Did you know that there are 371 verses about prayer in the Bible? There are 714 on love. But do you know what is the most talked about thing in the Bible? Hands down; money (over 2,000 verses).
Pastor Miles has pointed out before that the reason for this is because it is so personal.
Think about how important money is. Our survival is dependent on it and thus we hold to it dearly and sometimes cling to it desperately. Money can make our lives so much easier, full hopes and dreams; or it can control us and destroy us. God knew this and established rules of how we are to handle our money; not just to make our lives easier but to honor Him. Least we forget everything belongs to God; including money. We just get to borrow it.
1. Your checkbook is a theological document.
It is and it isn't money (ever bounce a check?). Just as money itself is just paper. But money can be used for so many things; good and bad. The same dollar that puts food on your family's table can be used instead to purchase drugs.
Very simply we spend our money on our hearts desires.
2. Treasure Islanders are managers of God's gifts.
As was said earlier we are just borrowing money from God; He gave it to us and has entrusted with not just money, but so many other things. And God has given us responsibility over all these gifts to us.
Matthew 25:14-30 is one of the most dynamic stories of the Bible regarding money as it tells of how a lord leaves money to his three servants. The first servant he leaves 5 talents (the money of the time); the second 2 and the last one just 1. This master seemed to know his servants and didn't give them equal shares and we'll see why in a moment.
3. Treasure Islanders should be willing and cheerful givers.
God wants us to give willingly and to praise Him when we do give as there is nothing worse than having someone give you something and you can see that they hold a grudge for doing so.
4. The generosity of Treasure Islanders is an indicator of their future faithfulness.
Pastor Miles pointed out that in heaven we will be given responsibilities based on our actions here on Earth and a major part of our judging is how we gave; cheerfully? Faithfully? Or regretfully.
Remember a few paragraphs ago the story in Matthew 25:14-30 was left at how a master had left his 3 servants a specific amount of money each? When the master returned to see what these servants did he praised the first two because they had doubled his money when returning it to him; however the last one hid the one talent he was given out of fear and the master had him thrown into the outer darkness.
5. Faithful Treasure Islanders secure ministry resources in abundance.
Matthew 25:29 says, For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away.
6. Faithfulness in tithing secure overflow blessing.
Pastor Miles points out in Malachi 3:10 is the only place in the Bible where God says to test him by tithing to see if he will open the windows of heaven so that blessing will pour down on us.
Pastor Miles pointed out that tithing will get His blessings and He knows what we need so we may give money to him but may receive something else back instead and something greater.
And the funny thing about all of this is that God has given us not just money but talents and other gifts and all these rules that He has laid down applies to all things He has blessed us with.