Devotional for

What It Means to Love Money

John Piper

The love of money is the root of all evils. (1 Timothy 6:10)

What did Paul mean when he wrote this? He couldn’t have meant that money is always on your mind when you sin. A lot of sin happens when we are not thinking about money.

My suggestion is this: he meant that all the evils in the world come from a certain kind of heart, namely, the kind of heart that loves money.

Now what does it mean to love money? It doesn’t mean to admire the green paper or the copper coins or the silver shekels. To know what it means to love money, you have to ask, What is money? I would answer that question like this: Money is simply a symbol that stands for human resources. Money stands for what you can get from man instead of God.

God deals in the currency of grace, not money: “Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat!” (Isaiah 55:1). Money is the currency of human resources. So the heart that loves money is a heart that pins its hopes, and pursues its pleasures, and puts its trust in what human resources can offer.

So the love of money is virtually the same as faith in money — belief (trust, confidence, assurance) that money will meet your needs and make you happy.

Love of money is the alternative to faith in God’s future grace. It is faith in future human resources. Therefore the love of money, or trust in money, is the underside of unbelief in the promises of God. Jesus said in Matthew 6:24, “No one can serve two masters . . . You cannot serve God and money.”

You can’t trust in God and in money at the same time. Belief in one is unbelief in the other. A heart that loves money — that banks on money for happiness — is not banking on the future grace of God for satisfaction.

From Future Grace, pages 323–324