Dear friend of Crown, please read our newsletter for April 2013!
Two economic systems are at work in the world namely, God's economy and the economy that was developed by man. The Bible reveals God's economy to us in the finest details. Indeed, there are more than 2350 verses in the Bible that teaches us how to handle money in God's economy!
Man's economy, and the way most people handle their finances, is in sharp contrast with God's financial principles. Isaiah 55:8 reads “'For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,' declares the Lord”.
The biggest difference between these two economic systems is the fact that, in God's economy, the Living God plays the central role.
In 1 Chronicles 29:11-12 we read: "Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, Lord, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all. Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things. In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all."
In the word, God calls himself more than 250 names! The names that describe God the most accurately in terms of finances are Lord and Master. How we see God in our finances will determine how we will handle our finances...
Man's economy says that everything belongs to me and I have the last say in what I'm going to do with the things I own.
The question is: Who is the owner?
All of our possessions belong to God. Study the following scriptures carefully:
Deuteronomy 10:14 - "To the Lord your God belong the heavens, even the highest heavens, the earth and everything in it."
Psalm 24:1 - "The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it."
The Bible names specific items that God owns. Leviticus 25:23 describes Him as the owner of all land. Haggai 2:8 says He owns all the silver and all the gold. Psalm 50 then talks about the wild animals, birds, insects and the cattle on the hills. God says, the world in its fullness, is Mine.
The Lord is the Creator of all things and He has never given the ownership of His creation over to man. However, Genesis 1:26 explains that He has given man the authority and the task to rule and reign over His creation. Colossians 1:17 says: "He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together."
To acknowledge God's ownership is a key element to allow Jesus Christ to become Lord over your possessions. We are not owners and we possess nothing, Job (after everything that happened to him) came to this conclusion: "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised." - Job 1:21.
We are God's creation, created to His own image and we are appointed by God as stewards over His creation. Steward also means manager or care taker. In the Bible, the position of steward is one of great responsibility. The stewards are second in charge below the master, and they carried full responsibility of all the master's possessions and household tasks. Our responsibility is to be faithful with that which has been given to us, whether it be little or much.
The parable of the talents in Matthew 25:14-15 teaches us that we will be held responsible for the amount of talents that we were given. The Lord rewards faithfulness, no matter the amount we have received...
Before we can be faithful, we must now what are expected of us. When we buy new equipment, we receive a manual that explains to us how to use that specific equipment. Similarly, we must study the Creator's manual, the Bible, so that we can determine how He expects us to manage His possessions. The advantages of a faithful steward is a more intimate relationship with Jesus Christ and also the development of good character that helps us to get our finances in order.
These few thoughts were taken out of the Crown Biblical Financial Small Group Study that have dramatically changed so many people's lives. Please visit our website www.crown.org.za for more information about material that you can use for yourself or recommend to a friend who is facing financial challenges in these difficult times that we live in.
If you are interested in the small group study mentioned above or in similar DVD series about stewardship and the management of finances on a Biblical basis, or you want us to send you the 2350+ Bible verses about finances, send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 021 975 0226.
We bless you in the name of Jesus Christ.
Crown SA Durbanville, Cape Town Western Cape, South Africa email@example.com +27(0)21 975 0226