“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matt. 6:21). The words of the Lord Jesus Christ cut through every conceivable pretense, motive, and smokescreen. Similarly, Paul David Tripp exposes our hearts in his book, Redeeming Money.
Tripp’s aim is to write a winsome book which is informed by the Christian worldview and motivated by the gospel of Jesus Christ: “If you and I don’t let the gospel of Jesus Christ correct our assumptions about life, we won’t be able to evaluate and gain ground in the way we understand and relate to money and make practical money decisions.”
The author presents four foundations that reflect a gospel-centered worldview:
- At the center of the universe is a God of incalculable glory.
- We live in a world terribly broken by sin.
- God offers us his heart and life-transforming grace.
- We were created to live for something bigger than ourselves.
These foundations enable Tripp to proceed in a way that serves his readers well. With these helpful principles in place, they can understand and make financial decisions that make good biblical sense and ultimately, glorify God.
Dr. Tripp makes it painfully clear that money problems reside within us. Instead of being content with what God has graciously provided, we crave for more and more. Discontentedness dominates our hearts. The author adds, “It is ingratitude, neediness, discontent, and envy of the heart that causes us to be all too money conscious, all too self-focused in our use of it, and all too liberal in our expenditures.”
Instead of finding our satisfaction in Christ, we long for substitute “saviors” that bring short-term satisfaction: “Either you are using your funds in the worship of yourself … or you are using your money in the self-conscious worship of God.”
Redeeming Money is like a relentless battering ram that smashes pride, self-interest, and idolatry. It is like a probe that searches for self-indulgent sin. And Redeeming Money is like a surgical scalpel that cuts out the pride, which is lodged in the sinful human heart.
Paul David Tripp does not write as a so-called expert. He does not write as a financial planner or investment counselor. Rather, he writes as a fellow struggler. And perhaps, this is one of the most endearing aspects of the book. After Tripp surfaces sin, he admits that he also battles sins, which are buried deeply in the heart. But he does not leave readers dangling in no man’s land. No! Trip encourages us with the power of the gospel and acknowledges our deep need for grace.
It is the gospel of Jesus Christ that makes Redeeming Money genuinely unique. This is a rare book in a market, which is flooded with books on finance. Most, however, fail to provide hope that offers freedom, forgiveness, and final salvation, which is found in Christ alone. Redeeming Money is a helpful, encouraging resource that will serve many people well in the days to come.