“He that is greedy for gain troubles his own house…” Proverbs 15:27
If you have seen any financial news lately you know that the housing market is in trouble, many people are not able to pay back their mortgages or home equity lines. Several lenders have gone into bankruptcy and many large lenders are under pressure. The ripple effect is that lots of other people are losing their shirts as a result of financial dealings of sub-prime yields and hedge funds etc… that I surely do not fully comprehend. Nor do I care to take the time to figure it all out and throw it on this blog. I can just tell you that the potential of 7,000,000 Americans losing their homes and the repercussions thereof is causing financial tremors from Wall Street to Tokyo.

I can also tell you something more important – the basic – spiritual – root source of the problem: GREED!

Here’s a quick break down of the greed:

Home Buyers: Greedy for wanting to live in a house with a lifestyle they really couldn’t afford. In other words just continously spending more than one makes eventually leads to poverty – though the individual may have enjoyed a nice home for a few years along the way. Along with generally being over extended, now the home isn’t worth what it was bought for.

Real Estate Agents and Mortgage Lenders: Greedy by wanting to make the commissions off the sale and loan regardless if they new it was a bad idea for their “client”.

Financial Institutions: Greedy for more money by empowering their employees to take advantage of people’s greed by creating products that many people did not have the financial background to fully understand and not clearly highlighting the risk.

I also have to wonder how many who have fallen into the popular “God wants you to be rich” teachings also fell into this trap. Unbiblical viewpoints always lead to practical trouble.

Most of those who have sought to follow Jesus in a more Biblical way in the area of finances should have avoided that teaching and the current problem. In general the view that followers of Jesus have their true citizenship in heaven and are journeying through this should have great impact on our financial dealings. It should lead to living below our means so that we can be generous to the opportunities God gives us to share in His work.