Summary: A sermon on Christian stewardship.

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Matthew 20:1-16

“Our Primary Stewardship”

By: Rev. Kenneth Sauer, Pastor of Parkview United Methodist Church, Newport News, VA

A young preacher had just finished seminary and had taken his first appointment in the hills of Kentucky.

Wanting to be effective in his preaching ministry, he walked into the pulpit on his first Sunday and preached

on the evils of smoking.

When he finished his message, some of the church leaders met him at the door: “We’re a little surprised that

you would deal with the subject of smoking because nearly half of the state of Kentucky raises tobacco. You

might want to think twice about talking about tobacco from this pulpit.”

The preacher thanked them for enlightening him.

The next Sunday he came back and preached against liquor and drinking.

With great ferver, he preached on the ills of whiskey.

The same group met him at the door when he was finished.

They said: “We think we need to tell you that you ought to be careful about preaching against alcoholic

beverages, especially since nearly a third of our county distills whiskey.”

“I didn’t know that,” the preacher replied. “Thank you for helping me.”

He came back the next Sunday to preach a stirring sermon on gambling--in any shape or form, the

lotto, racehorses, or any other.

The same group met him after the service: “We think we need to tell you that over half of our county raises

thoroughbred racehorses, so you want to be real careful about talking about gambling from the pulpit.”

Being a quick learner, the next Sunday, the young preacher preached against the evils of scuba diving in

international waters!

Obviously this young preacher took the easy way out...but this is not what we are called to do as


Ultimately, this is why Jesus was crucified....because He said things that made people uncomfortable or


And Jesus often used parables in order to help men and women see the great truths of the kingdom of God.

John H. Westerhoff the 3rd once said: “If you are not feeling very uncomfortable after you have read a

parable in the Bible, just assume that you did not get it. It’s function is to turn your life upside down and get you

very upset. And most people are not upset about parables. That means that they did not get it.”

Let’s take a look at the parable we read this morning from the perspective of stewardship.

First of all...what is stewardship?

Stewardship is simply the wise management of God’s resources.

Psalm 24 says: “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.”

And as Christians, we are called to manage those resources.

So, stewardship is as much about living as it is about giving.

On Sunday, September 15th we at Parkview United Methodist Church are going to have Consecration


And during the weeks of August, I plan to preach a series of sermons concerning stewardship.

I want all of us to spend the summer in reflection and prayer....asking God to tell us and lead us and teach us

how we can become even better stewards for His Church.

When we joined the Church we promised God that we would be loyal to The United Methodist Church

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