One of the best books I read last year on the topic of personal finance is Business Secrets from the Bible by Rabbi Daniel Lapin. In this post, I’ll highlight some of the key learning to help you achieve your financial goals this year.
Rabbi Lapin is best known as the author of Thou Shall Prosper. Rabbi Lapin has “devoted much of (his) research to studying and isolating those characteristics that have helped Jews excel in business.” While similar, I recommend reading both books. If you choose just one, I suggest Business Secrets from the Bible. This book is slightly shorter and breaks the lessons down into 40 Secrets to help you reach your financial goals.
The Top Ten Secrets for Financial Goals
Instead of sharing all 40 secrets, I am going to share what you need to know to finally take control of your finances this year. For a more thorough understanding of how ancient Jewish wisdom can improve your finances, career, and personal life, add Business Secrets from the Bible to this month’s reading list.
Secret # 2: We Have Infinite Imagination, Potential, Creative Power, and Desires
Your ability is infinite. If you are anything like me, you have barely scratched the surface of what you are capable of achieving. Always be grateful for what you have, but driven to do more.
Secret # 5: Making Money is a Spiritual Activity
According to Lapin, university Economic studies were once housed in the Theology Department. Success with money is driven by morality and integrity.
Something I found interesting in this chapter is that Jewish wisdom prohibits employers from delegating meaningless work. Meaningless work lacks a sense of accomplishment and contribution which has a negative impact on employees and is thus, immoral.
Secret # 11: In Order to Achieve Financial Goals, we Must Build Our Self-Discipline, Integrity, and Character
The hot topic this year was the $1.5 Billion lottery jackpot. Nearly everyone I spoke to last month had an opinion about whether or not they would want to win, what they would do with the money, and whether winning money ruins lives.
I began to feel like a broken record repeating, “Money is amoral. It’s people who make it good or evil. If you’re good with money, you’ll do well with a lot of money. If you’re terrible with money, winning a lot of money won’t make you wealthy long-term.”
Secrets # 21, 22, 23, and 24
I’m listing Secrets 21 through 24 together. They all highlight the essence of being Kairosive – embracing and igniting change. It’s difficult to be successful at anything in life without a healthy relationship with change. This is especially true with personal finance.
Secret # 21: Change is Scary
Secret # 22: As Painful as Change Can Be it Often Contains the Seeds of Growth
“Resisting change does not prevent change; such passivity simply prevents you from taking the reins.”
Secret # 23: Because Change is a Constant Reality, Life is More Accurately Depicted by a Video than a Photograph
Learn more about this idea in my post about embracing a Transformation Mindset.
Secret # 24: The More That Things Change, The More We Must Depend on Those Things That Never Change
There are two points in this chapter that are worth sharing. I invite you to employ your critical thinking skills and mull these over this weekend. If you’re brave, maybe even a friendly debate.
- “Poverty and destitution are the result of society making mistakes and disobeying God’s plan.”
- “Science, medicine, and technology are always changing, thus we need to balance them with the three things that do not change.” God, human beings (human nature), and the physical rules of nature.
Secret # 25: Press Forward Even When the Road Ahead is Not Clear
Don’t wait for conditions to be right. Don’t wait until you get a raise to start saving for retirement. Don’t wait until your daughter decides she wants to be a doctor to begin saving for college. “If you wait until the sea has parted, you’re too late.”
Secret # 26: Do Not Let Your Fear Conquer You – Press On
“The only way to avoid doing anything wrong is to do nothing.” Do you know where nothing gets you? Nowhere.
Secret # 29: Feeling Right About Money Makes You Act Right
Do you feel that money is the root of all evil?
Do you feel that life would be easier without money?
Do you feel that when you earn money, you are taking from someone else? That there is a fixed amount?
If so, the way you feel about money could be the root of your problems. Negative money talk has become a part of American culture. But not you. You have the power to change the way you feel about money and the power to influence those around you.
Rabbi Lapin says, “Wealth is how God rewards us for serving his other children.” God tells us in the bible that, “The gold of the land is good. Genesis 2:12”
Secret # 30: You Can Best Attract That Which You Best Understand
You can’t change something you don’t understand. If you’re trying to change you money habits, start by educating yourself. In addition to Business Secrets from the Bible, here are three more favorites.
Secret # 31: You Must Know Your Money, Which You Must Be Able to Measure and Count
You need a budget. You need to track your net worth. You need to make your progress toward your goals visible.
This is not negotiable. Trust me, I tried. This is what I use. Kairosive Budget Template
If you like it, use it. If not, find something that works for you.
Secret # 33: Don’t Live Beyond Your Means – Give Beyond Your Means
Remember Secret 24? This is a rule that hasn’t changed in thousands of years.
There are countless benefits to being generous. The bottom line is that you have to give before you get. Financial giving ingrains this value so we can use it in other facets of our lives.
For example, looking to earn a promotion? Give before you get. How about that prospective client? Give before you get.
One more secret.
Secret #10: Life Isn’t About What You Know – It’s About Who You Are
You can have all of the knowledge in the world, but it means nothing unless you take action.