The Bible has more to say about money and possessions than faith and prayer combined. Jesus himself has more to say about the subject that anything else. Why? Because money and possessions is the primary competitor with Jesus for lordship over our lives. According to Jesus in Matthew 6, “No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.”
The rich young man in Matthew 19 asked Jesus what he was lacking. Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” Author Randy Alcorn describes the struggle of the rich young man in the area of money and possessions.
“Jesus knew that money was the rich young man’s god. He also knew that none of us can enthrone the true God unless in the process we dethrone our other gods. If Christ is not Lord over our money and possessions, then he is not our Lord. He will call us to take action that breaks our bondage to money and possessions and frees us to live under his exclusive lordship. The principle is timeless:
“There is a powerful relationship between our true spiritual condition and our attitudes and actions concerning money and possessions.” – Randy Alcorn in Money, Possessions, and Eternity
The rich young man was literally grieved as he walked away from Jesus. While his “true spiritual condition” likely stirs up conviction in our own hearts, the “action” that breaks our bondage to money and possessions is that of giving.
At Crossroads Church, we believe the Spirit of God must lead each person in giving for the purpose of supporting the ministries of the church. We believe the tithe (10% of income) is the baseline for giving to the church – it is important to note that Jesus upholds the Old Testament tithe to the temple in Matthew 23. Our leadership and staff teams practice this principle. We also believe that we should follow the Lord’s leading in giving sacrificially beyond the tithe to meet the needs of those in the church, the poor, and other organizations which serve to further the kingdom of God (Proverbs 3:8-9, Malachi 3:7-12, Mark 12:41-44, Acts 4:32-35, 2 Corinthians 8-9).
For more information and additional perspective on this topic, we encourage you to read this summary by GodFirst.