In our service today we explored three main ideas about money:
- All money belongs to God
- God gives us money to use
- God seeks spiritual fruit from the use of our money
After the service, I had good conversations with many of you wanting some help or answers to your questions and I promised I’d write about them today .. so here we are!
Question: Are there any resources you can recommend to help a family budget?
Yes! There are some excellent resources at Crown Financial that I’ve used in the past. Larry Burkett was the founder of this organisation and I’ve really benefitted from his book “Using your money wisely“. A lot of their resources are completely free. Another thing I’ve learnt (from my dad) is to budget for 5 week months, every month. This allows you to use the 5th week as a margin or for savings.
Question: is a tithe necessary?
The term “tithe” simply means a 10th and was an OT term given for the temple tax. It wasn’t just necessary, it was a requirement for proper worship. Today I don’t’ believe that there is such a requirement. However, God demands 100% of your money because it all belongs to him. We are encouraged to give generously to the local church and to those in need (gospel fruit and good works fruit). In short, I’d put it like this: we don’t tithe for salvation, we give generously for holiness. It’s part of our sanctification to say “all that I have is God’s and I’m putting His money to good use”.
Question: you mentioned fruitfulness. Can you explain more?
Sure! What we see in the NT are two types of giving – one that is done towards the established church or missionaries and one that is done towards those outside the church. The first I call “Gospel Fruit” – the aim is to provide for those who are ministering in the gospel. In 1 Corinthians Paul said that he had a right to ask for a wage from the church, but instead gave up that right because it might impede the gospel. At other times he instructed the church not to “muzzle the ox”. The implication is clear, it is the churches responsibility to look after those who are labouring among them, or been sent out by them. The second category is what I call “Good Works Fruit” and concerns the welfare of those outside the church who are poor and in need.
The money we have should be used for fruitfulness in those two areas.
Question: I’d like to give to the work of the church. How can I do that?
great .. and thanks! Here’s the link you need
Questions: Where can I go for sound biblical money advice?
Stewardship – providing advice, inspiration and practical tools
Christians Against Poverty – a great charity, mainly for people on low incomes or in debt
Dave Ramsey – like Crown Financial with videos and Bible Studies