Sermons

Summary: It's a common complaint about pastors and churches: "All they ever do is talk about money." The reality is we rarely talk specifically about money. Both Old & New Testaments have a LOT to say about money and possessions. Let's hear Jesus' heart for us on the topic of money.

You can hear the audio of this sermon on my podcast at: https://www.buzzsprout.com/697261/3897275

Core 52 Week 21 - What About My Money?

• Common complaint in churches: All they talk about is money. Truth is the average N. American church generally has a short series on money/giving about 1/year. Works out to about 7% of the teaching content.

• Jesus and the gospels, on the other hand spend a ton of time talking about money.

o 10% of the verses in the gospels are about money.

o 16/38 parables address money and possessions.

• In the whole Bible there are 2,300 verses on money & possessions. By contrast, only 500 address the topic of prayer and even fewer teach specifically on faith.

• There is a direct correlation between financial management and faith development. Jesus’ clearest summary is Matt. 6:19-21 and Acts 20:35

1. God wants our hearts. (Which includes our money.)

Matthew 6:21 Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.

• The idea is that we invest in what we care about. And it’s always true that our hearts follow our money.

• The way we manage money reveals whether “in God we trust” is true or not.

• In fact, everything in creation belongs to God

Psalm 24:1 The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it. The world and all its people belong to him.

• That puts us in the position to be - not owners - but managers.

• This takes a lot of pressure off of us.

• But responsibility remains.

• It’s a bit provoking, but to mismanage or to claim ownership of anything is, essentially, embezzlement.

• We’ve forgotten what we prayed about from last week. That God’s agenda is our agenda. That He is no longer king of our world.

• When money becomes our master, God cannot be.

Matthew 6:24 “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.

2. Stewardship is Spiritual

Matthew 6:19–20 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal.

• False dichotomy between secular and spiritual.

• How we manage money & possessions affects our spiritual progress.

• Money is an eternal resource. Jesus expects us to send it on ahead.

Matthew 6:19–20 “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal.

• Example from Matt. 19:16-22

• All the external commands were good. What he lacked was a relationship with God.

• Jesus identified the problem: Money was his God.

• So, rid himself of the idol and be ready to follow Christ.

• See:

Colossians 3:5 So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual immorality, impurity, lust, and evil desires. Don’t be greedy, for a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world.

• covetousness is idolatry.

3. Generosity Brings Blessing

Acts 20:35 And I have been a constant example of how you can help those in need by working hard. You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ”

• We often think of blessing in terms of receiving the blessing.

• God focuses on the blessing that generosity offers to those who provide it.

Acts 20:35 And I have been a constant example of how you can help those in need by working hard. You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ”

• God gives us wealth to share and then opens up the floodgates of blessings in our own lives.

Proverbs 3:9–10 Honor the LORD with your wealth and with the best part of everything you produce. 10 Then he will fill your barns with grain, and your vats will overflow with good wine.

Luke 6:38 Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.”

Conclusion:

• Can you affirm from experience it is more blessed to give than receive?

• What do you sense God is prompting you to do as a next step toward generosity? What resource(s) do you need to take that next step of faith? (Training, accountability, education, debt reduction).

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