In the Parable of the Talents, found in Matthew 25:14-30, God gave to each of the stewards according to his ability and directed each to manage his portion well. God entrusts wealth and provision to His stewards so that these things will be available to Him at a later date. The management of wealth requires that it be invested or multiplied, as the parable reflects. It is important to note that each steward was rewarded or punished according to his stewardship.
Provide for Family Security
Throughout God’s Word, the head of the household is given the responsibility to provide for his own. Scripture states that “He who does not provide for his own is worse than an unbeliever” (1Timothy 5:8). This can include investing to provide such things as education, housing, capital for starting a business, an inheritance for your family, retirement and long-term care. Providing for your family in this way requires the sacrifice of some short-range spending to meet future needs.
We must be prepared for the lean years financially; both for ourselves and for assisting others. Just as Joseph prepared, by saving in the years of plenty to survive and help his people in the years of famine, we too should be like the ant in Proverbs 6:6 that gathers provision in the harvest to prepare for the winter.
There is a critical distinction that must be made between saving some of God’s provision to be used according to God’s will, and hoarding out of greed, fear or selfishness. The latter are ungodly motives and, as the Lord said in the Parable of the Rich Fool, who was building new barns to store his great wealth so he would never have to work again: “You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?” (Luke 12:20).
To Spread the Gospel
In reality, the true purpose of investing is to increase your assets so that you can serve God more fully, and to be able to give to others and your church without financial worry, anxiety or bondage. Investing wisely allows you to do this kind of giving.
The most important step in beginning to invest is to set your goals and pray about them before attempting to do any investing. If you sense that your motives are anything but biblical, it would be better to give your money away rather than risk your fellowship with the Lord. Remember to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, but in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” (Prov. 3:5-6).
Make God, not your investments, the object of your trust and your security. “All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, but the Lord weighs the motives” (Proverbs 16:2).
Jeff Masters, of Jeffery W. Masters & Associates, Specializes in Personal Financial Planning and Investments. Please send your questions to Jeffery.Masters@LPL.com, Or call at 954.977.5150