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Jason Hartman hosts Art Ally, President and Founder of Timothy Plan, a company focused on Biblically responsible investing. Art discusses what that means and how you can be content by less than what you think you need. He gives insight into how scripture teaches us about handling money and investing.
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Welcome to the Solomon success show, where we explore the timeless wisdom of King Solomon and the Bible as it relates to business and investing false prophets and get rich quick schemes are everywhere. Let’s not be distracted by these. Instead, let’s go to the source, the eternal principles that create a life of peace, power and prosperity. Here’s our host, Jason Hartman.
Jason Hartman 0:40
It’s my pleasure to welcome art Holly to the show. He is founder and president of Timothy plan art. Welcome. How are you?
Art Ally 0:47
Jason Hartman 0:48
Good. Good to have you on the show. Well, it’s great to have you on the show and I know you’re coming to us today from Orlando, Florida, not too far from where I am in South Florida. Talk to us about biblical investing. What is that?
Art Ally 1:01
Well, it’s actually a whole movement that’s finally taken on some velocity. A little over 24 years ago, it really hit me that my clients and I’ve been in the investment business 45 years now, I was helping invest in companies and I dealt pretty much with the Christian community, helping invest in companies that were funding and directly involved in on biblical, unholy agenda stuff like abortion, pornography, pantai family entertainment goes on, and
Jason Hartman 1:37
how about just crockery and dishonest dealings? Seems like I run into that all the time.
Art Ally 1:44
Well, you know, that’s just kind of standard fare and this cold right, yeah. You know, the values have turned completely upside down. Jan. I know, I know. But not for us, not for our clients and our shareholders. Yeah,
Jason Hartman 1:59
yeah. Absolutely. So what does it mean, though? It’s fine for us?
Art Ally 2:03
Well, it starts with the understanding that every Christian I think would confess to, It all belongs to God. When I asked him whose money in it well, it’s God’s, of course, well, then he has some pretty strict standards that he expects us to follow in handling his money, whether it’s the way we spend it, whether we get head over heels in debt with it, or we invest it once we have enough and have accumulated enough to start doing that. Mm hmm. And in today’s culture, you know, domestically, for example, we invest we’ve got funds that invest in stocks, we got funds that invest in bonds, we got funds that actually invest in inflation sensitive things like commodities. We also have international funds. But domestically, there are about 8000 publicly traded companies that are large enough for us to invest in. Mm hmm. The problem is Number of these publicly traded companies, which has nothing to do with the products or services they provide, are pursuing an unholy agenda. Tell us about their funding Planned Parenthood, whether they’re producing a board officience whether they’re major sponsors of pornography, distributors of that corporations are funding a lot of what’s wrong in America today? No Sure. We drew that line in the sand and said, You know what, we are not going to invest one penny of any shareholders money in any of those companies. Hmm,
Jason Hartman 3:38
let’s divide this up if we can, because I’d like to take a whole nother perspective look on it, not necessarily right away, but I just want to make sure we get to it on our talk today. One perspective is what the person or company receiving your investment funds does, how they manage it, what kind of steward they are of that money. That’s One component, but the other component is how we ourselves handle it. And you know, how we view things like leverage and debt and, you know, our own sort of personal side of it. You know, one is, I guess I’d call it one is the sort of the internal perspective on biblical investing. And then the other one is the external perspective. And you’ve talked about the external perspective, you know, and I can definitely see what you’re saying there. But I’d like to also make sure we address the internal perspective a little bit if we can, you know, that there’s so many biblical stories is the five talents comes to mind, etc. I’d call that more of an internal story. In other words, how the person with some money to invest views investing,
Art Ally 4:42
right? Well, actually, Jason is all internal. Okay. In other words, when you invest, you don’t give a company the money. Mm hmm. You actually own shares of that Corporation, right. And so if that corporation is for sale, Some unholy agenda, you’re participating in that. Sure. That’s pretty internal. So yeah, we will on that side of it, refuse to own any company funding evil. Yeah, right on the internal. You’re right. In fact, I wrote an entire nine hour biblical stewardship study course, several years ago, on everything God says, about money, which he says more about that, as you will know, than any other subject in the scriptures. But all of the training and the your audience is probably the same as you and I have been all of our training in handling money has come from the world, not from the church and studying the Word of God. So no wonder we’re in a mess because we know who the god of this world is. And Satan has a strong In fact, I believe it’s his strongest bond of choice. Non Christians and non Christians alike. And that’s money. Because that’s central to everybody’s life. Yeah, whether you’re earning it, saving it, you’re not a debt with it, investing it. Money is central. And if you handle a biblically you are free. If you don’t, you’re under bondage to that money and that becomes your God. Yeah, right. Right.
Jason Hartman 6:23
It is definitely a very important means of exchange. It impacts almost every area of one’s life. I remember many years ago, sitting in church and the pastor was talking about how we are all just stewards from birth to death, you know, obviously, you can’t take it with you. So you have to manage it wisely during your lifetime. And there are ways to do that, you know, you can hoard and never invest, you can saving versus investing. Those are two different things. I’d be kind of interested for you to talk I had that Dave Ramsey’s number two guy on the show. I did not have Dave on the show. But I’d be sort of interested to hear your your take on the Dave Ramsey philosophy, which, by the way, I believe is good for most people. It’s just not an investment strategy. I think it’s a good get out of debt and savings strategy, but not an investing strategy. I think that’s where Dave kind of leaves off. Love to get right on that.
Art Ally 7:22
Well, I consider Dave a friend. I know Dave, his program is really good. It is focused on getting out of debt, which is one of the biggest problems people have today. So it is a good program, but there’s very little scriptural very little biblical principles and like you say he doesn’t even get into investing right. In fact, he refers some of his listeners directly to the Timothy plan, because he knows we do it biblically
Jason Hartman 7:49
than anything else about some of the lessons in the Bible. You know, maybe specific lessons five talents are King Solomon that the namesake for the show anything You want to share there?
Art Ally 8:00
Well, King Solomon was, you know, by consensus, the wisest man that ever lived, because he asked God for wisdom and good judgment. However, like all the rest of us, he kind of straight anybody who has 300 wives and 700 concubines wise in my opinion, yeah, but we won’t get into that today but right now he did understand. And you know, the Book of Proverbs is just pure wisdom. Ecclesiastes, love Ecclesiastes.
Jason Hartman 8:33
Art Ally 8:34
Yeah, he had it all. Uh huh. And he says, that’s not where happiness is. It’s how you relate to the creator of the universe. And that’s the ultimate and the end of all things. In fact, in my biblical stewardship seminar, I kind of challenged people because, you know, we think we know what we’re doing and we’re approaching it from the world’s understanding of handling money and that sakas understanding In fact, it’s just the opposite. And the question I would pose to people is, Do you know anybody that doesn’t want to make more money? Anybody? Right? And the answer is no. I mean, there’s probably a few people out there, but everybody wants it. And if only I had more money, then I would be happy. So when you make more money, what do you want?
Jason Hartman 9:28
Art Ally 9:30
When you make that, what do you want? More? Yeah. It never has never ends. If accumulating money was the answer to happiness. Why are the wealthiest people in the world the most miserable? Yeah, God says, I want you to be content with those things you have.
Jason Hartman 9:47
Okay. So let’s just unpack that for a minute. I get the point you’re making but I want to just play devil’s advocate, if you will, for a second. Is it fair to say the wealthiest people are the most unhappy? I don’t know Warren Buffett and Bill Gates don’t seem terribly unhappy. To me, they’re not all that happy. Yeah, well, okay, tell me more. More here
Art Ally 10:06
that way. Oh, but the majority are very unhappy. In fact, if you have a child on drugs or a child with a brain tumor, you’d get everything you had to solve that problem. Sure, sure.
Jason Hartman 10:19
Money doesn’t do it. That’s not the most important thing, not the wrong with money. But we do not approach it from a biblical, godly perspective. We approach it from the worldly perspective, and we’re upside down as a rule. Yeah, I would agree. For sure. And a lot of people and I find myself questioning this quite a bit, in my own life, spend a lot of time and thought, energy and effort chasing more than they need. You know, it’s like, what is that perfect balance? I remember reading a study many years ago on, you know, does money make us happy and the results of this work One study I was reading about were kind of interesting. They said, Look, you know, and obviously, this depends where you live, and then you’d have to adjust for inflation, of course, because there’s been quite a bit of inflation. Since I read this article years ago, it seemed to indicate that the number was like $1.5 million net worth was sort of, you know, in most of America, not the really expensive places, because that’s not much and, you know, New York City, that’ll do it, you know, it’s like, you don’t need five or $10 million, or, or more than that, you know, about 1.5. And, you know, we’re reasonable income. And that’s sort of this kind of sweet spot that they talked about. Now, if you adjust that for inflation, I suppose it would be 2.5 million today. You’d have to adjust a little bit for geography. If you live in a really expensive place. You got to up it a little bit. But if, hey, if you live in Oklahoma City, that’s more than enough. Right? Any thoughts on that kind of thing?
Art Ally 11:53
You know, America is really not a realistic land when it comes to The entire world goes half the world goes to bed hungry, of course, and I’m just talking about us the study was just us people in poverty in America have a better life than the middle class in Europe. Oh, of course, we have so much. We have too much, hmm. And as a result of that, that becomes our God and we begin worried about losing it or not doing this with others. And in fact, we are not open handed. We are not sharing with the needs of people we are trying to hoard and accumulate, and that’s how you get that, huh, there’s nothing wrong with it. Some people do know how to handle it biblically, but very few. Money is Satan’s greatest father child, and it becomes the love of money, as it says, you know in Scripture.
Jason Hartman 12:52
It’s not all evil and the important distinction there is the word love the love of self love people misquote that of course. Right, exactly right.
Art Ally 13:01
Okay. But you know, Timothy, all we do is provide for those in the body of Christ, that are serious about aligning their biblical convictions with the way they invest the money God has entrusted to them, and they want to do it in a manner that would be pleasing to Him. How much money do you think God wants you to invest his money in abortion? Right? Serious answer none. Yeah. Or pornography and the damage that does or gambling and that’s a addiction, or alcohol and tobacco, which are addictive, and anti family in too many cases. He doesn’t want to investing any money in those things. And if as soon as money, all we do is provide we actually have 13 pots Jason, and it’s widely diversified, which is another cliche Ask these principle divide your portion into seven even eight. In other words, diversify. Do not put everything in one basket. Oh, that’s interesting seven or eight divisions. That’s considered the proper amount of diversification. Seven date coordinate scripture, according to scripture that was Solomon said, which is your namesake? Can
Jason Hartman 14:19
you go into that a little bit? Because what does it mean in terms of diversify, like different sectors in the stock market? Real Estate versus stocks or whatever? Yeah,
Art Ally 14:29
sure. Great question. Yeah. You know, there are different asset classes, there are stocks, there’s bonds, there’s growth stocks, there’s conservative socks, there’s aggressive stock, there’s international stocks, there’s commodities, there’s anything you can invest money in. There is an easy way to do it today in the marketplace. And the strategy of diversification just means asset allocation, dividing your money into different asset classes, then within each class to vote apart into the number of holdings in other words, in our various mutual funds, which we are, we’re a mutual fund company. Each one of our funds has between 50 and 100 different companies that the professional money management firms believe are economically great opportunities for people to invest in. But you know, they’re not always right. They’re usually right. Hmm. So that’s why it’s important to divide your portion just like Scripture says, into seven, even eight, that’s Ecclesiastes is 11 to run. And it’s an important principle, to put everything in one place may work out for a while when things are going well for that one place. But things do not always go well continuously. And it’s just a risky way to invest. Yeah, absolutely. Okay, good.
Jason Hartman 15:55
What else do you want people to know? Maybe a question. I haven’t asked. You. Just anything you want to share with the audience?
Art Ally 16:01
Well, we have a lot of tools, Timothy we’ve developed over these past 24 years, one of which is the evaluate or if people care. And not everybody does, unfortunately, Jason, but if people care about where the money they have invested is actually residing, we have a tool called the evaluator that we just provide for them. If they want to call our office. We’ll tell them because it analyzes every mutual fund, every holding of every mutual fund, every ETF, every annuity, variable annuity, and we know what every fund holds. Because that’s published quarterly. We cross reference that with our screening research, and we have a team of five full time people that do nothing but research companies that we refuse to allow our money management firms To invest in, so we can tell them how much money they do have invested in companies involved in abortion and pornography and all the rest. Mm hmm. And it’s a free service we give. Yeah,
Jason Hartman 17:12
good stuff. So give out the website then,
Art Ally 17:15
is simply Timothy plan.com, or the phone number one 800 tim plan and just ask for an evaluator analysis. And we’ll provide that for you for free. Your financial advisor, if you have one should be doing that. They can subscribe to evaluator they all should have that tool, because they need to know what’s important to their clients. And if morally responsible, biblically responsible, investing is important. We can provide them with the tools that can help them see where the money’s invested in what they’ve been recommending to their clients.
Jason Hartman 17:56
Art. Thank you so much for joining us today, and we appreciate that. The insights.
Art Ally 18:01
Well, it’s been my pleasure, sir. Thank you. Thank you for the good work you’re doing.
Jason Hartman 18:06
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