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“So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void. But it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.” (Isaiah 55:11, NKJV)
“Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.” (Joshua 1:8)
DEFINITION: Trust is believing in the integrity of someone, that they are who they say they are and will do what they said they will do. It is believing with confident expectation. Biblically, trust is a firm reliance, assurance, and belief on God and His Word. When someone has “trust issues”, it means they lack trust in a person, a relationship, or God.
FACTS ABOUT TRUST:
Trust can be misplaced. When dealing with others, your trust can be misplaced and you can be disappointed. This can result in what is termed “trust issues”, where you have difficulty trusting someone because of disappointments in the past.
Trust in God is never misplaced. The Psalmist said: “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God” (Psalm 20:7).
Trust is actually an expression of your faith in God. By trusting God, you are showing that you have assurance that He is who He says He is and that His Word is true. Trust also provides assurance of your salvation and eternal destiny.
DEALING WITH TRUST:
Ask God to heal your trust issues. If you have difficulty trusting God or others because of past experiences, ask the Lord to heal these emotions.
Ask forgiveness if you have been untrustworthy. Ask God to forgive you and ask the person you failed to forgive you.
Do not rely on man. This is not to say you should not trust people, but your main trust should be in the Lord. Do not place your trust in untrustworthy people (Proverbs 25:19).
Place your trust in God. Rely on the Lord because He will never fail you (Romans 10:11).
WHAT GOD’S WORD SAYS ABOUT TRUST:
The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. (Deuteronomy 31:8)
And those who know Your name will put their trust in You; For You, Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You. (Psalm 9:10, NKJV)
Help, Lord for the godly are no more; the faithful have vanished from among men. (Psalms 12:1)
Some trust in chariots and some in horses., but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. (Psalm 20:7)
For the king trusts in the Lord; through the unfailing love of the Most High he will not be shaken. (Psalm 21:7)
To you, 0 Lord, I lift up my soul; in you I trust, 0 my God. O my God, I trust in You; Let me not be ashamed; Let not my enemies triumph over me. (Psalm 25:1-2)
In You, O Lord, I put my trust; Let me never be ashamed; Deliver me in Your righteousness. (Psalm 31:1,NKJV)
I trust in you, O Lord; I say, “You are my God.” (Psalm 31:14)
Many are the woes of the wicked, but the Lord’s unfailing love surrounds the man who trusts in him. (Psalm 32:10)
In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. (Psalm 33:21)
Trust in the Lord and do good. (Psalm 37:3)
Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust. (Psalm 40:4)
I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God’s unfailing love forever and ever. (Psalm 52:8)
But as for me, I trust in you. (Psalm 55:23)
When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me? (Psalm 56:3-4)
Trust in him at all times, 0 people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge. (Psalm 62:8)
You are my God; save your servant who trusts in you. (Psalm 86:2)
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.” (Psalm 91:2)
It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes. (Psalm 118:8-9)
Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be shaken but endures forever. (Psalm 125:1)
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. (Psalm 143:8)
Do not put your trust in princes, Nor in a son of man, in whom there is no help. (Psalm 146:3, NKJV)
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him and, he will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Like a bad tooth or a lame foot is reliance on the unfaithful in times of trouble. (Proverbs 25:19)
Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe. (Proverbs 29:25)
Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord, is the Rock eternal. (Isaiah 26:4)
Let him who walks in the dark, who has no light, trust in the name of the Lord and rely on his God. (Isaiah 50:10)
This is what the Lord says: “Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who depends on flesh for his strength and whose heart turns away from the Lord.” (Jeremiah 17:5)
Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. (Jeremiah 17:7)
Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much. So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else’s property, who will give you property of your own? (Luke 16:10-12)
Anyone who trusts in him (God) will never be put to shame. (Romans 10:11)
I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day. (2 Timothy 1:12)
If we are faithless, he will remain faithful, for he cannot disown himself. (2 Timothy 2:13)
Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. (John 14:1)
TRINITY OF GOD
DEFINITION: The Bible reveals that God is one, with three distinct natures, each with different functions. This concept is known as the Trinity of God–meaning three distinct persons, yet a single being who is one.
FACTS ABOUT THE TRINITY OF GOD:
God has a triune nature. This means He has three distinct personalities–God the Father, the Son Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit. The three are one God, with different functions (Deuteronomy 6:4).
Scriptures that verify the triune nature of God. John the Baptist speaks of it at the time of the baptism of Christ (Matthew 3:16-17). Prior to returning to God and Heaven, Jesus spoke of sending the Holy Spirit (John 15:26). The Apostle Peter spoke of the triune nature of God (1 Peter 4:14), as did the Apostle Paul (Romans 8:2-3; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Ephesians 2:18). The book of Acts also verifies the triune nature of God (Acts 2:33).
A natural example that best illustrates the Trinity of God is an egg which is composed of the shell, the white, and the yolk. Each have different functions: The shell can be decorated. The white whipped into meringue topping, the yolk can be hard-boiled–but it is still one egg.
The Trinity of God is eternal. This means God has no beginning or end (Psalm 90:1-2). The eternal nature of God is best illustrated by a circle. A perfect circle has no visible starting point or ending point, yet it exists.
The Trinity of God is a spirit. This means God is without flesh and blood and therefore invisible to the natural eyes of man (John 4:24).
The Trinity of God is the sovereign, almighty power over all the universe (Ephesians l and Romans 9).
The Trinity of God is omnipresent, meaning God is present everywhere (2 Chronicles 16:9; Proverbs 15:3; Psalm 139:7-8; Isaiah 66:1).
The Trinity of God is omniscient, meaning He knows all things (Psalm 139:4; 1 John 3:20; Hebrews 4:13).
The Trinity of God is omnipotent, meaning He is all powerful (Genesis 17:1; Matthew 19:26; Revelation 19:6; Psalm 62:11).
The Trinity of God does not change. He does not change His basic nature, person, or purpose (Malachi 3:6; Hebrews 13:8).
The Trinity of God is holy. He is sinless and never sinned (Leviticus 19:2).
The Trinity of God is just, meaning He is fair and impartial in judgment (Deuteronomy 32:4).
The Trinity of God is faithful. He keeps His promises and is absolutely trustworthy (2 Timothy 2:13).
The Trinity of God is benevolent. He is good, kind, and desires your welfare (Psalms 145:9).
The Trinity of God is merciful. He shows mercy to sinful mankind (Exodus 34:6-7).
The Trinity of God is gracious. He shows undeserved kindness to sinful man (Psalms 145:8).
The Trinity of God is love. He extends His love to you and through you (1 John 4:8).
The Trinity of God is wise. God shows understanding and keen discernment. He created the world by His wisdom (Proverbs 3:19).
The Trinity of God is infinite. He is not subject to natural and human limitations or the limitations of space or time (1 Kings 8:27; Exodus 15:18).
DEALING WITH THE TRINITY OF GOD:
Accept and acknowledge the work of the Trinity in your life. God the Father wants you to accept Jesus Christ, His Son, as your Savior. When you do this, your sins are forgiven and you are given eternal life and the gift of the Holy Spirit of God.
Study more about the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. They all have additional names in scripture, and numerous functions. Study more about these in the Harvestime International Network publications “Spiritual Strategies: A Manual Of Spiritual Warfare” and “The Ministry Of The Holy Spirit” available at http://www.harvestime.org
WHAT GOD’S WORD SAYS ABOUT THE TRINITY OF GOD:
Then God said, “Let us make man in our image…” (Genesis 1:26)
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. (Deuteronomy 6:4)
As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:16-17
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. (John 3:16-18)
Jesus answered, “I did tell you, but you do not believe. The miracles I do in my Father’s name speak for me, but you do not believe because you are not my sheep. My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.” (John 10:25-30)
“And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever–the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.” (John 14:16-20)
“When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me.” (John 15:26)
God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact. Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear. (Acts 2:32-33)
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in sinful man, in order that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the sinful nature but according to the Spirit. (Romans 8:1-4)
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. (2 Corinthians 13:14)
For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit.
We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. (1 John 4:13-16)
TRIALS, TROUBLES, ADVERSITIES
DEFINITION: A trial is an examination by testing. Biblically, it is a test of faith in which you experience trouble or adversity. Trouble is sometimes referred to as “tribulation” in the Bible. Adversity is similar to trouble, meaning extremely unfavorable experiences.
FACTS ABOUT TRIALS, TROUBLES, AND ADVERSITIES:
A trial is not a temptation. A temptation is something that entices you to sin (see the topic of “Temptation” in this database). A trial is an adversity you are experiencing that tests your faith.
Trials, troubles, and adversities are experienced by all believers. In fact, the apostles taught believers that they would only enter the Kingdom of God through adversity (Acts 14:22). Peter said not to consider it strange or unusual when you encounter trouble (1 Peter 4:12).
God uses both positive and negative experiences for your good. Joseph told his brothers: “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” (Genesis 50:20). The Apostle Paul declared: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28)
DEALING WITH TRIALS, TROUBLES, AND ADVERSITIES:
Expect to experience adversity. Peter said not to be surprised by it (1 Peter 4:12-16). The apostles taught the early church that it was to be experienced as part of living in the Kingdom of God (Acts 14:22).
Pray about your trials, troubles and adversities. The Bible says that God has promised to hear before you call and even while you are yet speaking (Isaiah 65:24). Confess your total dependence on Him. Instead of asking “What am I going to do in this adversity?” ask God, “What are You going to do?”
Immerse yourself in the Word of God. The Bible brings comfort and direction during trials, troubles, and adversities.
Use your spiritual weapons. Trials, troubles, and adverse circumstances must be faced with your spiritual weapons. Study Ephesians 6:10-18. See also “Spiritual Warfare” in this database.
Remember that good things comes from God. If something comes to rob, steal, or destroy in your life, do not blame God. It is from the enemy. Jesus said: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10). James said: “Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows” (James 1:16-17).
Remember that there is divine purpose in adversity. Your faith is being refined (1 Peter 1:6-7) and spiritual qualities are being developed in your life: “Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope” (Romans 5:3-4).
Focus on eternal benefits. The Bible indicates that trials actually work for you when you are focused on the eternal benefits of the trials instead of the temporary problems: “Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18).
Rejoice in times of adversity. The Bible commands you to rejoice and give thanks to God in times of adversity. You may not feel like doing this, but do it as an act of your will (See 1 Thessalonians 5:18 and 1 Peter 1:6-7; 4:12-17). You do not give thanks for the adversity, but in the midst of and in spite of it.
Remember these six “p”s of adversity.
- Purpose: God has divine purpose in your trial.
- Profitable: Your trial is profitable if you submit to God and trust Him.
- Presence: God will be with you in your trials.
- Prove: Your faith will be proven by the difficulties.
- Produce: Your trial will produce positive spiritual qualities in your life.
- Perspective: You will emerge with a new perspective.
WHAT GOD’S WORD SAYS ABOUT TRIALS, TROUBLES, AND ADVERSITIES:
You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. (Genesis 50:20)
But in their distress they turned to the Lord, the God of Israel, and sought him, and he was found by them. (2 Chronicles 15:4)
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go. (Joshua 1:9)
The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. (Psalm 9:9)
Do not be far from me, for trouble is near and there is no one to help. (Psalm 22:11)
The troubles of my heart have multiplied; free me from my anguish. (Psalm 25:17)
For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock. (Psalm 27:5)
I will be glad and rejoice in your love, for you saw my affliction and knew the anguish of my soul. You have not handed me over to the enemy but have set my feet in a spacious place. (Psalm 31:8)
You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. (Psalm 32:7)
This poor man called, and the Lord heard him; he saved him out of all his troubles. The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them. (Psalm 34:6)
The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. A righteous man may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all. (Psalm 34:17-19)
May all who gloat over my distress be put to shame and confusion. (Psalm 35:26)
The salvation of the righteous comes from the Lord; he is their stronghold in time of trouble.
The Lord helps them and delivers them; he delivers them from the wicked and saves them,
because they take refuge in him. (Psalm 37:39-40)
For troubles without number surround me; my sins have overtaken me, and I cannot see. They are more than the hairs of my head, and my heart fails within me. (Psalm 40:12)
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. (Psalm 46:1)
…call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor me. (Psalm 50:15)
But I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble. (Psalms 59:16)
Do not hide your face from your servant; answer me quickly, for I am in trouble. (Psalm 69:17)
In the day of my trouble I will call to you, for you will answer me. (Psalm 86:7)
He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. (Psalms 91:15)
Do not hide your face from me when I am in distress. Turn your ear to me; when I call, answer me quickly. (Psalms 102:2)
Give us aid against the enemy, for the help of man is worthless. With God we will gain the victory, and he will trample down our enemies. (Psalms 108:12-13)
Trouble and distress have come upon me, but your commands are my delight. (Psalm 119:143)
Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you preserve my life; you stretch out your hand against the anger of my foes, with your right hand you save me. The Lord will fulfill [his purpose] for me; your love, O Lord, endures forever–do not abandon the works of your hands. (Psalms 138:7-8)
I pour out my complaint before him; before him I tell my trouble. (Psalm 142:2)
For your name’s sake, O Lord, preserve my life; in your righteousness, bring me out of trouble. (Psalms 143:11)
If you falter in times of trouble, how small is your strength! (Proverbs 24:10)
For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you. (Isaiah 41:13)
Shout for joy, O heavens; rejoice, O earth; burst into song, O mountains! For the Lord comforts his people and will have compassion on his afflicted ones. (Isaiah 49:13)
… no weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. (Isaiah 54:17)
Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear. (Isaiah 65:24)
The Lord is good, A stronghold in the day of trouble; And He knows those who trust in Him. (Nahum 1:7)
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. (John 10:10)
Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. (John 14:27)
In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)
They preached the good news in that city and won a large number of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith. “We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,” they said. (Acts 14:22)
Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. (Romans 5:3-4).
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28)
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:35-39)
Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. (Romans 12:12)
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. (2 Corinthians 1:3-5)
Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:16-18)
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9)
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7)
… that no one should be shaken by these afflictions; for you yourselves know that we are appointed to this. (1 Thessalonians 3:3, NKJV)
Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. (James 1:12)
Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. (James 1:16-17).
Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. (James 5:13)
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith–of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire–may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. (1 Peter 1:6-7)
Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. If you suffer, it should not be as a murderer or thief or any other kind of criminal, or even as a meddler. However, if you suffer as a Christian, do not be ashamed, but praise God that you bear that name. (1 Peter 4:12-17)
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. (1 Peter 5:7-10)
Study the story of Job–especially chapters 1-2 and chapter 42–to understand more about the purpose of trials.
TITHES AND OFFERINGS
DEFINITION: The biblical definition of tithing is setting aside for the work of the Lord a tenth of all one earns or receives. Offerings are special gifts above the tithe that are given to the work of the Lord.
FACTS ABOUT TITHES AND OFFERINGS:
The first record of tithing was when Abraham paid tithe to Melchizedek (Genesis 14:20).
Tithing was not just done under Old Testament law. Abraham’s tithing was done more than 400 years before the law was given. New Testament believers also tithed and gave offerings from their income (1 Corinthians 16:2. See also Luke 18:12-13).
Tithes and offerings are important to God. If a person fails to tithe, it is considered robbing God: “Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. But you ask, ‘How do we rob you?’ In tithes and offerings” (Malachi 3:8.).
You can borrow from the tithe, but if you do you must include 20% interest when you repay it (Leviticus 27:31).
God blesses those who tithe. Those who do not tithe are under a curse: “You are under a curse–the whole nation of you–because you are robbing me. Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it” (Malachi 3:9-10).
DEALING WITH TITHES AND OFFERINGS:
Ask God to forgive you if you have not been tithing. The prophet admonished the people to consider their ways, repent, and renew their covenant of tithing with the Lord (Haggai 1:5-11).
Set aside 10% of all you earn to give to the work of the Lord. Do this first before you pay any bills or spend money on anything else. In some cultures, as in Old Testament times, people tithe off of the produce of their land when there is no monetary exchange operative.
Set aside funds above your tithe to give as offerings to special works: Missions, the poor, specialized ministries, etc.
WHAT GOD’S WORD SAYS ABOUT TITHES AND OFFERINGS:
A tithe of everything from the land, whether grain from the soil or fruit from the trees, belongs to the Lord; it is holy to the Lord. If a man redeems any of his tithe, he must add a fifth of the value to it. (Leviticus 27:30-31)
Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the first fruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine. (Proverbs 3:9-10)
Consider your ways (and set your mind on what has come to you). Now therefore thus says the Lord of hosts: Consider your ways (and set your mind on what has come to you). You have sown much, but you have reaped little; you eat, but you do not have enough; you drink, but you do not have your fill, you clothe yourselves, but no one is warm; and he who earns wages has earned them to put them in a bag with holes in it…You looked for much (harvest), and it came to little; and even when you brought that home, I blew it away. Why? says the Lord of hosts. Because of My house which lies waste, while you yourselves run each man to his own house (eager to build and adorn it). Therefore the heavens above you (for your sake) withhold the dew, and the earth withholds its produce. And I have called for a drought upon the land and the hill country, upon the grain, the fresh fruit juice, the oil, upon what the ground brings forth, upon men and cattle, and upon all the (wearisome) toil of men’s hands. (Haggai 1:5-6, 9-11, AMP)
“The silver is mine and the gold is mine,” declares the Lord Almighty. (Haggai 2:8)
“Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. But you ask, ‘How do we rob you?’ In tithes and offerings. You are under a curse–the whole nation of you–because you are robbing me. Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.” (Malachi 3:8-10)
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. (Matthew 6:33)
Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. (Luke 6:38)
…The Lord Jesus himself said: “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35)
On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income…(1 Corinthians 16:2)
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work (2 Corinthians 9:6-8)
(See also “Finances” in this database. For detailed teaching regarding finances obtain the Harvestime International Network publication entitled “Divine Provision” available at http://www.harvestime.org)
DEFINITION: Time is a limited period during which actions, processes, or conditions exist or take place. It is a measure of the duration of events and the intervals between them. Time encompasses the past, present, and future–and for the believer this includes eternity.
FACTS ABOUT TIME:
Time is a gift from God. You are a steward of this gift from God and accountable for how you use it each day. Time is a precious and limited commodity.
The biblical day was from evening to morning. People began the day in weakness (tired in the evening) confessing their reliance upon God. Conversely, we begin or day in the morning relying on our energetic selves.
Your activities reveal your priorities. You only have so much time. What you do with your time reveals your priorities. You usually make time for what you really want to do.
A balanced day includes communing with the Heavenly Father in prayer, worship, and the Word; working on your job, at school, or in volunteer work; time spent building relationships with friends and family; and finally, some time spent relaxing.
DEALING WITH TIME:
Commit each day to the Lord. Begin with prayer and the Word and by asking God, “What are your priorities for me today? What do you want me to do with my time today?” If you commit your day to the Lord, a plan will emerge and your tasks for the day will be established (Proverbs 16:3).
Make a plan. Under the guidance of the Lord, make a plan for your day and jot down the details. Who do you need to contact? What do you need to do today? What can you delegate to others to do? What tasks can be postponed? What is the main priority for this day? If you “aim at nothing, you hit it every time”. With no plan for a day, you probably won’t accomplish much.
Submit your plans to God’s sovereignty. His will is sovereign over your plans. Your day may not turn out exactly as you planned (James 4:13-15). Be open to redirection.
Deal with interruptions wisely. Make “faith statements” regarding your plans for the day, but be aware that your day can be interrupted by unexpected events or people. Learn to deal with these wisely. Sometimes interruptions are God’s divine appointments where His plan overrules the plans you have made (Proverbs 16:9). Accept these graciously and fulfill the obligations involved. However, do not allow petty interruptions to keep you from accomplishing what is worthwhile–for example people that want to aimlessly chat with you during your work time.
View each day in light of eternity. “So often we think about life in terms of what’s happening today, this week, or next month. We need to try to look at things as God does, with an eye for eternity. Is what you are doing now making a lasting impact? Will it matter in another year, another decade, another century? Begin dedicating yourself to things that will still be important long after you are gone.” (John Maxwell)
Do not procrastinate. Do not put off doing important things that contribute to God’s purpose for your life. “I find myself thinking, ‘When life settles down I will…’ But I should have learned by now that life never settles down for long. Whatever I want to accomplish, I must do with life unsettled.” (Jean Fleming)
Balance your day. Commune with the Heavenly Father in prayer, worship, and the Word. Work on your job–including school or volunteer work. Spend time building relationships with friends and family, and finally, spend some time relaxing.
WHAT GOD’S WORD SAYS ABOUT TIME:
And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this? (Esther 4:14)
But I trust in you, O Lord; I say, “You are my God. My times are in your hands.” (Psalm 31:14-15a)
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. (Psalm 32:8)
If the Lord delights in a man’s way, he makes his steps firm; though he stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand. (Psalm 37:23)
You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Each man’s life is but a breath. (Psalm 39:5-6)
Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. (Psalm 90:12)
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you.
Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul. (Psalm 143:8)
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
When you walk, your steps will not be hampered; when you run, you will not stumble. (Proverbs 4:12)
A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest–and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man. (Proverbs 6:10-11)
Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed. (Proverbs 16:3)
In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps. (Proverbs 16:9)
A sluggard does not plow in season; so at harvest time he looks but finds nothing. (Proverbs 20:4)
There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven. (Ecclesiastes 3:1)
Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” (Isaiah 30:21)
I know, O Lord, that a man’s life is not his own; it is not for man to direct his steps. (Jeremiah 10:23)
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. (John 9:4)
Be very careful, then, how you live–not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. (Ephesians 5:15-17)
Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” (James 4:13-15)
Study the story of the talents in Matthew 25. Time is like one of these talents, a resource with which God has entrusted you. What will you do with it?