Brothers and sisters, today we will pray about faith and finances. Because money is important in our lives, God’s word devotes much space to them. In fact, research has shown that there are 3,225 references to financial matters in the Bible. We do not have to wonder what God thinks about money and its use when we search the Scriptures.
Money is not evil, though the love of money is. I want us to look at 1Timothy: 6:10
“For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs”.
1. I would like us to look at Matthew chapter 6:25.
“Do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear”
In fact Jesus said that our lives should be different from those of unbelievers who naturally run after these things. They not only run after them, they also worry about them. God should be seen as our real source. Those with salaries and those without have the privilege of seeing God provide for their needs.
I would like us to look at Matthew 6: 33.
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you.’’
If we are honest, we can admit that money, at times, can become our number one priority- not God and His kingdom. The Lord, out of his love for us, can choose to retrieve money from us in hope that by doing this, He can grab our attention and help us to set up our priorities right again.
Let us pray that as children of God we will seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, as all other things will be added unto us.
2. I would like us to look at one of the commandments in Exodus 20:17 which states the following:
‘You should not covet your neighbour’s house. You shall not covet your neighbour’s wife or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbour.’
In this Bible verse we are told not to compare ourselves with others, nor covet what they have. I also want us also to look at Philippians 4: 11- 13 where Paul said:
“I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength”
In these Bible verses we are told to be content with the provisions that God has made for us. Be absolute convinced about the justice of God, that God provided us with the right resources. He knows best how much he can trust us with and what we need in order to fulfil his calling in our lives.
Let us pray to the Lord for contentment in our lives for all the provisions that God has made available for us so far.
3. We need ideas, character and a government which protects our opportunities. Ideas are the primary source for the creation of wealth. Every person is created in the image of God and possesses a unique source of creativity, a well of unending ideas. Wealth is only as limited as one’s ideas or as limitless as his creative genius. Good business ideas must serve the real needs of others to be successful.
Let us pray that God will give us ideas that will serve the needs of others and will produce wealth. Let us pray for our government to give and protect our opportunities.
4. Every Christian is to be generous. We need to keep giving to the Lord as he leads us. Let us look at 2Corinthians 9:6-7.
“Remember this, whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver”.
Let us pray that as children of God we will give from our hearts and not under compulsion, and God will see us as cheerful givers.
5. I would like us to look at Romans 13:8
“Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another’’.
God wants us to live responsibly within His provision for us, to be up-to date with our financial obligations. It is financial wisdom for us to borrow what we can reasonably expect to repay. We may borrow money for a car or a house but we should be careful not to accumulate debt beyond our ability to pay. This is not to say that the Lord may not tell us specifically to take a step of faith involving our finances, in which case we are to obey.
Regarding credit cards, much wisdom must be applied when using them.
Let us pray that God will help us to live responsibly within his provision for us.
A word came from God on the 7th of February in church during a time of reflection on the ‘Rumours of God’. This word stated that ‘giving should be anonymously and without expecting anything in return’.
Matthew 6:1-4 states:
‘1. Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no rewards from your Father in heaven.
2. So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honoured by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their rewards in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.’
Pastor Mark Igiehon