If that’s true though, then what is our role in handling our money and possessions?
In this post, we’ll answer that question and learn how the concept of stewardship transforms the way we give, save, spend, and invest. You see, if God really owns everything, then the things we “own” during our short time here on Earth really aren’t ours.
Rather, we’re just stewards of His resources.
And if we’re just stewards of His resources, then we should give, save, spend, and invest these resources in ways that are honoring and glorifying to Him.
What is a steward?
Dictionary.com defines the word steward like this…
A person who manages another’s property or financial affairs.
I think that’s a good definition, but it doesn’t quite go far enough in my opinion.
Here’s a better definition…
A person who manages another’s property or financial affairs, in the way the other person would want them managed.
There’s a big difference between managing God’s money and possessions versus managing God’s money and possessions in the way God would want them managed.
You can see a real-world example of this difference in the rental car industry. On more than one vacation, I’ve been standing in the rental car line at the airport and I’ve overheard people say something similar to the following…
“Make sure we get the extra insurance so we can drive the car as hard as we want!”
The person who says this is typically implying that since they don’t own the car, it’s OK to do things like go off-roading, take sharp turns, and drive 90 MPH down the interstate.
But the reality is, while these customers may think it’s OK to act like Mario Andretti for a few days with a Toyota Corolla, I’m sure the rental car company would strongly disagree.
In the same way, if we manage our money and possessions as if we are the ultimate owner, then we’ll make some pretty poor decisions along the way, regardless of the size of our bank account.
What is good stewardship?
If we’re just stewards, then what is good stewardship in the life of a Christian as it relates to our money? Since this is a series on what the Bible says about money, let’s go there to find the answer to that question.
In the apostle Paul’s first letter to the church in Corinth, he says this about the Christian life…
So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. (1 Corinthians 10:31, ESV)
Although the context of Paul’s statement here isn’t about money and possessions, let’s not neglect the obvious meaning of the text.
“All” means ALL. Do ALL to the glory of God.
The statement “…whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” surely includes the act of managing our money and possessions. This idea of bringing “glory” to God is usually called “glorifying” God.
Glorify: To honor with praise, admiration, or worship. (Dictionary.com)
Glorifying God means making Him look as extraordinary and glorious as He really is. This means spending, saving, giving, and investing in a way that is very different from the way the rest of the world encourages us to spend, save, give, and invest.
How to glorify God with your money
As the old saying goes, you can’t put the cart before the horse.
Or in our case, we can’t glorify God with our money if we’re not glorifying God with our lives.
It’s like trying to drive your car without the engine.
It doesn’t work.
And glorifying God with your life can’t be done apart from a saving relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
To see a brief explanation of what it means to have a relationship with God through Jesus Christ and why we need this relationship, watch the short video below and read the article, “Back to God” by Frank Barker by clicking here.
Hint: It has nothing to do with filling out a card and walking down an aisle.
In the next post, we’ll talk about what many of you have been eagerly waiting for. We’ll cover some of the specific instructions the Bible gives on things like saving, debt, retirement, and other financial topics.
Even if you don’t believe in the Bible though, you’ll still find the advice in the next post incredibly helpful because whether you realize it or not, truly wise financial advice IS biblical.