For the next few weeks we’re going to spend some time talking about God & Money. God & Money seem to be two words that shouldn’t go together. It also seems that every time a person like me in a setting like this says words like that, people get uncomfortable. If you’re a non-Christian, non-church-going person, one of the reasons you may be so skeptical is because of how churches or pastors talk about money.
Let me say right up front that we’re not talking about these issues because we need your money. As a church, we’re doing fine financially. We’re not in the red. We’re not panicked. This is not an emergency sermon series on money because we’re afraid we can’t pay our bills. In fact, this series isn’t to get anything FROM you at all. We’re looking at this because I want something FOR you. How you think about money is directly relevant to your spiritual health.
How we manage our money is one of the easiest ways to measure how we’re doing spiritually. It’s one of the only visible, measureable metrics on Christian spirituality. And let’s be honest, you may think that the words God & Money don’t belong in the same sentence but we put them together all the time. Have you ever prayed to GOD when you were in a financial CRISIS? Exactly. Have you ever prayed, “God, if you’ll just help me buy this ___ then I’ll do anything else you want?” We put God and money together all the time.
Another reason we should take time to talk about these issues is because Jesus talked about God & money all the time. In fact, I got the title of this series from Jesus himself. There are two passages in the Gospels where Jesus uses the three words God & Money. Each time, he says exactly the same thing. The first is in Matthew 6:24 and the second is in Luke 16:33.
“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”
Money makes a terrible master. According to Jesus we can either master our money of have our money be a master over us. We can be devoted to God or devoted to money. But we can’t have both.
Why is Jesus so serious about our money? It’s because he knows something about the connection between our money and our heart. He knows that where we’ve put our money is where we’ve put our heart. The treasure in our wallets follows the treasure of our heart. Jesus said in this way in Matthew 6:19-21.
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
Jesus says where we put our treasure is where we put our heart. Jesus wants our heart. Jesus doesn’t want your money. Jesus doesn’t need your money. What is Jesus going to do with your money? Jesus doesn’t “need” anything from you. But he wants something FOR you. And in order for you to receive the kind of treasure Jesus wants FOR you, you must give him your heart. The number one competitor for our heart’s affection? Our money.
That’s why we’re going to spend the next several weeks discussing God & Money. Imagine a life in which you never had to worry about money. Doesn’t that sound nice? Whether you’re rich or poor or somewhere in between, you can have a life that’s free from financial worry. Join us for the next few weeks at Broadview as we try to make our dollars make sense.
One more thing. In addition to this preaching series we will also host a class called Financial Peace University. Audra and I started applying the Scriptural principles in this class several years ago. I can’t think of a single time in which we had a serious argument about money. We’ve experienced “Financial Peace” the entire time we’ve been together.
I wish I could bottle that up and give it to every single one of you. I desperately want every member in our church to experience the freedom that comes from managing your money God’s way. If you’re really serious about making a change, then consider taking this class. You can order materials online or through the church. But you need to sign up soon so we’ll know how many to order.
As always, if there’s anything I can pray for you about, please let me know! Have a great rest of your week!