March 26/2017

God, money and true riches…

getting honest about tithing and money.

As you give you are showing support for the vision of the Local Church.

Giving is a privilege and responsibility for those who have received from God the gift of eternal life. But it is wrong for churches or other Christian ministries to appeal to unbelievers for funds. Third John 7 mentions Christian workers who “went out for the sake of the Name, accepting nothing from the Gentiles.” Unbelievers cannot offer good works to God. It is wrong to give an unbeliever any basis for thinking that he can gain merit before God by giving or any other good deed.

Unbelievers frequently gripe that the church is always after their money. They are right in one sense: God is after their money, because their hearts are bound up with their treasure, and God wants their hearts to be devoted to Him. The fact that they resent giving shows the condition of their hearts. But we need to make it clear that if a person has not given his heart to God in response to God’s giving His Son on the cross to pay the penalty for his sins (2 Cor. 8:5), then we do not want him to give to the Lord’s work. Giving should be a thank offering to God, and a person outside of Christ cannot properly give such an offering (Heb. 13:16).

Giving is for believers, and it should be done by all believers. Poor Christians as well as rich should give to the Lord (2 Cor. 8:2; Luke 21:1-4). That is one reason it is wrong to be in debt, because you aren’t free to give generously when you owe creditors. But even if you can’t give much, you aren’t exempt from giving. Those who are supported in Christian ministry are not exempt either. In fact, they should set the example (Acts 20:35).

March 19/2017

God, Money and True Riches…

getting honest about tithing and money.

What To Do With the Abundance? Part 2

The central problem with the health and wealth gospel is that it is man centered and not God-centered. Prosperity theology encourages spending on ourselves. In essence it creates a bondage to materialism and leaves us with lost opportunities to help others and to store up treasure in heaven. Jesus said, “Do to others what you would have them do to you.” Matthew 7:12. If you and your children were hungry, what would you expect a prosperous Christian to do? If you would want that prosperous Christian to share, then say good bye to prosperity theology. Now imagine this on a global scale. God can prosper you or your business, maybe not so that you can get a new fancier car, but maybe… to help people who are facing a famine in another country. Or your extra can go to a ministry start up where people can hear the gospel and be saved from an eternity in hell. How many more gadgets, meals, houses, trinkets, and containers to hold these in do we really need? Living with eternity in mind and others centred is one of the reasons God blesses us.

 

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