Summary: This is a sermon from a series on worship. This one deals with giving as a function of our worship.
It seems to me that most people want to benefit from their money and they do whatever seems best to them to receive that benefit. Whether it is spending it on the things they want, investing it in hope of a positive return, or even gambling it for the possibility of a big payoff. That last one is of particular interest in our State right now. Consider a few of these facts…
88% of Americans gamble in some form.
95% lose what they bet.
Winners get back less than half of what they bet.
Did you know?
You are seven more times likely to be struck by lightning…
You are one half million times more likely to die in a plane crash…
In fact you are more likely to survive 88 rounds of Russian roulette than to win a typical state lottery.
With these odds you could buy fifty lottery tickets each week and could expect to win the lottery on average once every 5000 years.
That seems like a foolish way to seek a benefit from your money to me.
What does the Bible have to say about money and its use. Let’s take a look and see.
1. Who does our money really belong to? – Malachi 3:8-10
God challenges us to honor Him in obedience with what He has given us.
Only when we are obedient to God can we expect to grow spiritually and receive blessing.
But tithing is only the training wheels of true Christian giving.
2. What does Jesus say about tithing and giving?
Matthew 23:23 – the Pharisees
Luke 21:1-4 – the Widows two mites
Matthew 25:14-30 - the parable of the talents
Luke 6:38 – Give and it will be given to you in the same measure you gave
3. What about giving with a joyful heart? – I Corinthians 9:6-7
Let’s put this in context…
8:1-7 – Paul speaks of the liberal gift of the Macedonian Church in the midst of their great trial and affliction.
8:8-15 – Paul uses Christ as our model and example for giving.
9:1-5 – Paul says he has boasted to the Macedonians concerning them.
9:8-15 – Paul reminds them of Gods provision and “indescribable gift”
It seems clear that God not only wants us to give but He wants us to give out of His abundance and provision not out of what we are merely comfortable with.