Teaching Your Congregation About Money

Teaching your Congregation about Money
Ministry leader, please take some time to read, digest, and pray about the information in this article. The topic of money can be sensitive and very challenging to teach. Congregations may question your motives for teaching on the subject, assuming you are leading up to receiving an offering. However, this subject must be taught!
 
Money affects ever aspect of every person’s life. I know people who are called to the ministry but haven’t been able to do what God has told them to do because they are tied down by debt. I have counseled thousands of people from all over the United States and other nations, and the number one reason for marital break-ups and family strife is money.
 
These Times Call for Maturity
The kingdom of God needs mature saints now more than ever. Paul recognized that the church in Corinth needed to grow up in the things of God when he wrote, I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able. (1 Corinthians 3:2) Now is the time for the church to grow up when it comes to money. It’s time for the ministers and pastors to begin to feed the flock some meat from the Word regarding money! We are coming down the home stretch. God needs an army that is equipped. He needs spiritual militia that is not burdened down. He needs an army that can run and obey. He needs ambassadors in this world that will be so blessed that the world will get jealous and ask, “Why are you so blessed?” When the world is struggling financially, we can be the light that God intended us to be! There are some practical things that Christians need to do to get themselves in the position to be those blessed ones to whom the world looks.
 
Stay in the Middle of the Road
My spiritual father, Reverend Kenneth E. Hagin, used to say, “The church of the Lord Jesus Christ tends to get in a ditch on one side of the road or the other.” There have been two “ditches” that many have fallen into when it comes to the subject of the Christian and money. One claims that money is dirty, bad, and evil. That train of thought came from misquoting 1 Timothy 6:10: For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. Money is not the root of all evil; the love of it is. I have counseled people who didn’t have a dime, but they had such a love for money that it consumed them. I have also talked with people who made seven figures a year who had an inordinate desire for money, and it destroyed their families and their health. Money itself is just a tool. What goes on in the heart determines what it produces in your life.
 
The other side of the ditch is extreme prosperity teaching. The Word of God tells us that God wants us to prosper: Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. (3 John 1:2) However, that does not mean that every person should be a multi-millionaire; it doesn’t mean that everyone will be financially blessed regardless of what they do, how they handle their money, or how they obey God’s Word regarding finances.
 
The truth is in the middle of the road. Money is not evil. However, when people love money above God and people, satan can use money to bring evil into their lives. God’s will is for His children to prosper to the point that every need is met in abundance, there should be no lack, and there should be plenty to give generously to others at all times, but much of that depends on decisions God’s people make.
 
It is up to God’s preachers and teachers to minister the truth about money from God’s Word.
 
Basic Financial Truth
Understanding and obeying God’s Word regarding money is more critical as we come down to the end of all things. The world’s financial system is on the brink of disaster.  Perhaps you’ve never realized this, but your money is not tied to anything. There was a time that the money in the United States was tied to gold. However, money is no longer tied to the value of gold, silver, precious metals, or any other asset. Since the dollar is no longer tied to anything of value, the money is not sound, and there could be a complete economic collapse at any time. When the financial bubble burst back in 2008, the United States used up all of the leverage that monetary policy and fiscal policy could employ to avoid a 1930 style breadline depression.
 
Don’t Fear, but Get Real
The purpose of this article and the reason for you to teach your congregation about money is not to create fear! Fear is not from God! For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7) God has given us the spirit of power, of love, and of a sound mind. We should have a sound mind when it comes to money! Don’t fear, but let’s get real about money issues. People quote Proverbs 13:22, “The wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just,” but honestly, the wealth of the sinner will not be laid up for you if the sinner is the one who holds your debt! If believers continue to create debt, they should stop quoting that scripture! You can’t believe for the blessing of the Word unless you obey the instructions of the Word.
 
G.O.O.D. = Get Out Of Debt
Most ministers are well familiar with what the Bible says about tithes, offerings, and giving to the poor. The principles of sowing and reaping are foundational to financial prosperity and the blessing of the Lord. You’ve probably taught them on a regular basis. However, have you taught your congregation the G.O.O.D. principle? It stands for "Get Out Of Debt!" God’s Word tells us that debt puts you under the thumb of the one to whom you owe: The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is a servant to the lender. (Proverbs 22:7)
 
My wife and I were tens of thousands of dollars in debt at one time due to an unforeseen hospitalization that happened when I was between jobs for six days. We went to Bible school head over heels in debt. I know what it’s like to have so many bills and so little money that you have to put your bills in a paper bag and draw to select which one will be paid that month! I teach from the Word of God as well as experience. We graduated from Bible school debt free! No one can take our house from us; no one can take our vehicles from us. When things go bad in an economy, the lenders begin to call in loans. They owe people, and borrowers owe them, so they will come and collect! The people who have not gotten their financial house in order, or who have not built themselves up in faith will be the ones who are hit the hardest.
 
Do it and Teach it
If you are not personally debt free, begin to work towards that goal. Sow seeds toward it. Learn to live within your means. And do not create more debt! I encourage you to teach these principles to your congregation, whether you have achieved complete personal financial freedom yet or not. You can still teach what the Word of God says! Once someone makes the decision to become debt free, it can happen! It will come to pass as the individual obeys God’s Word regarding sowing; speaks words of faith; walks in love; and disciplines the flesh. 

This article is written by Bishop Keith A. Butler