5 Tips on Financial Wisdom – Straight from the Bible
Money seems to be a very controversial topic in many churches, either among the staff or within the congregation. Some talk about it too much and some just don’t talk about it enough. But whether it’s talked about or not, there is one thing for sure and that is we are commanded to give and in a number of ways.
However, there is more to giving than just doing it in order to receive or to be blessed. Also, a lot of responsibility lies with the giver.
But the best part is that the Lord doesn’t command us to do something without giving us the proper guidance on how to do it nor the encouragement to seek Him out about a particular topic. The Lord cares for all our needs and our financial status is not off limits.
Here are 5 tips on having financial wisdom coming to you direct from the Bible.
1. Living Debt Free
The Bible doesn’t give us specific instructions on how or why we should do our best to achieve this, but it does say that you should “owe no man nothing” (Romans 13:8). T
his verse requires Christians to pay all of his obligations. We could learn a lot from following this scripture. Many men in the Bible worked hard for a living, but most were also given an inheritance as well.
You and I will probably not receive an inheritance and it’s near impossible to live completely debt free. However, we should at least strive to live within our means. This means being wise in both where you spend and how you spend.
We are commanded by God to do our best to provide for our family and to take part in the advancement of God’s Kingdom.
There seems to be some debate with tithing and some consider it optional, but tithing is a mandatory offering for the Christian. In the New Testament, Paul tells the church to follow after the law that was given before, which was to give a portion of their weekly income to the church. This portion is given to support your attending church.
While at this point, Paul doesn’t name a certain amount of that income we should give, but that we gift “in keeping with our income” (1 Cor. 16:2). In Numbers, chapter 18, God tells Moses that a tenth of the tithe collected from the children of Israel is to be offered up to the Lord.
Malachi, chapter 3, beginning in verse 8, discusses tithes and offerings and not tithing or offering first to the Lord is the same as robbing HIm. The dictionary defines ‘tithing’ as a tenth of something.
Should you tithe or should you not? My advice to you is to diligently pray and seek God’s wisdom (James 1:5) in the matter of participating in tithing and/or how much to give.
Regardless if you decide to tithe, all tithes, gifting and offerings should be given with pure motives and an attitude of worship to God and service to the body of Christ. “So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Cor. 9:7).
Offering is another mandatory financial responsibility for the Christian. “When you give…..” (Matthew 6:2) – nowhere does it say “If.” Christ is letting us know that offering is a required act.
The Bible doesn’t give many requirements on how much we should give, or where we should give when we do, but it does tell us that our demeanor should be righteous. We shouldn’t strive to be seen, give reluctantly, or even to give without cause.
We know that the Lord loves a cheerful giver and we should always seek Him on what to give and how to give it, that it always be used for His glory.
4. Don’t depend on money
There are so many scriptures that would stand to back this; Matthew 6:21, Ecclesiastes 5:10, Hebrews 13:5, Matthew 6:24… The Lord says that all things will pass away, but He will remain.
We aren’t to put our hope in our jobs, our money, or even our possessions, but we are to put our trust in God. I’ve never seen the righteous forsaken, or His seed begging for bread.
He will take care of those who love Him and His will. Psalms 37:16 says “A little that a righteous man has is better than the riches of many wicked”.
5. Have a giving Spirit
Sometimes offerings don’t equate in what we have in monetary funds, but lie within us giving of ourselves. Offering our time, our skills, and even our bodies as sacrifices unto the Lord.
The Lord commands us to give, but also commands us to use wisdom and be led by Him. We are to know the difference between giving from ourselves and giving of ourselves.
Sometimes lending our time to a cause is worth more than spending our money on the cause. Maybe using the gifts, or the skills, that the Lord has given would be more profitable.
Making yourself available to a friend, your community, your church, or even to God, could be the exact the willing spirit He is looking for.
The Ten Principals of Christian Giving is incredibly eye opening. There are many good questions to consider when thinking about giving and tithing.
As Christians, we have a responsibility to both the church and the world when it comes to our finances. We are to give to our attending church through tithes and offerings, to help support the missionary spreading the good news of the Gospel, and to the sinner in need that they may see the love of Christ.
Some of our suggested reading on finances….
Being wise and seeking guidance from the Lord is important when it comes to our Christian responsibilities. The same is true for our finances. We are to follow His commands in ALL of our ways (Proverbs 3:5-6).
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