One thing we know about money matters is that money matters. God thinks money matters too. I say that because money and possessions are one of the most talked about subjects in the Bible. More than prayer, more than faith or more than salvation. That’s because God knew what areas we would struggle with.
That is why we started the year off looking at somethings that God says about money. My hope is that we can get a better understanding of what God says about money. The more understanding we have the more we can align our finances with God’s will for our lives. The more we learn to follow God’s will, the more we can honor God.
Ecclesiastes 5:10-20 (Amplified Bible)
“He who loves money will not be satisfied with money
We need to be able to take care of our basic needs. We need our money to take care of our needs. Most everyone I know has worked hard for their money. What we have been able to save we usually have plans for. And besides for people who go to church like us, they give to the church. Many of us also give to other charities. We think, well of course I am generous, look at the money I donated. Generosity is much more than how much money we give to help others. Being Generous is a way of living. Merriam-Webster defines generous as “liberal in giving: open-handed” That sounds familiar, may-be they got that definition from God’s Word.
Being generous is how God wants us to live. If we try to say that this story is from the Old Testament. It is only a command to those people at that time we are ignoring the what the rest of God’s Word shows us about money and possessions. Jesus in the sixth chapter of Matthew clearly taught about the need to not place money and possessions above God. Jesus reminds us that the material things we have in this world really don’t matter to God. It is our attitude towards God that is the most important thing.
If we aren’t already living this way, how can we learn to live generously? Remind ourselves what we have is because God has allowed us to have it.
What Jesus said about money.
“Be [very] careful not to do your good deeds publicly, to be seen by men; otherwise you will have no reward [prepared and awaiting you] with your Father who is in heaven. “So whenever you give to the poor and do acts of kindness, do not blow a trumpet before you [to advertise it], as the hypocrites do [like actors acting out a role] in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored and recognized and praised by men. I assure you and most solemnly say to you, they [already] have their reward in full. But when you give to the poor and do acts of kindness, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing [give in complete secrecy], so that your charitable acts will be done in secret; and your Father who sees [what is done] in secret will reward you.
We do good things to please God not to please people.
Jesus requires us to give to the poor and do acts of kindness. Not to draw attention to ourselves, not to gain God’s favor, but to bring glory to God!
Last Sunday of Advent. Week 4 of Songs of the Season.
We learn to trust in God by growing our relationship with Jesus. Spend time reading the stories of Jesus found in the four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Spend time talking with Jesus in prayer… Relationships only grow as we invest time in them. Our purpose in life is first to joyfully embrace this friendship with God .
And How can we know Him? These verses can help us figure that out.
John 14:8-17 (NIV)
Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.”
Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you I do not speak on my own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves. Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. “If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever The Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.
What can we learn about #Hope from these verses of Romans.
We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. Each of us should please our neighbors for their good, to build them up. For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: “The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me.” For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.
May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. For I tell you that Christ has become a servant of the Jews on behalf of God’s truth, so that the promises made to the patriarchs might be confirmed and, moreover, that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy. As it is written:
“Therefore I will praise you among the Gentiles; I will sing the praises of your name.” Again, it says, “Rejoice, you Gentiles, with his people.”And again, “Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles; let all the peoples extol him.”And again, Isaiah says, “The Root of Jesse will spring up, one who will arise to rule over the nations; in him the Gentiles will hope.”
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
One of the most difficult things about following Jesus; being defined as a “Christian;” is when things happen in our world that are hard to rationalize with our image of God.
The truth is that in our lives, in our journey of faith, there will be questions that may cause us to doubt.
is what we see in the book of Habakkuk. A man of God asking tough questions.
Habakkuk was not unlike us today.
His country, Judah seemed to be on a downward spiral.
An enemy country was rising in power and strength.
God’s people were straying from God.
It seemed as if evil was winning.
Doesn’t it seem that way in our country?
How long, Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen? Or cry out to you, “Violence!” but you do not save? Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrongdoing? Destruction and violence are before me; there is strife, and conflict abounds. Therefore the law is paralyzed, and justice never prevails. The wicked hem in the righteous, so that justice is perverted.