Biblical Stewardship Series Part 4
Intro: There is a huge difference in spending and investing.
- People spend time; they don’t invest time.
- People spend money; they don’t invest money.
- People spend on their family; they don’t invest in their family.
- People spend time at church, but they don’t invest in their church.
NOTE: THERE IS A HUGE DIFFERENCE IN SPENDING AND INVESTING
Spending means you take what you have and exchange it for something else.
Investing means you take what you have and get more of it.
SEE VS. 16 and 17 – they traded with the same, and made them other talents!!
I. Investing requires Perspective (it’s not what you have that is crucial; it’s what you do with it)
It’s not a toy – it’s a tool.
It’s not enough to have it in your hand. And thank God for the Initiation and the Inventory!!! AMEN!!
But then what? What are we going to do with it?
What do we do with what He has so graciously given to us?
ARE YOU A PIGGY BANK?
Some people buy collectibles. Coins, guns, knives, dolls, stamps, and then put them in a display case.
They never have any intentions of doing anything with what they have – it’s just for looks; for show; just to have.
- God gave you a wife/husband – are you going “to have and to hold” or are you going to invest?
- God gave you children – did you have kids just to “have”? or are they an “heritage of the Lord”?
- God gave you a job – do you just “have a job” or is it a stewardship tool to invest?
- God gave you a church – do you spend time at your church, or invest in your church?
- God gave us the great Commission – are we investing in reaching the world for Christ?
Those that invested in you did it so you could continue to invest.
They increased your value. God expects you to increase somebody else’s value.
The Apostle Paul realized that because of what God had done for him, he was INDEBTED.
- Romans 1:14 I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.
- I Cor. 9:16, 17 For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel! For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me.
Paul said – I can either exercise stewardship because I WANT to, or do it because I HAVE to – either way, WOE IS ME IF I DON’T DO IT!!!
II. Investing requires Perception (you can’t invest in just anything; it has to have the possibility for payoff)
- Luke 12:42 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward…
AN EXAMPLE OF UNWISE STEWARDSHIP
- Haggai 1:5, 6 Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways. Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.
From these verses, we learn that it is important WHAT you invest in; not just that you invest!
- Mark 8:36 For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?
What a sobering verse! You can invest in the wrong things, and yield a profit that will do you no good!!
- 6:19-20 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.
- Smart investors do not follow fads – they follow facts.
- Smart investors do not get caught up in trends; they operate based on truth.
- Smart investors do not listen to talk; they look for a track record.
The same applies to the believer. We cannot allow the fads and hype to dictate what we invest in.
The Word of God is fact; it is truth; it has a track record of being completely 100% reliable.
The KINGDOM OF HEAVEN is worthy of our FULL INVESTMENT!!
- Matthew 13:44 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.
NOTE: Here are just a couple of verses that prove this point:
- Isaiah 55:11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
There is no fear of failure; no crossing your fingers and hoping you hit the jackpot.
The Bible is very clear; if we invest in what interests God, HE WILL BLESS US.
III. Investing requires Patience (you have to wait for the process to run its course; not rush it)
- Luke 12:42 And the Lord said, Who then is that faithful and wise steward, whom his lord shall make ruler over his household, to give them their portion of meat in due season?
Instant gratification is the curse of this generation.
Fast food; fast service; we are obsessed with what is quick, and convenient, and easy.
Drive-thru windows at every store, bank, restaurant, pharmacy
Wise stewardship requires being faithful – until the Master returns!!
Jesus is coming – and it is very soon!!
Let’s just be honest – serving God is just too much trouble for many Christians today!
- It’s perfectly normal to sit at a football game for 4 hours, but coming to church twice on Sunday is just too much.
- Taking your children to school 5 times a week is normal, but taking them to church 3 times is too much.
- It’s sensible to spend thousands of dollars on your vehicles, or homes, or vacations, or hobbies, or pets while the church and its ministries do without.
- It’s logical to have every toy and gadget and new technological product while the world goes without the Gospel.
- It makes perfect sense to give your boss 40 to 60 hours a week, and yet complain about an hour or two of soul-winning visitation.
Putting your priorities in place and being a steward of what God has given you requires faithfulness; time.