Jesus finds himself stuck between the Temple and the Emperor, and we often are, too. So how do we live in both an earthly nation and a heavenly one? How we invest ourselves and our money is often the truest picture of our values. Kris shares Matthew 22:15-22 and talks about collaboration, subversion, and stewardship.
Here’s Isaiah 49: 15-16.
Here’s a link to Rachel Maddow’s Drift.
To learn more about Financial Peace University click here. (Kris notes that some of his theology is out of wack, but his financial advice is generally on point.)
A word of caution here: many stewardship materials you will find online or in bookstores rely on a heresy known as Prosperity Gospel or Prosperity Theology. Prosperity Gospel promotes the idea that God wants you to be rich, and that God’s blessings are dependent upon the worth or value of the person. (In other words, if you’re rich, God loves you; and if you’re poor, you’ve done something to make God angry, and you should give more money to that preacher in the front of the church so he can buy another helicopter to fly to his fifth mansion, because God really just loves him.) This ideology is bereft of any kind of sense or merit, makes an idol out of money (which God has some strong words about in various books of the Bible), and it only takes a brief glance at the gospel to understand it is also completely at odds with the ministry and message of Christ. So…. be careful. We follow a homeless rabbi; I’m betting if God loved Jesus, and Jesus was poor… then perhaps wealth is not a sign of God’s favor. Don’t let it seduce you, either.
Here are some other decent stewardship resources that might help you or your community think through how you are caring for the gifts you have been given:
Being Consumed (This one is about big financial and economic ideas.)
At the Crossroads: Leadership Lessons for the Second Half of Life (This one is particularly helpful for those who are retiring or retired.)
Here’s more information on the UMC’s participation in fighting death by malaria: Imagine No Malaria.
Finally, here is a short video clip which tells the story of the donation from the children of Liberia to the children of Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina.