Greed Steals Our Joy, and Ultimately Our Life
- Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man produced a good crop. He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’ “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.” ’ “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’ “This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God.” (Luke 12:13–21, NIV84)
- Stewardship Takeaway – How much is enough and how much is too much. At some point your saving and investing can become a modern day example of the Rich Fool. Once you’re on track to reach your retirement goals, you could consider increasing your giving to Christian ministries.
Money Blinds Us
- You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. (Revelation 3:17, NIV84)
- Stewardship Takeaway – Giving breaks the power of money in our lives. Do not allow your wealth become your source of comfort and security. Keep trusting in the Lord. Perhaps one of the best ways to tell if you have allowed money to become your source of security is how your mind and heart react when seeing negative returns/ balanced have declined.
Let Your Giving Be Anonymous
- “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. (Matthew 6:2, NIV84)
- Stewardship Takeaway – Give anonymously. Consider setting up a donor advised fund to enhance your ability to be anonymous.
The Way We Handle Money Has Eternal Consequences.
- So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? (Luke 16:11, NIV84)
- “I can see more about the spirituality of a man by reading through his checkbook than I can by reading through his prayer book.” – D.L. Moody
- True Riches has both near and far applications.
- Near – When we handle money well today, we can be trusted with truely amazing ministry opportunities. In this way, the way we handle money can be a litmus test for the Lord entrusting us with the Gospel ministry.
- Far – True Riches when contrasted with worldly wealthy is that which we can not take with us into the afterlife. Goes back to Matthew 7 and the Sermon on Mount when we are told to store up for ourselves treasures in heaven. These are the praises and gifts from God for our love for Him.
- Stewardship Takeaway – Learn Biblical stewardship principles, grow in them, apply them, and be faithful in your stewardship! Your trustworthiness of stewarding the Lord’s assets in your care impacts your rewards!
You Cannot Serve Both God and Money
- “No servant can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.” (Luke 16:13, NIV84)
- Stewardship Takeaway – Consider your ways.
- Is God using difficult circumstances to get your attention and to show you that your priorities are not his priorities? See episode 002 on Haggai
- Are your spending habits out of balance? Lot’s of luxuries and not giving/saving… See episode 003-008 on The 5 Biblical Sequential Priorities.
- Do you get your sources of security from the abundance of your possessions?
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