Date written: January 30th, 2003
Scripture ref: 1 Timothy 6:6-10
Our Attitude Toward Money
TITLE: Our Attitude Toward Money
PROPOSITION: Our attitude toward money and wealth should recognize, 1) our relationship with God regarding wealth, 2) the reasons God has given for wealth, 3) the problems associated with wealth.
OBJECTIVES:The hearer should be able to understand their responsibilities and attitudes toward wealth.
AIM:I want everyone to have a proper, healthy, and reverent attitude toward the teaching within God's word regarding wealth.
1. Read: 1 Timothy 6:6-10 "But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows."
2. About the Text:
1) Perhaps there is no more uncomfortable subject for us to talk about today than other people's money.
2) God's word, however, makes it clear that the gospel preacher must address this subject.
3) In the same context with which Paul discusses those who would be rich, he also discusses those who are rich in this world's goods.
4) Notice he says in verses 17-19 "Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life."
5) It is not merely a suggestion of God that we discuss earthly wealth, but a commandment.
6) God has some very definite and specific things to say about this area of our life.
7) If we would be obedient to God's will, we would do well to listen to his word in this regard.
3. Ref. to S, T, P, O, and A.
DISCUSSION: Our attitude toward money and wealth should recognize . . . .
I. Our relationship with God regarding wealth. Part of our relationship with God in this regard is understanding that . . .
1. We do not truly own anything. God owns everything.
1) Deuteronomy 10:14 "Behold, the heaven and the heaven of heavens is the LORD'S thy God, the earth also, with all that therein is."
2) Psalm 24:1 "The earth is the LORD'S, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein."
3) Psalm 50:10-12 "For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills. I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine. If I were hungry, I would not tell thee: for the world is mine, and the fulness thereof."
4) 1 Corinthians 10:26 "For the earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof."
2. God tells us that true and abiding riches simply cannot come from this earth.
1) Matthew 6:19-21 "Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."
2) 2 Corinthians 8:9 "For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich."
3. Neither our wealth, nor our lack thereof, guarantees that we are acceptable to God.
1) Proverbs 30:8, 9 states, "Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me: Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the LORD? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain."
2) It is not our outward possessions that indicate a good relationship with God, but our inward attitude. Psalm 51:17 "The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise."
4. It is possible to be rich and be faithful to God, but this is usually accompanied with an extraordinary attitude.
1) Notice the attitude of Abraham after recovering the people and possessions of Sodom in Genesis 14:21-23 "And the king of Sodom said unto Abram, Give me the persons, and take the goods to thyself. And Abram said to the king of Sodom, I have lift up mine hand unto the LORD, the most high God, the possessor of heaven and earth, That I will not take from a thread even to a shoelatchet, and that I will not take any thing that is thine, lest thou shouldest say, I have made Abram rich:"
2) Notice the attitude of Moses in Hebrews 11:24-26 "By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter; Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward."
3) Notice the attitude of Job.
a. His attitude toward the poor. "If I have withheld the poor from their desire, or have caused the eyes of the widow to fail; Or have eaten my morsel myself alone, and the fatherless hath not eaten thereof; (For from my youth he was brought up with me, as with a father, and I have guided her from my mother's womb;) If I have seen any perish for want of clothing, or any poor without covering; If his loins have not blessed me, and if he were not warmed with the fleece of my sheep; If I have lifted up my hand against the fatherless, when I saw my help in the gate: Then let mine arm fall from my shoulder blade, and mine arm be broken from the bone."
b. His attitude toward wealth. Job 31:24-28 "If I have made gold my hope, or have said to the fine gold, Thou art my confidence; If I rejoiced because my wealth was great, and because mine hand had gotten much; If I beheld the sun when it shined, or the moon walking in brightness; And my heart hath been secretly enticed, or my mouth hath kissed my hand: This also were an iniquity to be punished by the judge: for I should have denied the God that is above."
4) It is easy to point out that it is not a sin to be wealthy; it is much more difficult to point out that God commands us not to DESIRE to be wealthy.
II. The Reasons God has given for money and wealth.
1. To give to the poor. This is perhaps the most emphasized use for money within the New Testament, but sadly is the most often neglected.
1) Ephesians 4:28 "Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth."
2) Acts 20:33-35 "I have coveted no man's silver, or gold, or apparel. Yea, ye yourselves know, that these hands have ministered unto my necessities, and to them that were with me. I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive."
3) Galatians 2:9, 10 "And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision. Only they would that we should remember the poor; the same which I also was forward to do."
4) Luke 19:8 "And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold."
2. When we give to the poor, we prove our love for God according to the scriptures.
1) 2 Cor.8:8 "I speak not by commandment, but by occasion of the forwardness of others, and to prove the sincerity of your love."
2) 1 John 3:17 "But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?"
3. To further the work of the church. 1 Corinthians 16:1, 2 "Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye. Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come."
4. To have the necessities of life.
1) God wants us to have the necessities of life. Matthew 6:33
2) He wants us to be content with these basics. 1 Tim.6:8 "And having food and raiment let us be therewith content."
5. To take care of one's family. 1 Tim.6:8 "But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."
6. To enjoy God's creation. 1 Tim.6:17 "Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;"
III. The Problems Associated with Wealth.
1. Riches involve great difficulty because they militate against spirituality.
1) Mark 10:23-25 "And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God."
2) Repeated in Matt.19:23ff; Luke 18:24ff
2. Riches are deceitful.
1) Matthew 13:22 " He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful."
2) Mark 4:19; Luke 8:14.
3. Riches lead to many temptations. James 5:1-6 "Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you. Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten. Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days. Behold, the hire of the labourers who have reaped down your fields, which is of you kept back by fraud, crieth: and the cries of them which have reaped are entered into the ears of the Lord of sabaoth. Ye have lived in pleasure on the earth, and been wanton; ye have nourished your hearts, as in a day of slaughter. Ye have condemned and killed the just; and he doth not resist you."
4. Riches lead to covetousness. Luke 12:13-21 "And one of the company said unto him, Master, speak to my brother, that he divide the inheritance with me. And he said unto him, Man, who made me a judge or a divider over you? And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth. And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry. But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided? So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God."
5. Riches will not endure as they will ultimately decay and be destroyed. James 1:9-11 "Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted: But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away. For the sun is no sooner risen with a burning heat, but it withereth the grass, and the flower thereof falleth, and the grace of the fashion of it perisheth: so also shall the rich man fade away in his ways."
6. The rich are more tempted to hold back from God. Mark 12:41-44 "And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living."
7. Riches can lead to trusting in something other than God.
1) 1 Tim.6:6-10 "But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows."
2) 1 Tim.6:17-19 "Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life."
1. The United States and the citizens thereof per capita have so much more wealth than the rest of the world. Let us never lose sight of . . .
1) Our relationship with God in respect to wealth.
2) The reasons God has given for wealth.
3) The problems associated with material wealth.
1) If you are a Christian but have fallen away
a. Have you let the glamor and glitz of materialism take control of our life?
b. God says, "Don't allow that to make your decisions and control your destiny."
c. If you have need of prayer to help you overcome the temptations associated with money and wealth, we stand ready to receive you.
2) If you are not a Christian this morning . . .
a. Your soul is worth more than all of the wealth in the world.
b. Will you spend the best years of your life pursuing riches only to realize that you won't leave this world with them?
c. Dedicate your life and your wealth to God today.
d. Heed the plan that it has for man's salvation today!
a) Hear the word; Romans 10:17 "Faith comes by hearing . . ."
b) Believe with all your heart; Hebrews 11:6 "For without faith it is impossible . . . ."
c) Repent of your sins (Acts 17:30).
d) Confess Jesus as the Son of God (Matt.16:16).
e) Be baptized for the remission of your sins (Mark 16:15,16).