How to Make the Most of Our Money
Today, we’re going to talk about money from a biblical perspective. God has much to say that we can’t cover everything. So we will talk about money from a biblical perspective that might initially surprise you: rather than emphasize giving it all to charity, we’ll talk about making ourselves wealthier, getting the biggest bang for our buck, the most out of our money.
And no, not from a health and wealth perspective but from the grace perspective found in the teaching of Jesus and the apostles.
God’s Word tells us how to get the most return, benefits, treasures, and lasting joy from our money. Jesus Himself tells us,
Matthew 6:19 Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven…
Jesus motivates behavioral change, even in our spending habits. He doesn’t say it’s wrong to seek riches. He motivates us with greater riches in heaven, He wants us to have more of the best riches for the kingdom.
Jesus frequently motivates godly living with the promise of a future benefit or reward. “The last will be first.” “If you wish to be great in the kingdom, serve today.” Look at what Jesus says in Luke 6:35 and pay attention to His promise.
Luke 6:35 But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men.
Jesus tells us to be generous toward our enemies while expecting nothing in return. Yet, He promises great rewards in the eternal future when it matters most.
Trusting Jesus for the future rewards of godly living today doesn’t motivate greed. Taking Jesus at His word motivates kindness, generosity, cheerful giving, and love.
How do we change our spending habits? How do we become more generous? How do we get the most out of our money today?
Let’s start with some biblical principles.
PRINCIPLE 1: RELY ON GOD AS YOUR PROVIDER
That sounds obvious. But this is like the solution to all of our problems. God is our provider. I know you went to school, maybe got a degree, learned a trade, and you work, or the state subsidizes you—but God is our Provider!
James 1:17 Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.
Everything we have or will have is ultimately from God.
Jesus’ vision is not for us to rely on our efforts but to trust Him as our ultimate provider.
Luke 6:26 “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? … 28 And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, 29 yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. 30 But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! 31 Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear…?’ 32 … your heavenly Father knows you need all these things. 33 First, seek His kingdom and righteousness first, and all these things will be added to you.
By trusting that God will provide, we do not need to worry! Trusting God, we can focus on eternal values, build our faith and character, be more generous, and experience abundant life in Christ. Seek His kingdom first.
Trusting God, we can focus on eternal values, build our faith and character, be more generous, and experience abundant life in Christ.
PRINCIPLE 2: WE ARE STEWARDS MANAGING GOD’S MONEY
Jesus often brings up the idea that you are entrusted with God’s wealth. In Luke, we’re to be faithful and wise stewards. In Matthew, Jesus contrasts a “good and faithful servant” with a “wicked, lazy servant.”
PRINCIPLE 3: THE PRINCIPLE OF GENEROSITY
God is generous—He lavishly pours out His grace upon us. As stewards, we should be generous with His resources—the gospel, love, and forgiveness.
Yet generosity calls for sacrifice. If it’s not a sacrifice, it’s not necessarily generous. And here’s where we get stuck.
I don’t naturally want to part with my money. I’m quite selfish. So this feels like law, and I’m going to fail.
Well, here’s a fourth principle. We learn it directly from Jesus, and it should help.
PRINCIPLE 4: HE WHO SOWS BOUNTIFULLY WILL REAP BOUNTIFULLY
Luke 6:38 Give, and it will be given to you: a good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be poured into your lap. For the measure you use will be the measure you receive.
Trusting God with our finances allows Him to bless us in ways we cannot imagine.
Paul spells out the principle in a memorable way in 2 Corinthians 9:6,
2 Corinthians 9:6 Now… he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7 Each one must do just as he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, [you don’t have to do it, but the principle stands: He who sows generously will reap generously. Believe it and act on it!] for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed…
Trusting God with this generosity is in your best interest. God promises that you will reap bountifully when it matters most. Believing this, you can help, donate, and give cheerfully, knowing God will make all grace abound to you so you will have more than enough to meet even the next need.
God promises believers who generously give as an act of truth shall be rewarded when it matters most.
God calls for sacrificial generosity. Yet, however difficult, any sacrifice is only temporary and can be seen as an investment in greater and lasting riches.
1 Timothy 6:17 Instruct those rich in this 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, [eternal treasures, heavenly rewards] so that they may take hold of that which is life indeed.
The bottom line is wise stewardship today has eternal implications and rewards.
Matthew 25:21 His master said, “Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.”
God wants you to use the money He has entrusted you to gain greater and lasting joy. At the Bema, not the GWT, in the kingdom, New Heaven, and New Earth. Jesus will reward your generosity, faithfulness, and putting His money to good use today. It will lead to great and lasting joy.
Jesus will reward your generosity, faithfulness, and putting His money to good use today. It will lead to great and lasting joy.
A few other practices will help us make the most of our bucks.
Practice 1: Avoid excessive debt as much as possible!
Live within your means. The Bible cautions us against excessive borrowing and warns of the pitfalls of being in debt.
Proverbs 22:7 The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower becomes the lender’s slave.
Spending less than we make is difficult in our economy. But if you can manage, honor your financial obligations, and repay your debts. And whatever it takes, do not take on more debt than you can pay.
Practice 2: Find contentment in Christ and avoid excessive consumerism.
Rather than pursuing a lavish lifestyle beyond what God provides, discover genuine peace in your relationship with Him. The world doesn’t know God, so the allure of paychecks, offshore bank accounts, or frequent Amazon deliveries gets them giddy. I get it. But prioritize building up your spiritual life.
Hebrews 13:5 Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; [notice the basis for contentment:] for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU,”
Despite the constant influence of marketing, contentment is found in God’s loving presence and His care and goodness to us—personally trusting Him. Personally relating and acting with Him.
Contentment is found in God’s loving presence and His care and goodness to us—personally trusting Him. Personally relating and acting with Him.
Philippians 4:11 Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. 13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
Paul’s like, “Look, I’ve been through it all—rich, poor, you name it. But I’ve figured out this secret: being content in any situation. How? Through the strength I get from trusting and living with my faith and hope in Jesus.”
Practice 3: Create a budget that reflects your values and priorities.
Set aside a portion of your income for generous giving and prioritize it. Put the big stones in first. God rewards investing in the things He cares about.
God cares about…
The poor, needy, and afflicted: Jesus modeled concern for the poor, widows, and orphans. We are to follow suit, particularly with those in need within our church.
But also to those God has in our lives and those in need of disaster/famine relief. As you meet the needs of the needy and suffering and help bring relief in Jesus’ name, God will bless others, glorify His name, and reward you in glory.
Missions and evangelism: Jesus calls us to make disciples of all nations.
God will use and reward you as you support missions and evangelism that spread the gospel, plant churches in unreached areas, and disciple new believers.
The Church: The bible emphasizes committing to and supporting the church, the mission, the ministries, and the community that you are a member of.
Galatians 6:6 The one who is taught the word is to share all good things with the one who teaches him. 7 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; [here’s the same principle we started with] for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. 8 For the one who sows to his flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. [eternal rewards!] 9 Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.
As you financially support your church, you not only enable carrying out our mission, making disciples, caring for our members, and blessing the community, but you are investing in your future, eternal treasures. When you stand before the Judgment Seat of Christ, money is a matter He rewards. If you do, you will reap a great reward of riches and joy when it matters most.