Money, Storing Up for the Future


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Storing up for a rainy day; it seems logical and it seems prudent, but is it Biblical? How about investing in the stock market or saving for your retirement, what do the Scriptures say about this? Today we'll study what the Bible says about these topics and specifically about storing up for the future; so let's begin. 

We'll start with the story of Moses and the Israelite children wandering in the wilderness and being miraculously provided for by God with manna which came from heaven. Please notice that this manna was provided to God’s children on a daily basis and was not to be stored up. God wanted His people to depend on Him every day and not just when they were in trouble or when they ran out of food or water from their storehouse. What happened if one of God’s children would store up manna for the next day? It grew worms and rotted! The Apostle Paul says that what happened to them was for an example to us.
"For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope"  (Romans15:4). Let’s read this account of God feeding His people to see what example God is showing us. Then after that we'll explore what Jesus teaches us about storing up for tomorrow.

(Exodus 16:12) "I have heard the grumblings of the sons of Israel speak to them, saying, 'At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall be filled with bread; and you shall know that I am the LORD your God.'" (13) So it came about at evening that the quails came up and covered the camp, and in the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp. (14) When the layer of dew evaporated, behold, on the surface of the wilderness there was a fine flake-like thing, fine as the frost on the ground. (15) When the sons of Israel saw it, they said to one another, "What is it?" For they did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, "It is the bread which the LORD has given you to eat. (16) "This is what the LORD has commanded, 'Gather of it every man as much as he should eat; you shall take an omer apiece according to the number of persons each of you has in his tent.'" (17) The sons of Israel did so, and some gathered much and some little. (18) When they measured it with an omer, he who had gathered much had no excess, and he who had gathered little had no lack; every man gathered as much as he should eat. (19) Moses said to them, "Let no man leave any of it until morning." (20) But they did not listen to Moses, and some left part of it until morning, and it bred worms and became foul; and Moses was angry with them. (21) They gathered it morning by morning, every man as much as he should eat; but when the sun grew hot, it would melt. Why didn’t God want any manna stored for the next day? God knew that if they wouldn't have to totally depend on Him for sustenance, they would quickly fall away; they would go from completely depending on Him to depending on themselves for their living. God wanted to be their complete provider for EVERYTHING! God wanted them to continually look to Him for ALL THINGS and not to look to themselves for what they needed. Does Jesus teach anything different in our New Covenant?

(Matthew 6:8) Be not therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him. (9) After this manner therefore pray ye. Our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. (10) Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so on earth. (11) Give us this day our daily bread. (12) And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. (13) And bring us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. Jesus first of all says that your Heavenly Father knows what you need before you even ask Him. That is awesome; God knows what we need and wants to provide for us before we even ask Him! Then Jesus instructs us how to pray. Today in what we call “The Lord’s Prayer” Jesus says “Give us this DAY our DAILY bread.” Notice the emphasis on the word DAY and DAILY bread. Just like when God’s children were in the wilderness being provided for on a daily basis, we are supposed to ask God for the same daily provisions, having total and complete trust in Him! (Luke 12:24) Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds?

With Jesus giving us this example of how we are to pray, should we be putting money aside for retirement, a better life or should we have money on hand just in case of a "rainy day"? Let’s see more of what Jesus says about that. (Matthew 6:19) "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. (20) But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. (21) For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. This is a command from Jesus and He says DO NOT STORE UP TREASURES ON EARTH”. This is not a suggestion but a command!

Jesus says in (Luke 6:46) "Why do you call me, 'Lord, Lord,' and do not do what I say”? So why do we as Christians call Jesus our Lord and Savior if we don't yet trust Him to save us in our finances? If Jesus is truly our Lord we will obey His commands and trust Him instead of storing it up for later.

(Matthew 6:25) "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? (26) Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? (27) Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? (28) "And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. (29) Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. (30) If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? (31) So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' (32) For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. (33) But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. (34) Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Are you one of God’s children or a pagan? God’s children are supposed to trust Him while Jesus says the pagans are the ones running after material things and worrying about food, clothing and shelter. All you need to do is to seek the Lord… and these things will be given to you, that's our promise from Jesus! Is this consistent with what God promises us throughout the Bible, that all you need to do is trust in Him and He will provide? (Psalm 9:9) The LORD is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. (10) And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek you. Isn't this consistent with what God wanted of Moses and His people in the wilderness; that they should seek and trust Him because He would provide for them? Yes, Yes, and YES! God is the same and He does not change! What else does Jesus say about money?

(Matthew 6:24) "No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money”. These are very powerful words spoken by Jesus, so let’s examine our own lives for just a minute. Are you serving money right now? You may say… “this is not me! I do not serve money… I don’t despise God…." yet the Word of God says "Let God be true, and every man a liar (Romans 3:4). If we are serving our jobs and the money it brings us, before we are serving the God of Heaven then we are serving the god of money!

(James 4:4) “You adulterous people, don't you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God. Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God”. So in examining our own lives, do we spend more time making a living and doing "stuff" of this world (like the pagans) or do we spend more time to “seek first His kingdom and His righteousness”? Scripture says that if we do seek the Lord and His righteousness, God will indeed provide everything for us. So I ask again, according to the Bible’s standards (not yours) who are you serving… the God of Heaven or the god of money? 

(Revelation 3:15) 'I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. (16) 'So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. (17) 'Because you say, "I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing," and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked”. Being lukewarm is exactly what God wants to prevent. By us not storing up and by having Him give us our DAILY bread we are truly letting be our savior. That would continually make us reliant on God to supply us with our every need. Maybe that's why in the next verse of Revelation 3, Jesus gives us counsel on what to do. (18) I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. The only way we can buy that treasure from Jesus is to lose our life and give up our worldly trust in our strength and put  our complete trust in Jesus and His strength. Instead of trusting in our own strength (i.e. bank account, money, what we've stored up), we are buying that "gold refined in the fire". We are buying from Jesus by putting our trust in Him instead of our worldly wealth so that we can become "rich" in Heaven. By trusting in Jesus we are buying those "white garments" that we may be clothed in Heaven. 

In America today, that's exactly what we are: "lukewarm". We're not hot for Jesus and we're not cold; we think we have wealth and don't need to completely trust in God. We rely on the security of our careers, bank accounts and what we've saved for retirement. Are the Christians in America whom Jesus is speaking about; "the lukewarm"? We say to ourselves, "I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing". We think we have it all, but do we? This is what Jesus says will happen with those who feel so secure in what they've stored up; “So because thou art lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spew thee out of my mouth”. All that glitters is not gold! Some Christians seem to have it all yet they have nothing stored in Heaven; they are what Jesus calls "wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked”.

On the other side of the spectrum there are those Christians who've struggled all their lives, they have nothing stored up and continually have to rely on God every day. Aren’t these Christians much better off than the lukewarm "Christians" who seem to have it made? Those who have had to rely on God all their lives have had their faith built up over a lifetime and they know what it means to fully trust in God. (Psalm 37:25) I have been young, and now am old; yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his descendants begging bread. (26) He is ever merciful, and lends; and his descendants are blessed.  Most "Christians" today really haven't had to put their complete trust in God. Most Christians today don't know how to trust God because they've only known how to trust what they have and what they've worked for. The Bible says we are to rejoice in our trials, (1 Peter 1:6) In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, (7) so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Our testing is more precious than gold because gold is perishable while faith and trust are not, that gets deposited in the storehouse of Heaven on your account.

If you think Jesus is being hard on us in what He has commanded us about not storing up, what do you think about this scripture? (Luke 13:33) So therefore whosoever he be of you that renounceth not all that he hath, he cannot be my disciple. The Greek word for renounceth is “apotassomai” (ap-ot-as'-som-ahee) meaning literally to say adieu (by departing or dismissing); figuratively to renounce: - bid farewell, forsake, take leave, send away. So what is Jesus saying that we need to renounce? Not only what we own or what we possess but renouncing all includes our life also! (Matthew 16:24) Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man would come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. (25) For whosoever would save his life shall lose it: and whosoever shall lose his life for my sake shall find it. (26) For what shall a man be profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and forfeit his life, or what shall a man give in exchange for his life? Our reward is not this life and the wonderful things we can experience throughout our lifetime but quite to the contrary, it's about losing our life and giving it back to the One who gave us life in the first place. Yes friends our reward comes later. (Matthew 19:27,29) Then answered Peter and said unto him, Lo, we have left all, and followed thee; what then shall we have? ...And every one that hath left houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and shall inherit eternal life. The truth of the matter is this: Jesus not only says that we cannot store up treasure on earth but now He says that we need to give up all that we have; that we must not even store up our lives and the good times on earth but we must lose our lives in order to gain our eternal lives. (Luke 17:33) Whosoever shall seek to gain his life shall lose it: but whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it. We must lose our worldly lives today, that we might gain our eternal lives tomorrow! 

When Jesus says to renounce everything we have, Jesus is not saying to just go and get rid of what you've accumulated over the years. You're not to give your house away and live on the street but you're to renounce what you have and consider it God's and no longer your own. Here is what it would look like if you gave everything to the Lord. (1 John 3:16) This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. (17) If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? (18) Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. Yes you can give all you have to the Lord and yet retain possession of it. You then become that faithful steward in the Lord and give to others when you see them in need. You simply let the Lord tell you with that still small voice and that love in your heart as to where you can help others. Eventually by you being obedient what Jesus places on your heart, all that you have will be gone. If you're obeying the Lord when He speaks to you, then you'll have plenty of opportunities in which to be good stewards and give what you have away.

(Luke 12:32) "Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. (33) Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. (34) For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. This is a spiritual parable in which the Lord calls us to do literally in just one day or over a life time. Once you have this understanding and the knowledge of what the Lord commands us, we are to no longer consider that retirement account or savings account as ours. We are to give as the Lord speaks to our heart and the Lord will provide for you until the day you die; especially when He has you give it all away. (Luke 6:38) Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Think about it; if we serve a God who already owns everything in this world, who's testing us to see if we'll be good stewards with what we already have, then won't our God keep His promise and take care of us because we've already taken care of His children? Won't our God entrust us with even more seed to help others? (2 Cor 9:10) He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. (11) You will be enriched in every way for all your generosity, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God. Yes, God will continually supply you with the seed to help others and "you will be enriched in every way for all your generosity"! Can you out give God? He says to put Him to the test. Bring the full tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. (Malachi 3:10) And thereby put me to the test, says the LORD of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.

If you put on your spiritual eyes you'll see that God gives us money in order to test us. (Luke 16:9) I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings. (10) "Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much. (11) So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? Are you blessed with worldly wealth? You may not be rich, but you have money in the bank, money set aside for a rainy day or retirement. Could this just really be a test for each and every believer? Could the blessing we think we have stored up really be a curse? If we are going against God's commands and what is expected by our Lord by storing up earthly riches for a rainy day, how can God trust us with true riches? When we really think about money in comparison to eternal life and the things of God, isn't this scripture true? "Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much". If you cannot be completely faithful with money which is here today and gone tomorrow, how can we be trusted with the eternal treasures from God which last forever? Jesus asks the question, "So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches"? Have you obeyed what Jesus has commanded us; would Jesus consider you a trustworthy steward?

Jesus tells us a parable of a steward who is not trustworthy. (Luke 12:14) But He said to him, "Man, who appointed Me a judge or arbitrator over you?" (15) Then He said to them, "Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions." (16) And He told them a parable, saying, "The land of a rich man was very productive. (17) "And he began reasoning to himself, saying, 'What shall I do, since I have no place to store my crops?' (18) "Then he said, 'This is what I will do: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. (19) 'And I will say to my soul, "Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years to come; take your ease, eat, drink and be merry."' (20) "But God said to him, 'You fool! This very night your soul is required of you; and now who will own what you have prepared?(21) "So is the man who stores up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God." Isn't this a picture of the modern day "Christian" who is working so very hard and storing up for their retirement account? They've robbed God of spending time with Him just so they can put money aside and say to themselves: "Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years to come; take your ease, eat, drink and be merry". 

What will you say some day when we stand before God with money still in your bank account when we could have helped so many? (Matthew 25:32) All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats... (41) “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: (42) for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink... (44) “Then they also will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ (45) Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ (46) And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life”. Which do you think is more important; your money and what you have stored up or giving from your heart when you see the need? The correct answer would be giving out of a pure heart of love?

(1 Timothy 6:17) Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy. (18) Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works to be generous and ready to share, (19) storing up for themselves the treasure of a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is life indeed. The Apostle Paul is saying the same thing in which Jesus said about storing up wealth on earth. Paul warns us to not fix our hope "on the uncertainty of riches but on God"! You can never out give God; by giving to those who need help, you're simply showing God's love by doing what He places in your heart. When it's all finished and you're standing before the Father, you may not even realize the treasure you've accumulated in the banks of Heaven. (Matthew 25:31) “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. (32) All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. (33) And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. (34) Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: (35) for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; (36) I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ (37) “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? (38) When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? (39) Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ (40) And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ By you loving your neighbor as yourself and by you showing that love by giving what you have, you're then simply transforming your worldly wealth into heavenly treasure which you'll have for eternity!

You cannot just say that you love your neighbor; you must prove that love by your actions. (1 John 3:17) But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? (18) My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. Most of the Christians today are very guilty of this. We are very much lovers of our neighbors in word but not much in deed. We see the needs around us and because it's so important for us to store up for the future (retirement, savings, etc.) we close off our heart from that neighbors need. Yet, if the truth be told, you have the money, and you could come up with money if YOU had an emergency and needed the money for yourself. (Proverbs 28:20) A faithful man shall abound with blessings; But he that maketh haste to be rich shall not be unpunished. Are you doing all you can to put money aside for yourself and your retirement and things that you may need in the future? If so the Bible says you will not go unpunished. Yet if you've done it up until now in ignorance because you didn't understand what the Bible says, then simply repent and do what Jesus commands us. (Luke 12:15) Then He said to them, "Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions." It's hard to see in the spirit but your true life, your spiritual life that you'll have for eternity, does not consist of your possessions; it consists of what you do with your possessions during the short time you have on this earth. That's why Jesus said, "seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you" (Matt 6:33). Food, clothing and shelter is promised by the Lord and yet what most people do in life is work at jobs they hate, they work long hours and for what; money, retirement and that some day they will live somewhere warm and in happiness? That is greed and we must repent of it and guard against it at all cost!

Now for you skeptics, who might be tempted to quote Scriptures about Joseph and him storing up grain during the seven years of plenty to prepare for the seven years of famine, just remember what Paul said about the Old Testament being a type and an example for us to learn from their experiences. (1 Cor 10:11) Now these things happened unto them by way of example; and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages are come. You have to look at the spiritual parable of this story; otherwise it directly conflicts with the entire New Testament teachings of Jesus.

These are hard teachings today just like they were in the days of Jesus when He warned His people about bringing forth good fruit. (Luke 3:9) And even now the axe also lieth at the root of the trees: every tree therefore that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. (10) And the multitudes asked him, saying, what then must we do? (11) And he answered and said unto them, he that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath food, let him do likewise. Are you a tree bringing forth good fruit, not storing up for yourself but sharing with those who have need? You're not of the world anymore and this is your responsibility. If you're sharing you should have no worries of being cut down and thrown into the fire. (Proverbs 22:9) He who has a generous eye will be blessed, for he gives of his bread to the poor. The Bible says there will be blessings for those "who executes justice for the oppressed, who gives food to the hungry" (Psalm 146:7).

Are you starting to notice the contrast between the ways of God, which is giving and receiving (Matt 10:8) "Freely you have received, freely give" and the ways of the world which is buying and selling? All of us understand buying and selling but very few of us understand God's ways of giving and receiving. (Acts 2:42-47) And all who believed were together and had all things in common. (45) And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. (46) And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts... The early church understood the concept of not storing up, selling all their possessions and renouncing all that they had. (Acts 4:32) Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common...(34) There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold (35) and laid it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. This is a beautiful picture of putting what Jesus taught into action. (Acts 20:35) In all things I gave you an example, that so laboring ye ought to help the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that he himself said, It is more blessed to give than to receive. Would you have the faith to do what these early believers did?

(Hebrews 13:2) Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it. Although we are to help strangers, we see from Scripture that believers were sharing and giving amongst each other and among fellow believers. (2 Cor 8:9) For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich... (14) your abundance at the present time should supply their need, so that their abundance may supply your need, that there may be fairness. (15) As it is written, "Whoever gathered much had nothing left over, and whoever gathered little had no lack".  We are to first look to the needs of believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. (Galatians 6:7) Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. (9) And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. (10) Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith. We are too good to all but especially to believers. (Romans 12:13) Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. If Christians are one body in Christ then it makes sense that if we see part of the body that is hungry you would feed it and if you seen the body of Christ cold or naked you would cloth them. After all, if you were hungry wouldn't you feed yourself? It should be the same way with a brother or sister in the Lord. (James 2:14-17) What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? (15) If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, (16) and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? (17) Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. I pray that you're seeing that you should love with your deeds rather then just love with your words or good intentions. As the saying goes, "The road to hell is paved with good intentions". "Inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ And these will go away into everlasting punishment".

Did you realize that as you follow the voice of the Lord to help those whom He directs you to help, that God is really using you to answer the prayers of His Saints when they cry out? (Isaiah 41:17) “The poor and needy seek water, but there is none, their tongues fail for thirst. I, the LORD, will hear them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them". Yes God hears our prayers and although He can still do miracles like the manna from heaven, He prefers to use His people to bless others so that they can share in the blessing. (Proverbs 19:17) One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the LORD, And He will repay him for his good deed. God will bless those who bless others, "whatever good anyone does, he will receive the same from the Lord" (Eph 6:6). It's God's way of answering the prayers of His people while blessing those who obey Him. (2 Cor 9:10) He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. You are essentially God's tool to sow the seeds of faith when you unknowingly answer the prayers of others just by following your heart, thinking of others before yourself. (2 Corinthians 9:6) He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. (7) So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. If we look at money and giving through God's eyes we can see that He is the supplier of seed and we are to do the sowing... God uses us to answer the prayers of others. God gets the glory and He continues to supply seed to the good and faithful servant. God does this in order to answer even more prayers so we can be that testimony for Jesus.

The problem that arises is when God's people take the seed for sowing which God has given them and store it up for themselves. They look at the money they have as "theirs" instead of God's and they don't realize that when they do this they come under a curse. (Proverbs 28:27) He who gives to the poor will not lack, But he who hides his eyes will have many curses. We may not believe that we are hiding our eyes from the poor but when we see a need in which we have the resources to meet, but we're unwilling to take it from our "storehouse" then we are indeed hiding our eyes from the poor. (Proverbs 3:27) Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do so. (28) Do not say to your neighbor, “ Go, and come back, And tomorrow I will give it,” When you have it with you. Yes most of us have it with us or in the bank, yet we hide our eyes from those who are in need just so we can have our comfortable savings or retirement that will eventually be worthless. (James 5:1) Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. (2) Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. (3) Your gold and silver have corroded, and their corrosion will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure in the last days... (5) You have lived on the earth in luxury and in self-indulgence. You have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter.

Yes all the gold, silver and wealth of this world is all temporary and will be gone or worthless to you either in your lifetime or when you die, this is guaranteed since you cannot take it with you! That's why Jesus gave this advice to the rich young ruler. (Mark 10:21) Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.” (22) But he was sad at this word, and went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions. (23) Then Jesus looked around and said to His disciples, “How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of God!” (24) And the disciples were astonished at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, “Children, how hard it is for those who trust in riches to enter the kingdom of God! (25) It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Notice how Jesus specifically points out how hard it is for those who TRUST in riches or what they've stored up to enter into the kingdom of God. If it's so hard for those who trust in their riches to enter into Heaven, why are we working so hard to acquire that which will prevent us from gaining eternal life? Why are we spending countless hours working at jobs we do not enjoy and doing very little for the Lord? You're storing up wealth and acquiring "things of this world" that only makes it harder to enter the kingdom of God. As the saying goes, "the more you make the more you spend". (Proverbs 23:4) Do not weary yourself to gain wealth, cease from your consideration of it. (5) When you set your eyes on it, it is gone. For wealth certainly makes itself wings like an eagle that flies toward the heavens. Yes, it's a Biblical fact that the more you make the more you spend and the more you store up for yourself and your family, the harder it is to completely trust in God. Now if we haven't been trained by our weakness and circumstance to completely trust God now while times are still good, what will we do if we're forced to either take the mark of the Beast or starve? Will you have the faith to trust God then when you cannot trust Him now?

Because money is such a fleeting thing and because we cannot take it with us into eternity, we are continually encouraged to give it away so that we may have eternal treasure in Heaven. “He has dispersed abroad, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever” (2Cor 9:9). When Jesus spoke of feeding the poor and crippled He says "you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous" (Luke 14:12). Where do you want to be repaid; in this short life or repaid in eternity? Time and time again Jesus reminds us that whatever we go through in this life for Him, that we should rejoice because "indeed your reward is great in heaven". 

Yet even though we have a great reward waiting for us in Heaven, we serve a merciful God who has many promises for this life too. (Proverbs 3:9) Honor the LORD with your possessions, And with the firstfruits of all your increase; (10) So your barns will be filled with plenty, And your vats will overflow with new wineThis is the law of sowing and reaping "He that soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he that soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully" (2 Cor 9:6). It's interwoven throughout the entire Bible! (Proverbs 11:24) One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want. (25) Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered. Freely you received, freely give; the one who sows bountifully will reap bountifully; the one who waters will himself be watered. This is the law of God and it cannot be broken.

Now if you have your heart set on being rich because of these promises from God. If you have your heart set on gain by what you're giving to God; if you're wondering why you're not receiving when you've given so much, then you have your answer in front of you. Instead of giving out of pure love with no expectations, you're giving out of wanting more and with that brings a curse. (Proverbs 28:20) A faithful man will abound with blessings, but whoever hastens to be rich will not go unpunished. Giving with the wrong motives in our heart will never lead to the treasure in Heaven we so desire. That's because it's impossible for us to desire more worldly riches if we're obeying the commands of Jesus in regards to money. As Jesus said, "you cannot serve both God and money".  It's why Jesus commands us to not store up treasure on earth and to only seek Him and His righteousness and that He would provide things needful of the body.

Giving should come from a pure heart of love with no expectations. (Romans 12:12) Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. (10) Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another... (13) distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality. If we are loving our neighbor as ourselves, giving preference to others before our needs and we are distributing to the needs of the saints then we are giving the way Jesus commanded us. When we give from a joyful heart and "love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith" (1 Timothy 1:5), then we will not only be blessed in the resurrection but God will save us in the future when times are lean. (Ecclesiastes 11:1) Cast thy bread upon the waters; for thou shalt find it after many days. As you give when the Lord speaks to your heart, you will find that same Lord and God returning it to you after many days when you may be in need and you want your prayer answered. (Psalm 41:1) Blessed is he who considers the poor; The LORD will deliver him in time of trouble. (2) The LORD will preserve him and keep him alive, and he will be blessed on the earth. Scripture after scripture we are promised that in times of trouble the righteous will be taken care of by our Father. (Psalm 37:17) But the LORD upholds the righteous. (18) The LORD knows the days of the upright, And their inheritance shall be forever. (19) They shall not be ashamed in the evil time, And in the days of famine they shall be satisfied. By giving now, out of your plenty, God promises to give you back in the time of famine. Are you willing to make that trade today?

If you're not willing to make that trade; if you're not willing to give instead of to store up, then perhaps you need a refresher course on faith. You need faith because God is asking you to give up what you see right now for something you cannot see in the future. God is asking you to give your hard earned money and security for a promise that He will take care of you in the future. Really God is asking you to become as a little child. (Mark 10:15) "Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it”. God is asking you to trust Him as a little child trusts His parents and to trust Him just as a little child trusts that dad would never leave them nor let them go hungry. (Matt 7:9) "Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? (10) Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent? (11) If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him"!  We all need to stop being "adults" and become as a little child who trust their Father with all their heart. We need to be as little children who believe that God will take care and provide for them always no matter what happens. We Christians need to stop being our own savior and seek God to be our Savior. That's what it means to have faith and become as a little child again. (Hebrews 11:6) But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.  Those who seek God will believe that God is God and that He rewards those who seek after Him. These are the ones who truly understand that you cannot see what you hope for. (Hebrews 11:1) Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. So if you are walking by sight and not by faith, then it will be very hard for you to give up what you see; that hard cold cash in exchange for a promise in the Bible, a promise which you cannot see, a promise which hasn't materialized in the physical yet. It's only a promise right now, a promise which requires us to step out of the boat in faith which in turn manifests itself into reality. God calls the things that are not as though they were...

This whole money and not storing up subject is a real life test each and every day to see if you have the faith in Jesus to be your Savior. It's a test to see if you believe that God really can "call the things that are not as though the were" (Romans 4:17). This is why it's such a hard test; you’re exchanging the seen for the unseen, money for a promise. Yet, if we were each content with food, shelter and God, it would be a much easier walk. (1 Timothy 6:6) But godliness actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by contentment. (7) For we have brought nothing into the world, so we cannot take anything out of it either. (8) If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content. (9) But those who want to get rich (rich is the Greek word plouteō- be increased with goods) fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction. (10) For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs (11) But flee from these things, you man of God, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, perseverance and gentleness. Paul stresses contentment with what we have; that food and covering is all we need in this world. Paul also reminds us that when we desire to increase our goods we fall into temptation and into ruin. Maybe that's why Jesus said that it's so hard for people with wealth to enter heaven.

What would happen if each of us, instead of pursuing the material things of this world, we pursued "righteousness, godliness, faith, love, perseverance and gentleness" like the Bible teaches? What would happen if God was our #1 passion in life; (Mark 12:29) Jesus answered, The first is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God, the Lord is one: (30) and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength. If we truly loved God the way Jesus tells us to, with all our heart, soul, mind and strength, then God would certainly be our #1 passion instead of what we now have as our passion. To pursue the things of God is not the American way; it's not what we do in our society. The American way is to try and save, invest in stocks, increase our retirement fund and to get more. It's the good old "American dream", is this correct thinking according to Scripture? Does Jesus teach this? Here is a prophecy for today. (Jer 5:27) Like cages full of birds, their houses are full of deceit they have become rich and powerful (28) and have grown fat and sleek. Their evil deeds have no limit they do not plead the case of the fatherless to win it they do not defend the rights of the poor.(29) Should I not punish them for this?" declares the LORD. "Should I not avenge myself on such a nation as this? (30) "A horrible and shocking thing has happened in the land (31) The prophets prophesy lies, the priests rule by their own authority, and my people love it this way. But what will you do in the end? Yes, most Christians love what our preachers preach and what our “religion” says about money. God’s people love it this way” because they can have the best of both worlds. They can have their "God" every Sunday and they can still have their worldly life, their desires and the security of knowing that they have enough put away for that comfortable retirement they so desire. We've gone over many Scriptures that clearly show the truth, so why have our preachers not shown us these verses before? Are they afraid you will give to the true poor and needy instead of them? Do they convict our hearts? Are they hard to swallow and follow them completely? You just cannot find Scriptures in our new covenant (New Testament) that says we are to lie up our treasures in the bank and stock market. Sure you can quote the parable of the “Talents” and how they gained interest but is Jesus really talking about money management or is He talking about what you have done with the spiritual gifts which He has given you? (Luke 12:47) And that servant, who knew his lord's will, and made not ready, nor did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes (48) but he that knew not, and did things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. And to whomsoever much is given, of him shall much be required and to whom they commit much, of him will they ask the more. All who claim the name of "Christian are these servants who will be held accountable and now we understand God's will about storing up treasure on earth and will have no excuse before the Lord.  

I hope this has helped you understand the real New Testament Biblical teaching of money and storing up for the future. If we were not so concerned with being comfortable and secure in life and just wanted to live for the Lord, trusting God as a child like He wants us to, wouldn’t life be easier? Wouldn’t we have the life that God desires for us instead of the life we now have? (Hebrews 13:5) Be ye free from the love of money content with such things as ye have for himself hath said, I will in no wise fail thee, neither will I in any wise forsake thee. God will never let us down when we are taking care of others, He will always supply what we need when we need according to His riches. (Philippians 4:19) And my God shall supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

If we're truly seeking the Lord and His righteousness, God promises to take care of us! Wouldn’t it be nice to become as a child again and have that child-like trust in the Lord? After all, wasn’t it Jesus who said, “Verily I say unto you, except ye turn, and become as little children, ye shall in no wise enter into the kingdom of heaven”. How do we turn and become as little children? We simply rest in the promises in the Bible and TRUST IN GOD COMPLETELY!

I would encourage each one of you who calls themselves a Christian to "complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others (Philippians 2:2-4). Remember your true reward is in Heaven because you "joyfully accepted the plundering of your goods, knowing that you have a better and an enduring possession for yourselves in heaven (Hebrews 10:34). You have a better reward coming in Heaven, quickly now while there's still time, go out and exchange your dollars for riches in Heaven.

God bless,

Mark, a servant of the Lord,



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