SermonPutting Money Before God
An all-creatures Bible Message

Putting Money Before God
 
A Sermon Delivered to
The Compassion Internet Church
 
14 October 2018
 
Frank L. Hoffman, Pastor

Scripture References

Mark 10:17-34
1 Timothy 3:2-3
1 Timothy 6:10
Hebrews 13:5-6

Putting money before God happens when people want more and more money for their own personal use without considering what God wants them to do with it.
 
Years ago when I first entered the ministry, I asked God to honor my request to supply my financial needs from other sources so that I never had to ask anyone to pay me for my ministerial duties, so that no one would ever think that I was doing it for the money, and He honored that request.
 
It isnít that money is evil, for it does pay for a lot of goods and services that we all need; the problem arises when we are part of the problem we are told about in 1 Timothy 6:10Ö

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 a pang.
NASB

This is putting money before God, and we are to avoid such things; we are always to put God first in everything we do, which in reality is living in the heavenly will of the Lord, because when we put money before God, we are actually saying that we love money more than God, and nothing is to be put before God; He should always be put first in every aspect of our lives.
 
Unfortunately, the world is full of people who are putting money before God,  and they are the cause of most of our warring madness that causes millions of human beings to suffer and die every year.
 
What these see is the billions of dollars that are made from the manufacture and sales of arms and the people that are employed in the making of these munitions.
 
The same kinds of things are happening in the so called animal agriculture business, with very little of no regard for the billions of animals that suffer and die every year; to them, the money comes first.
 
Mark 10:17-34 contains the historical record of what Jesus said about putting money before God.

17. And as He was setting out on a journey, a man ran up to Him and knelt before Him, and began asking Him, "Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?"
 
18. And Jesus said to him, "Why do you call Me good? No one is good except God alone.

Jesus might have been acknowledging the fact that He, in the body of a human, was being tempted in the same way that we are all tempted, and that He considered the very fact of being tempted to be a flaw in the righteousness of living in the heavenly will of God.
 
This also would apply to Job whom we talked about last week.

19. "You know the commandments, 'Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.'"
 
20. And he said to Him, "Teacher, I have kept all these things from my youth up."

Based upon what Jesus says next, this man is really doing all of these things in his life, but Jesus detects something else.

21. And looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him, and said to him, "One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess, and give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me." 

Jesus detected that this man who was doing so many things in the heavenly will of God was also putting money before God.

22. But at these words his face fell, and he went away grieved, for he was one who owned much property.

His property or the income from his property was obviously not being used to help the needy and to end the pain and suffering in the world, nor was it being used to help free Godís creation from its present corruption.

23. And Jesus, looking around, said to His disciples, "How hard it will be for those who are wealthy to enter the kingdom of God!"

Charitable organizations always need money to operate, and along with the small donations given by most individuals, they usually need some large donors, too, which people like this wealthy man could supply, but he does not appear to be doing that either.

24. And the disciples were amazed at His words. But Jesus answered again and said to them, "Children, how hard it is 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."

It all depends upon where our heart is.
 
If the intent of our heart and soul is to serve God and protect the whole of His creation, then we will use whatever funds we have, small or large, to help in any way we can.

26. And they were even more astonished and said to Him, "Then who can be saved?"
 
27. Looking upon them, Jesus said, "With men it is impossible, but not with God; for all things are possible with God."

As we are told elsewhere in the Bible, God sees the intent of the heart and soul, and that is what makes it possible for human beings to be saved and enter the kingdom of heaven.
 
Every one of us needs to seriously look at ourselves and honestly determine what the true intent of our heart and soul really is, because that is what God sees.
 
Think about what we are told in Hebrews 13:5-6Ö

5. Let your character be free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, "I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,"
 
6. so that we confidently say,
"The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid.
What shall man do to me?"
NASB

That is, even if we are killed, we shall be in heaven with the Lord.
 
And also we need to remember what we are told in 1 Timothy 3:2-3Ö

2. An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,
 
3. not addicted to wine or pugnacious, but gentle, uncontentious, free from the love of money.
NASB

This is why it is so important for us, even if we only say that we are Christians to set the proper example of Christ in the world around us, for that is what people see and believe that is what Christianity is all about.

28. Peter began to say to Him, "Behold, we have left everything and followed You."
 
29. Jesus said, "Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel's sake,
 
30. but that he shall receive a hundred times as much now in the present age, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life.
 
31. "But many who are first, will be last; and the last, first."

This is because God sees the intent of our heart and soul, and if we desire to be the leader for reasons of pride, we will be made last in the kingdom of heaven. 

32. And they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking on ahead of them; and they were amazed, and those who followed were fearful. And again He took the twelve aside and began to tell them what was going to happen to Him,
 
33. saying, "Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered to the chief priests and the scribes; and they will condemn Him to death, and will deliver Him to the Gentiles.
 
34. "And they will mock Him and spit upon Him, and scourge Him, and kill Him, and three days later He will rise again."
NASB

This is the proof that Jesus was who He said He was, and thus it has become the basis of all Christianity.
 
Are we true representatives of Jesus Christ in the world or are we putting money before God?
 
Only we know the truth.
 
We pray that we are all true followers of Jesus Christ.
 
Amen.

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