God, Money, and You (Sermon notes and audio)

Posted on September 5, 2014

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This message was delivered on the morning of August 31, 2014 at Hillcrest Baptist Church. This message deals with tithing in the church, with an emphasis on the importance of tithing to your financial plan. You will find the sermon notes, and the audio. Please note that the sermon notes are NOT a full transcript. Typically, as I preach, I add to what is in my notes. So, for the full sermon, please listen to the audio version.

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Tithe2

SERMON NOTES:

Malachi 3:10-12

Last week we looked at the tithe from the lens of law and grace. This week, it’s God’s master financial plan.

Sometimes we know what the Bible says about an issue, but instead choose to follow worldly wisdom.

However, the Bible warns against this.

Proverbs 3:7-10

In no area is this more true, than with the issue of money. Many people rely on secular advice which cautions against generous giving.

However, if we faithfully do our part, God will be sure to provide.

GOD’S PLAN DIFFERS FROM THE WORLD’S:

Secular wisdom says to accumulate as much wealth as possible for selfish uses.

It’s like a pond without an outlet, it eventually grows stagnant and slimy.

Such an approach to money is unhealthy. It can even diminish your quality of life, and cause friction within families.

THE LORD WANTS US TO BE GIVERS:

We shouldn’t view ourselves as reservoirs, stockpiling money for selfish desires, but as channels, willing to share with others.

In God’s plan, believers receive in order to share.

We can use money for personal needs, but we should also give to our church, missions work around the world, and those who are hurting financially.

Generous people are not only happier, but also more peaceful and secure.

THE PRINCIPLE OF GIVING AND RECEIVING:

Luke 6:38

Choose to view your bank account as a channel rather than a reservoir, and then watch God abundantly supply all your needs.

WHAT ARE THE ELEMENTS OF GOD’S FINANCIAL PLAN?

The tithe: Giving 10% of your income to the Lord is a good starting point for Biblical stewardship.

Malachi 3:10

Don’t wait until you have paid all of your bills before tithing.

God’s people are to give the first and best of what we have.

Proverbs 3:9-10

Those who tithe see God’s miraculous provision for their needs.

The Place: The storehouse mentioned in Malachi 3 is the temple. As believers, we should give to the church.

Both the old and new testaments mention generosity.

1 Corinthians 16:1-2

Ten percent is the proper place to start, but it was never intended to be the end.

The early church was very generous. They not only tithed, they sold their possessions and donated the proceeds.

Acts 2:44-45

THE PURPOSES:

  1. To meet the needs in the temple. The priests needed money to maintain the temple, purchase supplies and provide for their families.

Christians today give to their local church for similar reasons.

Acts 6:1-3

These widows had needs, and money was essential to meeting those needs.

2. To demonstrate God’s faithfulness: When we trust our finances to the Lord, He provides all our needs.

Our faith increases and we grow closer to Him. The Lord teaches us about His trustworthiness through the practice of tithing.

THE RESULTS:

  1. Blessing: Malachi 3:10
  2. Protection: When God is your financial manager, he guards your supply.

Malachi 3:11

As you give, the Lord generously provides all your needs.

Luke 6:38

If your budget is tight, don’t try to figure out if you can afford to give, it probably won’t work out on paper, but you will experience His provision if you will be obedient.

3. Personal witness: Following God’s financial plan will bring you contentment, joy and peace.

The changes in your life will be a good opportunity to for you to testify about the blessings of obeying scriptural principles.

THE ATTITUDE:

Believers should give willingly, not resentfully.

2 Corinthians 9:7

THE PENALTY:

By failing to tithe, we will miss out on the many blessing which God has in store for us.

WHAT IS THE REAL PURPOSE OF HOLDING BACK OUR GIVING?

Rebellion:
It’s God’s will for us to return a portion of what He gives us.

Unbelief:
The Lord promises to provide our needs if we give scripturally. A refusal to do so indicates a lack of trust in God’s promise to provide.

Covetousness:
When someone fails to be obedient with finances, greed is often the motivator.

Stealing:
God grants His people the strength, intelligence, and ability to earn money. When the Israelites failed to give Biblically, the Lord considered it to be robbing Him.

Malachi 3:8-9

No financial plan is better than the one outlined in Scripture. When we give cheerfully, generously, and consistently, God blesses us.

The bottom line is that you can choose to either be a slave to your wealth, or a servant of God.

Matthew 6:24

Being a slave to your wealth shows a lack of faith and leads to worry, but faithfully trusting God for your needs brings peace.

Matthew 6:25-32

Rather than making it our life’s mission to seek wealth, we should be seeking God.

Matthew 6:33-34

Then you can put Malachi 3:10 to the test.

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Posted in: Church, Sermons