Friday, August 01, 2008

Money is Spiritual, Not Just Practical (Part 2)

Tomorrow, I'll preach in a church on God and money again. I thank God for the opportunity for me to address this very important topic -- one which confronts each one of us every day of our lives. I also teach my self as I preach to others! It's clear that our attitude towards money indicates who we are and what our relationship is with God.

You will find that God has very challenging things to tell us about money in His Word that are different from what the world thinks. Money is a very prominent topic in the Bible. Over 2,000 verses, including many sayings from our Lord Jesus, are recorded in the Bible on money and possessions. Money is thus a big issue, not just in our lives, but especially in Jesus' teachings and His Word.

I have 4 big points that I've shared on money during my church sermons these past several weeks. They are:

# 1 Money is not yours. (Psalm 24:1; Deut 8: 17-18; 1 Chron 29)
# 2 Money is good that can become bad. (1 Timothy 6:10; Proverbs 11:28)
# 3 Money cannot buy happiness and security. (Luke 12:15; Eccl 5: 10; Matt 6:19; Prov 23:5)
# 4 How you spend money reveals where your treasure is. (Matthew 6: 19-21; Matthew 6:24; Rev 3:17, 2:9)

Money is not yours

Psalm 24: 1 - “The earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains, the world, and those who dwell in it.”

One time, I received a text message from one who proudly claims that she's earning money as a result of her "work." Her view of money is that she owns it because she works.

It is very easy for us to claim that we own the money we have because we have "worked for it." Well, I ask these questions, "Do you really own money or anything? To what extent is your income the result of your own effort? There are many "accidents" or chance that lead one to have more money than another. There is the accident of your race, accident of your color of your skin, accident of your family inheritance, accident of your family, accident of your country, accident of other people around you helping, accident of government policy etc. Thus, even from a secular perspective, you do not deserve what you have -- a lot of what is yours is because of "accidents," because of chance!

From a biblical perspective, we do not own or deserve what we have at all. The Lord owns everything.

Deuteronomy 8: 17, 18 tells us, “You say to your self, ‘My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.’ But remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth.”

1 Chronicles 29 - “Wealth and honor come from you, Lord …”

So what God is saying here about money? Even if the money you have is a result of your "hard work," that hard work itself is a gift from God. The energy you use, the air that you breath, the pounding of your heart, the life that you use to "work hard" to earn money are not yours! Divine "accidents!" This is why our life, self-worth, or status does not depend on our income. Who we are does not consist of what we own. For after all, the money we claim we have is not really ours! We do not deserve what we have. Everything is owned by God and a gift from Him.

No comments: