I have written about money and wealth before. This time I want to compare two seemingly contradictory statements in the Bible.
Ecclesiastes 7:12 says that “money is a protection.” In contrast, Proverbs 18:11 states: “The wealth of the rich is his fortified city; It is like a protective wall in his imagination.” How can money be a protection and yet that protection be only a fake imagination?
I intentionally only partially quoted Ecclesiastes. The whole verse reads “Wisdom is a protection just as money is a protection, but the advantage of knowledge is this: Wisdom preserves the life of its owner.” While money may be able to buy medical aid, it cannot prevent us from dying. We cannot save ourselves or anyone else from death. Really, monetary wealth can literally disappear overnight. But the one who has gained an appreciation for having a solid relationship with their creator can result in true peace of mind that no one can rob away from us. Even if we die, we do so in full confidence that Jehovah can raise us back to life and do away with death forever.
So money does have benefits—it helps us provide an honest living for ourselves and families; affords us the opportunity to help others; provides for wholesome recreation, and much more. But gaining money, especially unnecessary “wealth” is not something to pursue ahead of our relationship with our Creator.