When and How to Teach About Money

How often does your church teach about money? For some churches, the answer is rarely or never. The topic is avoided. Some churches contain the topic of money to a single sermon series, only to return to the topic 365 days later.

If messages hitting on money are rare or totally absent at your church, let me give you a few reasons to consider placing them in your upcoming teaching calendar.

  1. Because Jesus taught about it. In fact, he taught about money more than any other topic while he was on earth. So if you teach on money, you are in pretty good company.
  2. Because the Bible has over 2,000 verses about money, possessions, and stewardship. God wove numerous verses throughout Scripture on how we are to manage the resources he gives us. Clearly, our relationship with money is important to God. So it should be important to you. With over 2,000 verses, there are a plethora of opportunities to discuss God’s design for us and money.
  3. Because personal money management reveals the heart. This is why God cares about our relationship with money. Money has a way of bringing to light that which is hidden in our hearts. The way we manage money is a symptom of either a spiritually healthy or spiritually sick heart. Personal money management reflects personal heart management.
  4. Because getting money wrong can have detrimental spiritual consequences. Money, on its own, is not evil. But 1 Timothy 6:10 says, “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, and by craving it, some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs” (CSB). The ramifications are ominous for those who put money in the wrong place. Their spiritual life will suffer.
  5. Because church members are struggling in the area of money. Forty percent of Americans have less than $400 saved. Thirty-three percent of Americans have $0 saved for retirement and 23% have saved between $1 and $10,000. We spend too much and save too little. And those in the church are often a reflection of these statistics.
  6. Because church members make money decisions almost every single day. Money is an everyday part of our lives. We can’t run from it. We can’t hide from it. And the world has no problem providing their thoughts on this area of life. So we need to know how to think about our relationship with money from a biblical perspective.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Art Rainer

Art Rainer

Art Rainer serves as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and is a cofounder of Rainer Publishing. He has written three books, Raising Dad , Simple Life, and The Minister's Salary, and lives with his wife, Sarah, and two sons in Wake Forest, NC.

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comment_post_ID); ?> I agree 100%, you can tell if a church is doing this it grows, if there's no growth there's poor leadership..
 
— Dennis Whiterock
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Great work Bubba! Its exciting to see how God has blessed your faithfulness over your lifetime into remarkable, fruitful, Kingdom expansion! Jesus DID say, "without Me you can do nothing!" (John 15:5). No surprise that He rewards "thick and thin" prayer with great fruitfulness! :)
 
— Mike Taylor
 
comment_post_ID); ?> I loved this presentation. It helped greatly as I organized an Outreach Ministry of The Shepherds Care. Thank you. Esther Callaham Mahgoube Emmanuel Pentecostal Church New Jersey
 
— Esther Mahgoube
 

Clarity Process

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Four Biblical Principles of Giving

What does it mean to give? How does it look? You may know intuitively that you should give but not know much beyond that.

The good news is that the Bible tells us what our giving should look like. Our generous God reveals to us four giving principles throughout Scripture.

Principle 1: Giving is to be a priority.

We are given resources so that we can give resources.

For most, giving is an afterthought. It’s what takes place after all of the needs and wants are taken care of. But in the Bible, giving is a priority.

The Bible repeatedly shows us that we are to give our first and our best to him. For example, Proverbs 3:9 says, “Honor the Lord with your possessions and with the first produce of your entire harvest.” For the Israelites, this meant that whatever crops or livestock were produced, they were to set aside the first and best of their crops or livestock for God.

What does this mean for us? For most of us, it means that we are to give some of our gross income to God. Before taxes, before retirement savings, before debt repayment, and even before bill payments, we give.

In God’s economy, amount sacrificed always supersedes amount given.Click to tweet

Principle 2: Giving is to be done proportionately.

This means that those who have more give more, and those who have less give less. Your giving should be proportional to what you have been given.

Proverbs 3:10 says, “Bring a full tenth into the storehouse so that there may be food in my house…,” says the Lord of Armies. ‘See if I will not open the floodgates of heaven and pour out a blessing for you without measure.’” Throughout Scripture we see the idea of proportional giving. As God blesses us, so should we be blessing others.

Principle 3: Giving is to be done sacrificially.

In God’s economy, amount sacrificed always supersedes amount given.

When King David went to offer God a sacrifice, a man tried to give him land and animals at no cost. In 2 Samuel 24:24, we read King David’s response: “No, I insist on buying it from you for a price, for I will not offer to the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.”

He knew that God would find greater delight in an offering that cost him something.

In Luke 21:1-4, we find Jesus pointing out a widow who gave two coins as the person who gave most. Why? She gave all she had. She sacrificed. Jesus is less concerned about what is put in the offering plate and more concerned about what is left at home. God tells us to give sacrificially.

God designed us not to be hoarders, but conduits through which his generosity flows.Click to tweet

Principle 4: Giving is to be done cheerfully.

In 2 Corinthians 9:7, Paul says, “Each person should do as he has decided in his heart – not reluctantly or out of compulsion, since God loves a cheerful giver.” God does not want a bunch of grumpy givers. You would refuse a gift if it was accompanied with bitterness and reluctance. God is not interested in those types of gifts either.

What I love about these four principles is that God does not only tells us how to give; he leads us. God gave his first and best, his one and only. He gave us Jesus. Giving was a priority. The creator and owner of all things gave us an unfathomable gift, one that can never be matched. He gave us Jesus. He gave proportionately. The Father sent his one and only Son to die on a cross for our sins. He gave us Jesus. He gave sacrificially.

At times the principles of sacrificial giving and cheerful giving may seem to contradict each other. How can you give out of sacrifice and still be happy?

God shows us how.

Isaiah 53:10 reads, “Yet the Lord was pleased to crush him severely. When you make him a guilt offering he will see his seed, he will prolong his days, and by his hand the Lord’s pleasure will be accomplished.”

God found pleasure in the crushing, or the crucifixion of his Son. But how? How can God find delight in the midst of the pain?

He focused on eternity.

He focused on the lasting outcome that would result from the crushing of Jesus; his seed, us, will be with him for all eternity. And it is through the lens of eternity, storing up treasure in heaven, that we can be cheerful givers, even in the midst of sacrifice.

God designed us not to be hoarders, but conduits through which his generosity flows. Giving is to be a priority. We are to give proportionately and sacrificially. We are to give with cheerful hearts. We are to reflect the generosity of our generous God.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Art Rainer

Art Rainer

Art Rainer serves as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and is a cofounder of Rainer Publishing. He has written three books, Raising Dad , Simple Life, and The Minister's Salary, and lives with his wife, Sarah, and two sons in Wake Forest, NC.

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COMMENTS

What say you? Leave a comment!

Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> I agree 100%, you can tell if a church is doing this it grows, if there's no growth there's poor leadership..
 
— Dennis Whiterock
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Great work Bubba! Its exciting to see how God has blessed your faithfulness over your lifetime into remarkable, fruitful, Kingdom expansion! Jesus DID say, "without Me you can do nothing!" (John 15:5). No surprise that He rewards "thick and thin" prayer with great fruitfulness! :)
 
— Mike Taylor
 
comment_post_ID); ?> I loved this presentation. It helped greatly as I organized an Outreach Ministry of The Shepherds Care. Thank you. Esther Callaham Mahgoube Emmanuel Pentecostal Church New Jersey
 
— Esther Mahgoube
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.

Checking the Vital Signs of Church Financial Health

I have seen many churches in financial distress. It is a sad situation to witness.

They are worried how they will pay their staff. They are worried how they will pay their bills. The ability to do ministry has dwindled.

And they are not sure how they got to this place.

So what happened? As we hear the stories of churches that find themselves scraping the bottom of their checking account, worried if they will financially survive, you tend to uncover some common themes.

  1. Failed to preach and teach stewardship. Maybe the pastor was afraid he would be considered a church leader that abuses his platform for personal financial gain. Maybe the church leaders were afraid of reducing attendance. Whatever the reason, financial stewardship was not taught.
  1. Took on too much debt. The church overextended itself. They built too much or too quickly. And a huge chunk of tithes and offerings were sucked away by the debt payment.
  1. Was not transparent with finances. They hid their finances from church members. Skepticism grew. And giving declined.
  1. Used very few dollars to reach and minister to the community. They focused on themselves. Little went toward outside efforts.
  1. Did not have multiple options for giving. They dismissed online giving and other nontraditional methods of giving, reducing participation from younger generations.
  1. Did not constantly evaluate how funds were spent. The church was not a good steward of the money they received. There was significant waste, preventing forward movement in the budget.
  1. Never took wise steps of financial faith. Budgets were not based on reasonable mathematical projections, but staff wants. And it was just assumed that the money to pay for these wants would be provided.
  1. The church relied on a few big givers. And when these givers either died or left the church, the church’s financial viability died or left with them.

It’s sad to see a church in financial disarray. It’s sad to see the staff struggle. It’s sad to see the ministry struggle.

Especially, when you know it could have been prevented.


To learn more about preventing financial disarray in your church, connect with an Auxano Navigator.


> Read more from Art.

Download PDF

Tags: , , ,

| What is MyVisionRoom? > | Back to Resourcing >

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Art Rainer

Art Rainer

Art Rainer serves as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and is a cofounder of Rainer Publishing. He has written three books, Raising Dad , Simple Life, and The Minister's Salary, and lives with his wife, Sarah, and two sons in Wake Forest, NC.

See more articles by >

COMMENTS

What say you? Leave a comment!

Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> I agree 100%, you can tell if a church is doing this it grows, if there's no growth there's poor leadership..
 
— Dennis Whiterock
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Great work Bubba! Its exciting to see how God has blessed your faithfulness over your lifetime into remarkable, fruitful, Kingdom expansion! Jesus DID say, "without Me you can do nothing!" (John 15:5). No surprise that He rewards "thick and thin" prayer with great fruitfulness! :)
 
— Mike Taylor
 
comment_post_ID); ?> I loved this presentation. It helped greatly as I organized an Outreach Ministry of The Shepherds Care. Thank you. Esther Callaham Mahgoube Emmanuel Pentecostal Church New Jersey
 
— Esther Mahgoube
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.