Contrasting Christian and Secular Estate Planning
"Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly..."
The Bible is clear that Christians must seek Godly counsel on important decisions, yet when it comes to one of the most important planning processes a Christian will ever undertake, little thought is given to the worldview of the professionals whose advice they seek. Because each Christian is accountable to God for his stewardship, estate planning is a matter of eternal consequence! What a joy to know that with the right counsel, we can stand before the Lord and hear, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant."
Three aspects of the Christian worldview distinguish Christian stewardship planning from secular estate planning. These fundamental differences make an extraordinary impact on the eternal outcome of the estate planning process.
The FIRST is the Christian's understanding that God owns all of his worldly possessions. [Ps. 50:10] By keeping in mind that God owns our possessions and we are only stewards, we begin the process of current oversight and long-term planning with the appropriate frame of reference.
SECOND is the reality that we will leave behind all our worldly possessions at our death. Paul told Timothy that just as we brought nothing into this world, we certainly will carry nothing out [I Tim. 6:7]. David lamented of mankind’s frailty when he spoke of the “heaping of riches yet not knowing who would gather them” [Ps. 39:6].
THIRD is the reality that as children of God we are to reflect the giving nature of our heavenly Father and that one day He will hold us accountable to His expectations. We are urged by Christ Himself to “lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven” [Mt 6:20] and that stewards are to be faithful [I Cor. 4:2]. To the end that we faithfully fulfill His wishes, He has promised that we will hear, “well done thou good and faithful servant.”