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To Be Rich Toward God, Part 1

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore
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March 14, 2024 7:35 pm

To Be Rich Toward God, Part 1

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore

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March 14, 2024 7:35 pm

Luke 12:15 says, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” It’s a verse that challenges us to be “rich toward God.” But how do you become rich in that way? On today's Faith & Finance Live, host Rob West will welcome Carolyn Calupca to share about the brand-new study guide from FaithFi based on the Parable of the Rich Fool. Then he’ll answer some questions on different financial topics. 

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The following program was prerecorded, so our phone lines are not open. Take care and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions. Luke 12, 15.

I am Rob West. That verse challenges us to be rich toward God. The theme of a powerful new study guide from Faithfi. Its author, Carolyn Kolupka, joins us today for a peek inside, and then we'll have some great calls that we've lined up.

But since this program is not live today, please hold your calls until we're back in the studio. This is Faith in Finance Live, biblical wisdom for your financial journey. Well, it's a pleasure to welcome Carolyn Kolupka to the program.

She was a longtime senior producer at Crown Financial Ministries, where she worked closely with Larry Burkett for many years. She's now a frequent contributor here at Faith in Finance and the author of our new four-week study, Rich Toward God, a study on the parable of the rich fool. Carolyn, welcome to this side of the microphone. Rob, thank you. I'm glad to be here. Carolyn, the historical context of the parable of the rich fool is fascinating, and I appreciated how you pulled this out so well in the Rich Toward God study.

I'd love for you to set that stage for us. Well, Rob, the year is 33 AD. It is the third year of Jesus' ministry. It's an intense time, both politically and spiritually. Rome still has Judea under its thumb.

There's an undercurrent of unrest. At this time, Jesus is walking to Jerusalem for the last time, and he's probably the only one who knows this. He's got a crowd of thousands following him at this point, because he's been teaching with an authority that the scribes and Pharisees just don't have.

So people are impressed by his miracles. They've been fed spiritually and physically, and he's been warning them about judgment to come and what to do about that. And then out of nowhere, so to speak, someone steps out of the crowd and asks him to solve a family fight about inheritance. Well, it makes this particular conversation pretty poignant, and I know we're going to unpack all that's going on here.

That's helpful, though, as background. So let me read this passage, and then I'm going to ask you to unpack it a bit for us. This, of course, comes from Luke 12, verses 13 to 21. Someone in the crowd said to him, Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me. But he said to him, Man, who made me a judge or arbitrator over you? And he said to them, Take care and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions. And he told them a parable saying the land of a rich man produced plentifully. And he thought to himself, What shall I do? For I have nowhere to store my crops.

And he said, I'll do this. I'll tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store all of my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years. Relax, eat, drink, be merry. But God said to him, Fool, this night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?

So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God. Now, Carolyn, why is this passage just as important for us today as it was 2000 years ago? Rob, Jesus' teaching is timeless because he always goes to the heart of the issues. And the heart of man has not changed since the beginning of time. So we need the answer to our heart problems as much now as they did then. Just like the rich man in the parable, we try to satisfy ourselves with material things. We accumulate, we protect our stuff with bigger houses, bigger storage units, bigger IRAs. So we just need to fix our own hearts just the way they did then.

Yeah, that's exactly right. I'm afraid we can actually redeem greed if we're not careful in the name of the American dream. And that was clearly not God's intent. Now, all of this leads to this big question at the end of that passage, Carolyn, that you addressed so well in the study. What does it mean to be rich toward God?

Give us some of your thoughts on that. Well, ultimately, it means to make God my treasure. So unlike the rich fool, we are supposed to desire God ahead of money, possessions, influence, success, those things which we choose to love, because those things don't last.

They are perishable. The rich fool didn't recognize God's authority or give him credit for his blessings, and he suffered the consequences. But when God is my treasure, I'm free to use his resources to serve others instead of myself. That's very well said.

We've got just about 20 seconds left. How can this study be helpful in encouraging God's people? Well, the study offers questions that lead us down the road to answering the question, What satisfies my deepest needs? Where can I find abundance? Am I rich toward God? And if you're not rich toward God, it leads you to how you can get there.

Yeah, it sure does. Well, Carolyn, thank you for your efforts on this and the incredible work you did in being its author. We'll have you back again real soon. Thanks.

I look forward to it. That's Carolyn Kolupka, author of the new FaithFi study, Rich Toward God, a study on the parable of the rich fool. You can find it at

That's We'll be right back. Great to have you with us today on Faith and Finance Live. I'm Rob West, your host.

Our team is away from the studio today, so don't call in. But coming up a little later, we'll have more of your questions right here on the program. Hey, let me take a moment to mention the FaithFi app. We'd love for you to download it. Just head to your app store wherever you download apps and search for FaithFi. That's faithfi.

You can manage your money. You can access the best content in biblical finance, podcasts, articles and videos. You can also participate in our FaithFi community where you can post questions and get answers from others on their stewardship journey. You'll find it in your app store. Just search for FaithFi or if it's easier, head to our website at

That's and you'll see the app right there on the home page. All right, we're going to dive in today. We'll begin in Mississippi. Hi, Diane.

How can I help? I'm married. I'm 59 and I never invested before and I have $100 and I was thinking of trying a mutual fund and I don't know if I should do it or not. Well, it's a great thought, Diane. I love the idea of you putting money away for the long haul. Even at 59, if the Lord tarries and you're in good health, you need this money that you would consider long-term in nature to last for decades. You need to be planning for at least three decades or more for this money to last, which means you have a proper time horizon to put that money at the risk of the stock or bond market or both. I think the key is just making sure that you truly have a long-term view with whatever you're allocating to the stock market, be it $100 or $100,000. You've got to start somewhere, so I think just starting with what you have available certainly is a great option.

Let me just ask a couple of questions though and then we'll talk about where you go from here. Do you have, Diane, what I would call an emergency fund, a liquid savings account separate from this money you're looking to invest? Yeah, I have, I think, $2,000.

That's it. And what do you all spend on a monthly basis roughly? What would be your total monthly expenses if you had to guess?

Well, probably $1,500, maybe $1,800. Okay. Well, my first recommendation to you is going to be let's do a budget. Not right now while we're on the phone, but I think in the next week or two, let's put a plan together. And one of the ways you can capture that if you'd rather use paper and pen is literally the two of you just carry a very small notebook around with you, maybe one as small as it fits in the palm of your hand. But every time you spend some money, write it down. And what we're trying to capture is not only those things that you get a bill for, like a utility bill or a mortgage bill, but also those things you don't get a bill for. So you guys go out to dinner or you stop and pick up something at the local market or you go to buy some clothes or you go out for an evening to see a movie, something like that.

You want to capture all those as well. And I'd love for you to develop a spending plan so that you all know exactly what you're spending in each category and you can make some course corrections. You may find you're spending money on things you would deem unnecessary and you can eliminate them, but it's hard to do that unless you really see where it's going. But let's say it's that $1,800 a month that you mentioned. I would really love for you to have three months expenses at a minimum in savings before you start investing.

So that's $5,400. And the reason is, I don't want you to put this hundred or any amount in the market when you only have, you know, $2,000 saved, because if something major came up unexpected, you'd have to deplete your emergency savings and then you'd have to pull that $100 out of the market in a very short period of time potentially. And that's just not the way we want to invest. We really want to only invest money in the stock market, whether it's individual stocks or mutual funds where we have at least a five year time horizon, preferably 10 or more. And that way we can weather those ebbs and flows of the market because the market hit an all time high on the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones.

I mean, higher than it's ever been in the history of the United States. And because of that doesn't mean it's not the right time to invest. I think you should still systematically invest in this market. But let's say we hit a recession later this year, which a lot of economists are expecting, the market will undoubtedly pull back. And if you needed to pull the money out, you could pull it out, your $100 could be worth $85.

And that's just not the way we want to invest. So my recommendation to you, Diane, would be take that hundred a month and whatever else you can free up by doing some work on your budget to identify expenses that you can eliminate. Let's say you can get that up to 150 a month and let's put that into your savings account until you get up to at least three months expenses.

That's fifty four hundred dollars. And then I think it's time to start thinking about, you know, putting money into a good, solid, maybe a faith based investing mutual fund, maybe inside a Roth IRA where it's after tax money, it grows tax free, and then you can pull it out at any point after age fifty nine and a half without any penalties, including the gains, as long as you leave it in there five years and you don't pay any tax on it. And that would be very simple to do. And you could just set up an automatic investment plan where it just automatically gets deposited into your Roth IRA and it automatically gets invested.

But I wouldn't do that now. Does that make sense, though? Yes, I think I'll try that first. OK. Yeah, very good. So I would after you work on the budget, I would try to figure out what that amount is that you can put in savings and I would automate it.

And here's what I mean by that. Just set up an automatic transfer right into your savings account every month. Now, make sure you got enough cushion there. I don't want you to overdraw yourself by doing this, but by setting it and forgetting it and building it into your plan, it's more likely to happen that way as opposed to you saying, well, when I get to the end of the month, whatever's left, I'll send that.

No, let's treat it like a bill and automatically transfer it to your savings until you get up to that three months expenses. Give that a shot. And hey, let me know how that goes along the way. And may the Lord bless you. Thanks for calling today. Let's go to Pennsylvania. Hi, John. Go ahead, sir. Yes.

Hi, Rob. I just had a question. How much of a net worth would my wife and I need at retirement to not have long term care insurance? Yeah, you know, the rule of thumb has been 2 million in assets.

It's now up to two and a half by most analysts. And the reason is just because of the rising cost of medical care, it's outpaced inflation pretty significantly. And so now, you know, full nursing care can run you nine 10,000 a month.

And so because of that, that number has been bumped up to two and a half million. So typically, what they will say is if you have assets, you know, between 200,002 or two and a half million, you need long term care insurance, or you should at least look at it and see if it fits in the budget below 200,000, you're going to really rely on Medicaid pretty quickly. And above two or two and a half million you can self-insure. Okay, so that would include your primary residence in that total net worth of two and a half million?

It would. I mean, assuming you would, I mean, the only challenge with that is that's very illiquid unless you put a reverse mortgage in place, which you could do. So let's say one of you needed to move into skilled care.

Obviously, you'd typically both go. But if one of you needed skilled care outside of the home, or if you needed in home care, it's illiquid. That's where I think a reverse mortgage can be a great planning tool to generate monthly income on a home that has significant equity or maybe is paid in full. But apart from that, you would need to look at other assets.

If you're willing to consider that home equity, then yes, you can make that a part of the plan. Hope that helps, John. Thanks for your call.

Well, folks, we're going to pause now for a brief break. But if you need assistance from a financial or legal professional, we'd love for you to visit And right there at the top of the page, it'll say find a professional, and you can find one of more than 1,500, perhaps one right in your area.

I would interview two or three, and there's a helpful list of questions there that you can use during that interview process. So check it out today at Much more to come just around the corner. Stick around. This is Faith in Finance Live with Rob West. Hey, if you hear a phone number mentioned today, please ignore that number and don't call us, because today's broadcast was previously recorded. But we think the upcoming information will help you and make you a wise steward of what God's given you.

So please stay tuned. Hey, before we head back to the phones, let me tell you about a brand new offering from Faithfi. We are so excited about our very first Faithfi study.

That's right. We're now producing studies for you to go deep into God's word around the money topic. Our very first one, we're just delighted to be able to offer to you. It's called Rich Toward God, and it's a study on the parable of the rich fool in Luke 12. It's a four week journey through Luke 12 to explore the themes of greed and eternal treasure and pride and true abundance. It ultimately helps you answer the question from this parable, what does it mean to live rich toward God? And whether you're going to do the study individually on your own or in a small group at church, it's an incredible resource.

It's beautiful. We're so excited about the design, and we'd love for you to check it out and maybe order one or several for your small group today. You can head to and click on shop at the top. S-H-O-P, that's Just click on our shop there, and you can check out our brand new study, Rich Toward God. Download it, or not download it, but order it today and jump into it with your small group and let us know how it goes. We're so excited to be able to explore these really important themes in God's word around our money management and its connection to our hearts through our new Faithfi studies. is where you can learn more. All right, back to the phones we go to Georgia. Hi, Sandra.

Go ahead. Hi, Rob. My 21 year old daughter is graduating from college this May. She managed to save a small amount of money, about $5,000. She wants to invest it all in a high yielding savings. I don't know much about it, so I'm calling to get some more information about that. Yeah, well I'd be happy to weigh in on that.

Let me just ask a question. I'm delighted that she saved this money. I'm glad she's already thinking about earning something on it. Does she have anything in mind with regard to the time horizon on when and how she would use this money in the future?

Not at this time. Okay. Do you think there's a chance, Sandra, she'd want to use it in the next five years for a car purchase, or down payment on a house, or first last in security on an apartment, something like that? More than likely, yes.

Okay, yeah, very good. So I think the savings is the right place to go. If at some point she decided she wanted to start saving for the long term, I'd love the idea of her opening a Roth IRA at some point, but I think we've got to get beyond the money that is either for emergencies now or even medium term savings for things that she might need in the next five years, and her idea of a high yield savings is perfect for both of those. In terms of how you should think about this, a savings account, whether it's a high yield savings or a regular traditional savings account at a brick and mortar bank down the street from your house, are basically the same, with one exception. The high yield savings typically is from the online banks, where they don't pay for the brick and mortar operations, and therefore they can pass along a lot more of that savings to the depositor. They're both backed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, FDIC, which just means that the deposit is protected by the full faith and credit of the United States government.

So if the bank or institution holding the money fails for whatever reason, and that doesn't happen very often, but if it did, then the government would step in and make sure that the money is protected and that it's liquid, that the depositors can get access to the money, and so that's where the FDIC provides that confidence. In terms of where to go to find a high yield savings account, I would go to the website That's Just click on high yield savings right there on the front page, and every day they're ranking the high yield savings accounts based on who's offering them very best and most attractive interest rates right now, and they offer their five star rating system, which factors in things like the strength of the bank, their customer service, just a whole number of issues. And I think as you and she look through this list, you could land on one that you feel good about. I mean, for instance, you'll find some today as high as 5%.

You'll find others between 4.3 and 4.5%, but I think if you find one that's highly rated in the five star rating system and has something around 4.5% or more, that would be a great option. If she uses a traditional checking account, she could open this account just for her savings and then link it electronically to her checking account. And that way, as she builds up more money in her checking account from her job, maybe she gets a direct deposit, she creates a spending plan or a budget, and hopefully she's living on less than she's making, so every month she's got a little bit left over. Then with a click of a button, she could automatically transfer that surplus on a monthly basis over to her new savings account electronically. It would be a great way for her to make a little bit of money on the money that she's accumulated. So if you take this, I think you said it was $5,000 over the next 12 months, she can make $275, which is great and it's completely safe. Does that make sense?

It does. I'm sorry. You said bankrate? I missed that. Yes, ma'am., so, and then just click on high yield savings and you'd find a list of what their interest rate is today, whether or not they have any minimums on the deposits, so the minimum amount that you need to start the account, and then you'll also see whether they're a member of FDIC, which is important, and they're ranking based on Bankrate's five star rating system. Okay, very good. Thank you so very much. You're welcome, Sandra.

Thanks for calling. Hey, let me send you a copy of Howard Dayton's book Your Money Counts. I think this will be a great little primer for her to get started in understanding how to handle money God's way. It'll cover things like the dangers of debt and the importance of a spending plan and the importance of compound interest for investing, but all through the lens of scripture. So you stay on the line, we'll get your name and we'll send you Your Money Counts from Howard Dayton as our gift to you to pass along to her.

God bless you, Sandra. Hey folks, we're going to pause now for a brief break, but we'll be back with much more on today's Faith and Finance Live. We're Faith and Finance Live and we talk about our telephone number often because we usually are live, but today the program is prerecorded. So if you hear a mention of the phone number, please don't call us, but you can find us online at Hey, before we head back to the phones, let me remind you, Faith and Finance is listener supported, which just simply means we can only bring you this broadcast and all of the incredible resources at as a result of your generous support. And so if you'd consider being a supporter of the ministry with a one-time gift or perhaps as a monthly partner, we would certainly be grateful. It would make a huge difference in us reaching more people with the message of biblical stewardship. You can give quickly and securely online on our website at That's Just click Give at the top of the page.

Thanks in advance. All right, we're going to head back to the phones. Let's go to Texas. Hi, Holly.

How can I help? Thank you so much for your program. And I had a quick question about investing in gold and silver. Great. Yeah.

What was your question on that? Well, there's so many different things to invest in. I'm just wondering if we should take some part of our finances and invest in gold and silver. I just recently voted in the early voting in Texas and we had a proposition that was actually to make it easier for people to eventually spend gold and silver. And so that got me thinking again about maybe we should go in this direction so that it is a more secure way of saving for the future in case of disaster. Yeah, that's a good question. Yeah, so that's really fascinating what's going on there. This is the Senate bill that was designed to create the U.S. first U.S. state created gold backed digital currency.

Is that the one that that you voted on? No, it's didn't say anything bad about digital at all. That would be another question I would like to hear your opinion on is all the digits. Yeah, so it was perhaps it was something different. Well, I'd love to know more about that, but I think you're right.

I mean, there's certainly something to be said about having an allocation of gold in the portfolio. You know, where are we headed here in the United States? Well, we've certainly got some major challenges ahead of us. I mean, I think it's conceivable that we could have a debt crisis in the next, you know, 10 years.

What does that mean? I mean, it sounds pretty ominous and it is, although many countries have been through it. I think we would weather it, but it would result in a high inflation would be one of the primary outcomes as well as slower growth. We've got to get a handle on this debt situation.

I mean, it's just gotten out of sight in terms of our federal spending and borrowing. We've got some longer term challenges as well with demographics. I mean, we're just we're not having as many babies.

And, you know, with the baby boomers retiring, we're not replacing what's called worker replacement is not occurring just because of the rate of population increase. And it's going to create some challenges for us, which is why it's really important that we, you know, when we show up to vote, we're educated and know which candidates stand for a biblical worldview of economics and wealth creation, that every person was created with value to be productive. And, you know, we're more mind than mouth. We're not just consumers, but we're creators made in the image of creator God. And there's a virtuous cycle of production and work and creation and improving God's creation that expands economic output and productivity. And then we give back to the God who created us that creates this virtuous cycle. And the moment we forget that and try to put the state in place of God, you know, and look to the Federal Reserve or something else as our provider, we, you know, we get all that all out of sorts. And so we need leaders who understand a biblical worldview who aren't going to presume upon the future, who are going to spend within their means, all the things that we need to do as individuals we need to do as a nation.

And, you know, we can turn this around. I mean, I'm not saying we're heading off a cliff and everything's going to come crumbling down. I don't think we should pull money out of banks. I don't think we should get out of the stock market. I think, you know, we need to continue to invest in my view, which is very biblical in the ingenuity and the companies of the United States and abroad that have real sales and earnings. And, you know, there's a lot to be excited about with relation to technological advances in A.I.

and and a lot of the things that are happening. But we also need to use sound money management principles as a nation alongside it. So all that being said, where does gold fit into that? I mean, I think gold is clearly a store of value. It's a fear trade because when times get fearful, gold tends to do well and it rallies.

So how do you fit that into your portfolio? Well, I guess the only thing I would say, Holly, is that just historically, despite all the other challenges and crises we've faced along the way, it does tend to be, again, based on historical performance, more volatile. And it doesn't have as good a performance over the long haul. You know, it's selling today at about two thousand forty dollars an ounce. That's actually five hundred dollars lower than it sold for in 1979, adjusted for inflation. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 went from four hundred and thirty one in nineteen seventy nine to about forty eight hundred and fifty today. That's about a ten fold increase. So I think for that reason, it has a place in your portfolio, but I wouldn't overweight there.

So what does that mean? Well, I would say, you know, most people, if you have the ability to do this, should have a five percent forever allocation in gold. And that might be the position you want to take in physical gold with maybe, you know, gold coins or gold bars that are smaller, where you're going to secure them, store them safely. You'd have them for the future. Maybe you plan on passing them on.

If you ever needed them, you've got them. And then with the other five percent for a total of 10, I'd probably buy and this is just my thoughts on it. I mean, this may or may not apply in your situation, but I'd take the other five percent and buy one of the gold tracker ETFs, which is basically an exchange traded fund that has gold in a vault that backs it. And the ETF just moves in lockstep with the price of the ounce of gold of an ounce of gold. So as gold goes up, the price of the ETF goes up. So it's a way for you to have a gold trade in your portfolio without you having to take possession of the gold, which means you can lower that position if you wanted to, without having to find a dealer to buy it. And then you've got the markup, you know, for them to make the purchase and you've got more to store and and secure. And so it's a way to kind of split your gold allocation of 10 percent between a physical allocation at five and then a tracker stock at the other five. But that's a lot of information.

Give me your thoughts on all that, Holly. Well, you know, I don't really have a lot of background in trading and that kind of stuff, but it this makes sense to me. If you were trying to alleviate the possibility of losing everything in a hyper inflation scenario, it seems like maybe the physical gold would take care of of helping, you know, in that situation. As far as the other one being basically a stock, would that be affected by collapse? Like, I mean, even if we went into like the detrimental computer crash situation, would that just automatically possibly be lost? No, because the idea there is that there's gold backing it in a vault. And so there's actually real gold there. Now, the markets would have to be functioning because this is a trade. And arguably in a crash environment like that, as long as the markets are open, you know, that would would go up because the price of gold would be rising rapidly. And so there would be a lot of trading volume there.

And so you could still get it, but definitely different than having it in your safe in the other room. That's for sure. So that's just that's my take on it.

But hopefully that helps you, Holly. It's a great thought. And we appreciate you being on the program today. We'll be right back. We're so glad you've joined us for Faith and Finance Live today. Here in our final segment, let me remind you not to call in because we're not live today, but we'd love for you to stick around and enjoy the rest of the program. All right, let's head back to the phones.

Ron's been waiting patiently in Oklahoma. Go ahead, sir. I'm in the middle of transitioning from I'm a reservist, but I work as a civilian.

I'm transitioning to be a pilot in the Air Force. But I have a question about I was presented a way to make passive income. My question is, what passive income is biblically based and has a biblical worldview and aligns with scripture?

And also, how much time should I apply in investing in my finances before it kind of ventures over into like gluttony or not really focusing on God's view of finances? Wow. Yeah, I love this, Ron. Great questions. First of all, thank you for your service to our country. What do you fly? I don't know yet. I'm putting my packet in for OTS. It's wherever God tells me to fly. Hey, I love it.

Well, grateful again for your service to our nation, sir. You know, this is a great question because, you know, what we're talking about here is a couple of things. Number one is how do we look at how we manage God's money, which is what it is through the lens of scripture, both with regard to the investments, the deployment of our capital in a way that's God honoring and how much is enough, right?

What is our financial finish line? Because it's not a matter of just the mindless accumulation of wealth. It's really about putting something aside, which is clearly a biblical model, but we don't want to trip over into, you know, what we saw with the parable of the rich fool where he said, listen, I'm, you know, I had a great harvest, so guess what? I'm going to take all those barns I have. I'm going to tear them down.

I'm going to rebuild them bigger so I can eat, drink and be merry. And that, and we see at the end of that, God says, you fool, this night your life is demanded of you. And so it is for those who are not rich toward God. And so the question is, what does it mean to live rich toward God? How do we find an appropriate amount of savings, you know, as we're managing God's resources?

And so let's dive into both of those. When you say passive income, Ron, what are you meaning there? I was walking in the store and a gentleman came up to me and he started talking to me about end up being a brother in Christ as well. And he started talking to me about a company where they invest in the small aspects of toothpaste, toothbrushes, and you can be a business owner over that and you make money by other people investing in that. So you make money at home without technically working. And I didn't know if that was a, first of all, I thought it was a scam, but I wanted to know the truth of any passive income period of trying to make money without actually working a nine to five. Is that a biblical worldview?

And if it is, where is it and where is it not? Sure. Well, certainly putting your money to work and getting a return on it is absolutely a biblical concept. I mean, you should consider the parable of the talents would be a great example of where, you know, you're managing the master's money, you need to know the master's heart in order to be a wise and effective manager. And part of that includes taking what the manager has entrusted to you and getting an appropriate rate of return, not living in fear, but, you know, putting it to work in a way that's prudent.

And so, you know, I think that's absolutely appropriate. I would be very cautious about anyone approaching you with an offer of quote, passive income where you know, you're maybe you have to buy into a system or, you know, you don't have to do any work. So the way I would look at passive investing is through investing in, you know, sound investments, where you understand the risk levels, where, you know, you're properly diversified, which is also a principle right out of scripture from Ecclesiastes.

So you're not putting all of your eggs in one basket, which is what you would be doing in this quote unquote passive business opportunity with the, you know, consumer durables. And, you know, I would look at that as in putting a solid investment plan together where that passive income is the growth and the dividends of the companies that you're invested in through, you know, the traditional stock market investments. So I would find a good high quality mutual fund, perhaps one even that has a faith-based approach where you're systematically investing into it and you're looking for the growth and the income from it so that at some point you could convert that into an income stream in retirement, let's say, when God directs you to something else and maybe you're unable to work for pay at that point, or at least your pay is reduced, and this could supplement that income to maintain your God-given lifestyle, whatever God has called you to there.

So I would probably say without knowing anything, and I don't, don't look at the kind of opportunities that were presented to you there because they often don't work out, they're much riskier, they require a lot of upfront capital, and they just don't pan out the way that they're described. Instead, I think a very prudent approach would be investing in the stock and bond market. Now, with regard to a God-honoring approach, I mean, I think this is a conviction matter, so I'm not one who says investing in the S&P 500 is sinful. I think that's a Romans 14 issue, let each one be fully convinced in his own mind, so our deployment of capital in the secondary markets, which is what happens when we buy stocks and bonds and trade through the market, whether or not we need to be screening those investments I think is up to each conviction of each individual to decide. Now, if you decide you want to go that direction, there's some wonderful faith-based investing fund families out there like Eventide, like One Ascent, like Guidestone, like Timothy Plan, and these folks are focused on creating value for their shareholders by buying companies that they're looking to appreciate, but they're also screening out companies that would violate biblical values, and they're intentionally selecting companies that make the world rejoice, that create human flourishing, and even looking to make a kingdom impact. And you can find a list of those on our website at

Just click the show, and you'll see a number of those fund families there, and you can make an investment directly in any of those mutual funds in a way that fits your overall goals and objectives and risk tolerance. The last thing I'll say as to the second part of that question on how much is enough, I think is a decision that we each need to come to between us and the Lord. You know, it'd be one thing if the Bible said, here's what enough looks like, or here's what percent of your income you should live off of.

It doesn't. Which means we have to go to the Lord and say, what have you called me to? What's the appropriate lifestyle for me? How much is enough with regard to accumulation? And having a godly advisor who can walk with you, because there's the math equation side of that that says, based on the lifestyle I feel like God has led me to, here's how much I would need in retirement to supplement Social Security to maintain that lifestyle. That's a math equation. But then the other side of that is just, Lord, how much do you want me to trust in you for my provision? How much do you want me to give away now and in the future? And what is that kind of right balance?

And I don't think, you know, that's a set it and forget it. I think that's a constant conversation you're having with the Lord. But as long as you're checking your heart against greed, and you're asking the Lord how much is enough, and you're looking for opportunities to give, even radically, beyond that point, I think that's the place where God, you know, really is pleased with our approach to managing his money. Remember, there's plenty of very wealthy people in the Bible. It was about their hearts, though. Why did God entrust them that resource? And what did they do with it, I think, that was the ultimate test of whether or not we're seeking the Lord with our money management. But I've thrown a lot at you, Ron. Give me your thoughts on all that.

You definitely answered my question. I have three kids. I have a one-year-old, a two-year-old, a seven-year-old. And me and my wife, we've focused on this very hard. I mean, we budget pretty well. We budget our finances off a 70-30 rule. 70% goes to our bills. 30% is split between tithes, savings, and personal money. So we're really trying to ensure that we do this correctly. But yeah, I agree. I do feel that the heart posture check is one thing that God has really been ensuring that I recheck every single time, which I can't even say is per career.

I think per paycheck, God is saying. Heart posture check, every time you have something come in, because I may have a different plan for you as it comes in. But I think you answered perfectly what I was looking for. Here's what I want to do. I'm so encouraged by your call and your question today and the way you're approaching this. I want to send you a copy of our brand new four-week study. It just came off the printer. It's called Rich Toward God, and it's a study on the Parable of the Rich Fool. And it's going to take you over four weeks, and maybe you and your wife do this together.

I'll send you two copies. It's going to take you into this incredible passage in Luke 12 and help you guys think through and process what is true abundance. Can we get prideful in our prosperity? What about the uncertainty of tomorrow? And then finally, what does it mean to live rich toward God? I think this study will be a blessing to you. It's full of scripture. It's going to challenge you with some important questions to consider that we'll ask you to answer as you go through it.

But I think when you get to the other side of it, the Lord will really use it to help you investigate some of these things you're thinking about, okay? Yes, sir. Thank you so much for that. Thank you. All right.

Hey, stay on the line. We'll get a copy, actually two copies of Rich Toward God in the mail to you. By the way, folks, if you'd like to check it out, we'd love for you to look at our brand new Faith Five study. It's our very first in our series of Faith Five studies. Again, it's called Rich Toward God. It's a journey through this four-week study on the Parable of the Rich Fool found in Luke 12, 13 to 21.

And it really tackles some incredible themes in scripture that I think we all need to wrestle with, including this really important question, what does it mean to live rich toward God? Check it out today. You'll find it on our website at

You'll see a pop up there for it, or you can click on shop at the top of the page and read more about our new study. Hey, before we wrap up today, let me remind you, you know, financial decision-making can often seem overwhelming, seemingly endless decisions about money, but we can boil it down into something perhaps a bit more simple. All we can do with money is live, give, owe and grow. There's the money we spend on our lifestyle, the money we owe for debt and taxes, the money we grow for the future and the money we give to the Lord's work. And all of those are addressed in scripture.

Every one of those have principles that we can pull out of God's word. Our hope and prayers that we can help you do that on this program each day. Faith and Finance Live is a partnership between Moody Radio and Faith File. Let me say thank you to my team today, Amy, Dan, Jim and Gabby T. Couldn't do it without them. Thank you for being along with us as well. So thankful for your calls and your questions. Have a great rest of your day and we'll see you next time on Faith and Finance Live. Bye-bye.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-03-14 20:46:46 / 2024-03-14 21:04:14 / 17

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