CBN.com Terry Felber: I think that there’s a lot of misunderstanding in the church and Christian culture. I think there’s some definite prejudices against business, profit, and wealth.
Lisa Ryan [reporting]: Terry Felber has well-developed thoughts on finances and faith! He’s a highly successful businessman, and a deeply devoted Christian.
Terry: As Pat Robertson has pointed out so often, money is talked about more in the Bible than any other subject.
Lisa [reporting]: Terry grew up in a loving, affluent Jewish family but what he saw in some circles shaped his perceptions about wealth.
Terry: Well I saw a lot of unhappiness among the people who were affluent. There was alcoholism and sexual immorality. I saw that in the country club atmosphere I grew up in. So money must be bad, [and it can] make you unhappy.
Lisa [reporting]: As for his perception of God…
Terry: Very curious. [I understood] that there was a God. That God was real, but not really knowing where He was.
Lisa: So when you went on a search for God, what were you seeking in Transcendal Mediation?
Terry: My heart’s desire was never just to know about God, but to know God. I wanted to know Him. I wanted to experience Him. I thought through meditation I could experience, through Eastern philosophy, I could have a God experience. I ended up going to Switzerland and studying with Mahareeshi Moshyogi, who was the teacher of the Beatles.
Lisa [reporting]: Terry later came back to America to teach Transcendal Mediation.
Lisa: So were you buying into the religion behind Transcendal Mediation?
Terry: I was as a teacher. The new practitioners never knew it was that. They just thought they were gonna sleep less, have more energy, lower blood pressure.
Lisa: Did it fulfill something you were looking for? Did you experience God?
Terry: No! It did something. I’m not sure what it did.
Lisa: Did you find everything you were looking for in that?
Terry: No, I wasn’t fulfilled and probably deep down knew that Transcendal Mediation wasn’t the truth.
Lisa [reporting]: Oddly enough, he felt strongly impressed to start reading the New Testament.
Terry: Thinking I was supposed to show the Christians -- who’d kind of been chasing me to learn about Christianity -- that Jesus actually believed what Mahareeshi believed. That’s what I was thinking God wanted me to read the New Testament for.
Lisa: So you were thinking that if you could attribute the acts and miracles of Jesus to the metaphysical...
Terry: Exactly! I wanted to show them that Jesus was metaphysical. Metaphysics believes that God lives within you. I read the New Testament, and I saw over 300 Old Testament prophecies fulfilled in the New Testament in great detail.
Lisa: Because you knew your Old Testament!
Terry: I did know the Old Testament, exactly! As I read 300 of those kinds of prophecies I thought, how can this be? This must be truth.
Lisa: Did that convince you?
Terry: Oh, it was thrilling to me. Yes, very convincing. I started to pray an hour and half a day and have done that pretty much every day for 21years since we became Christians. That more than anything has developed the relationship and fulfilled what I was looking for.
Lisa [reporting]: Terry began to put the pieces together. His new relationship with Christ and his perceptions of business and money. He applied biblical truths to his own life and found that they worked! Now he teaches others the success principles he’s learned.
Terry: Godly principles to budget, live below your means, to owe no man but for your love, not get into high speculation, those kinds of things.
Lisa: One of those principles is “Financial prosperity is connected to soul prosperity.” Explain.
Terry: God is a jealous God. He’s jealous for our love. He loves us so, as our heavenly daddy. As long as we put him first, then He wants to fulfill the desires of our hearts. Also it allows us to finance the furthering of the kingdom, because that takes money to sneak Bibles into China, to go on mission trips and build buildings.
Lisa: Why do you say you want to die poor?
Terry: First of all, I’m not interested in leaving a lot of money to my children. The unhappiest people I’ve ever met are people who’ve inherited a lot of money because they no longer have the motivation and incentive to go out and produce on their own. The rest is going to go to furthering the kingdom of God. I want to die to where it’s all been given away and used by God.
Lisa: Is it only the wealthy and those on the end of receiving who are to be generous givers?
Terry: Not at all. The tithe is the ten percent to the local storehouse, the church, and the gifts and offerings are above that either to church or para-ministries, charities, whatever. God wants both of those and when you don’t give, you rob Him of that.
Lisa [reporting]: Terry wrote The Legend of the Monk and the Merchant to teach the principles he believes will make anyone’s life successful. He says not everyone’s meant to be wealthy but that those blessed with wealth can accomplish great good...
Lisa: How do they keep themselves from becoming lovers of money and mastered by it?
Terry: As you spend time talking to God, the Holy Spirit convicts you as you get off track in certain areas. As you’re having tendencies toward making idols of things of having too much importance on recognition or status. The key is spending time every day talking to God.
A caring friend will be there to pray with you in your time of need.