Summary: Message on Tithing and Stewardship Send e-mail to email@example.com for Powerpoint.
The Sermon On The Amount
Today we are going to address the topic of giving, and explore what the Word of God says about this dynamic area of not only Christian life, but also of the life of anyone who simply wants to “win” at life by becoming a giver.
Most likely, in the heart of hearts of most people there is a desire to be a giver, but often the discussion goes way off the map when it goes into “how much” should I give, and does it matter what kind of attitude I have when I give?
There are so many questions regarding giving, but the world might often ask, how it is that anyone who gives something away can actually in turn become a better person, and have their needs met unless they keep it all.
A favorite story is of a man of substance approached to contribute to a major financial campaign. The urgent need and compelling case were stated, and the call was made for his support. The man responded: "I understand why you think I can give fifty thousand dollars. I am a man with my own business and, it is true, I have all the signs of affluence. But there are some things you don’t know. Did you know that my mother is in an expensive nursing home?" Well, no, we didn’t know. "Did you know also that my brother died, and left a family of five and had almost no insurance?" No, we didn’t. "Did you know my son is deeply religious, has gone into social work, and makes less than the national poverty level to meet the needs of his family?" No, we hadn’t realized. "Well, then, if I don’t give any of them a penny, why do you think I’ll give it to you?"
Donald E. Messer
This is simply going to be an honest look at the issue of stewardship from a passage in 1 Chronicles which talks about how David and the people provided the resources for building the temple of God.
As we look at this passage together we will be asking and answering three questions:
1) Why do we give?
2) How do we give?
3) What do we give?
We will not be exhaustive in our answers to these questions but will primarily stick to this passage and see what it has to say to us regarding these things.
In today’s message we will learn that stewardship is a matter of the heart, and a sign of loyalty to God. David writes, “O Lord, God of our fathers Abraham, Isaac and Israel, keep this desire (for stewardship) in the hearts of your people forever, and keep their hearts loyal to you” (29:18).
Godly Stewardship of our finances is the evidence that our hearts are truly loyal to God. This is the case because our finances are usually one of the last areas that we are willing to turn over to God. Therefore, when one becomes a good steward of finances through becoming a giver, we can be sure of their devotion to God. A pastor I know once said, “If God has their checkbook, you know he has their heart.” I think that is very true. Let’s look at this passage together.
I. WHY SHOULD WE GIVE?
This is a very good question to start with as it is foundational to understand the purpose of stewardship. Many would say that they have worked very hard to earn their money and so why should they turn around and give it away to God. They worked for it. They earned it. It belongs to them. But as we begin to delve into the passage at hand we quickly learn that this simply isn’t true.