisdom for, is to determine the means we should use to meet those goals. In the book of Proverbs we will discover God's wisdom on this matter, telling us to: II.
The Bible in Basic English
This is oftentimes not easy in the world we live in, where the prevailing trend is to make a living by any possible means, honest or not. Not By Dishonesty Proverbs warns us against any attempt to acquire money by deceit: 'The getting of treasures by a lying tongue is a vanity tossed to and fro of them that seek death. By creating fictitious customers, he covered his tracks so well that his theft was not detected for five years.
What made this case so tragic is that his victims were all poor foreign workers from China who suffered very greatly through his dishonesty. A cancer stricken father had no money for his operation; children could no longer afford to go to school. This is the kind of sin that is mentioned in Proverbs ,23 'Rob not the poor, because he is poor: neither oppress the afflicted in the gate: For the LORD will plead their cause, and spoil the soul of those that spoiled them. Not by Gambling Another means of acquiring money that the Book of Proverbs condemns is gambling.
Proverbs 'Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labour shall increase. And when times are bad like the present time, and people are not able to get a job, the temptation sometimes comes to 'try your luck' so to speak.
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Please do not give in to such temptation. Dear friends, if any of you have been secretly or openly playing with jackpot machines, buying Singapore sweep, Toto or 4D, or placing bets on horses or on soccer matches, listen to what the Wisdom of God says in this proverb we just read - Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished. The money that is won is soon lost in the next round of gambling! Many families have been tragically destroyed all because of a parent who gambles. He gets so addicted to gambling that he is unable to feel for others.
He gambles late into the night instead of spending time with his family who needs him. He sells off the house and other family securities, and destroys the lives of his loved ones. How about those who speculate on the stock market, currency market or property market to make money?
This is actually another form of gambling, because it has the same risks involved. We should not be involved in anything that makes money by guessing the future value of a commodity.
African proverbs about goats
That's what speculation is all about. But there is nothing wrong with investing in shares just as a means of getting dividends from a long-term investment. No speculation is involved in this. Not By Habitual Borrowing Another means that we should not use to acquire money is habitual borrowing. Proverbs 'The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender. And what it teaches us is that borrowing puts the borrower at the mercy of the lender. If the borrower is unable to pay back what he owes to the lender, the lender can really make life very difficult for him.
Now, there are some people who keep borrowing only from those who would not be harsh with them when they are unable to pay off the loan. They may even go around the church, sharing their financial woes with others and asking for loans from member after member. This is not a good Christian testimony at all, and we do not want to encourage this.
When such a fellow church member comes to you, and you feel that he really needs help, please advise him to approach the welfare committee of our church. You may like to give to the church welfare fund to help him, as the committee will then make all the necessary enquiries, study his case thoroughly and come up with a comprehensive plan of action to help him. The point that must be emphasised is that habitual borrowing is not good at all, and we should refrain from doing it. There are times however when we find it necessary to take loans, e.
There is nothing wrong with that, provided we can afford the loan, and we have the means to pay off the loan. And please, do not assume that since your business is doing well at the moment, you have the means to pay off the loan. Some brethren have had to face financial difficulties because they committed themselves to servicing housing loans that they could well afford about five years ago when times were good.
But when the economy declined, they suddenly found themselves bearing a heavy financial burden they could not carry. But By Diligent Employment Having seen what means we should not use to to acquire money, let us now look at the means that we should use.
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