I heard Dave Ramsey say once that if you read Proverbs a few times over you can get a Master’s degree in finance. He’s right, it’s in there. I will be covering many of the main points here over the next few weeks and today I’m starting with what integrity has to do with finance. Here are a few of the verses that touch on the subject.
Proverbs 11:1 – The Lord abhors dishonest scales, but accurate weights are his delight.
Proverbs 11:3 – The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.
Proverbs 16:11 – Honest scales and balances are from the Lord; all the weights in the bag are of his making.
Proverbs 20:10 – Differing weights and differing measures – the Lord detests them both.
Proverbs 20:23 – The Lord detests differing weights. And dishonest scales do not please him.
Proverbs 21:6 – A fortune made by a lying tongue is a fleeting vapor and a deadly snare.
I think that God makes it pretty clear that honesty and integrity are key to having a successful business.
Dishonest Scales, Accurate Weights
All of these verses refer to people being honest in business. For example, if you are going to get gas in your car, you expect to get exactly one gallon of gasoline for every gallon you pay for. If you go to the grocery store, you expect the scales measuring your produce to be accurate. Any of these businesses could rig their scales to make you pay for more than you are getting.
This is something that God despises, and people who try these scams are playing with fire. Inspectors check scales, and if you fail you are in for a world of trouble. As Proverbs 21:6 points out, a fortune made by lying is fleeting. You will be found out and shut down.
Thomas Stanley, author of The Millionaire Next Door and The Millionaire Mind found that the #1 link between people that were multi-millionaires was fanatical levels of integrity. Sure there are some greedy, dishonest people that get rich, but that is not the norm. It also doesn’t usually last. People who build successful long term businesses do it by treating their customers and employees with honesty and respect. They don’t do it by cutting corners and cheating people.