In Your Bible Read This Out Loud: Ecclesiastes 11:1-2
Memorise This Verse: John 9:4 ‘As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me’.
Afterwards Talk About This: How can you ensure that you get the maximum benefit out of your giving in the time you have left on earth.
Something To Do Before Next Time: If God has spoken to you to change an aspect of your giving then do so before you next meet.
Written Diploma Work: Write one side on the implications of someone delaying the decision to become a giver.
Meditate Word By Word On This Verse: Ephesians 5:15
Having seen the principles of giving into both a heavenly and a spiritual bank account and seen previously the idea of heavenly rewards on judgement day there is a further principle that is applicable to heavenly rewards, heavenly bank accounts and earthly bank accounts. This principle is that the time to give to a heavenly/earthly bank account and the time to start earning heavenly treasure is NOW and the time to start giving into the work of God is NOW. If you are not yet a giver there should be an urgency and almost a desperation to start giving as delaying this decision will have eternal costs that will be suffered on judgement day.
Perhaps God has spoken to your heart about opening an earthly bank account to save for a specific purpose such as an orphanage, a hospital, a piece of medical equipment, a missionary or a specific project to extend the Kingdom of God and it will take 4 or 5 years to save for. For example, if you wait 2 years before you start to save because you spend your money on luxuries as opposed to saving it, then you are delaying a blessing that Jesus wants to extend to those in need. If God has spoken to you to start saving then in obedience to this it is important that you show discipline in your spending habits and your saving and it is even more important that you start to save now.
Perhaps God has spoken to you about your heavenly bank account and the need to start giving and to view your giving as a payment into a heavenly bank account which he could administer for you the time to give and make deposits into your account is now. For example, suppose in 2 years time a recession hits your country or a war or a famine if you have been giving faithfully then you will have a large heavenly bank account that God can preside over. If you have chosen not to give then you will have no blessings to call upon and the same financial calamity that comes upon the non-Christians could come upon you, as you are not rich towards God. Dark times of hardship could come upon our countries or cities in the future but those who have built up a large heavenly bank account will have large reserves of blessings to call upon and will be able to laugh at the financial panic that the non-Christians will experience!
‘Well do I remember the days of the depression. Hundreds of men came to the church office for help. Several times I questioned them. Not one of them was ever able to say that he had squared with God during the days of prosperity. God looks after those who remember him’
Oswald J Smith ‘The passion for souls’
This truth is very much expanded in Ecclesiastes 11:1 which says, ‘Cast your bread upon the waters, for after days you will find it again. Give portions to seven, yes to eight, for you do not know what disaster may come upon the land’. How true this verse is!, due to terrorism, war, famines, sickness and many other factors we simply do not know what disaster will come upon our lands, our towns and ourselves – we undoubtedly live in times of great uncertainty.
However those who sow to God during the good times when things are going well will certainly be able to reap back from God in the bad times, and their previous giving will be an ark of protection against any financial calamity that comes upon the land. Why not start now to invest for your financial future by being a generous giver and build up a strong ark of financial protection around your life this thought of shielding yourself from financial calamity is spoken of in Psalm 37:18. ‘The days of the blameless are known to the Lord, and their inheritance will endure forever. In times of disaster they will not wither in days of famine they will enjoy plenty’
Perhaps God has spoken to you that you have little heavenly treasure and through not giving systematically you have touched few people for eternity. If you delay the decision to become a systematic giver and invest your money into the conversion of lost souls to the Kingdom of God then you will reduce the time you have left on earth to earn heavenly treasure. Remember that Jesus himself said that we will be welcomed into heaven by those whose lives we have impacted by our giving. Will you enter heaven amongst jubilation and celebration or will you enter in solitude and silence as you have not impacted people’s lives through your giving? the time to start making friends for eternity is now, the time to give is now.
Perhaps you are a young person and as you read this book your faith has been quickened to believe God to see thousands and millions invested into the work of God. In order to start to activate the laws of sowing and reaping into your life start to give now, and you will experience a lifetime of giving into the work of God younger friend – the time to start giving is now. It could be that God has ordained that you spend the next 50, 60 or 70 years as being someone who releases untold amounts of money into world mission and in order to start this wave of blessing you need to start to give and sow financial seeds.
Perhaps you are old and your days on this earth are numbered, why not make the most of the time that is left really count by heavily investing your money into the work of God. Remember that Jesus said in John 9:4 ‘As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no-one can work’ older friend, the time is coming when you will never have the chance to give to the work of God, the time to give is now before that day catches up and overtakes you. The scripture below shows that even older people can bear lasting fruit for God – for the sake of the time you have let on this earth, why not use your money to draw people unto Jesus.
Psalm 92:12 ‘The righteous will flourish like a palm tree….They will still bear fruit in old age’
If God has spoken to you about the place where you give your money to being unfruitful and of the need to invest elsewhere then the time to make the change is now. Why bother spending more of your money on an organisation that is not bearing fruit and where you are seeing few returns for your hard earned money? If you persist in giving to an unfruitful organisation you only serve to perpetuate something that is not fulfilling it’s God given mandate, and you are foregoing the chance to invest in somewhere that is doing the work of God. The time to make any necessary changes in the place to give your money to is now – even if you have given to a church all your life, if it bears little fruit you should seek out a fruitful organisation that is worthy of your hard earned money.
A House of Prayer for the Poorer Nations
Pray for Hungary
10,035,568 people, 92% Christian
Church growing after communism but mature leaders in short supply.
This study contains the personal beliefs and practices of of the author who recommends them to the reader. The author takes no credit for their success where applied and likewise takes no responsibility for any failure or disappointment.
The House of Prayer for the Poorer Nations at the end of each section is based on Operation World 21st Century Edition © Patrick Johnstone, Jason Mandryk. Published by Paternoster. All scriptures are NIV © Hodder & Stoughton.