HERO CENTRAL August 7-11 Vacation Bible School

July 28/1Corinthians 16

Verses 1-4 > It is interesting that right after talking about the resurrection of Jesus Paul talks about money! Christians get excited about Jesus coming back from the dead because it shows that faith in Jesus was not in vain. However not every Christian is excited about giving money. Why not, after all the money we have isn’t ours in the first place it belongs to God. We should all be excited about giving away someone else’s money our government is and does:)

Psalm 24:1 (NLT) — 1 The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it. The world and all its people belong to him.

Giving is an act of Worship! Each member was supposed to come to church on Sunday with their bringing money as an act of worship to our resurrected Lord Jesus Christ! Pretty exciting huh? Our offerings are sacrifices that have a sweet fragrant smell to the Lord.

Philippians 4:18 (NLT) — 18 At the moment I have all I need—and more! I am generously supplied with the gifts you sent me with Epaphroditus. They are a sweet-smelling sacrifice that is acceptable and pleasing to God.

Giving should be planned and proportionate. Paul didn’t want to have to take up a special offering or do fund raiser when he came. He just wanted the money to be ready for the needs of others. If all Christians would plan to tithe > giving God ten percent of their income the church would never have to ask for money it would be there guaranteed by God himself. One of the first plans a person should have for money is to plan to tithe.

Malachi 3:8–10 (NLT) — 8 “Should people cheat God? Yet you have cheated me! “But you ask, ‘What do you mean? When did we ever cheat you?’ “You have cheated me of the tithes and offerings due to me. 9 You are under a curse, for your whole nation has been cheating me. 10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test!

Giving was personal and individual. Paul wanted everyone no matter how rich or how poor to partake in the blessing an privilege of giving. He said you should each put aside. If we really do appreciate the resurrected Jesus and the grace he has extended to us we would show our appreciation in our giving.

My son worked many years as a waiter and he said most of the waiters and waitresses didn’t like waiting on most Christians because they were cheap tippers! Not all but most. What kind of tip do you think Jesus deserves for the service he gives us?

The money was to be handled honestly. Paul wanted people along with him when he delivered the money so he would not be accused of dishonesty by his enemies. It is a sad day and a blemish on Christ and the church when money isn’t handled honestly. We don’t want lose our testimony because of mismanaged funds. As a pastor I refused to be authorized to write checks out of the church checking account.

Verses 5-7 > Paul said he would visit if the Lord would let him. Always leave room in your schedule for the Lord to change it. Don’t complain when your day is interrupted by someone or something unexpected it may be a God moment to minister to someone or a test of  your character and patience. Staying flexible is wise. You are presuming on the future when everything is so planned out that you leave no room for the Lord to do anything. And you are presuming that you are in charge of the future. Don’t take God out of the everyday.

James 4:13–16 (NLT) — 13 Look here, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we are going to a certain town and will stay there a year. We will do business there and make a profit.” 14 How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone. 15 What you ought to say is, “If the Lord wants us to, we will live and do this or that.” 16 Otherwise you are boasting about your own pretentious plans, and all such boasting is evil.

Verses 8-9 > Paul looked at opposition as an opportunity to tell people about Jesus. What a great outlook to have! A tough time is just an opportunity to see God work in us and through us and for us! An interruption might be an opportunity to talk about Jesus. That is why it is important not take God out of the everyday but to actually look for him day to day.

One evening years ago Cleo and I were watching television and the doorbell rang interrupting our program. It was a young college student asking if we had change for dollars. She needed it to use the washing machine and dryer. We invited her in made change and she stayed and talked for awhile. The conversation turned to Jesus and if she knew where she would spend eternity if she died. She was unsure and eventually she yielded her life to Jesus. All because of an interruption!

Be Inspired Hilltop!

 

 

 

Comments

  1. Mark Gundersen says:

    Paul finishes the letter by laying some groundwork for Timothy and acknowledging those that helped him. Remember life is not a sprint but a relay and you get the baton from someone and hand it to the next runner. Paul stated his ministry was running a race for God and let’s others know their part of the race was important to Paul.