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God's Plan for Giving, Part 2

Grace To You / John MacArthur
The Truth Network Radio
September 24, 2021 4:00 am

God's Plan for Giving, Part 2

Grace To You / John MacArthur

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September 24, 2021 4:00 am

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Luke 638 give, and it shall be given unto you using the principal or dog to be a banker to figure out that that is the principle of investment you give to God and it shall be given you. But what exactly does that mean you have to get rid of all those nice wedding gift you haven't used yet or do you have to avoid investing in mutual funds or don't get a fancy car or house or don't ever buy diamonds or pearls or gold are the things we traditionally think of as treasures well today on grace to you. John MacArthur shows you what the Bible means when it talks about laying up treasures on earth, and he looks at how to honor the Lord with your finances, no matter the size of your bank account Johns titled our current study God's plan for giving so with a look at what Jesus has to say about money. Here's John.

There are many things in the word of God that are specially emphasized in terms of the blessing that attends them and giving is one of them and I recognize that the subject of giving is like all other subjects in the Bible is the revelation of God and needs to be understood in as the apostle Paul was able to say to the Ephesian elders so must I be able to say to you if I have fulfilled my ministry. I have not failed to declare unto you the whole counsel of God and not to declare unto you these principles would be to rob you of blessing in the area that God has allowed for such wonderful blessing and I think it's important for us to put this in perspective because I think most Christians have been seriously done in on the teaching of giving. As you reflect back on your church life in the past that you will find that your thoughts about giving will vary in many different areas but much of the time our relationship to giving. In a church can be very distasteful. There are some churches, for example, that you been in and that I've been in that are preoccupied with money, but it seems like everything that goes on has dollar signs involved.

The success of anything is measured and how big the offering was no opportunity is ever lost for making appeals in every possible inconceivable approach and gimmick is used to make those appeals effective whenever large crowds gather for any meeting of any kind with any purpose in mind, it seems to be an opportunity to make money or to take large offerings constant efforts at publicizing and raising money through many money means are laid at the feet of the people and many people have been a part of systems in churches that have exacted money in ways that are not biblical. Another thing I think is important and is put the thing out of perspective, is that in many cases churches fall out of the danger of partiality to the rich. I would have to say that it is true that in many churches the wealthiest people dictate the theology and the policy and some of you maybe have seen this happening.

John Murray said, perhaps few weaknesses have marred the integrity of the church more than the partiality shown to the rich. The church is compromised with their vices because it is fear the loss of their patronage, its voice has been silenced by respective persons and discipline has been sacrificed in deference to worldly prestige."

I think that that's kind like James to have not your faith in terms of respective persons of a man comes in is a gold ring.

Don't give them the best seat and say the guy has lousy close it under my feet. That's having respective persons, there's no place for partiality, but only for impartiality. I think when a church is partial to the rich is any different than selling indulgences. There are other churches that trade on spiritual fear that attempt to pressure people to give and this is equally wrong. The right thing to do in the area of giving is to teach the truth of the word of God and then leave it to the spirit of God to generate the response along with all the rest of the fruits of spirituality, so we teach the word of God. We don't use gimmicks we don't use programs. We just teach the word of God. Assuming the spirit of God will produce in the lives kind of giving commensurate with the kind of life. Now we said that the giving patterns of the Scripture. In terms of revelation fall into three categories. In the first part we study category one which was giving from the book of Genesis to the time of Moses. The first phase of giving in terms of God's history. The second phase was from Moses to Christ the time of the law and we saw that in both of those phases of giving. There were two kinds of giving taught in the word of God first was required giving and we said that require giving was always connected with taxation and weight that anytime there was a stipulated percentage added to a taxation whether it was the 20% income tax exacted in Egypt. In Genesis 41 of 47 which is before Moses and before the Mosaic law, whether it was a 23 or so percent exacted on Israel through the three tithes that they paid in addition to some other taxes.

But in both cases exacted giving that which is required, that which was dictated was the required giving of the Old Testament, the free will giving was something again. It was always spontaneous, voluntary, no amount was ever stipulated. No frequency was ever stipulated. The only motive was never law the only motive was a thankful and loving heart. So the two kinds of giving in the Old Testament required giving which was taxation tithing under the Mosaic law was never giving the reason tithing isn't giving is because the tides didn't belong to the people he couldn't give it over and over again.

We saw the Old Testament say the tithe is whose the Lawrence and if you didn't give the tithe to the Lord, according to Malachi 3.

You rob God because the funding of the national entity. The government was funded by the tides of the Jews. The three tithes took care of the salaries and livelihood of the ministers of the government who were the priests and Levites. The second tied the second 10% took care of the social and religious life of the nation and providing the feast in Jerusalem. The third tithe paid every third year was for the welfare system that is never to be confused with free will giving our offerings to God tithing in the Old Testament was taxation not giving so we saw that last time we covered then the fact of the Old Testament teaches two things required giving that is pay your taxes, free will giving that is give to God whatever your heart desires to giving no frequency was prescribed and very little was said, other than to say generosity and liberality will be rewarded now.

This morning we come to the New Testament and were going to study what the New Testament has to say about giving. Let me just begin by saying this it says exactly the same thing the Old Testament it. There have been a lot of people who said will Old Testament giving was one thing, a New Testament giving is something else that is in so New Testament giving is more clearly defined, but it is the same. There are two kinds of giving stress to the New Testament one.

Pay your taxes to give God whatever you want. There is no amount.

Let's begin by looking at the required giving of the New Testament what was required in the New Testament to begin with. Let's look at Matthew chapter 17. We are introduced to the subject in the New Testament of required giving. Now remember the tides that were exacted from the Jews, along with the temple tax, along with the land Sabbath rest along with the special profit sharing tax where a man couldn't harvest the corners of his field had to leave him to the poor. All of this was taxation and in the New Testament times and the times of the Gospels were written primarily the Jews were still under these laws and so it was proper for a Jew to continue to pay his ties to Israel to support the priests to have money for the poor, but take care the feast in Jerusalem.

These things continually went on the taxation system in the time of Christ was still going. The temple treasury, the court of the women still had those 13 little trumpet shaped receptacles and the people still came there and they still put their tax money in those thing. In addition to that, however, the Romans were exacting taxes from them and that was becoming an absorbent but they were still under the obligation of Mosaic law to pay their taxes and Jesus remarks regarding this repeatedly in the Gospels.

Let's look at Matthew 1724 and when they were come to Capernaum, they that received the tax money attribute means taxes came to Peter and said, does not your master pay taxes. Now these are the tax collectors and they came to Peter and he said what about your master does he pay taxes. I like this.

He said what yes Jesus paid his taxes. We ought to pay our taxes. He did, and I think it's so exciting to see Matthew present this because Matthew usually is involved in declaring Christ as King.

And even though he is king.

In fact, King of Kings. He still subscribes himself to that which was right in terms of paying the required legal taxes. Jesus paid his tax and I want to see how I paid them was this kind of interesting. And when he was coming to the house, Jesus spoke first to him, saying, what are you thinking, Simon, of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute of their own sons or strangers will obviously kings don't tax her own sons.

The workaround that strangers Peter 7M of strangers. Jesus said unto them that are the sons free mother were cheesemaking little analogy really that we don't need to pay their taxes were true. The family of the king, but in spite of that, lest we should offend them going out of the sea, cast a hook, take up the fish that first comes up and when you open its mouth is to find a piece of money, take that and give to them for me and you now friends. That's the way to get your text me if that was still involved about April 1 the beaches to be lined with Christians from San Diego to San Francisco in her we have to admit that God is not still operating on that basis. The point of the passage is simply this, Jesus paid his taxes. Jesus again advocating what the father advocated in the Old Testament, Mosaic time with the father instituted in the pre-Mosaic time pay your taxes. This is required giving. Now go to Matthew chapter 22. Let's look at it again another passage related to the same thing.

Matthew 2215 then went the Pharisees took counsel how they might entangle him in his talk, which of course was ridiculously never did succeed, they said unto him their disciples with the Herodian's the family of the Harrods saying master. We know that thou art true and teaches the way of God in truth and this just drips with hypocrisy and if you not caring for any man that means that you don't care for one man over another. You don't regard the person of men. Other would you treat everybody equally. If everybody's equal then tell us therefore what you think about this, is it lawful to give tribute to Caesar or not should be fair taxes are not the role we see Jesus is pay your taxes, and the Jews are down on East Perlman. If he says don't pay your taxes, the Romans are down on so I think they've got in between a rock and a hard place. But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said why are you testing me, you hypocrites use the direct approach. Verse 19.

Show me the tax money to be coin they brought him a denarius, a sedative who loses this image and superscription with pictures on this point and they said Caesar's new set of them, render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's and to God the things that are God's. And really that was a tremendous answer much more insightful than it sounds of this stuff and go to Caesar the important stuff you got when they heard these words, they marveled and left him and went their way. Taxation is necessary and Jesus said pay your taxes, your text do what's right that's required giving Matthew 2323 makes reference to this, Jesus says to the Pharisees. He calls her hypocrites again for the fifth time in the same conversation is got three more to go. You pay your tithes of mint that's a little herbs and anise as plants and cumin that seeds here they were, if they attend seeds they were giving one seed to the priests they attend herbs they were there separating the tea leaves is what it amounted to sleep little and this is great. You know you're doing this but you will you know the weightier things such as justice and mercy may others were so legalistic he doesn't condemn the paying of the ties.

It was right for them to do that. Jesus acknowledges that this was their taxation system. He just says that you've ignored the things that really matter. That's why your to be called hypocrites but notice the tithing here was in reference to giving not free will, but that which is required the 10th of everything. A man had everything that grew everything possessed to be given. This continued in the New Testament time of the economy of Israel, because this was taxation.

Again you have in Luke 1812. Another reference to tithing. And this is the only other mention of it in the Gospels that all there is no exacting of the title and the church anywhere in the New Testament, it is never required of the church is always in reference to Israel's economy in the Gospels and in the book of Hebrews. It is only mentioned in reference to Melchizedek and Abraham wore a back in the book of Genesis has no bearing on the church at all in here.

It's in connection with boasting and hypocrisy. 1812. This Pharisee came the temple prayed to himself and said I fast twice a week. I give tithes of all that I possess.

And here is boasting about his tithing. He paid his taxes.

Wallace and friends paying your taxes was a need to boast about your supposed to do that. So the gospel that's all the gospel says about tithing before books we know is the gospel. That's all it has to say and all of those incidents in reference to Israel's paying its taxation so the national government or to Rome giving them what is due them. As I said in the book of Hebrews chapter 7 the only other mention of tithing has to do with what Abraham did and Melchizedek's case and that was Abraham gave a tent, not because God told him to just so happened that he gave it to. He volunteered to give that amount. At no time does the New Testament ever suggest or even hint and there are plenty of places where it may have, but it does not tie this exacted upon the Christian. Incidentally, I told you that the ties in the Old Testament was 23%, not the 10%. We think because it was three times right in Romans 13. Let's find out what the New Testament has to say in the epistles to the church about this required giving. Now were not under the Jewish economy you say wow.

I'm not a Jew I'm not living in Israel not to pay my taxes anymore. That's the national government of Israel that was for the funding of that nation. I'm in America we don't have a religious theocracy here that's for sure. That still doesn't mean anything doesn't mean that you're not on the hook for taxation verse one of Romans 13 says there is no power but of God, the power to be ordained of God. If you resist that power.

Verse two you're going to receive judgment. Now go down to verse six, four for this cause.

Pay your taxes for they that is, the ministers of the United States government or whatever government herein are God's ministers say oh no, oh yes, you say, but they're not very godly.

You're right. In many cases that is true.

Nevertheless, God has designed human government as a force to keep society together to punish the evil and to support the good and in that sense, not in the sense that I'm a minister of God, but in the sense that they ruled the place of God through an institution of God, called human government. They are his ministers. Remember that when you pay your taxes, you are in the truest sense supporting the work of God. I know that comes as a shock, but it is true you say well fight Sheila my taxes here in Sheila my taxes there get more money for the Lord not you will Rob Lord you will fall under the category of Malachi 3. By not paying your taxes the government is to be funded by the people. Listen, especially Christian, we know the God who is set the government up. Don't cheat the government you just you use about a blessing you take yourself what belongs to God actually got to figure out every way you can pay your tax's terrific opportunity.

We are a little mixed emotion on it, render therefore to all their dues tribute to whom tribute is due custom to whom custom fear to whom fear honor to whom honor right across the board onto the government and God will bless you because you been obedient to his principal and you supported his ministry. I know that they share required giving all it says about required giving the New Testament his friends pay your tax that's God's design and you be blessed let's go to free will get in here we under the category of the giving that is truly giving to God. There is no reference about tithing in any passage at all.

In the New Testament the talks about Christian giving absolutely no Jesus never made the ties incumbent Paul never made incumbent Peter, John, James, nobody, the writer of Hebrews. None of the writers of the New Testament. Jude made incumbent Luca Road acts. None. Let's look at the 10 principles then that the New Testament does give for Christian giving 10 of them listed will go through them rather quickly, and I think you'll find it most helpful point number one giving is investing with God giving is investing with God. Luke 638 this is a terrific verse Luke 638 give, and it shall be given unto you using the principal or not to be a banker to figure out that that is the principle of investment you give to God and it shall be given to you how good measure will be measured out good press down know what that means. It means it will be in all like the crackers that you buy at the market that you get home and you open the box and is a little pile at the bottom right but that when God gives back to you. It will be pranced down jampacked in the vernacular, shaken together if they'd shake those crackers before they sell those packages, you really know what you're getting. It will be shaken together down and still what running all over Xiamen given to your bosom. You see, God will move upon others to support your needs far beyond what you gave for with the same measure you measure, it shall be measured to you again.

What you invest with God you receive dividends on what you don't invest with God you don't get any dividend on that there is the biblical principle of the New Testament that set the basis or the heart of the whole of Christian giving.

Giving is investing with God and the return is an eternal yield and eternal dividend now much you look at Matthew chapter 6 verse 19, lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, don't invest your fortune, and the earth.

Some of you done that now you wish he had. Don't do it lay not up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and thieves break through and steal but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust is corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. In other words, be sure that your priority is investing with God because wherever you put your treasure. That's what you want to put your heart, let's say that I take $20,000 and ICR have two choices.

I can put my $20,000 in an earthly investment and so I take this $20,000, a precious commodity and I put into an earthly investment. You know I want to do. You know I'm going to start thinking about that $20,000 every time I get the paper, to find out where the stocks are what the thing is, and find out about my money pretty soon. At $20,000 and start run in my mind and I will start plugging into what's happening economically, start biting my economic fingernails, and I will start worrying about my 20,000 and all that does is generate my attitudes and actions and responses toward the world because that's where I put it let's see I take the same $20,000 and I give it to God, then where does that generate my attention on the say Lord America 20,000.

I gave him while hope receives a return on it and it generates my relationship to him.

You see, that's what it means when it says where your treasure is, that's where arch enemy, but wherever your investment is, there will be preoccupied with wanting to see the dividends on your investment so you lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, now the point is in verse 24, at the very at the very end of this little session. He says no man can serve two masters. That is to lords to people absolute authority over breathing will hate one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. You can't be a slave to God and money is one of the other if we would learn to invest with God. It would generate activity going that way because we'd be checking in our investment over time. Believe me, I would much rather give my money to God than to any organization. I know that runs on economic base what you guys were trustworthy. I know that God is a secure investment.

So investing with God is a basic premise. That's John MacArthur here on Greece to you. He's Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary today.

He considered God's plan for giving that's the title of our current series and John in light of the current subject.

I think it would be helpful for our listeners to hear about grace to use philosophy on giving. We are listener supported. We don't hide that fact.

But we are not the first organization. People should think of when they consider their giving to the Lord, knowing we made that clear through all the years the first ministry that you need to support is your local church. You need to support the shepherds and pastors and people and ministries and outreach of your local church. Thus, the priority and then as the Lord makes it possible for you to support us.

We receive those gifts with great joy and gratitude we want to be not a replacement for the church, not by any means. We want to be simply a supplement where you can find the teaching of the word of God and spiritual resources that are going to help you to grow in grace and knowledge of Christ so that you're even more effective and more valuable to your local church. We we know people hunger for God's word. We know that every day, and through radio books, MP3s, download CDs, television our website where proclaiming, explaining and delivering God's truth to his people. That's our ongoing commitment. We are not the church but we also know that this teaching needs to be available all the time because so much garbage is available all the time. If all people had of the teaching of the word of God was a Sunday morning message in a week in between. And that was that was it, they wouldn't be able to count her the powerful influences of evil that come against them. Through all the media in the culture we live in. So I think God has raised up the opportunity for all of us to draw down spiritual truth every day of the week through ministries like grace to you and we are grateful for how God is grown, grace to you over the years from a simple church tape ministry to a global ministry now of spreading the word of God across the planet in multiple languages. We are so grateful that he is done this. This is not our plan.

This is not our design.

This is God spreading the truth far and wide, because that was his desire and his plan wouldn't of been possible without radio station partners and it wouldn't be possible without friends who support grace to you with their prayers and their gifts so we we say thank you, thank you for the partnership. God is doing mighty things across the world through the ministry of grace to you and through your support of this ministry. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

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