Dishonest Scales – PGTF Principle 1

by Derek Clark

PGTF stands for Proverbs Guide to Finance, and it is the basis behind this site. It’s been said that you can get a Master’s degree in Finance if you read Proverbs through a few times. I heard it last from Dave Ramsey, but I don’t know who said it first. I’ve come up with what I think are the 7 main principles of finance from Proverbs, and this is the first one.

Dishonest Scales

The Lord abhors dishonest scales, but accurate weights are his delight. Proverbs 11:1

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.

So what does God mean by dishonest scales and differing weights? Well, a good example would be a gas station that didn’t actually give you a gallon of gas when they say they are. The pump could rigged such that you only get .95 gallons for every gallon you pay for. Another example could be a grocery store that has a scale that reports a number higher than the actual weight of your produce. These are simple examples, but they get the point across as to what these verses are talking about.

You say, well I’m good because my business doesn’t weigh anything. That is not the case. The point behind the verses is we have to be honest in all of our dealings. If you lie to your employees or bosses or customers you are breaking this principle. If you produce a car that isn’t safe and then try to cover it up it will come back to haunt you. The truth comes out in the end no matter where you are trying to cut corners. You are going to be better off in the long run if you treat everyone with honesty and respect.

Let me know of other examples you know of that represent dishonest scales. Has anyone seen this play out, i.e. a gas station getting caught by an inspector?


Khaleef @ KNS Financial August 10, 2010 at 8:26 am

I don’t have any personal examples of this playing out – except the things that make it to the news. However, I agree that following Proverbs (and the rest of the bible) to gain financial wisdom is the best thing to do.

It is so important for us Christians to realize that God has the answer to every matter than we come across, and we need to submit to His wisdom and will, rather than our own – or even what’s popular.

James Orcutt March 8, 2015 at 7:18 pm

I think you when one speaks of differing weights it can only refer to one thing and that is of a measurement of money because in biblical times a scale was used to measure out Gold and Silver as a way of buying something. I believe it refers to the money itself and not so much how it is used or who is using it. For example Gold requires great toil to extract it out of the earth and it has intrinsic value of its own. However our current form of money is what they call fiat money and I do not mean a automobile.. Think about it, our government prints trillions of dollars out of thin air and just think what that does to the money already out there? It destroys it value and especially those on fixed incomes, it steals from them which is most definitely a moral issue. There are many scriptures indicating that God detest the use of this form of money that has differing weights. Most people do not know that when you purchase something with Federal Reserve Notes (FRN), that you “buy it”, but in reality you discharge a debt because a FRN is a debt note. Many pastors teach that our form of money is amoral as well as a popular teacher of Financial Peach called Dave Ramsey. They refuse to consider the fact that our money in its creation has differing weights and only focus on the of money as being the only moral issue and I think it is wrong to do so. what do you think?

Nicole November 11, 2017 at 7:14 am

I wondered if this verse meant not treating people the same. Say favoring some people over another case of who they are. God looks at us all the same. Am I wrong?

Ron January 16, 2018 at 8:26 am

I believe it is a spiritual application for Christians to treat a person with the same way you expect to be treated

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