All that we have and all that we are has come from God. He has blessed us with money and possessions, and he has given each of us specific talents and abilities. We have been called to be good stewards – to use our money, our time and our abilities as best we can to benefit God’s kingdom.
Giving tithes and offerings demonstrates our obedience to God, and the recognition that all we have has come from him. Why is it then, if we are happy to faithfully give our time and money, that so many Christians seem to have an issue when it comes to discussing wealth creation.
There are at least two distinct lines of thought ; one promoted by many of the big name TV evangelists who promote the “prosperity” and “name it and claim it” teachings, and the other viewpoint of many of the conservative Christians who push the opinion that seeking wealth is ungodly.
Unfortunately both of these viewpoints seem to run contrary to the Word, and to Jesus’ teachings about stewardship.
The “prosperity” teachers promote the idea that whatever you give to God, he will return to you many times over. Although this is close to the teaching of stewardship, which says that you should seek to multiply whatever God gives you, so that you can give him more back in return. It has been distorted, in as much as the actual motivation behind giving promoted by the prosperity teachers is self based (if I give more, God will give me more) instead of focusing on Christ. There is a huge difference between giving to get more, and working to increase your means so that you can give more to further the works of the kingdom.
Some now try to imply that if you are not prosperous, then your walk with the Lord must be lacking in some area, and others at the other end of the spectrum are always making condemning statements about the evils of being rich.
We need to really look at what the Word says, and the examples that Jesus gave.
I firmly believe that the enemy wants to deter us from aiming to invest and make our wealth grow, as he does not want us to be successful. He doesn’t want us making lots of money that we can use for the Lord’s work. He doesn’t want us to be able to fund mission outreaches or to feed the poor or to fund Christian satellite TV channels.
Some Christians seem to have the misconception that being wealthy is evil and being poor is holy. There is nothing holy about being poor. God doesn’t want his children to be in poverty. A rich person has far more power at their disposal to be able to help where financial assistance is needed than a poor person.
At the same time though we need to make sure that our motivation for creating wealth is to “get so we can give” as opposed to the prosperity teachers notion that we should “give so we can get”. As long as we do not idolize money, and retain the truth that all we have has come from God anyway, then there is no need to feel any guilt about how much money we make.
There are many examples in the Bible that show God’s desire to bless his faithful followers with wealth:
“Pay it Forward” to help others…Luke 6:38 New International Version (NIV)
38 Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Learn more at: http://godsmoneyfeeder.com
Revelation 3:18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire ...
Deuteronomy 14:25 then exchange your tithe for silver, and take the silver with you and go to the place the LORD your God will choose...Learn more at http://whatablessing.net/