TEACHER: Ken Hicks
SCRIPTURES: Matthew 6:19-21
BOTTOM LINE: The only treasures we get to keep … are those we give away!
QUESTION: Are We STEWARDS or OWNERS of our Resources?
But Jesus taught more on this subject than any other subject in Red Letters. 16 of the 38 Parables were concerned with how to handle MONEY and POSSESSIONS.
In the Gospels, an amazing 1 out of 10 verses [288 in all] deal directly with the subject of MONEY. The Bible offers 500 verses on prayer, less than 500 verses on faith, but more than 2,000 verses on MONEY and POSSESSIONS.
Jesus had a remarkable way of teaching and saying things, especially about MONEY, that were so contrary to the ways of the world … didn’t He?
And one of the things I’ve learned … that has really helped me in my own person life … as well as in teaching and preaching about MONEY is this … God’s Word tells us to:
- Give 1st
- Save 2nd
- Live on the Rest …
here we’ve landed as a Church is this … God doesn’t NEED our MONEY! In fact … in one sense … we don’t even have ANY MONEY!
He owns it all … He’s channeled His Resources financially, etc, through our Stewardship, and our job is to pray about every single penny God has distributed for His Mission in the World thru our hands, and then respond accordingly. Cheerfully. Generously.
And here’s what I know: our response in GIVING as God directs. He’s called us to do so cheerfully, w/ Joy, and He’ll call enough of us to support His Mission in the World. As long as we all respond, don’t you think things will be ok?
Matthew says a lot to try to help paint this portrait of the relationship between Christ-Followers and our Heavenly Father … in fact, Jesus mentions the term Father 11 times in this chapter … painting the importance of this relationship.
We are Children of God … and it’s a powerful thing to know we can go to Him … and cry out to Him at times Abba Father … and nothing can pull us away from the significance of that relationship!
Matthew 6:21 … “21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
For me, when we wrestle w/ all this tension about MONEY, it’s because it’s a HEART issue. Somehow we have to get that we are only STEWARDS and not OWNERS.
Jesus is pleading w/ us here. He said, Ken … bro, it’s not about storing up for yourself this big old stockpile. Sure, you need to save, and invest and be able to pay your bills, etc, but what really matters Ken are things that are eternal!
And what we know is we have this tendency to share our Time, Talents, Energy and Resources w/ the things that tug on our Heart strings don’t we?
Jesus was really serious about this subject. He said we can’t serve both God and MONEY, and somebody asked me 1 time, So what are you saying Ken? And I said … I’m not saying anything … this is what Jesus said.
Jesus is trying to get us to see here is … Are we distracted from the things that are of greatest importance?
For that matter … How’s Our Relationship w/ our Heavenly Father?
Is my HEART seeking after self … and my Flesh … OR … after a Real, Vibrant relationship w/ God?
There are so many different things … and people … vying for our HEART … our HEART is sort of like Mission Control Center of our lives … Proverbs 4:23 tells us to Guard our heart above all else, for it is the well spring of life.
This is where everything else in life gushes forth … so …
- Where’s my Treasure
- Where’s my Heart
- Who or What am I Serving?
How do we give ourselves a Spiritual Checkup to see? Because what we believe deep down in our hearts determines how we behave … speak … lives … respond to others … what we believe will come out for all to see.
Do we Love the Word of God? Do we love gathering as His Church? Do we love serving as God’s Hands and Feet in the lives of others? Do we love Praising God and Worshipping Him in Prayer? Do we love seeing Jesus fill us w/ the Fruit of the Spirit? Do we Love God more than anything?
How do we learn to lay up for ourselves treasures in heaven? Learn the discipline and joy of GIVING! In fact … the only treasures we get to keep … are those we give away!