Daily Bible Studies & Sermon Notes

Breaking Free from Financial Bondage
Rick Battershell
What does it look like to handle money God’s way? Unfortunately, many Christians have only learned how to handle 10% of their income God’s way—the area of giving. Most have learned how to handle the remaining 90% from the world’s perspective. It’s hard not to follow our inclination toward acquiring stuff. When we do, we miss what’s really important and end up struggling. We work overtime, leaving our families behind, so we can make enough money to pay the bills… all in the name of stuff! God’s desire is that we’d experience peace. When we believe that God is the owner of all we have, we gain a new perspective on the way we handle all the resources we have been given—not just 10% of our income. Having a content heart, managing money God’s way, and avoiding the trappings of the world, frees us to focus on the things that really matter, like family, friends, ministry and God’s purpose for your life. (Adapted from Crown Ministries and Dave Ramsey materials)

Why talk about finances?
1) Matthew 6:24 - You cannot serve both God and Money.
2) Luke 12:14 - Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed
3) Luke 14:33 - In the same way, any of you who does not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple

Who doesn’t struggle with financial issues or the pull of stuff?
1) Many are in so much DEBT:
• Trapped in a certain career or job
• Servants to the lender
• Can’t take time off or afford to take a mission trip
• Often both couples in a marriage work
2) Culture “More is Better”

World’s way of prioritizing spending decisions
1) Lifestyle 2) Debt 3) Taxes 4) Savings 5) Giving

God’s way of handling finances
1) Giving 2) Savings 3) Taxes 4) Debt 5) Lifestyle

You have a choice
1) Isn’t it true that you have followed a specific path financially that has created your current financial reality? I’m sure there are things that have happened to you financially that were beyond your control. But I’m equally sure that there is a long sequence of financial decisions you’ve made that explains where you are financially. In essence, you have followed a specific financial path, one that, if followed by others, would bring them to a similar destination.
2) Just as there are paths that have led us to places we never intended to be, there are paths that lead us away from those places as well. (“Principle of the Path” by Andy Stanley)

Financial Bondage Through:
1) Wealth or pursuit of wealth (1Ti 6:1)
2) Laziness (2Th 3:10)
3) Dishonesty
4) Greediness
5) Covetousness
6) Anything that gets in the way of your relationship with God and others

Why does Northwest Church offer the finance education?
1) God can use it to change your life
2) To help people experience financial peace
3) To help guide people down the right path
4) How we handle finances reflects our spiritual lives
5) To teach biblical principles for making financial decisions (Hos 4:6)

1) Leviticus 25:23 - The land
2) Haggai 2:8 - The silver and gold
3) Psalm 50:10-12 - The cattle on a thousand hills
4) Psalm 24:1 - The earth and all who live in it

How do I recognize that God is the owner?
1) Surrender ownership to God in your heart
2) Tithe (Ge 14:18-20; Mt 23:23)
3) Accept God’s direction (Jer 29:11)
4) My reaction to events of life
• How I react when faced with a loss
• How do I react when something is damaged?
• Regularly thank God for His provision
5) Practice contentment

What are my responsibilities?
A) Be a faithful steward of everything entrusted to me by God
1) Until we realize and act like God owns it all, we are never going to be free (Mt 25:14-21, parable of the talents)
2) Parable of the Rich Fool (Lk 12:16-21)
3) Rich are to be generous and lend freely (1Ti 6:17-19)
4) God may give to you to supply another’s need (2Co 8:1-15)
B) Know the Owner’s instructions—pray, read Bible
1) 2 Timothy 3:16-17
2) Hosea 4:6
3) Pray for God’s direction in financial decisions
4) Seek counsel (balance extremes - marrieds - singles)
5) Know biblical principles for making financial decisions (Crown)
• Develop and live by a spending plan, debt and co-signing
• How we work, saving and investing
• Gambling, paying taxes, employee and employer responsibilities
• Seeking counsel, honest in financial dealings
• Lifestyle decisions, inheritance for children
• Planning for the future, leaving a legacy
• Viewing our present lives through the lens of eternity
C) Trust God
1) Proverbs 3:5-7
2) Luke 12:25
D) Teaching our children (www.crown.org) (www.daveramsey.com)
E) High School workshop - Weds Feb 17 & 24 - contact Elanor Harris
F) Dave Ramsey Financial Peace University - Sunday, April 11 6:00-8:00pm

What do I do?
1) Take action within 2 weeks or statistics say you won’t.
2) Evaluate what path are you on—the one that leads to:
a) Financial bondage or
b) Financial freedom
3) Ask the Lord to make you aware of His ownership and make you willing to transfer ownership. Pray for this during the next 30 days.
4) Seek God’s plan for your life and purpose to be content there.
5) Do what God tells you to do—to the best of your human ability.
6) Trust God to provide.
7) Cultivate an attitude of contentment and thankfulness.
8) Expect God to work through your finances.
• To manifest His power to show the people in our world that He exists
• To unify us as a body
• Direct our lives by providing and by withholding

1) In what ways does stuff create worry? relieve worry?
2) What are some of the ways that you’ve stored up treasures on earth? in heaven?
3) Describe ways that you make Jesus the Lord over your material possessions. What areas in your finances do you regularly struggle to make Jesus Lord?

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