Summary: 3 Mindsets about money: First-I share w/ God when I want to. Second-I share w/ God because I have to. Third-It’s all God’s, and He shares w/ me! We will aim for the 3rd perspective today.
The “Trust” Fund
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.
God is interested in your money. Not because He needs your money…for He certainly does not!…but because YOU need it! Since you are important to God, your money is important to God.
God is interested in how you secure it/spend it/save it/share it. Immediately, some people say…don’t talk about money! Talk about something spiritual. That kind of statement shows a lack of Biblical knowledge, and a lack of spiritual insight. For nothing is more spiritual than how you handle your money. It is the supreme test of where our heart is.
Matthew 6:21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Adrian Rogers: “a faith that hasn’t reached your wallet, probably hasn’t reached your heart.”
Money is something we use everyday, it’s our medium of exchange, our very survival depends on it. How can Jesus Christ be Lord, and not be Lord over our money? How can he care about us, and not care about that which is so intrinsically tied to our very survival?
“But, it’s uncomfortable…I don’t like it when the preacher talks about money.” If that’s true, you would not have liked the preaching of Jesus Christ. When He walked this earth, he gave 36 parables, and 16 of them had to do w/ our attitude toward money! 1 out of every 10 verses in the NT deals w/ our attitude toward money!
Verses about faith…about 500 / prayer—500 / money—over 2,000
Remember the story Jesus told about the widow’s mites? The Pharisees were giving their large offerings, and the little lady gave her 2 mites. That whole story has to do w/ our attitude toward money. If God’s not interested in money, then why include that story in His Word?
Unjust steward—Lk. 16…at the end of the story Jesus said, if you have not been faithful w/ your money, who do you expect to commit to you the true riches? That whole story has to do w/ our attitude toward money. If God’s not interested in money, then why include that story in His Word?
Rich Young Ruler—came to Jesus and asked what he had to do to be His follower…Jesus said, sell all you have, come and follow me. But he couldn’t do it, he went away sorrowful, because he didn’t own his possessions…they owned him! That whole story has to do w/ our attitude toward money. If God’s not interested in money, then why include that story in His Word?
Clearly, God is interested in your money!
I’ll tell you who else is interested in your money…Satan! It is his desire to keep you under a curse/in bondage. And the best way he can do that is to affect your attitude toward money in a negative way.
Ever use fly paper? It has on its surface a sweet, honey-like substance, which is also very sticky. It’s a simple principle: the fly approaches saying, I want the honey, want the honey, want the honey! He lands and begins to eat, saying, I got the honey, got the honey, got the honey…and he tries to leave and the paper says, I got the fly, got the fly, got the fly!
Many people today run around saying, I want the money, want the money, want the money…and before they know it, the money has got them!
So yes, God is interested in your money/so is Satan…
…and one more person is interested in your money: You are! You know you are!
By the way, let me just say that because several of you already get this message and could probably preach it better than I could, our per capita giving is fairly high. And it has remained so without an imbalanced plea from your pastor to give more. You guys are amazing! However, just as we preach the basics of repentance and forgiveness regardless of how many people already get it, it is my responsibility as your pastor to preach the basics of honoring God with His money.