Gaming Theology 003: Budget

Let’s talk about everyone’s favorite subject.

Another one of the questions we get asked on the show is how do we budget for all these games we talk about playing on the show. I always respond, jokingly, that I don’t budget and just buy whatever game I want. Anyone that is married knows that kind of philosophy does not fly very far. How does a Christian who enjoys video games budget for games? Well, it all goes back to Gaming Theology 001: priorities.

If we have a proper, Biblical understanding of our priorities, then we can budget sufficiently for our hobbies. With that framework in mind, let us consider the topic of tithing for a moment. We first see it in Genesis 14:19-20, after Abram returns from rescuing Lot, defeating an army, and runs into Melchizedek, who blesses him while attributing his victory to God. Abram, in response, gives a tenth of his possessions. The giving was not because of an obligation or because Melchizedek demanded it but, because of Abram’s joy and recognition of God’s providence. Later in Genesis 28, Jacob offers a tenth as a tithe and even later in Leviticus, we see tithing instituted as a Law. Even Proverbs 3:9-10 states:

Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the firstfruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine.

Putting this on hold, let’s take a look at the New Testament. In Mark 12:41-44, Jesus is observing people coming and going, offering their tithes. He sees wealthy people leaving large sums of money but notice what He says when a poor woman, a woman with very little to her name, drops two coins off:

And he called his disciples to him and said to them, “Truly, I say to you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the offering box. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.

Now, why would she do that? Could it be because of her faith? Consider also 2 Corinthians 9:7:

Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

Are you seeing a theme here? We don’t give a tithe to God out of obligation but out of recognition for who God is, His sovereignty, and His providence over our lives. Even the following verses in 2 Corinthians 9 assure us that God provides, in some way, for us. Think about this: if everything is God’s, and He allows us to have possessions and money, how gracious is it of Him that, as far as things seem, Scripture only notes 10% be given? It doesn’t take a mathematician to see that that leaves us with 90% left-over! Now, surely the 10% rule that can be established shouldn’t be something that falls under a legalistic ruling; we all have different amounts of income. Our giving should be out of the gladness of our heart and out of our recognition, and worship, of who God is, His sovereignty, and providence in our lives! Therefore, when budgeting, God should be considered first and foremost, with everything else trailing behind it.

If you struggle with budgeting and sticking to it, do not fear! There are multiple resources available! You can always check out Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. A helpful application you can also use is You Need A Budget (YNAB), which is free for college students!

Now, if you need some tips or ideas on how to budget for games specifically, we’ll dive more in depth on that in a later post. In the meantime, check out Episode 46 “Chasing Rabbits”.

GG & Amen

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