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Jesus' Terrible Financial Advice: Flipping the Tables on Peace, Prosperity, and the Pursuit of Happiness

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“Jesus’ advice ruined what I planned to write.” It was the recipe for a great book. John and his wife—both financial experts—had cut their income by 80% to pursue more meaningful lives. Within six years they had two kids, were debt-free, went on several vacations, and doubled their net worth. John was ready to share the biblical principles that made this possible.  But he c “Jesus’ advice ruined what I planned to write.” It was the recipe for a great book. John and his wife—both financial experts—had cut their income by 80% to pursue more meaningful lives. Within six years they had two kids, were debt-free, went on several vacations, and doubled their net worth. John was ready to share the biblical principles that made this possible.  But he couldn’t. After reviewing Scripture’s teaching on money—over 1,300 verses—he realized he had missed something big.  Jesus’ Terrible Financial Advice turns even conventional Christian wisdom on its head. While it answers many of the practical questions we have—like does Jesus want me to be rich or poor? Should I give to everybody who asks? Is it wrong to save?—it goes beyond these concerns. It asks bigger questions, gives bolder answers, and offers a more comprehensive view of stewardship. Follow Jesus’ “terrible” (shocking, otherworldly) financial advice, and you’ll have what money can’t buy: purpose. 


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“Jesus’ advice ruined what I planned to write.” It was the recipe for a great book. John and his wife—both financial experts—had cut their income by 80% to pursue more meaningful lives. Within six years they had two kids, were debt-free, went on several vacations, and doubled their net worth. John was ready to share the biblical principles that made this possible.  But he c “Jesus’ advice ruined what I planned to write.” It was the recipe for a great book. John and his wife—both financial experts—had cut their income by 80% to pursue more meaningful lives. Within six years they had two kids, were debt-free, went on several vacations, and doubled their net worth. John was ready to share the biblical principles that made this possible.  But he couldn’t. After reviewing Scripture’s teaching on money—over 1,300 verses—he realized he had missed something big.  Jesus’ Terrible Financial Advice turns even conventional Christian wisdom on its head. While it answers many of the practical questions we have—like does Jesus want me to be rich or poor? Should I give to everybody who asks? Is it wrong to save?—it goes beyond these concerns. It asks bigger questions, gives bolder answers, and offers a more comprehensive view of stewardship. Follow Jesus’ “terrible” (shocking, otherworldly) financial advice, and you’ll have what money can’t buy: purpose. 

30 review for Jesus' Terrible Financial Advice: Flipping the Tables on Peace, Prosperity, and the Pursuit of Happiness

  1. 4 out of 5

    Lydia Howe

    WHY I CHOOSE THIS BOOK That backcover blurb, folks. It intrigued me. Plus, the title. Who wouldn't want to read a book like that? Plus, if y'all have been around for long then you know that I'm currently working at trying to learn how to relate to money well - tracking how I spend it, reading books about how to steward my money well, and seeking God's will for how I spend, save, and give. This book seemed like a natural read considering all that.  WHAT I THOUGHT ABOUT THIS BOOK For being such a sho WHY I CHOOSE THIS BOOK That backcover blurb, folks. It intrigued me. Plus, the title. Who wouldn't want to read a book like that? Plus, if y'all have been around for long then you know that I'm currently working at trying to learn how to relate to money well - tracking how I spend it, reading books about how to steward my money well, and seeking God's will for how I spend, save, and give. This book seemed like a natural read considering all that.  WHAT I THOUGHT ABOUT THIS BOOK For being such a short book this nugget took what felt like an inordinately long amount of time to read. In an effort to be succinct, here’s a list of pros and cons. Pros: *The author has done his research. He's not only fairly over-qualified when it comes to a human standpoint (he's a CPA with a Ph.D. in Accounting), but he also has studied the subject of money extensively in the Bible.  *He puts God's Word above his own logic. I really liked what he had to say about that - basically, if he finds an inconsistency with what he believes vs. what he discovers in the Bible he realizes that he must be wrong somehow, so he digs in to find out the truth.  *He has a lot of good to say about how and where to place money in our lives. For the most part, I agreed with what he said and felt like he provided a good balance between the mentality and practical side of finances.  Cons: *The biggest con for me is I simply did not relate well to his style. I'm not sure what it was about his writing but it didn't jive well with me. I realize this is entirely subjective and even though it lowered the rating of the book for me, it's not a bad thing by any means.  *There were several things I disagreed with - and this could very well have been a matter of interpretation, so I could have simply misunderstood him, but it bothered me a fair amount. *Sometimes the book felt a bit redundant, despite how short it was.  CONCLUSION The last third of the book was my favorite and where I really felt like I learned something. I didn't agree with everything I read, but nothing was big enough for me to not recommend the book. Overall it was pretty solid and pointed out a lot of good things.  RATING I’m giving Jesus' Terrible Financial Advice 3 out of 5 stars. Moody Publishers graciously sent me a copy of this book so I could review it - all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jeanie

    By giving, you physically trade the promises offered by Money for the promises offered by God. Giving is the antidote to greed and the deceitfulness of wealth. Greed, the inordinate desire to obtain wealth to keep for oneself, is idolatry. Giving has a way of freeing us from Money as master. The author John Thorton knows money. As an accountant, he knows the value of money, saving for rainy day and investing. His quest for how Christ looks at money would be considered terrible financial advise f By giving, you physically trade the promises offered by Money for the promises offered by God. Giving is the antidote to greed and the deceitfulness of wealth. Greed, the inordinate desire to obtain wealth to keep for oneself, is idolatry. Giving has a way of freeing us from Money as master. The author John Thorton knows money. As an accountant, he knows the value of money, saving for rainy day and investing. His quest for how Christ looks at money would be considered terrible financial advise from what he has learned from education and experience of the business world. However, Jesus advise on money reveals what we really need. In giving, we know Christ more, we are set free from money and we are better for it. Thorton's own quest on serving two masters. You can only serve one but how? He found in the scriptures that it is with purpose. Understanding Christ purpose will help on how we view money, giving and others. Where does money have you? Does it have you in fear, greed or grace. Just as we cannot love God and money, we cannot fear both as well. It is one or the other. This book helps us get there. In a conversational tone, my attention was held. I did feel like I was not being manipulated but that I was being encouraged to a better way. A Special Thank You to Moody Publishing and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This book, Jesus' Terrible Financial Advice, was in a list of books available for review in the book reviewing program of which I'm a member. The description of this book caught my attention. It was described as not being the book that the author, John Thornton, intended to write. He wanted to write about how his family had gotten to a debt free state and wanted to back it up with biblical principles. But then He went to the Bible to study the topic and found that Jesus' teachings on money shock This book, Jesus' Terrible Financial Advice, was in a list of books available for review in the book reviewing program of which I'm a member. The description of this book caught my attention. It was described as not being the book that the author, John Thornton, intended to write. He wanted to write about how his family had gotten to a debt free state and wanted to back it up with biblical principles. But then He went to the Bible to study the topic and found that Jesus' teachings on money shocked him, they really seemed like irresponsible teachings, teachings that didn't seem like the type of instructions that God would give wise stewards to follow. He put off writing the book for a long time. I was intrigued by this information and so I requested the book. Thornton later decided to dive in and write the book with this perspective, "If my theology disagrees with God, one of us is wrong, and it's not Him." Thornton directs us to think about why Christ came to the earth in the first place, "to glorify His Father". And all of Jesus' teachings, including his teachings on money, stem from this purpose. God does not need money to get things done, and we Christians do not need money either because God supplies all our needs, and he does not need money to do that. Thornton makes it clear that being rich does not make you an evil person, nor does being poor make you a good person. Money is not bad in and of itself, but it does have potential to become an idol when we look to it for peace, security and help. Poor people can do this just as much as rich people. The love of money is deceiving, it promises that money can supply all our needs, directing our focus to it rather than to God. And many also may be deceived by thinking that the Lord's work cannot get done without money (look at all of the Christian ministries out there begging for money!). God can supply our needs however He wants, with or without money. Being a wise steward does not mean building up earthly treasure, but building up a heavenly treasure. "Imagine if you were playing Monopoly, and you were offered the chance to trade in your pink fivers for real ones. Or better yet, trade the yellow $100 Monopoly bills in for Benjamins. You'd go straight to the bank and make the exchange. And you wouldn't ask how many of the Monopoly bills you could keep. You'd trade in every last one." The author demonstrates from the Bible that this is the perspective of a believer. We are after real treasure, not fake treasure. A believer doesn't care about storing up treasures on this earth, but storing up treasures in Heaven. A believer doesn't care about gaining worldly acclaim, but commendation from His Father in Heaven. A believer's goal is to glorify the Father, to do His will. And Christ tells us how this is to be done, "Jesus explains how we can make the most of the lives He has given us…" Many of the means by which Christ says we can glorify the Father are shocking to us, such as letting people sue you and giving them more than they demand of you, by giving to everyone who asks, by letting yourself be wronged financially, even by a brother in Christ, or rather, especially by a brother in Christ. There are some questions about how we are to implement the 'giving to everyone who asks you', and I think that Thornton addresses them pretty well by pointing out that it may be clarified by other biblical truths. In this book we are reminded that God wants us to run our whole race, the beginning and end of it, at full speed. This, among other things, involves being wise stewards of everything God has given us, including our use of any money He has allowed us to have. We look to our Master to give us the standards for how we are to use His property and money, He defines what good stewardship looks like. And we should not look on our growing old as permission to use God's gifts to us however we want. The thought should not even cross our mind that we will ever reach an age where we will be able to retire from being good stewards of the Lord's gifts. We should not look to slow down as we get old, and enjoy our earthly life, our goal should still be to serve the Father with all the strength He gives us, grasping any opportunity He gives us to serve Him and invest in eternal things. Thornton laments that some older Christians do not desire to end their spiritual race at full speed, and yet hypocritically ,"We condemn our brother who squanders his early years, all the time longing to squander our later ones." All in all, I think that this is an excellent book, pointing us back to the Lord as our Master, and reminding us that we are to live a life of faith. We must trust that God really is infinitely wiser than we are, even when we think that His commands are not humanly logical. As Thornton says, "God has a better plan for our lives than we do", God knows best whether or not our earthly richness or poorness will bring the most glory to Himself. And we Christians desire to be content with His sovereign placement of us in this earthly life. Many thanks to MoodyPublishers for sending me a free review copy of this book (My review did not have to be favorable)

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jan Green

    Excellent Excellent read, thought-provoking, a book worth praying about. I’ve thought of myself as a “giver,” a child of the King with infinite resources. I am convinced there is more we can accomplish with what God has given us.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kayla Hollatz

    I have read a few biblical finance books this year common in this has been one of my favorites. It is a short but powerful read.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kacy

    "Now is our time to walk as Jesus did. More often than not, this begins with money, simply because it measures so many of our hopes and fears. To a world that doesn't recognize Jesus as God's son, his teachings on money are terrible, in the sense that they are strongly repulsive, notably unattractive, and objectionable. But to those who do know him, Jesus' words are different kind of terrible. Terrifying and awesome. Terrifying because his advice ruins the empty lives they have planned for ourse "Now is our time to walk as Jesus did. More often than not, this begins with money, simply because it measures so many of our hopes and fears. To a world that doesn't recognize Jesus as God's son, his teachings on money are terrible, in the sense that they are strongly repulsive, notably unattractive, and objectionable. But to those who do know him, Jesus' words are different kind of terrible. Terrifying and awesome. Terrifying because his advice ruins the empty lives they have planned for ourselves. Awesome because he replaces our lives with better ones than we could ever have imagined. This book only scratches the surface of Jesus teachings, but [there] are 10 truths that gives us a glimpse of how God does this."

  7. 4 out of 5

    Warephreak

    I liked the way it started and would like to do a study based on this book. I have to reread the last part though as it didn't sink in as well later on. maybe that is a good thing though. I liked the way it started and would like to do a study based on this book. I have to reread the last part though as it didn't sink in as well later on. maybe that is a good thing though.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Anino

    ARC Received Courtesy Of NetGalley and the Publisher In Exchange For An Honest Review To be quite succinct, this has to be the best book written on wealth that I have ever read. For me, it was an eye-opening experience, that I shall not soon forget. I basically liked it, because the author was simplistic and real in his approach to examining ones functional/dysfunctional relationship with wealth and riches. Oftentimes, with all of the cares of this world, when me obsess about what our own financi ARC Received Courtesy Of NetGalley and the Publisher In Exchange For An Honest Review To be quite succinct, this has to be the best book written on wealth that I have ever read. For me, it was an eye-opening experience, that I shall not soon forget. I basically liked it, because the author was simplistic and real in his approach to examining ones functional/dysfunctional relationship with wealth and riches. Oftentimes, with all of the cares of this world, when me obsess about what our own financial forecast will be; we make the serious error of not understanding that Jesus himself, (not our bank accounts and accoutrements of wealth), is the real gift. May the Lord have mercy on us, and our credit/cash obsessed culture. Giving this one: 5 humongous stars

  9. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    Quick read on Biblical finances. Challenges me to take Jesus' financial snippets literally. I appreciate Thornton's honest authorship but most of the principles we already embrace in our handling of resources...I think! Quick read on Biblical finances. Challenges me to take Jesus' financial snippets literally. I appreciate Thornton's honest authorship but most of the principles we already embrace in our handling of resources...I think!

  10. 5 out of 5

    The Reading Knitter

  11. 4 out of 5

    Tom Hazen

  12. 5 out of 5

    Dan

  13. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Hain

  14. 4 out of 5

    Benjamin Finley

  15. 4 out of 5

    Susanne J Marshall

  16. 5 out of 5

    Chris Vincent

  17. 5 out of 5

    Emily

  18. 4 out of 5

    Bianca Ohlin

  19. 5 out of 5

    D.L. Mayfield

  20. 5 out of 5

    Katie Claussen

  21. 5 out of 5

    E A Vis

  22. 4 out of 5

    Carter Hemphill

    The last good book on stewardship I read was by Randy Alcorn (Money, Possessions and Eternity). Like that book this book reminds you of the complicated teachings of Jesus and how we are to use money wisely to store up treasures in heaven. A very quick read -- but helpful in being reminded again of the proper Christian approach to stewardship.

  23. 5 out of 5

    BenReadsBooks

  24. 4 out of 5

    Thk

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ken Kregel

  26. 4 out of 5

    Paul K

  27. 4 out of 5

    Zack

  28. 5 out of 5

    Amanda H

  29. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Lagan

  30. 5 out of 5

    Philip

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