When it comes to finances, it would behoove all of us to take God's advice, especially in these tough economic times. Today Pastor Miles gave us three truths about money:
1. How we use our money reveals our true spiritual condition.
Your spending habits and decisions are spiritual ones. (So are decisions such as what you wear, with whom you spend your time, and the education and career you pursue!) These choices are spiritually influenced and they will influence your future spiritual condition.
Your checkbook is an indicator of where you heart is. Would you like to see yourself have a change of heart? Try changing your habit first. Redirect your treasure (your money and your time)! Stop investing hours in watching ESPN, stop throwing money away on pointless shopping, and watch your heart change.
"For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." Matthew 6:21
"No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon." Luke 16:13
2. God has given us clear and overwhelming directions on how we should use our money.
The Bible talks about money more than any other topic. One example is the story of the poor widow in Mark 12:41-44:
Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites, which make a quadrans. So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, "Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood."
In this passage, Jesus is not trying to communicate that poor people who give are better than rich people who give, nor that one must give away all his money, nor that a wealthy person will not go to heaven. God is interested in the condition of your heart, and He appreciates a heart that is willing to surrender everything and do whatever He asks.
3. God will judge how we use our money.
If you are a Christian, what happens when you die? There's a pit stop before you get to heaven: the Bema Seat, where Christ will judge your faithfulness on earth during your lifetime.
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. 2 Corinthians 5:10
We can't fool God with our words or our spending. God knows the condition of our hearts and He expects us to use all He gives us for His glory. He wants us to be wise and intentional with our money, not to waste it ignorantly or selfishly hide it away. (Matthew 25:14-30)
***To further teach on the topic of biblical finances, The Rock University is offering a six-week class, Rock Financial Living, on Fridays from 7-9 pm beginning January 22. The instructor, Dave Wessels, gave a sneak preview of the course at the end of today's message.
Dave explained the six main areas of spending (debt, giving, housing, lifestyle, savings, and taxes) and the allocations given to each area by the average person. Astonishingly, research shows that the spending of an average Christian is no different than the spending of the average non-Christian.
- Are you satisfied with your spending patterns and your financial security?
- Do you think that a Christian with a heart surrendered to God should spend money the same way as a non-Christian does?
- Do you want to be able to give more? Save more?
- Are you ready to get out of debt?
- Would you like to learn skills to help your marital communication about money?
Dave demonstrated that if a group of people the size of the Rock Church were to get serious about getting out of debt and they reallocated that money toward ministry, they could contribute $60 million to God's work each year! By learning God's principles about money and creating some habits of discipline over a small amount of time, your finances could be turned around!For details, visit http://www.therockuniversity.org/