Money has always been a major part of society, and that was true in Bible times. Here are a few examples of the kinds of money mentioned in the Bible:
Shekel: A shekel was a weight of gold, silver, or brass consolidated into a coin. Its use was widespread throughout the ancient Middle East. The term comes from the Hebrew word shaqal, meaning “to weigh.” Today, the currency of Israel is the shekel, but the Israeli new shekel is not to be confused with the kind used in Bible times.
Mina: The mina was the equivalent of 50 shekels. Jesus used minas in His parable of the ten minas, or the parable of the ten talents. A mina was the equivalent of about three months’ wages. (See Luke 19:11-27; Matthew 25:14-30.)
Denarius: The denarius was a day’s wages in the Roman Empire during the time of Jesus. Mary, the sister of Lazarus, poured a pound of perfume on Jesus’ feet that could have been sold for 300 denarii, or 11 months’ wages. (See John 12:1-8.)
Jesus said where your treasure is, there your heart will be too. He also said no one can serve both God and money. Money itself is not bad—it’s what we choose to do with money that can be bad. The Bible says that the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil, which reminds us that God should be first in our lives. All wealth, possessions, and money belong to God, and we are simply stewards of it.
Here’s a good exercise for the end of the year: Look at your last bank statement. How have you been choosing to use your money? Are you choosing to give to your church, to God’s work, to those in need, to worthy causes? Make sure you are using God’s resources in the best ways. It will reveal where your heart is. (See Matthew 6:21,24; 1 Timothy 6:10.)
Question: When money becomes tight in your household, do you find yourself feeling more anxious or more dependent on God?
For more insight into godly character read my book, A Husband After God’s Own Heart.