Week 1 - Spiritual & Material Riches

Spiritual & Material Riches

Week 1 Provision Principles – Ps Tony Cameneti

In this series we will look at why it is important that we stay balanced. True balance is the key to life.

Deut 8:18 “And you shall remember the LORD your God, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day” (NKJV)

 

God gives us power to get wealth. We do want to get to that, but, in the process, we want to look at our priorities, our affections, what we seek.

There is an interesting contrast in the Bible regarding riches: the contrast is between the Old and New covenants. As we begin this new series on Provision Principles, we will start by looking at a few contrasting points.

 

1. Greatness

It is interesting to see what the Bible describes as great in the Old Testament in contrast to the New Testament.

 

Job 1:3His possessions included 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 500 yoke of oxen, and 500 female donkeys; in addition he had a very great household. Thus he was the greatest of all the people in the east” (NET)

Matt 20:26 “It must not be this way among you! Instead whoever wants to be great among you must be your servant” (NET)

 

Very interesting!!

  • In the Old Covenant, great is associated with ‘the accumulation of things’
  • In the New Covenant great is associated with ‘the humbling of one-self to serve’

 

When you consider yourself – know what greatness is. Is it having things? Having an important title or position? We respect and honour all those things; but are they great in God’s eyes? He says, ‘serving makes us great’.

 

We have seen faithful people who serve become great and accumulate material things

 

2. Inheritance

In the Old Testament – We see inheritance defined as ‘material things’.

Prov 13:22 “A good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children, but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous” (NIV)

 

In the New Testament – We see how valuable the legacy of faith is; and nothing said about the passing on of material wealth.

2 Tim 1:5 “When I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also” (NKJV)

1 Pet 1:4 “and we have a priceless inheritance – an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay” (NLT)

 

We further see that our Spiritual inheritance follows us and is waiting for us in Heaven. The best thing we can leave our children and our children’s children is faith in the Lord Jesus – introducing them to Jesus, modeling Jesus, helping establish them in Christ

 

3. Beauty

The Old Testament described the outer beauty of some of the queens, including their clothing.

 

The New Testament describes an inner beauty.

1 Pet 3:3-4 “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight” (NIV)

 

4. Riches

The Old Testament

1 Kings 10:2 “She arrived in Jerusalem with a great display of pomp, bringing with her camels carrying spices, a very large quantity of gold and precious gems” (NET)

1 Kings 10:10 “She gave the king 120 talents of gold, a very large quantity of spices, and precious gems. The quantity of spices the queen of Sheba gave King Solomon has never been matched” (NET)

 

The Queen of Sheba, according to the Bible, was a woman of great wealth, beauty and power.

 

The New Testament

Eph 3:8 “Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ” (KJV)

Eph 3:16 “That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man” (KJV)

 

It is always best to seek the Kingdom of God FIRST – allowing God to add to us.

 

Measuring Life in the New Testament

What did Jesus say about measuring life?

Luke 12:15 “And He said to them, ‘Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses’” (NKJV)

 

What does ‘for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses’ mean? These translations help us to understand better:

MSG     Life is not defined by what you have

BBE     A man’s life is not made up of the number of things which he has

NLT     Life is not measured by how much you own

 

Who you are in the realm of the Spirit is not defined by what you have in the natural

 

What about people who have money? God does not leave anybody out. Business people are VERY valuable to the Kingdom of God.

 

Rom 12:6-8 “Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness” (NKJV)

 

Closing Thoughts

  • People who serve are great in God’s Kingdom
  • We have a rich Spiritual inheritance to give and one that is also waiting for us in Heaven
  • God gives us power to get wealth
  • Seeking the Kingdom of God first (Spiritual riches) adds material riches to us
  • We have a deposit of Spiritual wealth in us
  • It is this Spiritual wealth that breaks the yokes of sickness, oppression, depression, pain
Week 2 - Gratification Now and Hereafter

Gratification Now & Hereafter

Week 2 Provision Principles – Ps Tony Cameneti

The Scriptures clarify that God is not against provision.

Prov 8:18 “Riches and honor are with me, long-lasting wealth and righteousness” (NET)

 

Our relationship with God will cause us to be blessed with – right standing (salvation), long lasting wealth, riches and honour.

 

Phil 4:18-19 “For I have received everything, and I have plenty. I have all I need because I received from Epaphroditus what you sent – a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, very pleasing to God. And my God will supply your every need according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (NET)

 

By co-operating with God in giving and receiving, we can expect all our needs to be met.

 

God is not against things or provision. He will meet ALL our needs. He will richly bless us. However, what can provision and having all I need or want do for me? Can it make me happy? Can it fulfill me? Can it bring purpose to my life? In answering this, let us look at someone who had more wisdom and money than anyone and see if it made him happy; if it fulfilled him; and gave purpose to him.

 

King Solomon

Who was King Solomon?  What did he have?

 

He was a king who ruled around 967 BC and was the son of King David and Bathsheba. His kingdom extended from the Euphrates River in the north to Egypt in the south. Although he was young, he soon became known for his great wisdom.

 

He had a huge amount of wealth – some of which included 12,000 horses with horsemen and 1,400 chariots. He controlled the entire region west of the Euphrates and there was peace within his borders.

 

Consider – Did it make him happy? Did it fulfill him? Did it bring purpose into his life?

 

Eccl 2:1-11 “I said to myself, ‘Come on, let’s try pleasure. Let’s look for the good things in life.’ But I found that this, too, was meaningless. So I said, ‘Laughter is silly. What good does it do to seek pleasure?’ After much thought, I decided to cheer myself with wine. And while still seeking wisdom, I clutched at foolishness. In this way, I tried to experience the only happiness most people find during their brief life in this world. I also tried to find meaning by building huge homes for myself and by planting beautiful vineyards. I made gardens and parks, filling them with all kinds of fruit trees. I built reservoirs to collect the water to irrigate my many flourishing groves. I bought slaves, both men and women, and others were born into my household. I also owned large herds and flocks, more than any of the kings who had lived in Jerusalem before me. I collected great sums of silver and gold, the treasure of many kings and provinces. I hired wonderful singers, both men and women, and had many beautiful concubines. I had everything a man could desire!So I became greater than all who had lived in Jerusalem before me, and my wisdom never failed me. Anything I wanted, I would take. I denied myself no pleasure. I even found great pleasure in hard work, a reward for all my labors. But as I looked at everything I had worked so hard to accomplish, it was all so meaningless – like chasing the wind. There was nothing really worthwhile anywhere.” (NLT)

 

Response – Wealth and things cannot satisfy us. Solomon was loaded with things, including wisdom, but he was not satisfied.

 

Gratification Now and Hereafter

What brings gratification?

  • Satisfaction?
  • Pleasure?
  • Happiness?
  • Fulfillment?
  • Contentment?

 

Eccl 3:18-21 “I also thought about the human condition – how God proves to people that they are like animals. For people and animals share the same fate – both breathe and both must die. So people have no real advantage over the animals. How meaningless! Both go to the same place – they came from dust and they return to dust. For who can prove that the human spirit goes up and the spirit of animals goes down into the earth?” (NLT)

 

Here is a wealthy and educated man that didn’t understand that there is life after death. His wealth, wisdom and things could not fulfill him; they couldn’t make him happy; they couldn’t answer the real questions of life; they couldn’t bring him purpose.

 

Eccl 3:22 “So I saw that there is nothing better for people than to be happy in their work. That is why we are here! No one will bring us back from death to enjoy life after we die” (NLT)

 

When someone doesn’t know what happens to them after they die they aren’t able to enjoy what they have while they are alive

 

Eccl 4:2 “So I concluded that the dead are better off than the living.” (NLT)

 

Solomon was miserable without a relationship with God

 

Why God?

1. God said ‘you need me’

Acts 17:24-25 “He is the God who made the world and everything in it. Since he is Lord of heaven and earth, he doesn’t live in man-made temples, and human hands can’t serve his needs – for he has no needs. He himself gives life and breath to everything, and he satisfies every need.” (NLT)

 

2. Jesus said ‘He is the only way’

John 14:6 “Jesus told him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.’” (NKJV)

 

3. He is the only true source of truth

John 14:6 “Jesus told him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.’” (NKJV)

 

4. True purpose can only come from God

John 14:6 “Jesus told him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.’” (NKJV)

 

Our Question: What brings gratification?

  • Satisfaction?
  • Pleasure?
  • Happiness?
  • Fulfillment?
  • Contentment?

The Answer: A relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ

 

John 4:14 “But whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.” (NKJV)

John 6:35 “And Jesus said to them, ‘I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst’” (NKJV)

Week 3 - Jehovah-Jireh - My Source of Provision

Jehovah-Jireh – My Source of Provision

Week 1 Provision Principles – Ps Patsy Cameneti

Jehovah-Jireh is one of the names of God that He gave to us. These names are very important because they tell us something aboutHim. They reveal things about Him so we know how to interact and engage with Him. These names reveal truths about Him.

 

1. GOD Is My Source of Provision

Gen 22:13-14 “Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked, and there behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. So Abraham went and took the ram, and offered it up for a burnt offering instead of his son. And Abraham called the name of the place, The – LORD – Will – Provide; as it is said to this day, ‘In the Mount of the LORD it shall be provided.’” (NKJV)

 

The name ‘Jehovah-Jireh’ is only mentioned once in the Bible – but at a VERY significant time: the intended sacrifice of Isaac. God is in covenant with Abraham and has asked Abraham to sacrifice his son, Isaac, in order to allow Him (God) the opportunity, later on down the generations, to offer His only son, Jesus.

In the Septuagint, the name means ‘The Lord Sees’.

 

Definition

Pro-vision:          arrangement or preparation beforehand, as for the doing of something, the meeting of needs, the supplying of means, etc.

It means to ‘see beforehand’. God is able to see ahead of time what is required and to provide for it before it is actually needed. We are able to see where we are at the moment; and look back to see where we have been. However, we are not able to see what lies ahead in the future. But God is able to see and also prepares what is required ahead of time.

 

James 1:17 “Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light. There is nothing deceitful in God, nothing two-faced, nothing fickle” (MSG)

 

These gifts that come out of God are – rivers! Rivers of light, rivers of life. In Rev 22:1 John, the apostle, saw the river coming out of the throne of God and the name of this river is ‘Life’. God gives gifts and these gifts are rivers that never add sorrow.

And … these gifts are perpetual – cascading and ongoing. This is what is coming out of God!

 

Ps 23:1The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want” (NKJV)

 

He is our source. Note: if the Lord is your shepherd – then you also get the last part of the verse.

This verse identifies the Lord as being our shepherd – so, we are His sheep. And, sheep have never been accused of being … smart. While we can become intelligent in a given field and we can gain experience, we never replace God as our source. We always remember that He is the shepherd and we are the sheep. We always stay in a place of humility to receive form Him.

 

2. God’s Ability to Provide

We may have a desire to give to someone, but we may lack the resources to do it. What is God’s reservoir – His source out of which He can give?

 

i. Ps 24:1a “The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it …” (NLT)

Q. Does God hand out resources sparingly, restricting each of us to only one thing and only once a week? Does He have enough to give and keep on giving?

A. God owns all the resources that are on this planet and He knows exactly where all of them are located. If all these resources were divided up to everyone alive, there is enough that everyone would be a billionaire!

He knows stuff that we do not know. He is the great shepherd.

 

ii. Phil 4:19 “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (NKJV)

This verse says that He will provide according to – not His riches on the Earth – but according to His riches in glory. This takes the limitation of everything.

 

3. God’s Desire to Provide and Give

God has all these resources in Earth and Heaven; but does He want to give them to us?

 

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (NKJV)

God did not yell from Heaven, ‘I love you’; He did not make clouds in the shape of hearts to tell us of His love. No! He gave – and gave the His only, most precious, son.

 

The Greek word for the love of God is ‘agape’; however, the Hebrew word for love is ‘ahava’ which means ‘to give’. God is love and He isperpetually giving because He is love. He can’t help Himself – He must provide. His heart of love demands that He gives.

 

Ps 35:27 “Let them shout for joy and be glad, who favour my righteous cause; and let them say continually, ‘Let the LORD be magnified, who has pleasure in the prosperity of His servant’” (NKJV)

 

It makes God happy when we are blessed. We do not have to beg to get Him to give something to us. He is always looking to give to us. Not only does He have the resources to give, He also has the desire to give.

 

2 Cor 9:7 “… God loves a cheerful giver” (NKJV)

 

If He enjoys a cheerful giver, then He must be a cheerful giver Himself! He is a happy God. Hs is happy to see us when we come to Him; He is happy to have someone to give to. He loves it when I’m blessed.

 

Phil 4:19 – does NOT say ‘my job, my friends, my relatives shall supply all my needs’; it says, ‘my God’. Whatever we look to as our source is from where we draw our supply and we are subject to the limitations of that source.

There is no lack in God. He is able to bless anything that is under Him.

 

How is He Our Source?

He uses channels to get that supply to us – a job, a friend, a relative can be a channel – but don’t switch it to being a source. It can be easy to do this because we can see the channel – whereas, we cannot see Him, the source.

 

Heb 7:7 “And without all contradiction the less is blessed of the better” (KJV)

 

God is to be elevated to the highest place; and, from this place, blesses those beneath. If we elevate something else to the highest place, giving becomes a necessity to tick off people we need to pay – including God.

 

If we elevate something else to the highest place then, He who is the source is not in a position to be that supply to us

 

His sources are unique. In the Old Testament:

  1. A widow provided a room for the prophet to live in whenever he passed through. And, in return, God provided something for that woman that no-one else could supply – a child (she was previously barren). God never robs from us. Out of His heart of love, He wants to give to us.
  2. The prophet, Elijah, was fed by birds – which is very uncommon. This is an example of the resources available to God.
  3. He provided bread out of Heaven and water out of a rock – supernatural resources.

 

God has channels to get provision to us that we have not even thought of

 

All He needs from us is to be focused on the provider, the giver – not on the provision.

 

Jer 17:7-8 “But blessed are those who trust in the LORD and have made the LORD their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit” (NLT)

 

Because we live in this world, our expectation tends downwards, towards what we can see

(Ps 119:25 – My soul cleaves unto the dust).

 

Application

1. How do we keep our eyes and expectation fixed on Him so that we don’t look to our job/friends/family?

i. We worship Him as our source

ii. We give with the right purpose; we give to acknowledge God. Tithing honours God – honours Him as the creator of the universe and acknowledges, ‘You are my source’

2. Know and be convinced of God’s principles for provision.

3. Act on those principles – believe, give, speak. Say what the Bible says about our finances; say what the Bible says is true. We don’t just think things in our hearts; we say them out loud, out of our mouths. We are led by the Holy Spirit.

 

Additional Material

  • Mark Hankins – podcast ‘Impact Conference 2015’ – Prosperity

(available on Rhema Family Church website)

  • Keith Moore – Abounding Ability
  • Kenneth E Hagin: How to Be Led by the Spirit of God
Week 4 - Connecting the Purposes of God to Our Lives

Connecting the Purposes of God to Our Lives

Week 4 Provision Principles – Ps Tony Cameneti

Review

  • Week 1 – Spiritual and material wealth – a contrast between the Old and New Testaments
  • Week 2 – Money and things can never satisfy or fulfill us – only the fullness of God
  • Week 3 – God is our source – He has the ability and desire to provide

 

Connecting the Purposes of God to Our Lives

Examples of God’s Purposes

  • Winning people to the Lord
  • Sharing God’s Word with others
  • Healing – laying hands on people
  • Lifestyle – be holy as He is holy

 

Connecting Money to the Purposes of God for Our Lives

When I share about tithing it isn’t because I am the Pastor and our Church is desperate for people to tithe. I am a tither myself. Why? Because:

 

I discovered the purposes of God for money that connects Him to man

 

Modern Day Tithers That Were Blessed

  1. A man started a small cheese business in Chicago; it failed miserably. He vowed to God that he would tithe. He started up again and began tithing on whatever sales he made. His business grew into a giant company. His name is J.L. Kraft – the founder of the Kraft Cheese Company. He has given millions of dollars into the Kingdom of God.
  2. Henry P. Crowell bought a broken down oats mill in Ohio. He vowed to God he would tithe and the small broken down mill turned into the Quaker Oats Company.

Others who began tithing before they became wealthy:

  • William Colgate – Colgate Toothpaste
  • J.C. Penny
  • H.J. Heinz – Heinz Catsup
  • Thomas B Welch – Welch’s Grape Juice

 

What About People Who Don’t Tithe and Become Wealthy?

Prov 15:6 “In the house of the righteous there is much treasure, but trouble befalls the income of the wicked” (ESV)

 

You can find people everywhere that dispute tithing. A recent study speaks really loudly about tithing:

Christians Who Tithe Have Healthier Finances Than Those Who Don’t

  • The report encompasses survey responses from 4413 tithers from all 50 states (USA) and a variety of different churches and income levels
  • The new report takes a close look at the financial, spiritual and giving practices of people who give 10 percent or more of their income away to churches and charities each year
  • Researchers compared tithers to non-tithers using nine financial health indicators and found that tithers were better off in every category
  • Among tithers, for example, 80 percent have no unpaid credit card bills, 74 percent don’t owe anything on their cars, 48 percent own their home and 28 percent are debt free

 

The finances of Christians who tithe are generally healthier than the finances of those who do not

 

The weird thing is, a tither looks at that and says to himself, ‘Well I’m better off because I give.’

A non-tither looks at that and says, ‘Oh, they give because they’re better off.’

Brian Kluth – founder of the study and Maximum Generosity

 

Kluth called the findings unprecedented. The fifth annual study reveals that 97% of tithers make giving to their local church a priority, and 63% started tithing between their childhood and their twenties. It also found that 70% give based on their gross income rather than their net income; and 77% give more than the traditional 10%.

 

Benefits of Knowing the Purposes of God

Allowing God’s Word to form our beliefs

  • We won’t blast it if we grasp it
  • We won’t reject it if we trust it
  • We’ll act on it and do it

 

Old Testament Study on Tithing

Tithing was documented under the Law of Moses but practised before the Law of Moses

There is no Scripture that instructed people to tithe – we simply see that they did.

 

Jacob

Gen 28:22 “… and this stone, which I have set up for a pillar, shall be God’s house. And of all that you give me I will give a full tenth to you” (EVS)

 

Under the Law – (Leviticus 27)

  • Hebrew word ‘ma’aser’ – means ‘tenth
  • Belonged to the Lord – they were not giving what was theirs
  • Was called holy
  • Tithed of all of their increase
  • A necessary step for God to be involved in their finances

 

Where Did the Tithe Go?

Deut 12:11 “you must bring everything I command you – your burnt offerings, your sacrifices, your tithes, your sacred offerings and your offerings to fulfill a vow – to the designated place of worship, the place the LORD your God chooses for his name to be honored” (NLT)

Num 18:21 “As for the tribe of Levi, your relatives, I will compensate them for their service in the Tabernacle. Instead of an allotment of land, I will give them the tithes from the entire land of Israel” (NLT)

Num 18:24because I have given them the Israelites’ tithes, which have been presented as sacred offerings to the LORD. This will be the Levites’ share. That is why I said they would receive no allotment of land among the Israelites” (NLT)

 

The tithe went into the tabernacle. They weren’t given an option to split the tithe between more than one thing. They took the entire tithe to the storehouse because the tithe took care of the house of God and all that pertained to it.

 

New Testament Study on Tithing

There are 2 strong references to tithing in the New Testament

  1. 1 Cor 9:1-4, 7-14
  2. Heb 7:8 “Now at the present time, men over whom death has power take the tenth; but then it was taken by one of whom it is witnessed that he is living” (BBE)

 

5 Things I Learned that Affected My Giving

1. We Honour and Please God with Our Money

Prov 3:9Honor the LORD with your wealth and with the first fruits of all your produce” (ESV)

Phil. 4:18 “I have received full payment, and more. I am well supplied, having received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent, a fragrant offering, a sacrifice acceptable and pleasing to God” (ESV)

 

2. Money Can Locate Our Hearts

Matt 6:20-21 “But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (ESV)

 

3. Money Tests Our Hearts Before God

Luke 16:11 “If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches?” (ESV)

 

4. We Can Love Jesus Back by Tithing

Gen 14:18 “And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. (He was priest of God Most High)” (ESV)

 

5. Money Positions Us to have Our Needs Met

Phil 4:19 “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (ESV)

Week 5 - Common Principles of Provision

Common Principles of Provision

Week 5 Provision Principles – Ps Tony Cameneti

1. Recognize the Need – Our part

2. Make a Request – Our part

3. Receive Direction / Instruction – ‘God’s part’

4. Act on Instruction – ‘Our part’

5. Answer / Miracle – ‘God’s part’

 

Things That Can Stop Provision

1. Not admitting there is a need

2. Not making a request for the need

3. Ignoring The Holy Spirit’s prompting concerning the need

4. Ignoring God’s promises, commands or instructions concerning the need

5. Wrong beliefs followed by wrong talking nullify truth, prompting, commands or instructions

 

The Valley Full of Water

1.       The need identified – their part

2 Kings 3:9 “So the king of Israel went with the king of Judah and the king of Edom, and they marched on that roundabout route seven days; and there was no water for the army, nor for the animals that followed them” (NKJV)

 

2.       The request made – their part

i. In the Old Testament

2 Kings 3:11 “But Jehoshaphat said, “Is there no prophet of the LORD here, that we may inquire of the LORD by him?” So one of the servants of the king of Israel answered and said, “Elisha the son of Shaphat is here, who poured water on the hands of Elijah” (NKJV)

 

ii. In the New Testament

We each have the Holy Spirit living in us; we are to learn who we are in Christ and how we are to be led by The Spirit.

 

3.       Direction / instruction given – God’s part

2 Kings 3:16 “And he said, ‘Thus says the LORD: ‘Make this valley full of ditches’” (NKJV)

This is their part – to make the valley full of ditches. It would be interesting to know if they argued as to how many ditches constituted the valley being ‘full’. Maybe some would have been happy with 5? or 10? 20? 50? 100? 1000? How would they interpret ‘full’?

 

4.       They acted on the instructions – their part

 

Digging the ditches represented a response to God’s promises, instructions or commands and was an act of faith

 

5.       The land was filled with water – God’s part

2 Kings 3:20 “Now it happened in the morning, when the grain offering was offered, that suddenly water came by way of Edom, andthe land was filled with water” (NKJV)

 

It sounds like they dug many ditches

 

The Never-Empty Jug and Jar

1.       The need identified

1 Kings 17:10-12 “So he got up and went to Zarephath. When he went through the city gate, there was a widow gathering wood. He called out to her, ‘Please give me a cup of water, so I can take a drink.’ As she went to get it, he called out to her, ‘Please bring me a piece of bread.’ She said, ‘As certainly as the LORD your God lives, I have no food, except for a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. Right now I am gathering a couple of sticks for a fire. Then I’m going home to make one final meal for my son and myself. After we have eaten that, we will die of starvation’” (NET)

 

2         Direction / instruction given

1 Kings 17:13 “Elijah said to her, ‘Don’t be afraid. Go and do as you planned. But first make a small cake for me and bring it to me;then make something for yourself and your son’” (NET)

 

3         Promise made

1 Kings 17:14 “For this is what the LORD God of Israel says, ‘The jar of flour will not be empty and the jug of oil will not run out until the day the LORD makes it rain on the surface of the ground.’” (NET)

 

4         Acted on the instruction

1 Kings 17:15She went and did as Elijah told her; there was always enough food for Elijah and for her and her family” (NET)

 

5         Answer / Miracle

1 Kings 17:16 “The jar of flour was never empty and the jug of oil never ran out, just as the LORD had promised through Elijah” (NET)

 

Too Many Loaves and Fishes

1.       The need identified

John 6:5 “Then Jesus, when he looked up and saw that a large crowd was coming to him, said to Philip, ‘Where can we buy bread so that these people may eat?’” (NET)

 

2.       Human resources were insufficient

John 6:7, 9 “Philip replied, ‘Two hundred silver coins worth of bread would not be enough for them, for each one to get a little’ … ‘Here is a boy who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what good are these for so many people?’” (NET)

 

3.       Instruction

John 6:10 “Jesus said, ‘Have the people sit down.’ (Now there was a lot of grass in that place.) So the men sat down, about five thousand in number” (NET)

 

4.       Acting on the instruction

Sitting down represents rest.

 

5.       Miracle

John 6:11 “Then Jesus took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed the bread to those who were seated. He then did the same with the fish, as much as they wanted” (NET)

 

Jesus ‘took what they already had’. He gave thanks for what they had – which opens the door for the Father to multiply it.

 

John 6:12a “When they were all satisfied, Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Gather up the broken pieces that are left over …’” (NET)

 

The need was abundantly met

 

Practical Application

Two categories of people

i.        Call to walk away: Jesus and Paul

ii.       Call to work

 

Luke 9:2-3 “Then he sent them out to tell everyone about the Kingdom of God and to heal the sick. ‘Take nothing for your journey,’ he instructed them. ‘Don’t take a walking stick, a traveler’s bag, food, money, or even a change of clothes’” (NLT)

Phil 4:11-12 “Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need” (ESV)

 

Know your category  

i.      Do you have peace?

ii.     You can’t make it happen

iii.     Faith doesn’t dictate how God’s grace is on you

iv.     Faith co-operates with how God’s grace is on you

 

Call to Work

2 Thess 3:10-12 “Even while we were with you, we gave you this command: ‘Those unwilling to work will not get to eat.’ Yet we hear that some of you are living idle lives, refusing to work and meddling in other people’s business. We command such people and urge them in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and work to earn their own living” (NLT)

 

With regards to working: do we wait for our dream job? or do we take what is available?

 

Final Thoughts

Jesus took the loaves and fishes and then He blessed them

God can bless the work we take when we put Him first

Remember a job is never our source but a channel that God can bless!

Week 6 - Money Laundering

Money Laundering

Week 6 Provision Principles – Ps Patsy Cameneti

There are more than 2000 Scriptures in the Bible on the subject of finances. Why does the Bible put so much emphasis on finances? Because finances can present the most problems for us; and can exalt themselves over the Lordship of God.

Dirty money is a result of loving money. Money is not evil – but the love of it produces greed, covetousness, theft, fraud, wastefulness, worry, doubt.

Definition of money laundering: the process of transforming proceeds of crime and corruption into legitimate assets

Money laundering for us, as Christians, is: bringing our will, our thoughts, our motives and our priorities about money, and our money itself, into heartfelt agreement with God’s Kingdom principles. The Holy Spirit is our personal tutor and guide. The book of Proverbs has much to say on the subject of finances. Let us allow the Holy Spirit to continue to show us Kingdom principles so our money can stay laundered and clean.

Eph 1:3 “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (NKJV)

This verse says that he HAS – past tense – blessed us with EVERY spiritual blessing. What is spiritual blessing?

2 Pet 1:3 “as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue” (NKJV)

Again, this verse says HAS – past tense – blessed us with ALL things that pertain to life – things that have to do with living (job, clothes, kid’s things, etc). Our spiritual blessing is everything that pertains to life and Godliness.

3 John 2 “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers” (NKJV)

God in talking to us says, ‘I want you to prosper’, ‘I want you to be in health’, ‘as your soul prospers’. God wants our whole life – spirit, soul and body – to prosper.

Ps 68:19 “Blessed be the Lord, who daily loads us with benefits, even the God of our salvation” (NKJV)

There are 2 ways to translate the word, daily, in the Hebrew:

1. That daily He takes our loads – so we are not loaded down. He wants to take our cares every day.

2. Daily He loads us with benefits.

In the 1st way = He loads himself – with our cares

In the 2nd way = He loads us – with benefits

God is the greatest, biggest, loaded one. What does He do with all the things He has? Daily – He is looking for someone to share the load with.Unknown Object

Matt 6:11 “Give us this day our daily bread” (NKJV)

He gives to us every single day.

James 1:17 “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning” (NKJV)

Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of Heaven. These gifts are rivers of light, cascading down from the Father of light – it is not two-faced, and has nothing fickle. These gifts are coming in waterfall proportions. Perpetually coming; always coming in our direction. Even when we drink from the waterfall, we do not exhaust the supply. Water is perpetually coming. Even when we are not drinking from the waterfall’s supply, the blessing/water is still coming. We need a bigger container if we want more water. Someone may use a water glass and think that this is all I am allowed and it has to last. But God wants to do so much more. We can have as much as we want.

Sometimes we have measured the ability of God to give by our own ability to receive

This is not right. God can give so much more than we can receive

Heb 11:39 “And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise” (NKJV)

This verse says ‘yet none received all’. What would a human look like if they could receive all that God is. This would be Jesus.

This verse is very challenging – knowing that they did not receive all. Let’s see what would happen if we enlarged our ability to receive.

John 1:14 “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth” (NKJV)

We have all received of His fullness.

Even after John the Baptist, His beloved cousin, was beheaded, He went to a place to be alone. But the people followed Him; but He didn’t say ‘leave Me alone’, ‘go away’. Nowhere in Scripture did He ever say ‘I’ve had it up to here’. Jesus became an extension of the cascade itself.

Is 58:11 “The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, and strengthen your bones; you shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail” (NKJV)

We will be like a watered garden. Every area of our lives would be nourished and supplied beautifully by God with every blessing coming into our lives. However, THE BLESSING of the Lord is never just about us. God doesn’t mean for each of us to be just privately blessed. And like a spring of water, God’s blessing, His cascade of blessing, does water our life. But He never meant it to just water us. He meant it to water others as well. He means for our lives to be springs of living water – whose waters do not fail.

HIS WATERS DO NOT FAIL

There are 2 parts to a river – the receiving (at the source) and the giving (the flowing). They give simultaneously and continuously. God will generously provide ALL.

2 Cor 9:8 “And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work” (NKJV)

There is no place in this river that lacks replenishment. There is plenty to refresh and resupply.

2 Cor 9:11 “While you are enriched in everything for all liberality …” (NKJV)

That’s the picture of a river: it is constantly able to give because it is constantly being replenished. We are constantly receiving so we can constantly give out. We don’t need to coax a river to give; it just does it. Freely we have received, freely give.

When there is a fixation, not on the giving and replenishing of God, but on the lack, something is not right. When we fixate on the lack, it is like a boulder in the river – the thoughts end up damming up our river. Because we are no longer receiving – even though God is giving – we are not giving. Our thoughts dam up the potential for our lives to be a river.

Thanksgiving – Enlarging Our Ability to Receive

Thanksgiving is a tool to wrench our eyes off things of lack, off things that make us feel sorry for ourselves – and on to The Great Provider, who is all the time cascading good things to us. All we have to do is receive.

If we find ourselves saying ‘Why don’t good things happen to me? Why do they only happen to other people?’ God wants to help us in that. These questions are fixated on the lack. It takes as much energy to say the whinging things as it does to thank God. Let’s acknowledge whatever good things are happening. Whinging turns our ability to receive upside down so we are not able to receive. Thanksgiving opens us to receive from Him. Let’s be thankful every single day.

What can we thank Him for? Wisdom, grace, mercy, favour, people, health, seed to sow, His goodness. Let’s thank God for all the good things that happen. Maybe one person has hurt us; but concentrate on those people who haven’t. Maybe we have pain in our bodies; but is there any area where we are pain free. Be thankful for what we have – a bed to sleep in, a car to drive.

Give Daily – Enlarging Our Ability to Give

If we get fixated on the lack, we get afraid of what might be coming in; and we start hoarding what we have. If He is constantly replenishing us, we do not need to hoard and we can freely let go. Remember the Lord. It is He who gives us the power to get wealth.

If we are constantly aware of what we have and freely giving what we have, there is no holding back and every day is a day of giving. And we are thankful for what we can give. What a blessing to be a cascade ourselves. We are hooked up to the Great Cascade Himself.

God is Giving More than We Are Receiving

Let’s receive bigger. Let’s enlarge ourselves to receive more. How? Through thanksgiving and daily giving. When we live in a world of thanksgiving, we start noticing more and more things for which we are thankful. Let’s live in thanksgiving to God for all that He has given to us – just for us to enjoy.

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