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Christian Attitude and Teaching on Wealth

1. Bible Read: 1 Timothy 6:6-10

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: The Christian attitude toward 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

2) 2 Corinthians 8:9

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

2) Notice the attitude of Moses in Hebrews 11:24-26

3) Notice the attitude of Job.

a. His attitude toward the poor, Job 31:16-22.

b. His attitude toward wealth. Job 31:24-28

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

2) Acts 20:33-35

3) Galatians 2:9-10

4) Luke 19:8

2. When we give to the poor, we prove our love for God according to the scriptures.

1) 2 Cor. 8:8

2) 1 John 3:17

3. To further the work of the church. 1 Corinthians 16:1-2

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

6. To enjoy God’s creation. 1 Tim. 6:17

III. THE PROBLEMS ASSOCIATED WITH WEALTH.

1. Riches involve great difficulty because they militate against spirituality.

1) Mark 10:23-25

2) Repeated in Matt. 19:23ff; Luke 18:24ff

2. Riches are deceitful.

1) Matthew 13:22

2) Mark 4:19; Luke 8:14.

3. Riches lead to many temptations. James 5:1-6

4. Riches lead to covetousness. Luke 12:13-21

5. Riches will not endure as they will ultimately decay and be destroyed. James 1:9-11

6. The rich are more tempted to hold back from God. Mark 12:41-44

7. Riches can lead to trusting in something other than God.

1) 1 Tim. 6:6-10

2) 1 Tim. 6:17-19

CONCLUSION:

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.

2. Invitation

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).

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