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Summary: Money is perhaps the most powerful tool, other than our tongue, that God has given to us to use for furthering His mission here on earth.

George or Jesus?

Money – one of our greatest treasures. We can’t do with it and we can’t do without it.

Money affects all sorts of things:It affects relations between countries for example: “A visiting American textile-buyer told a long but amusing story at a luncheon in Seoul, South Korea. The translator repeated it to the group in a just a few words, and the audience laughed and applauded. Later, the textile-buyer commented to the translator, “I think that it was wonderful the way they appreciated my joke. It’s amazing how you were able to shorten in Korean.” The interpreter replied, “Not at all. I merely said, ‘Man with big checkbook has told funny story. Do what you think is appropriate.”

It also affects personal relationships: Mr. Jones said to Mr. Smith, “We’re having a raffle for a poor widow. Would you like to buy a ticket?” Mr. Smith replied, “I’m afraid not. Even I won, my wife wouldn’t let me keep her.”

Money also affects good deeds: “Pastor Smith felt sorry for the old man he saw every morning in the park through which he walked to his office. It seemed the world had been hard for him. One morning he handed him an envelope with $10 inside and note that read, “Never Despair.” The next day the man handed Pastor Smith $60. “What is this for?” the astonished minister asked. “Never Despair was in the money paying 6 to 1 odds in the second race,” the man answered.

And of course money affects, as we are aware of these days, employer/employee relations: “During an inflationary period several years ago, employees at Hughes Aircraft in Torrance, California, found this sign over a company water cooler, “Due to inflation and other rising costs, the water in this cooler is now twice as free as it use to be.”

And strangely enough money even affects pastors and pets: A Baptist minister received a call from a lady who was quite upset over the death of her cat, Homer. She wanted the preacher to conduct the funeral service for Homer! The Baptist preacher explained that this was a little out of his line and referred her to a friend, the Presbyterian pastor at a church down the street. Later, the preacher learned that his Presbyterian friend had referred her to a Methodist minister, who referred her to someone else.

About an hour later, she called the Baptist preacher back and she was still upset. The woman said that she was at her wit’s end. She couldn’t find a preacher to conduct Homer’s service and didn’t know what to do. She said that she planned to give $1,000 to the church of the minister who performed this service for Homer. The Baptist pastor later said that it took him only a moment to mull it over and then to say to her, “Well, why didn’t you tell me that Homer was a Baptist cat in the first place?”

Money – we can’t do with it and we can’t do with out it. Money is perhaps the most powerful tool, other than our tongue, that God has given to us to use for furthering His mission here on earth. Doug Rumford, who I will quote a couple of times this morning has said this, “Money is one of the most ‘spiritual’ substances in the world; it becomes the vehicle that moves us toward or away from a deeper knowledge, and I would add, experience, of God . . . . Money is a powerful force.”

Yes this is the money sermon. One that many pastors dread to preach and parishioners dread to listen to. One that evokes a wide range of emotions from outright hostility to careless indifference to shame and guilt from everyone and anyone.

But, money is a powerful force and a powerful tool. It is so because, in His remarks to His twelve disciples at the beginning of their three year journey together, Jesus makes a very profound statement about money and other treasures that goes to the very heart of this message about this tool that God has given to us to use for the right reason and purposes.

We read these words in Matthew 6: 19-24.

(READ THE PASSAGE)

In this passage, Jesus tells His leadership and ministry team that

1. Real treasure, real value in life comes not in money and material possession, but in the intangibles that come to us as we carefully and consistently walk with God.

2. That where our treasure is, what we really value as most important in life, is what will preoccupy us.

3. Our eyes are a light for the body and the kind of eyes you have will determine what kind of light you will let in to your soul. In other words, money has spiritual power to either darken or lighten your soul.

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