Summary: This sermon deals with tithing and why we should do it.
NUTS For Christ In Stewardship
4/14/2002 Eccl.11:1-6 2 Corinthians. 8:1-12 9:6-9
This is our third NUTS sermon. NUTS stands for Never Underestimating The Spirit. We are indebted to Leonard Sweets from the Beyond All Limits Conference for getting us started with NUTS Passion. Today is our day for financially committing ourselves to supporting the ministry of Christ. Whatever we do for God, we ought to do it with a passion to offer our best.
Let’s meet Bobby for a moment. Bobby is eleven years old, and knows his parents 20th anniversary is coming up. He tells his parents, “Mom and Dad, you’re the greatest parents in the whole world. I sure wish I had a $100 because if I did, I would get you the best anniversary gift ever.”
In the past, Bobby had always drawn them a picture card and told them how much he loved them. Bobby’s parents were interested in seeing just what their son would get them if he had the money. The next day, they sent him a hundred dollars in the mail, with no return address, and with a typed message saying, “this is for you, to do as you please.”
Bobby was thrilled when he opened the envelope. “Wow, a hundred dollars, and it is mine to do what I want to do with it.” Two days later on his parents anniversary, the anticipation was building in their hearts as to what their son would give to them. Expectation mounted as Bobby came through shouting as he always did “Happy Anniversary!”. He presented them with another hand drawn card. In it he told them they were the best parents ever, and he loved them very much.
They smiled and said, “this card is great where is our gift.” Bobby said, “You’ve got it. I always make you a card for your gift.” His father said, “but son, you said, if you had a $100, you’d get us best anniversary gift ever.” Bobby replied, “well Dad I would have, if you had of given me the $100 when I said it. The father said, “but, son you got a $100 in the mail.” Bobby replied, “I would have used some of my money, but after I bought my new game, and two cd’s, I barely had enough left to go to the movies, so you can see why I didn’t have anything left for gifts for you.
How would you have felt if you were Bobby’s parents? It’s not that Bobby did not love his parents or even that Bobby was a bad kid. Bobby simply did not understand the concept of being grateful and demonstrating it by making personal sacrifices. Being NUTS For Christ in Stewardship means never underestimating the Spirit when we make personal sacrifices because we are grateful for what God has done for us. Who knows how many envelopes Bobby would have received if he had of acted differently?
There are many people who are willing to give, only when they think it will not cost them anything to do it. This week, Super Lotto fever of 70 million had many people giving away millions to the church and to the cause of Christ. Why, because they did not have it to give.
Let me ask you something for those of us who know Christ, if you had to choose between winning 70 million dollars and living and dying without Christ or having what you have now and living and dying in Christ, which would you choose. No let’s not play the game of a deathbed confession. What if you had won and God said give it all away if you really want to know Me, then what would you have done.
This morning we sang songs, “Lord you are more precious than silver, precious than gold, and beautiful than diamonds, and nothing I desire compares with you.” I wouldn’t trade you for silver or gold. I wouldn’t trade you for riches untold. You are my everything. Were we telling the truth to God in our praise and worship, or were those just idle words? God can already knows based on what w do with the little silver and gold we do have.
Jesus came to earth with a mission. He said, “I came to seek and to save those who were lost.” That was the most critical aspect of Jesus’ ministry. Then Jesus turned around and gave the mission to us. He tells us in John 15:16
You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit--fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Notice that as a result of us doing what God tells us to do, God is able to bless us with answers to our prayers.