Faithlife
Faithlife

Financial Stewardship

Notes & Transcripts | Handout
dismiss children… Two age groups!
Today’s topic is on money…it is where our text is staking us today. But be patient with me and if you struggle with patience… don’t worry our text takes us to the topic of patience next week.
Today’s topic is on money…it is where our text is staking us today. But be patient with me and if you struggle with patience… don’t worry our text takes us to the topic of patience next week.
James 5:1–6 NASB95
1 Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries which are coming upon you. 2 Your riches have rotted and your garments have become moth-eaten. 3 Your gold and your silver have rusted; and their rust will be a witness against you and will consume your flesh like fire. It is in the last days that you have stored up your treasure! 4 Behold, the pay of the laborers who mowed your fields, and which has been withheld by you, cries out against you; and the outcry of those who did the harvesting has reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. 5 You have lived luxuriously on the earth and led a life of wanton pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. 6 You have condemned and put to death the righteous man; he does not resist you.
Turn now also to
1 Timothy 6:17–19 NASB95
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.
James 5:1–7 NASB95
1 Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries which are coming upon you. 2 Your riches have rotted and your garments have become moth-eaten. 3 Your gold and your silver have rusted; and their rust will be a witness against you and will consume your flesh like fire. It is in the last days that you have stored up your treasure! 4 Behold, the pay of the laborers who mowed your fields, and which has been withheld by you, cries out against you; and the outcry of those who did the harvesting has reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth. 5 You have lived luxuriously on the earth and led a life of wanton pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter. 6 You have condemned and put to death the righteous man; he does not resist you. 7 Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the precious produce of the soil, being patient about it, until it gets the early and late rains.
When the word “rich” is used there is a certain class of people we automatically think of…
When the word “rich” is used there is a certain class of people we automatically think of…
1 timothy
Forbes magazine shares in an article that… “In 1923, a meeting of America's most powerful men took place at the Edgewater Beach Hotel in Chicago.  Attending the meeting were the following nine financiers and power brokers:
the president of America’s largest steel company,
the president of America’s largest utility company,
the president of America’s largest utility company,
the president of America’s largest gas company,
the president of the New York Stock Exchange,
the president of the Bank of International Settlements,
the nation’s greatest wheat speculator,
the nation’s greatest bear and speculator on Wall Street,
the head of the world’s greatest monopoly
a member of President Harding’s cabinet.
It was said to have been both a celebration of their success as well as an opportunity to plan their future exploits and dominance.  These were the captains of their respective industries and some of the most successful businessmen of the era.” They were extremely rich & altogether they controlled more wealth than there was in the US Treasury.
No doubt these men would have been ones James was speaking to, BUT who else?
Charles Swindoll… “our definition of “poor” is far different than the Bible’s. Poor people in the Bible were homeless, helpless, destitute, and hopeless. They often had nothing to eat, nothing to wear, and nowhere to stay. By biblical standards, even most people living by our society’s standard of “poverty” wouldn’t have been regarded as truly “poor.” The reality is that most of us are blessed with more than we need and are therefore in the position to bless others,”
Most of us in many ways can and should identify with the “rich” addressed i this passage.
Consider some definitions that will help as we look at what James is speaking about...
1. Poor Physically & Poor Spiritually
2. Rich Physically & Rich Spiritually
3. Poor Physically & Rich Spiritually
4. Rich Physically & Poor Spiritually
2 & 3 should be the ones modeled in the christian’s life. YES… you can be rich Physically and rich Spiritually and still be a christian!
Don’t confuse wealth with one who is wordly and evil
Don’t confuse being poor with righteous living either
Wealth and money are not evil. “The love of wealth and money is the root of all sorts of evil.”
1 Timothy 6:8–10 NASB95
8 If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content. 9 But those who want to get rich 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.
1 Timothy 6:10 NASB95
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.
To be rich physically and rich spiritually is a difficult burden to balance
Some here probably are saying just let me try!
Abraham was a rich man, but he maintained his faith and character. When Lot became rich, it ruined his character and ultimately ruined his family. It is good to have riches in your hand provided they do not get into your heart.” Warren Wiersbe
We want the riches we see from others… “you shall not covet” is the last of the Ten Commandments, but it is the most dangerous. Covetousness will make a person break all the other nine commandments. Warren Wiersbe
We want the riches we see from others… “you shall not covet” is the last of the Ten Commandments, but it is the most dangerous. Covetousness will make a person break all the other nine commandments. Warren Wiersbe
We want the riches we see from others… “you shall not covet” is the last of the Ten Commandments, but it is the most dangerous. Covetousness will make a person break all the other nine commandments. Warren Wiersbe
We need to be content.
The scriptures are full of warnings concerning wealth and money.
James is dealing with #4. In this passage James has several rebukes for those with physical riches and each rebuke carries with it a warning that we too today should heed!

We need to take what James is saying to heart and be Wise Stewards of the riches God gives us!

He says “Come now” pay attention “you rich” Rich Physically and Poor Spiritually
Judgement is coming
What is being done or not done is noticed by the God of the Universe!
This is coming in the future, a reference to final judgement

To Become Wise Stewards... Stop Hoarding Your Riches

Verses 2-3
Rotted
Moth Eaten Garments
Rusted Gold and Silver
This comes from no use, riches wasted! WARNING!
Riches not used or invested give back awful dividends
This is poor stewardship
How are you using the riches God has given you?
WARNING!
Earthly treasures hoarded and not invested will be of no use in eternity...
That hoarded will testify against you in fact
James warning here is strong… consume your flesh like fire!

Wise Stewardship Does Not Cheat Others From What Is Deserved

The worker deserves his pay
Many would hold out or not pay at all… this is still true today. The wealthy are sometimes the hardest to get paid for work done.
This is not speaking of a handout… this is work done and earned.
WARNING! God hears their cries! He will NOT forget.
Are you withholding from someone what they have earned?

A Wise Steward Does Not Live A Selfish Lifestyle

Use the riches God has given you for His eternal purpose!
This is not saying don’t have nice things or that it is sin to enjoy the things of Life…BUT
WARNING! They had “Fattened their hearts” this is a heart issue
it is all about self, wanton pleasures
The day of slaughter… fattening up for destruction

Wise Stewards Will Stay Away From Taking Advantage Of The Righteous

With Riches comes power, influence, control
Those poorer cannot resist.
Righteous… Believers we should live as an example to this world
WARNING! Just because we see many get away with this “taking advantage” just because they are not judged now, does not mean judgement is not coming.
So often Rich people are envied, yet it is the rich that most times bring the greatest persecution in our lives.

How are you doing as a steward of the riches God has given you?

What warnings do you need to heed today?
Is God asking your to correct a poor pattern in your finances?
What happened to the distinguished gentlemen we opened up with?
Within 25 years, all of these great men had met a horrific end to their careers or their lives:
But how did things turn out for these distinguished gentlemen?  Within 25 years, all of these great men had met a horrific end to their careers or their lives:
The president of the largest steel company,Charles Schwab, died a bankrupt man;
the president of the largest utility company, Samuel Insull, died penniless;
the president of the largest gas company, Howard Hobson, suffered a mental breakdown, ending up in an insane asylum;
the president of the New York Stock Exchange, Richard Whitney, had just been released from prison;
the bank president, Leon Fraser, had taken his own life;
the wheat speculator, Arthur Cutten, died penniless;
the head of the world’s greatest monopoly, Ivar Krueger the "match king", also had taken his life;
and the member of President Harding’s cabinet, Albert Fall, had just been given a pardon from prison so that he could die at home.
And as for the Wall Street Bear, Jesse Lauriston Livermore, famous speculator in the stock and commodities markets, his end is perhaps the most tragic of all.  A week after Thanksgiving in 1940, Jesse walked into the Sherry-Netherland Hotel in New York, had two drinks at the bar while scribbling something in his notebook, then proceeded to the cloak room where he sat on a stool and shot himself in the head.  He was 62 and left behind $5 million, down from the $100 million fortune he had amassed just ten years earlier.

People… God is aware and concerned with how you handle the physical riches of this world, you should be too. But that is secondary to the Spiritual riches He has offered through His Son Jesus Christ. God is offering so much more than what this world has to offer.

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