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Summary: When a person makes the choice not to tithe they become robbers of God

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Highway Robbery

Malachi 3:6-12

June 11, 206

Morning Service

Introduction

The day the church treasurer resigned the church asked the local grain elevator manager to take the position. He agreed under two conditions.

That no treasurer’s report would be given for the first year.

That no questions be asked about finances during that year.

The people were surprised but finally agreed since most of them did business with him and he was a trusted man.

At the end of the year he gave his report:

* The church indebtedness of $228,000 has been paid.

* The minister’s salary had been increased by 8%.

* The Cooperative Program gifts has been paid 200%.

* There were no outstanding bills.

* And there was a cash balance of $11,252!

Immediately the shocked congregation asked, "How did you do it? Where did the money come from?"

He quietly answered: "Most of you bring your grain to my elevator. Throughout the year I simply withheld ten percent on your behalf and gave it to the church in your name. You didn’t even miss it!"

As we look at the essence of what it means to have a closer walk with Christ, we must begin a careful examination of spiritual disciplines. Disciplines are those actions that draw you into a deeper walk with Christ. The first discipline we are examining is stewardship.

What is a steward? A steward is a person who manages the property of someone else.

Stewardship is God’s resources deployed through His people to mobilize His people to evangelize. – Stan Toler

Stewardship is one of those issues that people get several wrong ideas about. The first is that Jesus said very little about money.

In Matthew, Mark and Luke 1 out of every 6 verses deals with the topic of money. If you look at the parables of Jesus, 16 of 29 parables deal with money or finances. Jesus was very concerned about the topic of money but the question is why? It has been said that money is the root of all evil. Jesus seems to be more concerned about what our money is doing to us than what we do with our money.

The second is that the church shouldn’t talk about money. If jesus talked about money the church most definitely should deal with the issue. The problem is that most people do not understand the issue of stewardship. Stewardship is much more about the state of your heart than it is about the size of your wallet.

If you have your bibles with you this morning, I want to examine the stewardship issue with you. Open them to Malachi 3:6-12

6 "I the LORD do not change. So you, O descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed. 7 Ever since the time of your forefathers you have turned away from my decrees and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you," says the LORD Almighty. "But you ask, `How are we to return?’ 8 "Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. "But you ask, `How do we rob you?’ "In tithes and offerings. 9 You are under a curse--the whole nation of you--because you are robbing me. 10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this," says the LORD Almighty, "and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it. 11 I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit," says the LORD Almighty. 12 "Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land," says the LORD Almighty. Malachi 3:6-12


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