From the staff of Dynamic Steward

Summary: A biblical study that examines key financial principles for this vital area of life--personal finance.

Group study—beginning at the beginning

The purpose of this study is to examine key biblical passages that give us financial principles for this important area of life. The summary below is an abridged excerpt from the Participant’s Guide Appendix, p. 143, in the Good $ense Budget Course by Dick Towner and John Tofilon of Willow Creek Community Church. These Scriptures lay the foundation for a biblical approach to financial management. Read, discuss, and contemplate them in your group as you study together. Try to add to the list!

Foundations of financial ministry

1. God Created Everything. In the beginning there was nothing, and God created
(Gn 1:1).

2. God Owns Everything. ??The silver is mine and the gold is mine,’ declares the LORD Almighty? (Hg 2:8). ?Every animal of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills? (Ps 50:10). ?The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it. The world and all its people belong to him? Ps 24:1 NLT).

Flowing out of the fact that God created and owns everything is the logical conclusion that whatever we possess is not really ours, but belongs to God; we are simply entrusted with our possessions. Therefore, we are trustees, not owners. Although 2 Corinthians 4 does not directly refer to material possessions, its counsel is applicable to this aspect of life as well.

3. We are Trustees. ?A person who is put in charge as a manager must be faithful? (1 Cor 4:1-2 NLT).

4. We Can’t Serve Two Masters. ?No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money? (Mt 6:24 NLT).

5. Use Resources Wisely. ?His master replied, ?Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness’? (Mt 25:21-28).

6. Pursue Biblical and Financial Knowledge. ?Buy the truth and do not sell it; get wisdom, discipline and understanding? (Pr 23:23). ?Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed? (Pr 15:22).

7. Measurable Goals and Realistic Plans. ?Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed? (Pr 16:3).

8. Trustworthiness Matters. ?Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much. So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else’s property, who will give you property of your own?? (Lk 16:10-12)

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October–December, 2003

Stewardship