Money, Money, Money

Many people are convinced what churches want most from them is their money.  In our current economy we are all more aware of money issues.  I don’t blame people for their concern.  It is money that makes our lifestyle work.  Without a good income we can’t pay for our house, utilities, food, health-care, car, etc., let alone the things we enjoy for entertainment.  It certainly seems the old adage “money makes the world go ‘round” has something to it.  What surprises me is how many of us who claim to be Christian do not have a Biblical view of money and giving.  

 Jesus says in Matthew 6:19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

It appears there is a heavenly 401K for anyone who loves God and seeks to advance His Kingdom.  It isn’t that we will need money in Heaven.  But there will be a reward for those who give of their time, talents and resources to God’s work in the world.  The problem is the way we view our giving to the church.  There are those who see their commitment of time and money to their church as paying membership dues.  If we are part of a club we expect certain benefits and perks as a dues paying member.  And so we approach church in the same way.  We believe that our giving buys a better experience for us.   And the more we give the more influence and benefits we should receive.  But that’s not Jesus’ approach.  When we give of our time, talents and resources it should be for God and His work not our own personal agenda.  Church is not a club where we seek to make our lives more comfortable but an instrument of God for building up the faithful and reaching out to those who need Him.  So if you are part of a church how do you give?  Do you target your giving to what benefits or pleases you?  Do you withhold your giving if you don’t like this or that?  Or do you give to God to further His work through your church?   Let me close with this passage from Colossians 3:23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.