Faithful Stewards Of God’s Resources

Feb 26th, 2011 | By | Category: Christian Life

In preparation for a recent conference at which I was to speak, I was studying Matthew 6:19-24.  Among other things, Jesus is clearly asking His followers to have an investment strategy, one that balances investment for the future with investment for eternity.  Material wealth is not evil, but it is transitory, will deteriorate and can be stolen (vv. 19-20).  Not so with investment for eternity.  As Randy Alcorn has observed, ?Whatever treasures we store up on earth will be left behind when we leave.  Whatever treasures we store up in heaven will be waiting for us when we arrive.?  In vv. 22-23, Jesus challenges His followers to have a vision for eternity, one with clarity of purpose and focus.  Such people live for eternity, not for the moment.  That kind of vision comes from uncompromising loyalty to Jesus (v. 24).  What a liberating way to live!

Such a view of material things is actually rooted in the concept of stewardship.  Humans have dominion status over God?s world (Genesis 1:26-31; 9:1-7).  As Creator, God has sovereign status.  As stewards, we are therefore accountable to God, who owns everything.  The primary responsibility of a steward is faithfulness.  What God entrusts to us must be managed well.  [I find it very interesting that the Greek word group (oikonomis, oikonomous, oikonomeo), which actually connotes the idea of stewardship, is often transliterated into English as ?economy, economics.?]

A.W. Tozer writes that what we treasure revolves around 4 questions:

1. What do we value most?

2. What would we most hate to lose?

3. What do our thoughts turn to most frequently when we are free to think of what we will?

4. What affords us the greatest pleasure?

For that reason Jesus cuts to the heart of stewardship in Matthew 6:21:  ?where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.?  Jesus is in effect saying to us:  ?Show me your checkbook, your credit card statements and your receipts for cash expenditures, and I will show you where your heart is.?  His point is clearly that we should put our resources, our assets, our money and possessions into the things of God.  Our perspective is always an eternal one.  For that reason, Jesus lays down the gauntlet in v. 24–either choose a life wasted in the singular pursuit of wealth on earth or choose a life invested in the pursuit of wealth in heaven.  You cannot serve mammon (Aramaic for ?money?) and God.  You must choose.

A few concluding thoughts:

  1. As Christians, we live with tremendous tension?being ?in the world but not of the world? (John 17:13-18).
  2. We are not ascetics?living a life of self-denial to merit God?s favor.  We are to enjoy the material things God gives to us (1 Timothy 4:4).
  3. But we balance this goodness of God?s material gifts with their transitory nature.
  4. Everything we do has eternal significance (1 Corinthians 10:31) and for that reason we live always with eternity in view.  Nothing is exempt from that vision.

See Randy Alcorn, Money, Possessions and Eternity, pp. 93-106.

Comments Closed

2 Comments to “Faithful Stewards Of God’s Resources”

  1. Thomas Lubari says:

    Wonderful brother,
    I’m conducting a conference on Environmental Protection in Yei ,South Sudan.
    This is on being good stewards of the resources He has given us.
    Pastor Thomas L
    M.A Th/Dev

  2. Ravi Shankar says:

    well god is the power who control us