PRECEPTS FOR LIFE
a Production of
Precept Ministries International
P.O. Box 182218, Chattanooga, TN 37422-7218
The following is an actual transcript of the PRECEPTS FOR LIFE Broadcast. For the purpose of filling transcript requests quickly, they have received only light editing. If you have questions concerning the material covered in this broadcast, Kay has published a number of books explaining the Scripture in depth. These books may be ordered by contacting the telephone number or address printed above.
SERIES: Interview With Dave Ramsey
TITLE: Program 1 - Money
O Beloved, there is so much more that you need to know about money and possessions and the quest for contentment, because we think that we get contentment from what we have, and yet that’s not true. And if you’ve obtained a lot of things, you know that, because you’re still not satisfied. I want you to understand what God has to say about money, possessions, and the quest for contentment.
IN THE STUDIO:
Kay: “…The love of money is the root of all evil….” (1 Timothy 6:10a, b KJV) Money is not evil, but it is the heart behind the money that can get us into trouble. And this is what we want to talk about today. We need to understand what place money is to have in our lives. Because, I tell you what, if it doesn’t have a proper perspective in your life, Beloved, it can destroy you. We think it can buy us power and everything we want, and yet,
“…the love of money…,” is destructive. (1 Timothy 6:10a) And those that love money end up in ruin. Well this is what we’re going to do today on the program. I’m going to take you to a friend and a brother by the name of Dave Ramsey with The Lampo Group.
You may have seen him on “Oprah,” and you may have seen him on “60 Minutes.” He’s in Nashville, and we’re going to talk to Dave. Dave, I’m so thankful that you’ve agreed to be on the program.
Dave: Well Kay, it is an honor to be with you. We’re, we’re just thrilled to be on with Kay Arthur. This is a big deal. I mean you got to understand, when, when we went broke and lost everything and hit bottom and, and went through all that, one of the things that happened was my wife went through Precepts. It really impacted her life and as a result our marriage. So we’re we’re thrilled to be with you.
Kay: O Dave, thank you very, very much. I am very humbled and I am excited that God allowed your wife to get into Precept. Because it’s [through His precepts that we get understanding and that we come to hate every false way]. (PARAPHRASE, Psalms 119:104) What are His precepts for life? It’s what this Book has to say, Beloved. And what I want to do is I want to give you a little bit of background on Dave Ramsey.
THE DAVE RAMSEY STORY:
Dave: Whoo, we’re going to have some fun today, you know how I know that…Money’s fun when you’ve got some.
Shelia: And Dave Ramsey was having a blast right out of college. The real estate market was booming and he quickly went from rags to riches, acquiring 4-million in assets.
Dave: Well my wife Sharon and I started like most folks, ah, broke, eating off a card table, driving a 1902 Pinto and I started buying and selling real estate and I got rich, at least by a kid from Antioch, Tennessee standards. Only I did some things wrong, not morally wrong, not ethically wrong, but I borrowed too much money. I didn’t understand this borrowers/slave to the
lender stuff then. And ah, the short version of the story is that the bank got sold to another bank and ah, they called our notes and we spent the next two and a half years of our lives losing everything we owned. We were sued a gazillion times. Ah, we were foreclosed on and finally with a brand new baby and a toddler and our marriage hanging on by a thread ah, we hit bottom, bankrupt. And ah, you know, I, I kind of do everything backwards. I met the Lord on the way up.
All the wealth and Jaguars just weren’t doing it for me, but I got to know Him on the way down. And so at the bottom of the mess we made a decision that we were going to learn how money really works and that involved finding out that the Bible had something to say about money. Whoa, what a neat idea.
Shelia: And that’s how Dave turned his life around.
Dave: Capitol One, let’s make it into two. What do you think? Huh, ya know, ya gottta make, ya gotta have a little fun with this. This has gone on long enough.
Shelia: He discovered the Bible had simple and practical lessons on how to handle money.
Dave: Every time I read for instance about debt in the Bible I don’t find any good things in there. It’s a curse, you’re a slave. If you sign surety for another you’re lacking in sense. I mean that’s co-signing. Every time I find it in there it’s a negative thing. And so I went whoa, it’s not a sin. I’m not going to hell for using a Master Card. It’s not a salvation issue, but it’s stupid and it doesn’t work.
Shelia: And now Dave teaches others how to discover God’s plan for financial peace.
Dave: This is the best in talk radio. Service orientated talk radio. Talk radio that matters. Talk radio that’s about you and for you. If you’re doing really well, we’re here to help. If you’re not doing so well, we’re here to help.
Shelia: The Dave Ramsey show is heard on more than 250-Radio Stations across the country with 2-million listeners. 5-days a week, Dave sits behind
this microphone and gives sound financial advice based on Scripture and experience.
Dave: And so I, I tell them let’s get our priories straight. And you know, make sure you’re in a good church. Make sure you’re walking with God. And I tell them on main stream radio and it’s shocking. And I say, hey, you know, give your wife some extra hugs. She’s scared right now. You guys hang on to your marriage. The number one cause of divorce in North America today is money fights and money problems. I mean, people do this stuff wrong. And so if you’re going to go through the mess then let’s, let’s prioritize life very, very carefully. And it becomes seared into who you are.
It becomes your theology, your doctrine, your philosophy of life. You know we all say, “God first, family second.” When you’re in the middle of this stuff, it’s God first, family second and stuff comes and stuff goes.
Shelia: According to A.C. Nelson, 78-Percent of Americans are living paycheck to paycheck. That breaks down to 8-out-of-10 homes on your street. Dave says it’s a way of life in our culture to buy junk we can’t afford with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.
Dave: Normal is I owe, I owe, so off to work I go bumper sticker on my car. Normal is I have no clue how my children are going to school unless they go deeply in debt. Normal is I have no hope of ever being with out a car payment or a house payment. I’m going to live my life that way. That is normal…that’s why I like being weird.
Shelia: Dave has also helped thousands to find financial freedom and to realize the direct connection between money and marriage.
Dave: We have people come into our office that look like this all the time and they are going, hey dude, can you get me out? We lived in the same neighborhood as Mom and Dad, had a nicer car than Mom and Dad, nicer clothes than Mom and Dad, definitely a better stereo system than Mom and Dad, but in the first seven years 90% of marriages end on money problems.
Shelia: Dave’s greatest passion is helping others. He tries to get us to understand that the “Good” life is not about fancy cars and big homes.
Actually Dave has learned that some of life’s greatest gifts don’t have to do with money at all.
Dave: You know one of my greatest possessions is probably this: if, if this building caught on fire I’d run in here and grab this. This was my great, great, great-grandfather’s Bible. He was a circuit riding preacher. And so he carried this over the, in the saddlebags on the back of his donkey. And um, then all those years later I end up in a, on a main stream radio show, evangelizing and talking about God and, and then I discovered that was in my family tree.
This represents, you know, my interaction with my kids, my interaction with my wife, our interaction with leaving a legacy, a real legacy. There’s all kinds of inheritance to leave. And you, leaving money is a good thing. There’s nothing wrong with that at all. But what if you left a legacy in your family? Now that would be a real possession.
Shelia: Sheila Travis for Precept Ministries International.
IN THE STUDIO:
Kay: Dave what I would like you to do is share with us what took you down, so to speak, into this destruction and how did God get your attention and draw you back to Himself?
Dave: You, you know Kay, I was being interviewed the other day by one of these talking heads on the networks. I do all these appearances. And the guy said, “Dave, you know you were, you started from nothing. You became a millionaire and and then you hit rock bottom. And, and then you’re a millionaire again. So how did you bounce back?”
And I said, “Well dud, when you lose 4 million dollars you really don’t bounce. It’s more of a splat sound.” And so you know what I did at the bottom of that was not bounce. What I did was sit around and cry and moan and blame other people and you know, it, it was my wife’s fault. It was the bank’s fault. It was the IRS’s fault. You know, and I really spiritually had to walk through that sense of being a victim and realize that I was more the victim of my own choices than anything else. And man that was a tough day when I had to look in the
mirror and go, ah, you’re the problem and that’s a spiritual awakening. But the cool thing is as soon as you do that then you get to trade places with God. You quit trying to be Him. And when you trade places with Him, He gets to put His arms around us and you just get that hug and that sense of yeah, You are in control. It is Your plan. It is Your deal. And there’s a sense of peace that passes all understanding, the Bible says, that floods your soul when you release that control and then that’s where the new found zeal and passion comes for following God’s ways of doing things straight out of Scripture.
Kay: And Scripture describes it, doesn’t it Dave? As He says in 1 Timothy chapter 6, that “…Those [that] want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is [the] root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves [through] with many griefs.” (1 Timothy 6:9-10)
And yet, because He is “…The Great Shepherd (chuckle) of the sheep….” (Hebrews 13:29b) He puts that crook around your neck, and He’s drawing you back into His arms. Many times when a shepherd has a sheep that wanders, he has to take the sheep and break its leg in order to get the sheep’s attention. But then he binds it up and he carries the sheep until the sheep get used to hearing the voice of the shepherd, and come to know the shepherd so well that the sheep don’t want to wander away. (See John 10:27)
Dave: One of the things I’m realizing is that in North America normal is broke. And we have the answer to that problem. We have the antidote. And Romans 12:2 says, “Be not conformed to this world.” They’re broke; don’t do what they’re doing. “But instead be transformed.” And how are we transformed? “By the renewing of our minds.” We call that a total money makeover.
Kay: And, Beloved, it is a total money makeover because what you’re doing is you’re taking your mind and you’re conforming it to God’s precepts for life. And you say, “Okay, this is what God says, and this is what He says
about money, and this is what He says about faith, and this is what He says about the way He’s going to provide for me, and I will trust Him.” I know that God is speaking to you and we’ll be back in just a minute to continue talking to Dave Ramsey.
IN THE STUDIO:
Kay: Money! Money, Honey, it takes money, Honey. I think, today, the problem is, as Dave said, we are expecting to live like our parents lived. And we’re expecting to live that way right from the beginning of our marriage. There’s not a sense of scrimping and saving and doing without and planning for the future. What does God say to us? Well I want to go back to 1 Timothy chapter 6, and I want to read verse 17. It says, “Instruct those who are rich in this present world…,” (1 Timothy 6:17a) to get rid of all their riches because it’s a sin to be rich. No. That’s not what he says. And I want you to understand it is not a sin to have money. It is not a sin to be rich.
You say, “Well make me a rich Christian instead of a poor Christian.” Well let’s go on and read and see what it says. It says, “Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy.” (1 Timothy 6:17) God means for you to enjoy life, and yet He does not mean for you to live for yourself.
You know, one of the greatest joys that Jack and I have in life is giving to other people, is helping other people where they have great needs. God is the same way. He loves to give us things that we can enjoy. He is the One who is our provider. When you come to Him, His name is “Jehovah Jireh.” And so when we go to the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew chapter 6, He gives us a warning. And the warning is this: that “…You cannot serve God and [mammon].” (Matthew 6:24b) And “mammon” means wealth. Well I want to go back and I want to ask Dave to share with us some more about this matter of money because a lot of people are focused on money.
Dave: Most people aren’t doing well with money. They look like they are. Everybody looks like they’ve got it together. We go to church. We lie, you know. How’s it going? Just fine. Car’s going to be repoed Tuesday, just fine, you know. We lie in church. It, real people, regular people are struggling with this all around you. They sit with you on Sunday. They sit with you on Monday and Tuesday. You sit near them in the restaurant, regular folks are struggling everyday with these issues regardless of how they look on the outside.
Kay: You are so right, Dave. They are putting on this façade outside, but inside they are worried, worried, worried. And you know what? It is eating their lunch. It makes them tense. It keeps them from getting sleep, and it makes them, many times, if they don’t know to run to God, then they run to alcohol or they run to anything that’s going to get them out of their situation. O Beloved, where you need to run is to God. He is the One that has promised to supply all your needs. His name is “Yehovah.” “Jehovah--Jireh”: The Lord will Provide.
In Philippians chapter 4 it says, “…My God will supply all your needs…,” not your greeds but your needs, “…according to His riches in glory [through] Christ Jesus [our Lord].” (Philippians 4:19) And this is why He says in Matthew chapter 6 in the Sermon on the Mount, “And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? (Matthew 6:27-28a)
“Do not worry then, saying, „What [shall] we eat?‟, „What will we drink?‟ or „What will we wear for clothing?‟ For the Gentiles…,” and He’s talking about people that don’t know God, “…eagerly seek [for] these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek…[the] kingdom [of God] and His righteousness, [first]….” (Matthew 6:31-33a) Well, Dave, you weren’t seeking the kingdom of God and you ended up bankrupt.
Dave: You know Kay, one of the things that happens to a lot of people when they hit rock bottom, especially guys is you entertain these crazy thoughts of even suicide. As a matter of fact the number one cause of male suicide in
North America today is money, money problems and money fights with their spouses. And almost no ladies have that issue.
If they commit suicide it’s over other things, relational issues or something like that. But money is a big deal with guys. We keep score and the score’s zero or a negative it, it is very natural, which is not a good thing for thoughts of that kind of stuff to go through your head, for that little demon to sit on your shoulder and go, you know the life insurance is more valuable than you are.
And I won’t kid you, I went through those same exact thoughts. They didn’t last long, but they were there and a lot of people that we deal with that call our customer care center are facing those exact same things. And they call me on the radio show they’re facing the exact same things. And so that is a very very real thing. I’m not sure exactly how, how you get past that. I don’t know if I’m enough of a theologian to walk you past it. I just remember as a baby Christian, I was reading in Scripture and the whole earth being formed, the whole discussion of creation in the Bible is about that long. And then He spends 35 chapters discussing Joseph.
Wow, you know I must be important to Him. And then you think about the relationship of our heavenly Father with us, versus our relationship with like our kids. How important is it that my kids get that? And as a child, how important is it that I realize that hey, I’m not valued on what I do, I’m valued because I am. And this thing of being versus having gets changed around in how you look at life. If you get that out of the going broke process you’ve really got a gift.
Kay: O Beloved, Dave is so right. If you have been broken in the process of going broke. Then God is there. He’s the Potter. He takes that broken, marred vessel, He puts it back on the potter’s wheel, and you know what? He takes that scar--that mar there--and He weaves it into a beautiful vessel for Him. (See Romans 9:21) Dave, thank you so much for being on this program. I want people to know how to get in touch with you.
Dave: Anytime anybody wants to get us it’s just real easy. Just check out the website at Daveramsey.com. We have an 800 line, it’s 888-22-peace, p-e-a-c-e, 888-227-3223.
Kay: Dave, thank you so much for joining us today on the program. You’ve made it a real blessing.
Dave: Well we were honored to be with you. Thank you so much for having us.
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