“ God shovels it in, and I shovel it back…but God has a bigger shovel.” R. G. Letourneau
The Physics of Keeping v. Giving
Mass, Gravity, Orbit
Needed: A Shift in the center of gravity; a Copernican Revolution of Giving
Are we headed away from our treasures or toward them?
Once you grasp true grace giving, tithing becomes a moot point. 2. Tithing isn’t giving. 3. Tithing is ceasing to rob God. 1. Tithing isn’t the end-all of giving. 4. Tithing is giving’s training wheels.
We live in history’s wealthiest society
We know the grace of Jesus
We have the indwelling Spirit…
But we can’t give as much as God required of the poorest Israelite, who didn’t know Christ or have the Spirit?
Does grace lower the bar of set by the law? Or does it raise it? Giving less than a tithe?
The church should be:
A grace-saturated culture of joyful contagious giving that begs for the privilege of giving . Where we never talk each other out of giving because “that’s unwise.” Where we follow the example of the poor widow , not the rich fool . Where we model for our children and grandchildren the grace and joy of Jesus.
If I were the person God wants me to be, what would I do with God’s money?
Do it now…then watch God make you into the person He wants you to be.
Five minutes after we die, what will we wish we would have given?
Spend the rest of our lives closing the gap between what we’ll wish we would have given and what we are giving .
We come in naked and broke. We may be dressed when we go out, but we’re just as broke. Warren Buffet? Going to go out broke. Bill Gates? Going out broke. Tom Hanks? Going out broke. Steve King? Broke. Not a crying dime.
All the money you earn, all the stocks you buy, the mutual funds
you trade—all that is smoke and mirrors. It’s still going to be a quarter-past getting late whether you tell the time on a Timex or a Rolex.
So I want you to consider making your life one long gift to others. And why not? All you have is on loan, anyway. All that lasts is what you pass on….
We have the power to help this needy world. Why should we refuse? Because we’re going to take it with us? Please.
A life of giving repays. ….So I ask you to begin giving, and to continue giving. I think you’ll find in the end that you got far more than you ever had, and did more good than you ever dreamed.
Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Stephen King, etc.:
People without Christ can discover the truth of His principles and enjoy the short-term happiness of giving —while many of God’s own people are enslaved to stinginess and debt, robbing God and living joyless fruitless lives.
6 So we urged Titus, since he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part. 7 But just as you excel in everything —in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us— see that you also excel in this grace of giving .
7 But just as you excel in everything [ work, sports, hobbies, parenting ] …see that you also excel in this grace of giving. You can excel in giving —do it bigger and better than in the past. You can give:
What have you been doing to excel in your giving? What steps have you been taking to raise the bar ?
Have you been providing a model of generous giving by what you do with your time and money? How are you helping your kingdom teammates excel at giving? Do you have giving accountability?
Gift of teaching: get better as you use it; people know what it looks like. Gift of giving: get better as you use it; people don’t know what it looks like. Rom. 12: gifts of prophecy, serving, teaching , encouragement, giving , leadership, mercy. Grace of giving = gift of giving
We know the church’s prayer warriors.
Where are the giving warriors ?
What gifts would you expect God to grant widely during a time of unprecedented physical and spiritual needs?
In such a time, what resources would you expect God to entrust to His people with the gift of giving?
Eternal Rewards in relation to the use of our money and possessions
What questions or concerns do you have about the doctrine of eternal rewards?
Why do you think this doctrine has been so neglected or misunderstood?
I value all things only by the price they shall gain in eternity.
I place no value on anything I possess, except in relation to the kingdom of God.
He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.
I have held many things in my hands and I have lost them all. But whatever I have placed in God’s hands, that I still possess.
And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that 1) he exists and that 2) he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training . They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever ….
Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly ; I do not fight like a man beating the air. No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
1 Corinthians 9:24-27
For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time has come for my departure. I have fought the good fight , I have finished the race , I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness , which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.
2 Timothy 4:6-8
All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. People who say such things show that
they are looking for a country of their own ….If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country —a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.
I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.
For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.
2 Corinthians 4:17
Not that I am looking for a gift, but I am looking for what may be credited to your account .
The Steward’s Eternal Destiny
No man has power over the wind to contain it; so no one has power over the day of his death.
It ought to be the business of every day to prepare for our last day.
Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. So we are looking forward to a new heavens and a new earth , in which righteousness dwells.
2 Peter 3:11-13
Show me, O Lord, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life. You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Each man’s life is but a breath. Man is a mere phantom as he goes to and fro: He bustles about, but only in vain; he heaps up wealth, not knowing who will get it. But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you.
Man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment.
Christ will come again to judge the living and the dead.
Apostles’ Creed (AD 250) Nicene Creed (AD 325) Athanasian Creed (AD 400)
For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed . He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead.
Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you . And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted up to the skies? …
No, you will go down to the depths. If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.
The Believer’s Experience in Heaven
When he lies he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
[The satanic beast] opened his mouth to blaspheme God, and to slander his name and his dwelling place and those who live in heaven.
There are many rooms in my Father’s home, and I am going to prepare a place for you.…When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.
John 14:2-3, NLT
I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves , so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.
No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him .
Set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits at God’s right hand.… Let heaven fill your thoughts .
Colossians 3:1-2, NLT
The Believer’s Judgment in Heaven
Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out— those who have done good will rise to live , and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned.
Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. …And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books… The sea gave up the dead
that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done . Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. If anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.