Managing Money for Our Master – Part 2

Putting God First in Our Finances

Proverbs 3:9,10


Pastor Craig Ledbetter                                           

Bible Baptist Church, Ballincollig, Cork, Ireland

15 Nov, 2009  AM


I.                   Introduction (1Timothy 6:17-19)


A.      This month, we are learning about being Steadfast in our Confidence!

B.     But if anything, God’s people in general are very worried.


1.       They have joined with the economists, and the analysts, and accepted all the talk about economic disaster and recession, and swine flu, and global warming – not that non of that exists, but that Christians have lost their confidence in God!

2.      People who should be looking forward to the rapture, and to the fulfilment of all the Bible’s prophecies, are instead overwhelmed with fears and concerns about the future


C.      Let’s turn our attention to the area of money, and to its management. There are loads of Bible scriptures about money and the Bible is full of wisdom about managing our money and our finances. In fact, of Jesus' 39 parables, over half of them use money or the earning of money as a teaching tool.

D.    There are Four Big Principles, or Truths about Handling Money


1.       The Stewardship Principle – you are managing God’s Property

2.      The Life Principle – Handle Money as a Christian, not as a Customer

3.      The Investment Principle – there is a right way to Invest Your Money

4.      The Stress Principle – Your dependence upon Money Will Prove Your Dependence on God (or lack of it)


E.      I taught you just the first of these principles last week

F.     For most people, if not 98% of all Europeans, MONEY is their true god – the actual thing people trust in, work for, love, and need in order to live!

G.    We all need to move our trust, labours, love, and need back to the Creator and Giver of all things!

H.    We do that by First Obeying The Stewardship Principle


1.       Everything you have, everything you own, came from God. Your life, your health, your wife, your children, your job, your hands, your good looks, your LACK of good looks…

2.      God owns this entire universe

3.      And even beyond all that, if you are saved by Jesus Christ, He even owns YOU (1Cor 6:19,20)

4.      What does that make US? Stewards, Managers of someone else’s property – that someone else happens to be GOD!

5.      So, it is Time be a Good Steward with God’s Money


a.       By Putting God First in Our Spending (Proverbs 3:9,10)

b.      By Budgeting Our Spending (Telling Your Money where to go instead of asking where it went)

c.       By Paying Our Bills

d.      By Cutting Expenses

e.      By Being Ever Busy Working to Make Money

f.        By Saving Something Every Month

g.      By Giving money away without strings attached

h.     Lastly, Pray! Pray for God to help you trust Him as you obey His instructions and wait on the Lord and not get impatient


I.        I want to develop this more so that it becomes a way of life - a way of thinking about money, and handling money – that it becomes automatic

J.      Money, covetousness, debts, and the economy has run our lives far too long! It’s time to let God run our lives, and let Him teach us how to use money instead of it abuse us!


II.                Message - The Life Principle of Money Management (Colossians 3:17)


A.      The way we think about money is the way we think about life!


1.       If it is only to be accumulated, then people are only stepping stones, and life is only about having the most “toys”

2.      If it is only expected and not earned, then we are only angry, and never content

3.      If we worry about money, we will not trust in God

4.      If we see money as our problem, then we will miss the majority of God’s blessing which have nothing to do with possessions and lands and bank accounts- we will miss our families, our Saviour, our Bible, etc!

5.      Money is an extension of ourselves, and how we think about money is exactly the opposite about how we think about God!


B.      The normal way People Handle Money


1.       They spend it all – it burns in their pocket or purse, waiting to be spent

2.      They live in perpetual covetousness – always wanting, always excited about getting something new

3.      They constantly worry about not having enough money – it is on their thoughts all the time – no time for worship, and rest, and thankfulness towards God

4.      They are angry and frustrated because they don’t have enough money – blaming others, and circumstances (and even God) for not giving them what they deserve – they live very heady and elitist

5.      They live in debt – it is a lifestyle – a way of living for most families


a.       Credit Card debt

b.      Credit Union debt

c.       Continuous Overdrafts


6.       They are unable (and usually unwilling) to give to others, and have no time or energy to serve God because they are in bondage to bills and debt and the weekend’s spending sprees

7.      Then there are those that seek to be rich! Beware when your life's objective becomes earning as much money as possible (Prov 23:4; Eccl 5:10-12)! Christ taught us to live to make others rich (2Cor 8:9)

8.     These are the modern lifestyles that have brought our world to near ruin


C.      What Christian’s need is to replace their way of handling money with a whole new lifestyle – a whole new way of thinking about money, and spending it

D.    Biblical Commands on Managing Money as a Way of Life – not just to get out of Debt


1.       Respect Money - Don’t Worship It (1Tim 6:10)


a.       Money needs to be respected like a powerful tool – it can be used right for great good, or it can be abused, and it turn and hurt you bad

b.      When money becomes your way of just having a good time, and the source of pleasure, then you will end up very disappointed, and broke (see the prodigal son)!

c.       God’s Four Purposes for Money - To provide for:


1)       The needs of you and your family (1 Tim 5:8) - Main Purpose

2)     The needs of others (1 Tim 6:17,18; 1 John 3:17) - Compassion

3)     The operation of the government (Rom 13:1-8; Mt 22:17-22) - Taxes

4)     The operation of your local church (Mal 3:10) - Tithes and Offerings


2.       Earn Money - Work Hard


a.       Whether you make much money or not, work is more important than money! It is vital to mental, and physical health. Work, not money builds your confidence, develops character and discipline (2 Thes 3:10-12).

b.      Money is not a God-given right. It is NOT an entitlement that you should just sign up to the government for! There are needs that we should provide for, but not for just everyone to grab at the government purse!


1)       This kind of thinking only leads to the ruin of democracy, and to the lose of freedom!

2)     Alexander Tytler wrote, “A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse (entitlements) from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits … with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship.”


c.       Work was designed as a lifestyle for man even before Adam and Eve fell into sin (Gen 2:15), and hard work is part of the curse that God placed upon life because of Adam’s sin (Gen 3:17-19).

d.      So… WORK to obtain money, and to get ahead of debt. It takes work (Pr 10:4)!


3.       Get Out, and Stay Out of Debt (Pr 22:7)


a.       This HAS to be a priority!

b.      Your lifestyle got you into debt – you must have a new way of living to get out of debt

c.       Debtors LOVE you being in debt!

d.      A simple procedure


1)       Only spend what you have – no more use of the credit cards

2)     Pay all your debts the minimum for right now, so that you can pay off each one

3)     Say you have six debts


a)      Credit Card A - €4,000

b)     Credit Card B - €500

c)      Mortgage - €225,000

d)     Car Payment - €3,400

e)     Credit Union Loan - €2,000

f)       Personal Loan from family - €250


4)      Pay off the smallest debt first, as fast as you can


a)      The Personal Loan of €250


5)      Put that payment now against the next debt


a)      Pay off the Credit Card B debt €500


6)      Pay off the next debt as fast as you can – the Car Payment

7)     This is called the Snowball Effect of Debt Management

8)    Every debt you pay off allows you to more quickly pay off the next debt

9)     The bondage of every debt is crushing! The money you have after you have paid off your debts is phenomenal!


4.       Thank God for Your Money - Be Content


a.       Probably THE best advice God ever gave us!

b.      Do you have enough to eat and clothes to wear? Then be content with what you have.

c.       Lack of contentment is a sin. It is also the greatest cause of unnecessary debt. If it is your sin, then confess it to the Lord and let Him help you change your greedy ways. Meditate on scriptures such as 1Tim 6:6-8; Heb 13:5

d.      Covetousness (the opposite of contentment) is idolatry!!!

e.      Contentment is a choice, not a feeling


1)       I’m content with my wife

2)     I’m content with my calling

3)     I’m content where I live and the kind of car I drive

4)     All because I choose to be!


f.        Contentment is the foundation of our attitudes! If it isn’t there, ALL our other attitudes will be wrong! There is nothing wrong with wanting another car – and even working to save up for it. The problem comes when if we CAN’T have another car, that our attitude collapses! Same with marrying, with looking for a better job!


5.       Keep a Loose Grip on Money (Luke 6:27-35)


a.       One of the fastest ways to get more money is to give it away (Luke 6:38; Prov 11:24). Not flippantly, but sensitively – to people who can’t ever pay you back!

b.      In other words, Let people take advantage of you! That’s where a Christian makes a huge difference – we give to and forgive people who don’t really deserve it – just like God did towards us! You are giving as to the Lord!

c.       Money and the giving of it should be no problem to the Christian


1)       The tithe should be no problem for a Christian. Give it to God

2)     Giving extra to support more missionaries should be automatic of all of us – give it for souls

3)     Giving to people as we hear of needs should be second nature!


d.      Those who are miserly, tight-fisted, stingy with their money have forgotten where the money first came from – God!


6.       Serve God, Not Money (Matthew 6:25-33)


a.       Money makes a good servant, but a terrible master

b.      The key to managing your money is to use it to the honour of God. The truth is, we generally don’t honour God with our money – we only honour ourselves with our money


1)       Most of us serve our bills, and our employer

2)     We work for retirement, and our holidays

3)     But is that what God saved us for?

4)     Is Christianity only about heaven, or is t also about living an abundant life down here (John 10:10)?


c.       To serve God means to do everything for Him (Col 3:23), and because of Him.

d.      Money never cared about you, nor does it love you like you love it! YET! The more you love God, the more of the love of God you will know!

e.      Make your money a servant of God – a sacrifice for God to use for His purpose and His glory


III.               Conclusion