FAITHFULNESS – (3) FINANCES

 

1.      Introduction

·           Lk 16:10-13  Who will commit to your trust the true riches?

·           Faithfulness = trustworthy, yielded, reliable, able to have confidence in.

·           God has riches of greater value than money that he desires to commit to us.

·           How you handle money qualifies you for entrustment with true riches.

·           Faithfulness Ž Attitude (to money and God) + Actions that receive blessing.

 

2.      Attitude to Money

a.      Make money a friend – not an end

·           Don’t make money the focus and good of your life.

·           Lk 12:15  Beware of covetousness – man’s life not consistent of things possessed.

·           1 Tim 6:9-12  The longing to be rich results in many problems.

(i)             Temptation

(ii)            Snares

(iii)           Lusts

(iv)          Sorrows

(v)           Dissatisfaction  Ecc 5:10

·           1 Tim 6:17-18  God specifically instructs people who have much money.

(i)             Don’t be high minded

(ii)            Don’t trust in money

(iii)           Be generous

·           God instructs us in what we should make an end.

·           Flee (5347) = run away, escape.

·           Follow (1377) = pursue, press forward, run after, make it a goal.

 

b.      Maintain a right attitude to money

“Make it a friend”  Love money or covet after wealth.

·           Recognise its value – money = life in tangible form.

·           Bring it under your management – make it your servant.

·           Manage it in a way that honours God and receives His blessing.

·           Recognise that faithfulness with money qualifies you.

 

3.      Attitude to God

a.      No man can serve two masters

·           Matt 6:24  Master (2962) = kurios = Lord, supreme in authority.

·           Cannot (1410) = not possible to have power.

·           Your heart follows what you hold to be treasure, of value (vs 21).

·           Money competes with God for affection and influence over your life.

·           Eyes = focus of your attention, of your heart.

·           Whatever you make the focus of your attention fills your heart.

·           The attitude you have reveals who or what you are serving ie, who is the master or Lord of your life.

·           Masterkurios – one who directs your actions and decisions.  Examples:

(i)             Anxiety, worry, greed, fear, out of control Ž Money

(ii)            Peace, relaxed, content, joy, control Ž God

·           The Christian who is filled with worry, anxiety, greed, fear will attract money problems into their life as much as non-christians.

·           Cannot just pay God some money on Sundays and expect all will go well with $.  Key issue:  Who will have dominion – God or money?

·           Heart attitude must change so bring money under God’s dominion, authority and blessing.  Must see God as source or idolatory.

 

 

b.      God is abundant and generous

·           You must establish a Bible based view of God.  Prov 23:7

·           How you see God affects your ability to exercise faith for $.

·           Ps 35:27  He takes pleasure in the prosperity of His servant.

·           Pleasure (2655) = to be pleased with, desire, incline towards.

·           Prosperity (7965) = shalome = safety, welfare, prosperity.

·           God is your Father – He is an abundant, generous provider (1 Tim 6:17).  It gives Him pleasure to provide for you.

·           Ps 84:11  No good thing will He withhold from them who walk upright.

·           Phil 4:19  My God will supply all your needs – abundant riches.

·           Poverty mindset Ž Never enough for me! Ž Withhold!

-                      Many people cannot conceive God is so good.

-                      How see God?  Mean, withholding, tight, hard to please.

-                      Many Christians say “God is good” but in heart – “Hard man”, struggle and strive to get ahead in spite of circumstances, in spite of God.

-                      cf  Matt 25:24  Hard man – afraid – hid.

·           vs 26-28  Direct your focus to goodness of God.

·           vs 30  This is a faith action – must overcome unbelief.

·           Make God your source – not job, spouse, gifts, abilities.

 

c.      God has power to add

·           Matt 6:33  All these things added.

·           Added = to lay alongside in addition to.

·           Added Ž Provision when need; meet right people at right time, be in right place, see opportunities, blessings overtake.  Duet 28

·           Key Criteria:  Seek first the Kingdom of God.

·           Seek (2212) = seek for, desire, endeavour.

·           Seek to find and embrace the dominion of Christ and His word over your life.

·           Seek to enter His rule in finances, so sense that everything is under His control Ž Rights, peace, joy (Rom 14:17).

·           It is a conscious choice and decision to yield finances to God.

§  Recognise poverty mindset.

§  Renew attitude towards God and His goodness.

§  Release this area continually to His control.  Take responsibility to manage under His direction.

§  Rejoice – content with what have and obey God.

 


 

Application Questions

 

Matt 6:24-34

 

1.      What stands out for you in this passage?

2.      How can someone serve (become a slave to) mammon (money)?

3.      (i)     What qualities of God stand out in this passage?

(ii)     Compare these to what the unfaithful servant thought of God.  (Matt 25:24)

4.      (i)     What does it mean to seek first the ‘Kingdom of God’?

(ii)      How can we apply this to our finances?

(iii)     How can we deal with worry, anxiety over finances?

5.      Jesus put the parable of the unjust steward (Luke 16:1-13) in between a series of parables on the value of lost people to God and the eternal fate of lost people.  Jesus places the greatest value on lost people.

 

(i)       Which lost people are you praying for at the moment?

(ii)      How can you reach out to them?