Copyright © 2014 Author [
The American faith preacher is telling the people at a conference in the city of London, England:
” Last time I was here the Lord told me to tell you, that you can be a millionaire in a month.”
I am watching this on my television screen as it comes through the computer. It is about 9.00 p.m.
Lorna has already gone to bed.
The faith preacher tells the people a second time;
”You can be a millionaire in a month.”
The audience loves it. They are going wild.
I am waiting for him to give a testimony, an example of someone that experienced this amazing prediction.
Surely he won’t leave us all hanging in mid-air?
A few days later I am reading a book about a young girl who has a convulsion at home and goes into a coma. The father is writing the book.
He was involved in sports coaching early in his career and he is using all the principles he learnt as he tries to get the hospital staff and doctors to believe for his daughter to get better.
She is lying in a coma; the doctors cannot find any brain function on the monitors. The father is not allowing anyone who does not believe…to come into the room.
Everyone is annoyed.
Late at night he starts to talk to his daughter. He thinks he can see a response. He goes into coaching mode and encourages his daughter to move her big toes so they touch.
Her feet are spread apart.
But they slowly move closer.
It takes an hour to make progress.
In the meantime the nursing staff have come in the room and told him to quieten down.
When he points out to them that his daughter’s feet have moved, he is treated with distain.
They watch for a while but cannot see any movement.
After they leave he continues to encourage his daughter until her toes touch. He is ecstatic!
She is alive in her seemingly immobile body, not only alive but communicating with her father.
The father is convinced all of this is happening because he is believing.
I stop reading and think about the power of belief.
My thoughts go back to the preacher in London.
He said,” You can be a millionaire in a month.”
He wasn’t speaking to me, maybe he just said it because he wanted to motivate the people or shock them.
I thought about the story of the father and his daughter.
Even if the end result is not what we want, things might be, just might be, slightly improved.
What if someone left that conference and believed they were going to be a millionaire in a month, would their believing affect their circumstances in a positive way that may not have happened if they proceeded to go about their lives for the next month in their ordinary state of mind?
In other words, if they expect something to be different in a month, will that expectation cause an actual change in their situation and would the results be measurable?
Here is my idea…what if I believe to be a millionaire in a month and therefore get up every day for the next 30 days imagining the result, speaking the result and trying to feel the result?
There must be some way to measure the power of my believing.
It would be interesting to see whether my book sales increase and by how much.
I can start writing about my experiment today.
Even if the change is small it will be better than no change at all.
This is one of my favourite stories; I have included it on day two of my experiment because it is a great example of the principle that;
” a small result is better than no result at all.”
When a team of scientists in London first used penicillin they failed, but in their failure they succeeded.
The patient died but that did not mean the drug did not work, it just did not work enough to save his life.
He did initially start to recover.
Our faith works the same way, we pray for someone and they improve, then they relapse.
This means that our faith worked, we had faith for recovery instead of faith for completion.
We have to be like these scientists and realise that we are on the right track even though we are not yet winning. We know that our faith works; all we have to do is learn how to make it work on a higher level.
[The story of penicillin – the first antibiotic to successfully treat people with serious infectious diseases – begins with a bit of luck.
Alexander Fleming, a British scientist, noticed in 1928 that mould had prevented the growth of bacteria in his lab.
But the main plot of the story involves the rediscovery of penicillin 10 years later by an Australian scientist:
Howard Florey and his team transformed penicillin from an interesting observation into a life saver.]
Penicillin kills bacteria by blocking cell wall growth.
[In May, 1940 they performed one of the most important medical experiments in history on mice in the laboratory.
The results were so exciting: Florey knew that it was time to test the drug on humans.
But Florey’s team didn’t have enough of the drug to see the patient through to a full recovery and he unfortunately had a re-lapse and died.
Because of this experience, the team then concentrated their efforts on sick children, who did not require such large quantities.]
I would like to quote part of the story…where they realise they did not have enough of the substance.
“But Florey’s team didn’t have enough of the drug to see the patient through to a full recovery and he unfortunately had a re-lapse and died.”
They knew how to make the drug, but they did not have the ability to make it in large quantities.
So they needed help.
And that is how sharing your vision with other like-minded people helps to grow your faith.
Here is what they did:
“But the team needed drug companies to help produce the large amounts required.”
It can be dangerous to share your vision with other people because there is a war going on between belief and un-belief.
We have to surround ourselves with believing believers.
Sometimes we need other people’s help to produce more faith.
My friend Paul’s favourite book is, SEED-FAITH, by Oral Roberts.
He loves the part where Oral Roberts tells the reader to take their tithes from,” [a debt they owe and change them into a seed they sow.”
__]Oral Roberts thought that the church was missing out on a financial harvest because when you give as a duty you are not getting any benefits from your giving as you are doing it to make man happy instead of making God happy. He was implying that God loves a cheerful giver rather than someone who is giving out of obligation.
At the time my friend Paul was reading the Seed Faith book, he was paying his tithes rather than giving them and then he would add a little offering which he considered his faith seed for his financial harvest.
He was tithing around a $100 a week and then giving $20 as an offering.
After he read the book he stopped giving his offering of $20 and changed his attitude towards his tithes.
He started believing his tithes were a gift to God instead of a duty.
He believed that the $100 he was tithing was seed for his financial harvest. He got a real release of faith and joy.
Before this he had $20 faith…now he had $100 faith.
Eventually he went back to giving his $20 offering.
In the end he went back to where he was in the beginning, he was giving the same amount of money.
But now his believing…as he gave…was revolutionised and he noticed an enormous increase of grace.
Not only did his financial situation improve… his ability to enjoy his work increased. He found he was living in a new realm of faith that far exceeded the level he normally operated at.
All this came about without changing the amount of money involved.
He was so used to being told that he “had to give” more money to prosper.
He was pleasantly surprised by how all this worked out.
He has just come back from Perth, Western Australia where he visited a church that no longer has an offering time in the service.
The congregation give electronically or put their tithes and offerings in a box at the back of the church.
He was talking to one of the pastors about this very different way of doing things and the pastor informed Paul that the people actually gave more under this new pattern than they did under the old pattern.
Today is the third day of my project, since starting this journey three days ago a lot has changed and little has changed.
I thought up this idea as a bit of fun and now it is taking on a life of its own. My thinking is being influenced in a good way, I am realising how much seed I have sown in different areas of my life.
I am also realising how little expectation I have for a harvest.
I give tithes every week without fail and just do it out of duty.
It does help me believe for God’s protection.
But I have been asleep regards expecting anything else.
Some of you may have read about my three year experiment.
I set myself a goal to read the New Testament once a week for three years.
I completed that goal early this year and it did result in some very special changes in my life. As time has gone on I have stopped expecting any further results from sowing all that word into my heart.
On top of all this I have written three books and two devotionals.
These have been given away freely through promotions at various times this year and I have not been expecting a harvest from this type of giving either.
Life has a way of convincing you…“That this is all there is.”
But now I have embarked on my, “Millionaire in a Month,” journey…I have been woken up from my slumber.
The whole world knows, “that you reap what you sow.”
Farmers live by this, but I have not been living by this principle.
I have given away a lot of money, I have given away a lot of books and I have spent a lot of time in the word.
And now almost by accident I hear a faith preacher challenging his audience that they can be a millionaire in a month and I decide in a half serious way to take up his challenge.
What I have really done is wake myself up to perceive all the seed I have sown!
By the way, remember the story I was telling you about the father and his daughter who was in a coma. The story became all about waking her up from her deep sleep.
As she slowly regained consciousness, she slowly regained her movement and eventually her parents were able to take her home.
The key was; to make her aware of her surroundings.
As she became aware, she was able to use her inbuilt abilities.
She was able to take advantage of natural gifts that were already there.
Her father along with the hospital staff were able to coach her to wake up to the possibilities of walking and talking again.
When you set a goal you are actually creating a virtual coach.
That goal will wake you up to all the possibilities that are lying dormant within. My experiment proves this because even though I have set a ridiculous goal of being a millionaire in a month, that goal has motivated me to sit down and write a brand new book.
I thought I had finished writing, now I am back writing with a new motivation. Where did this motivation come from?
It has appeared out of nowhere.
It has been created from nothing but an idea. Ideas are free.
So my imaginary coach is free…free coaching is a new idea.
Perhaps that will make me rich.
Today we have the G20 world leaders meeting in Brisbane, Australia.
And today is going to be one of our hottest days of the year.
As I am writing these words I hear two “Super Hornet” military jets fly over my house.
So I have gone outside to watch them go past, they are going so fast that the noise you hear is not indicating where to look for the jet.
You have to look ahead of the noise to see where the jet is placed.
Your ears are telling you wrong information; your eyes are more accurate.
In 1980 the pastor of the largest church in Korea published a book called;
”The Fourth Dimension.”
In the book he writes about the difficulty the Christian ministers were having with the Buddhist monks because the monks were healing people from their sickness.
The Buddhist monks were developing their spirits by various means.
Such as visions and mental pictures of health.
These unbelievers, by exploring and developing their inner spirit in such a way, can carry out dominion upon their physical sickness and disease.
The Korean pastor was motivated to learn how to develop his spirit by using his imagination.
He did all this in a Christian and biblical way.
He writes in his book that these principles helped him to oversee a huge pattern of growth in his church so that eventually his church became the largest church in the world.
While he kept imagining what he wanted his church to become he was assailed on all sides by voices of unbelief. He used his spiritual eyes of imagination to drown out the voice of reason.
When Moses was called by God to rescue the Israelites from Egypt he saw the burning bush before he heard God’s voice.
God gave Moses a sign to prove to Pharaoh the king of Egypt that he had been sent by God.
Moses threw his wooden rod onto the ground and as he did this his rod turned into a snake. When he did this in front of Pharaoh, the Egyptian magicians copied Moses.
The magicians threw down their wooden rods and the rods turned into snakes. Now Moses had the same problem that the Korean minsters had.
His opposition was also performing miracles.
The main lesson in these stories is that the human spirit is able to influence the natural world. When we focus on a goal or vision we are training our spirit through our imagination.
My background is in sales, I have been exposed to a lot of motivational speakers and their material over the years.
I am always amazed at the similarities between these worldly speakers and the preachers that I regularly listen to.
They both get me motivated; they both teach good principles such as putting your customer first.
They both teach about goal setting and using your imagination to be creative. They both inspire me to aim to be a better person.
And they both get results.
The only difference is…the worldly speakers see themselves as the centre of the universe, while the Christian speakers see God as the centre of the universe.
In all these things, Christians have an advantage.
Because God is invisible, Christians have a lot of practise in using the eyes of their spirit to discern spiritual realities.
Christians should find it easy to develop their imagination so they can visualise their dreams and visions.
I would like to go back to the story of the father and his comatose daughter.
He had been a sports coach for years and not all his dreams had come to pass. But his coaching experience had taught him how to harness the art of using his imagination and believing to focus on a different result than the one that was in existence at the time.
In this challenge for his daughter’s life he was able to draw on those skills that were already at a very developed stage. And he was so happy to have used sport as a means to do this.
All around him in the intensive care unit at the hospital he was hearing how bad things were. But in the middle of this battle he was able to open the eyes of his heart and imagine a new day…in which his daughter was healthy and whole.
Finally even some of the doctors were won over by his believing and his focus and his inner motivation.
He heard what they heard but he did not see what they saw.
Like the jets that have just flown past my house, where my ears thought they were was inaccurate.
My eyes saw where they really were and to do that I had to focus my concentration ahead of the noise.
A long way ahead.
I have just received the mail and opened a letter from the city council.
It is a parking fine for a $113.
Thanks a lot Brisbane city council. How am I going to stay in a positive frame of mind with this sort of rubbish going on?
Easy, I will pay it and move on.
I go into the city about once a year, no big deal.
Don’t they realise that I may be a millionaire very soon?
How you see yourself and how others see you can be very different.
I asked a young man at church what plans and goals he had and he said,
”I want to own an airline.”
I asked what kind of airline, thinking he was going to start his own with maybe one small plane?
He said, “I want to own Qantas our national airline.”
I didn’t know how to reply, that airline is worth billions of dollars.
Up to that time I had always thought of this young man in a very positive light. Now I was worried about his emotional state.
People don’t mind if you tell them you are going to be a millionaire in a month if you say it in a slightly humorous way.
So I explain to them that it is a scientific experiment.
To see whether I can get the sales of my book to move, without changing any other factor.
For instance, if I sell a few books in a normal month what will be the sales results of this month if in the meantime I try to imagine myself as a millionaire?
Why don’t I pay that fine as if money is no problem?
“Here you are… Brisbane city council, here is your money, it doesn’t bother me!”
I have got plenty of money; there is a lot more of that stuff around here.
I need to develop a bit of swagger.
I can go into character like the Hollywood actors and play the role of a rich man. I would have to learn how to think rich and how to act rich.
Somehow we need to dissociate ourselves from our present circumstances and the way to do this is different and variable, because what works for one might not work for another.
Here is the story of a man who thought he was not successful and while he lived his life as if that was a fact, he was unaware of the real situation.
We may not always be as trapped as we think we are.
Something, somewhere out there may be happening beyond our horizon. Our sense of true north may not be our true north.
This is a newspaper interview and article about a documentary called Searching for Sugar Man:
[When Rodriguez first came to notice at the start of the 70s, he had the makings of a folk-rock star – the next Bob Dylan, as his co-producer Dennis Coffey put it. But somehow stardom eluded him.
His albums, Cold Fact and Coming from Reality, sank without a trace in the US and Rodriguez sank with them.
In fact, he returned quietly to Detroit and became a labourer.
Meanwhile, totally unknown to him, his music was gaining a huge fan base in South Africa where it’s politically charged lyrics had struck a chord with a growing anti-apartheid movement.
His South African fans believed him dead, and neither word of his popularity in that isolated country nor royalties from hundreds of thousands of his albums trickled back to the US.]
[The documentary tells how, after the fall of apartheid, three dedicated fans finally tracked Rodriguez down to a tiny house in Detroit and flew him to South Africa in 1998 for a triumphant, back-from-the-dead tour.
“It was incredible,” he says.
“They were just so good to me.”
“It was amazing.”]
Isn’t this man lucky and unlucky at the same time?
He missed his opportunity through no fault of his own and then because of three good people he was reunited with the success that was always his and some of the money that belonged to him.
His dream became a reality. Maybe in his early life he walked and talked as if he had a lot to contribute to the music scene. He was inspiring people in a far off land and he did not know it.
He was making money and he did not know it.
He was successful and he was the last person to find out about that success.
Who am I going to mix with while I spend a month believing to be a millionaire?
Only my wife knows what I am doing.
No-one else knows.
I came up with a perfect solution. YouTube is full of videos of these faith preachers telling anyone who will listen how to get rich. Every night I have been watching these guys walk up and down the stage of some conference explaining their story or someone else’s story of how to do it. They sure get excited. And yes, they are a little strange like my surfing friends from years ago. But it’s free and they all seem to be millionaires, where else am I going to find millionaires willing to share their vision except on the internet.
I am finding it pretty easy to watch them, because it’s for a reason and a relevant purpose.
I remember when I was a young man, how I would like to read motivational books. Any time I could get my hands on an inspiring book I would devour it.
A good book can give you an experience that may not be available to you in other ways. I watch these men get excited and I want to get excited along with them. They are funny and entertaining, I don’t agree with everything they say, I didn’t agree with everything my surfing friends said or did, but I still wanted to catch what they had.
They knew how to do something that I didn’t and I wanted to learn from them…but not necessarily learn to be like them.
One of my favourite movies is the popular Anthony Hopkins movie;
“The World’s Fastest Indian.”
This movie was based on the story of Burt Munro, a New Zealand-born motorcycle racer who became famous for setting a world record in 1967.
The true story of Burt’s life is just as captivating as the film.
Munro grew up in the early 1900′s on a farm in New Zealand.
He often rode horses around the farm at a very young age because he enjoyed the fast ride.
Burt stayed on the family farm until his father sold it near the end of World War I. He spent some time working construction until joining his father to work on a new farm. After this, he became a speedway racer for a short while, and eventually found work as a motorcycle salesman and mechanic.
Given his love for speed, Burt soon purchased an Indian Scout motorcycle. The motorcycle was very early off the production line and topped out at a speed of just 55 miles per hour.
Burt was unhappy with the speed of the Indian Scout, so he began to modify the bike. He spent years working on his bike, which he called the “Munro Special,” since it was made up of many parts that he made himself, being a man with little money.
Despite his limited means and age, Burt started racing his motorcycle and went on to set several world records with his Indian Scout in the 1960s.
The reason I like this story is because this man elevated himself to an international level of achievement by a very simple means, he made his motorcycle go faster, it’s that simple.
All you have to do to get a film made about your life story is do one thing, one activity better than anyone else has done it. Everyone loves a world record holder. Often it does not matter what the record is.
Simply running faster than anyone else will make you rich and famous.
Have you ever wondered why the world is designed to promote record holders? Why people are drawn like moths to a flame.
I remember a famous person visiting our primary school in the 1960’s.
Herb Elliot won Gold in the 1500m event at the 1960 Rome Olympics.
From 1957 to 1961, Elliot never lost a 1500m or one mile race.
This man took all the school kids to the oval and gave us tips on how to run.
I don’t remember anyone else who visited our school from that era.
He made an impression because he was famous and he was famous because he could run fast.
We may not be competing in a sport but we are competing against other people in our careers or in the marketplace with our business, or we can be competing against ourselves.
I have seen this with those who play golf.
Because you get an exact score with every game you play, you can compete against the score you got last week. The game of golf allows you to measure your progress with precision.
As a family we noticed this when computer games first came out.
We got the children a Nintendo game for Christmas and took it on holidays with us. You would be amazed to see how everyone was determined to get a better score each day and progress to new levels in the game.
New levels gave you extra power for your computer character and new abilities and the family member who was winning had boasting rights.
The big discovery we made was how someone’s mood would change depending on their result.
If they got a high score they would get happy, very happy.
Improving your score and going to a new level is a good feeling.
And the scientists tell us that we experience happiness when certain chemicals are released in the brain.
How else would you explain Burt Munro spending his whole life making his motorbike go faster or how do you explain someone like Herb Elliott practising day after day in the heat and in the cold.
When he was healthy and when he was not so healthy.
When it was convenient and when it wasn’t.
It feels good to achieve in the big things and in the small things.
I have not been able to start my leaf blower for months and then I go out yesterday and give it one last try before giving up on it and to my surprise it starts and runs as if there had never been a problem.
That made me happy!
Chemicals were released in my brain!
The great news is…humans love to be motivated and we don’t care where that motivation comes from.
It could come from winning a random competition.
When my daughter was getting married she won $500’s of flowers for her wedding by entering a competition on the radio.
Earlier this week the wife of the man who tunes our piano was telling me that her husband had stopped playing the piano and had lost the interest and desire.
She went on to share that very recently she and her husband were invited to a birthday party that was being held for a musician friend they had known for many years.
At the party everyone got in the mood and started playing together in a jam session.
She encouraged her husband to join in but he held back because he was out of practise.
She said,” eventually the atmosphere was too strong and he could not resist.”
He joined in and had a blast, much to his wife’s delight.
She said,” He was drawn in!”
If we surround ourselves with motivated people the energy in the room energises us.
We can get drawn back into our gift, back into a state of believing and therefore achieving.
Even doing a little better in a small thing can influence us into taking on the bigger challenge and though you may be all alone, remember this… someone, somewhere out there believes in you.
The preachers that I have been listening to have been saying,” Our situation can turn in a day.”
One of the most popular preachers in the U.S.A. has an ongoing theme of hope. His message inspires millions of people.
He says, “[Don’t give up, things can be put right in an instant.”
__]And he says, “[Don’t give up, God has a plan for your life.”
__]Another of his themes is,” to believe you will be raised up and your enemy moved out of the way.”
This message is so simple, yet this preacher continues to attract a huge audience.
My local pastor told the following story in one of his sermons, and even though I have heard it before the underlying principle still stirs something in my spirit.
[My name is Jack, I am a youth leader.
I have a friend named Monty who owns a horse ranch in California.
From time to time he permitted me to use his home for [youth at risk] fund raising events.]
At the last event Monty got up and told us this story:
[“I want to tell you why I let Jack use my home for this fund raising. It goes back to a story of a young man who was the son of an itinerant horse trainer, who travelled from town to town training horses.
As a result his son’s education was continually interrupted. When this young man was a senior, he was asked to write a paper about what he wanted to be when he grew up.
That night he wrote a seven page paper describing his goal… of someday owning a horse ranch.]
He wrote about his dream in great detail and he even drew a map of a 2000 acre ranch, showing the location of all the buildings, the stables, and the track. He also drew a detailed floor plan for a 4000 square foot home that would be located on the ranch.
He put a great deal of his heart into the project and turned in the paper the next day. Two days later he received his paper back.
On the front page was a large red F with a note from his teacher that asked him to see him after class. The student went to the teacher after class as instructed and asked why he had received the failing grade.”
The teacher said:
[‘This is an unrealistic dream for someone like you. You have no money.
You come from an itinerant, poor family with few resources.
Owning a horse ranch such as this requires a lot of money.
There is no way you could ever achieve this dream.’]
[Then the teacher told him he would reconsider the grade if the paper was rewritten with a more realistic goal.
The boy went home and thought about what to do next. He asked his father what he should do.
His father said, ’Son, you will have to make up your own mind on this. It is a very important decision for you.’]
[Finally after careful thought, the boy turned in the same paper, making NO change. His remark to the teacher was:
‘You can keep the F and I’ll keep my dream.’]
My friend Monty then turned to the assembled group and said:
[“I tell you this story because you are sitting in a 4000 square foot house in the middle of my 2000 acre ranch.
I still have that school paper framed over the fireplace.”]
“The best part of the story is that two summers ago that same schoolteacher brought 30 kids to camp out on this ranch for a week.
When the teacher was leaving, he said:’ Look, Monty, I can tell you this now. When I was your teacher, I was something of a dream stealer.
During those years I stole a lot of kids’ dreams. Fortunately you had enough gumption not to give up on yours’.”]
No-one likes a dream stealer; this teacher was probably unaware of the power of his words.
Many adults can still remember a teacher who influenced them for good or for evil. Dreams are delicate things, they can be formed in a minute by an unusual experience and last a life time.
I am writing this book because I turned on the television and heard a preacher say,” You can be a millionaire in a month.”
That is a seed thought for sure. Fancy telling someone they can be a millionaire in a month.
I feel challenged to put down my dreams on paper in a clear and concise way. Here is my dream.
“To see God’s hand come upon my finances in a miraculous and obviously supernatural way, so that outsiders will be able to acknowledge what has taken place, and for this to continue into the future.”
If I was to choose a sentence that sums up my financial life to this point in time, this is what I would write.
“He lived by faith, but did not receive the promises.”
The words that I hope to use one day are these.
“The windows of heaven opened over him and a supernatural financial blessing was poured out in such large quantities… that he could not contain it and was able to give it away.”
I believe this should happen for every Christian, so I do not consider it unusual. It’s just unusual for someone to write it down.
I also would like to have the ability to bring this blessing into the lives of other Christians so they can experience God’s obvious touch on their finances in an ongoing way.
[The Poseidon bubble was a stock market bubble in which the price of Australian mining shares soared in late 1969, and then crashed in early 1970. It was triggered by the Poseidon NL company’s discovery of a promising site for nickel mining in September 1969.
In the late 1960s, nickel was in high demand due to the Vietnam War, and there was a shortage of supply due to industrial action against the major Canadian supplier.]
In September 1969, the mining company Poseidon NL made a major nickel discovery at Windarra in the Shire of Laverton, Western Australia.
[In early September their shares had been trading at $0.80, but as information about the discovery was released, the price rose until it was trading at $12.30 on October 1.
After this, the price continued to climb due to speculation.
Poseidon shares peaked at a high of $280 in February 1970, and fell rapidly thereafter.]
In 1969 I was 13yrs old, and I remember my father coming home after work with two of his friends for a few drinks. They were all pretty excited.
The reason they were so excited was because one of these men was my father’s best friend and this man was a stockbroker on the Adelaide Stock Exchange.
This stockbroker had managed to get my father some shares in Poseidon NL at around a $1 per share and they had shot up to $10 per share that day.
This memory still has the atmosphere attached to it.
As I am writing I can still feel the excitement of their conversation and exuberant behaviour.
They were involved in one of the biggest stock market bubbles in history.
All over Australia people were becoming millionaires in a month and some even in a week.
So it is possible, just not probable.
All that has to happen is, for you to be in the right place at the right time doing the right thing and knowing the right people. That share market opportunity came along once in a life time.
Please God do not let me miss any opportunities that are coming my way. Open my eyes to see what I need to see, to hear what I need to hear, to understand what I need to understand and to meet the people I need to meet.
I met a Christian man in 2005 who was making big money in his share trading on Australian mining companies. He knew some of the top stockbrokers in Perth, Western Australia. These stockbrokers were helping him get in on the ground floor as these mining companies launched batches of new shares onto the market.
He had been talking to me for about two years about getting involved but I had resisted. He even offered to trade on my behalf, all I had to do was open an account and he would put the seed money in, and when my account was in profit he would take his money back out.
It sounded so good that I could not resist. I opened the account and he did proceed to make money on my behalf. He was good to his word.
My wife and I thought God had orchestrated this set of circumstances and we were impressed. But the financial crisis hit and everything changed.
The financial crisis of 2007–2008, also known as the Global Financial Crisis, is considered by many to have been the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s.
It threatened the total collapse of large financial institutions, and stock markets dropped worldwide.
I had delayed my decision for two years and I missed a very good opportunity. This Christian man did not make a million in a month but before the financial crisis he had been well on the way to be in a position where it would have been possible.
My father made money on the share market because he knew a man and I had a similar experience. These connections may have come about by coincidence but God can organise divine connections to bring to pass his financial purpose in our lives.
It sounds good to me!
When you buy shares in a mining company you are giving the company money they need for day to day running expenses and also money they need for growth and expansion. Only when the company grows does your investment grow, if your money is just used up for running costs and paying wages the value involved is not increasing.
The faith preachers are telling their audience a similar story.
They say that the money you give to the church is a gift and also an investment in God’s business.
It is used for wages and other expenses but your money that you have given over the years has enabled the church world-wide to grow in numbers and in effectiveness.
Therefore these preachers are implying in subtle and not so subtle ways that one day your investment is going to come back to you in a big way.
As what you have invested in [the church] has grown exponentially.
This must be why they keep saying,
“Today is your day!”
We do not know what day our harvest will appear, but for some of us it could be ready to drop.
Someone, somewhere around the world has just woken up to find out that their lives have been changed for the better financially.
We celebrate with them and look forward to our turn.
We thank God for all the investment opportunities that have come our way over the years and trust that he is able to turn our losses into profits in his time and in his season.
He can turn a disaster into an unexpected and pleasant surprise.
He does not do this all the time, but he does do it some of the time.
He is a God of variation and his outcomes are not predictable.
There is one predictable thing we do know about God…he never changes these words.
“A man will reap what he sows.”
The secret to creating wealth is tied up with creating faith.
Most Christians accept the fact that you can increase your faith by hearing and believing in your heart the word of God.
The book I have found most helpful on this subject is called:[
“The Tongue A Creative Force.”]
[This book says, “The words you speak can cause you to experience freedom and increase, or cause you to live a life of bondage and lack.
Most people do not realize the power of their tongue.
It is the ultimate creative force, and this dynamic potential is inside of you. His Word spoken from your mouth and conceived in your heart becomes a spiritual force releasing His ability within you.
Allow God’s creative power to flow from you.”]
The story in this book is about a man who owns a farm, he is in debt, the crops are failing and his money is running out.
He gets hold of a book written by Kenneth Hagin, in the book he discovers that his words have power.
He then writes down a list of scriptures that can build up his faith in the area of finances.
Every day for over two years he speaks those words out loud and at the same time he trains himself to say only positive words in his normal conversation.
One day he is around the family table when the phone rings.
Someone offers him an investment opportunity. He accepted the deal and when he hung up his family asked him where he was going to get the money from?
Without thinking he replied, “Money is no problem!”
Suddenly he realised that those words came right out of his spirit.
Faith had come!
He made a lot of money on that deal and went on to become a successful land developer and faith teacher.
The best way for me to build up my faith is by reading out loud every day the Psalms.
Here is a suggested routine.
MONDAY PSALM 1-25
TUESDAY PSALM 26-50
WEDNESDAY PSALM 51-70
THURSDAY PSALM 71-90
FRIDAY PSALM 91-110
SATURDAY PSALM 111-130
SUNDAY PSALM 131-150
Here is the bible verse that best describes what happens.
[“I believed; therefore I have spoken.”
Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak.”
2 Corinthians 4:13]
After speaking the Psalms I find that a doubting attitude has been replaced with a spirit of faith.
Motivation comes on the scene and the desire to give up is changed into an expectation of improvement.
Therefore I can say from my spirit with an attitude of faith.
“Money is no problem.”
Well the 30 days are up and here I am standing in my boat like Peter.
He said to Jesus, “I have fished all night and caught nothing.”
What do you tell a man who has fished all night and caught nothing?
Jesus said, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.”
Does that mean I have to give it a go for another month?
“Yes, I will do it for another month because a fresh word has come to me from a story in Matthew 8: 5-13.”
An important solder had a sick servant.
The solder went and told Jesus not to come to his house because he felt unworthy. He asked Jesus to give the command for healing;
[from a distance],
because this solder was a person who understood how commands and authority work…he was in the army and he commanded the solders and servants below him. This is what he said.
[The centurion replied, ‘Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed.
For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me.
I tell this one, “Go,” and he goes; and that one, “Come,” and he comes.
I say to my servant, “Do this,” and he does it.’]
Jesus was amazed at the faith of this man and said to him.
[‘Go! Let it be done just as you believed it would.’
And his servant was healed at that moment.]
I felt God spoke to me out of this story. This is the impression that came to me.
God was telling me…he wasn’t coming to my house to help me because he had already given me authority to command certain things to happen and I was going to have to learn how to use this authority.
God was telling me to learn how to do three things that the solder was doing. Let me quote the words of the solder.
I tell this one, “Go,” and he goes; and that one, “Come,” and he comes.
I say to my servant, “Do this,” and he does it.’
This is the lesson I was to learn.
Learn to command; “sickness to go and healing to come.”
Learn to command; “debt to go and wealth to come.”
Learn to command; “failure to go and success to come.”
These are three basic commands to start with but the sky is the limit because Jesus commanded tree’s to wither, storms to stop, sickness and demons to go and the dead to come back to life.
There isn’t anything that you cannot command.
[I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.
Here is another scripture that tells you there is no limit.
[Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked,
‘Why couldn’t we drive it out?’
He replied, ‘Because you have so little faith.
Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, “Move from here to there,” and it will move.
Nothing will be impossible for you.’
__][Matthew 17: 19, 20]
The challenge from Jesus is…when we learn to move mountains, we have arrived!
He was clearly trying to teach his disciples how to speak to things and command them to move. Now you can understand why I am continuing my experiment.
Because I feel that God has got involved and now it has a momentum of its own.
The key for Lorna and myself is to make sure that we have faith going into our spirits because when we speak to things… faith goes out of us.
So we make sure we read our psalms out loud as everyone knows that faith comes from “hearing” the Word.
If you think that the devil or someone you know is stealing your money, then some teaching on the blood of Jesus will help because Jesus had the same problem.
[But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected, “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor?
It was worth a year’s wages.”
He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.
Judas was stealing money, but in your case… it may be a series of natural circumstances that is the problem.
Whatever your situation is…the devil is generally not far away when money goes missing.
The bible encourages us to resist the devil using our God given authority and to also declare the victory that is ours because the blood of Jesus was shed on the cross.
One of the most popular bible verses on the blood is:
[And they overcame him [the devil] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony.
The teaching I have heard over the years is to take this verse as an encouragement to express vocally what the blood of Jesus has done for us.
It is interesting to note that when Jesus talked about his blood for the first time he lost a few followers.
[Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this, said, “This is a hard saying; who can understand it?”
The blood of Jesus is not a popular teaching! It is hard to understand and does sound a bit gruesome but it is important to know why the cross worked. The Old Testament stories are even more pictorial…you should read Leviticus chapter 16.
Blood is flying around here, there, and everywhere.
Listen to what Leviticus 17:11 says about blood.
[The life of each creature is in its blood.
So I have given you the blood of animals to pay for your sin on the altar. Blood is life.
That is why blood pays for your sin.]
Here is one of the most important things you need to understand.
Because the life of the creature is in the blood.
So the life of God is in the blood of Jesus.
[Jesus said to them, “What I’m about to tell you is true.
You must eat the Son of Man’s body and drink his blood.
If you don’t, you have no life in you.
Anyone who eats my body and drinks my blood has eternal life.
The technical reason you are born again is because you have actually been sprinkled with the blood of Jesus.
[To be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood.
Are you shocked to hear this? Here is a verse that says your conscience has been cleansed.
[Having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience.
Guilt was removed from your conscience because something was sprinkled. What was sprinkled?
Obviously something that can cleanse guilt.
What would that be?
[How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences.
The only substance that exists in the universe that has the ability to clean a human conscience from guilt is the blood of Jesus.
Now you can see how important the blood is!
“How long will you waver between two opinions?”
[1 Kings 18:21]
Elijah was giving the people a bit of a hurry up!
This story is in 1 Kings Chapter 18 and 19.
He challenges his opposition to see who can get fire to fall on the bull they have killed as a sacrifice.
Both sides have prepared an offering for their God.
Elijah lets the opposition go first.
They sing and dance and when nothing happens they start cutting themselves.
[So they shouted louder and slashed themselves with swords and spears, as was their custom, until their blood flowed.
__][1 kings 18:28]
Teenagers have a big problem with cutting themselves, you can tell from this story it is not from God.
Elijah does not have to shed his blood.
Just the blood of a bull will do!
God answers his prayer and fire falls from heaven.
He won…the enemy lost!
The same result happened on the cross…Jesus shed his blood…he won…the enemy lost. We get sprinkled in his blood when we are saved.
We win the enemy loses.
You may be thinking, “How can I win in this Christian life?”
By prayer, by fasting, by bible reading, or by going to church?
Off course, all these things will help you in your Christian walk.
But remember this, behind the scenes the blood of Jesus has enabled everything to work.
[Without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.
That’s right, no blood means no forgiveness.
But there is blood so there is forgiveness.
Phew, what a relief!
Do not waver between two opinions…get your forgiveness today.
[If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins.
__][1 John 1:9]
How does that work? This verse shows how!
[The blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
__][1 John 1:7]
Yes, the blood of Jesus! God forgives us and the blood purifies us.
God needed the blood of Jesus because animal blood does not do the job.
[It is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.
Animal blood does not take away sins.
One of the great blood stories is in Exodus 12.
Moses calls all the men and instructs them to select a lamb without defect. They are to kill the lamb and eat it as a meal.
They are also told to get the lambs blood and sprinkle it on the tops and sides of the doorframes of their houses.
Then they and their families are to stay in the house overnight while the destroyer kills all the firstborn of Egypt.
The most obvious benefit of the lamb’s blood is…it provides protection.
Most people when they need protection go to Psalm 91.
[Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
The blood and Psalm 91 are not mentioned together very often.
But you can see from the story in Exodus 12 that these people were dwelling in the shelter of God and resting in His shadow and they were doing this by applying the blood to their situation.
God had instructed them through Moses to use the blood of the lamb for their protection and their children’s protection.
Moses gave them another instruction.
The Israelites did as Moses instructed and asked the Egyptians for articles of silver and gold and for clothing.
[The Lord had made the Egyptians favourably disposed toward the people, and they gave them what they asked for; so they plundered the Egyptians.
Immediately after these families applied the blood they found themselves in a wealthy place.
Here is another story of God’s seemingly strange ways of getting his message across. He spoke to Abraham and said:
[“I am God Almighty; walk before me faithfully and be blameless.
Then I will make my covenant between me and you and will greatly increase your numbers.”
I always translate covenant for the word agreement, it just helps me understand things in a more modern way.
We see that Abraham has received good news.
His numbers are going to greatly increase.
Then God announces the not so good news.
[You are to undergo circumcision, and it will be the sign of the agreement between me and you.
For the rest of his life Abraham was going to wear a mark on his body that would remind him and his wife of God’s agreement.
Abraham was going to become a very important and influential man, these were serious promises and God made sure they were received in a serious way.
Whenever the blood of Jesus is mentioned in the New Testament it is a serious business. Paul writes to the Corinthian church about the way in which communion is being conducted and he is not very happy.
[So then, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord.
__][1 Corinthians 11:27]
That is his first warning; he then follows up with a stronger warning.
[That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have died.
__][1 Corinthians 11:30]
Wow, I bet those people changed their attitude after Paul got through dealing with them.
The problem the Corinthian church had was a lack of discernment.
[For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves.
__][1 Corinthians 11:29]
Judas had the same problem, he did not discern who Jesus really was and he brought judgement on himself in a big way. Let’s have a look at the last supper.
[In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.
This is probably the third Passover that Jesus had celebrated with his disciples.
But this would be the first time Jesus mentioned his blood is the…
“blood of the new agreement.”
Please note what happens immediately following this statement.
[But the hand of him who is going to betray me is with mine on the table.
The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed.
But woe to that man who betrays him!”
Judas was not discerning who Jesus was and now he does not understand how powerful the blood of Jesus is.
He could have repented and confessed his sin!
The sequence of events is a little different in the gospel of John.
[Jesus answered, “It is the one to whom I will give this piece of bread when I have dipped it in the dish.”
Then, dipping the piece of bread, he gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot.
As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him.
As soon as Judas took the bread, Satan entered into him!
Now Satan is involved.
But Satan cannot hang around when the blood of Jesus is spoken about. Things got too hot for Judas.
[As soon as Judas had taken the bread, he went out. And it was night.
When Judas left, Satan left with him.
The devil and his helper was removed from that table around the same time that Jesus had proclaimed his blood was the blood of the new agreement.
The verse I mentioned at the beginning was:
[And they overcame him [the devil] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony.
My conviction is…we need to declare out loud what the blood of Jesus has done for us and when we do that… the devil has to leave.
He does not want us to speak about the blood of Jesus.
Remember what the Israelites were instructed to do by Moses.
[Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses.
They were called to be active not passive.
Declaring the blood of Jesus will get rid of the thief.
If you have experienced a financial emptiness the following verse will interest you.
[You were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, with the precious blood of Christ.
As you can see the blood of Jesus has broken every form of poverty as well as driving out anyone or anything that has been stealing from you and the blood of Jesus breaks generational influences.
You are free from the past!
The blood has set you free from an empty way of life.
“You were redeemed from the empty way of life.”
After applying all these biblical principles to my personal financial situation.
I found that my favourite principle was the mustard seed.
Please let me explain.
[“What shall we say the kingdom of God is like, or what parable shall we use to describe it?
It is like a mustard seed, which is the smallest of all seeds on earth.
Yet when planted, it grows and becomes the largest of all garden plants, with such big branches that the birds can perch in its shade.”
Sometimes when things come to a stop and my faith needs stirring up.
I ask God for an idea.
A mustard seed idea.
By this I mean an action I can do that will release my faith in a fresh way.
The verse I use is, “Yet when planted, it grows.”
I do an action that is a single action.
For example, years ago when I had my house up for sale without any results.
I got some cooking oil and sprinkled it around the outside of the house and prayed that God would give me favour with any buyers who walked onto my property. Not long after I did that single action…the house sold for a good price.
The main difference between a “mustard seed action” and a “scattering seed action” is one is a single action that you do not do again and the other is a series of actions that are repetitive.
With the mustard seed action you are planting one seed once.
And the scripture says that, “[Yet when planted, it grows.”
__]You do it once and then you don’t doubt that you did it.
I did this again about two weeks ago.
I asked God for a single faith action to release my faith for my book sales.
As soon as I did the action I stopped doubting.
It was a single action, something I will never repeat.
That is what makes it special!
And my book sales doubled.
You may have read the following passage in some of my other books.
I would like to finish this book on a positive note by encouraging you to try something new if the normal ideas are not working.
[If you have faith as a seed; it is growing even if you cannot see it growing! Something is happening under the surface.
Maybe something has happened and you are not aware that there has been a change.
God may have done something while you were sleeping or reading this book.]
[Your healing or financial or relational miracle could be happening out of sight.
When your faith is ignited, resurrection life gets released.
Is your faith switched on? Why not turn it on now. Turn your faith into a seed by making an action.]
Decide to do something differently today so when you wake up tomorrow there will be no doubt that you have changed.
[Because you will remember what your faith action was and no one can deny that you did it.
All that action will do is release your faith by doing something differently.]
You should ask God for an idea [from heaven, if the normal ideas are not working.
In scripture the Lord likens the kingdom of God to the planting of a grain of mustard seed, which grew and became a tree.
On another occasion he describes the growth in a slightly different way and says,]
“first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear.”
[The nature of the kingdom is to grow from being small to being fully developed.
Thank you for reading my book.
Remember all you do is plant it. Once planted it grows by itself!
You may disagree with this last section or it may encourage you.
The idea for this chapter came from a story that happened to Lorna and myself when we were young Christians with a young family and a new business.
This story began one Sunday morning when the pastor of our small congregation announced that an overseas trip was being organised by our denomination’s head office.
A church conference was being held in South Korea and people from the Australian churches were invited.
Lorna and I felt faith rising in our hearts and when we got home from church that morning we prayed and asked God about whether we should go.
We did not mention to anyone that we were thinking of going; we just left it up to God.
A couple of weeks later the pressure came on us because the people organising the trip had to let the travel agents know how many people were going, so plane flights and accommodation could be confirmed.
We had to tell our church that we wanted to go, but we were short on funds.
We were taking little faith steps.
A generous middle-aged couple heard about our situation and phoned us to say they felt God had put it on their hearts to contribute most of the money towards our trip.
We were so excited, this looked like God was confirming and answering our prayers.
So we rang the church to confirm that we were now able to go.
The church then booked our flights and accommodation.
After all this excitement we got another call from this middle-aged couple. They had changed their minds and instead of giving us the money; they now considered it a loan.
Instantly we were in debt.
Just because someone changed the rules.
Up to that stage we felt we had acted wisely in our decisions…now we appeared to be unwise.
Eventually we went on the trip, everything went well and we enjoyed ourselves and were blessed to have gone.
But we came home to a debt that we had trouble paying.
We were not happy with how long it was taking and we were burdened by how the story had unfolded. We prayed and asked God for wisdom.
Here is one of the scriptures that seemed very relevant to us at that period of time.
[My child, if you have given your pledge to your neighbour, if you have bound yourself to another,
you are snared by the utterance of your lips,
caught by the words of your mouth.
So do this, my child, and save yourself, for you have come into your neighbour’s power: go, hurry, and plead with your neighbour.
Give your eyes no sleep and your eyelids no slumber; save yourself like a gazelle from the hunter, like a bird from the hand of the fowler.]
Now you as the reader may not like the idea that we came up with to pay this debt.
The idea that we came up with, was to use our tithes to pay the money we owed this couple.
We told them what we were going to do and they did not mind a bit.
For the next two months we went to church and gave our tithes to these people and our debt was cleared.
We then carried on tithing and giving offerings to the church as we normally did.
We were happy to not be snared any longer by our original acceptance of their offer to fund our travel.
They had told us that they felt God told them to give us the money and then they changed their minds and the gift turned into a loan.
If at the start they had offered the money as a loan we would not have believed God was in it.
And we would not have snared ourselves by accepting the money.
The main reason I am telling you this story is to say this…Lorna and I did not sense God’s displeasure towards us because we had used our tithes to pay our debt.
We actually believed we did the right thing rather than the wrong thing by using our tithes to free ourselves.
We do not think it is a good idea to pay of normal debt with our tithes, but there are always exceptions and because it was debt associated with a church organised trip we felt it was okay at the time.
Since then we have never done that again.
These events took place many years ago at a time when the teaching about tithing was very strict.
There was a lot of pressure put on Christians in our denomination to tithe.
It was preached as law and if you did not tithe they told us we were robbing God. They always quoted Malachi 3:8
[_Will anyone rob God? Yet you are robbing me! But you say, “How are we robbing you?” In your tithes and offerings! _]
The real problem for Lorna and me was… we came into agreement with that middle-aged couple.
We did it innocently enough, but no-matter what our motivation was at the time the end result was the same. Debt!
We enjoy giving and enjoy supporting God’s work in the nations.
Because of our many years as Christians it does not hurt to go back to the scriptures and have a look at what the New Testament says about financial giving.
Here is one of the times that Jesus speaks about tithing.
[“Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector.
The Pharisee, standing by himself, was praying thus, ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people: thieves, rogues, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.
I fast twice a week; I give a tenth of all my income.’
But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even look up to heaven, but was beating his breast and saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’
I tell you, this man went down to his home justified rather than the other; for all who exalt themselves will be humbled, but all who humble themselves will be exalted.”]
I can relate to the Pharisee because I also have mentioned to God in prayer that I tithe and because I tithe… could he possibly bless me.
When we look at this scripture, we can clearly see that Jesus is not impressed.
But I am impressed…this guy fasts twice a week!
He is a spiritual athlete.
The next verse where Jesus refers to tithing is in Matthew 23:23
[“Yes, woe upon you, Pharisees, and you other religious leaders—hypocrites!
For you tithe down to the last mint leaf in your garden, but ignore the important things—justice and mercy and faith.
Yes, you should tithe, but you shouldn’t leave the more important things undone.]
Jesus is once again unhappy with these guys.
He doesn’t like their attitude, but he does tell them to keep tithing.
He is talking to people who are under the law and we need to remember we are most definitely not under the law.
So is he telling Christians to tithe?
The better question is…is he more concerned with heart attitude than with the outward action?
Yes, I think so!
This is a good place to release a bit of pressure and tell you, I am going to make the case for attitudinal change rather than influence you into changing what you give.
It will be far more relaxing to talk about how we give; rather than how much we give.
Our hearts are open before God and he knows all things.
“We have spoken openly to you, our heart is wide open.”
[2 Corinthians 6:11]
We have to wander down to Hebrews chapter 7 to find the scripture passage that mentions tithing the most in the New Testament.
Two main people are playing a part in this Bible story.
Abraham and Melchizedek.
The writer is referring to Genesis chapter 14.
Abraham has just come back after rescuing Lot.
[Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was the priest of God Most High. And he blessed him and said:
“Blessed be Abram of God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth;
And blessed be God Most High,
Who has delivered your enemies into your hand.”
And he gave him a tithe of all.]
This is the first time that tithing is talked about in the bible.
We trace our tithing as Christians back to this scripture passage.
The context of this story is important.
Abraham was tithing after a great victory.
He was blessed by Melchizedek before he tithed.
And finally we see him refuse a financial offer from the king of Sodom.
[Now the king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the persons, and take the goods for yourself.”
But Abram said to the king of Sodom, “I have raised my hand to the Lord, God Most High, the Possessor of heaven and earth, that I will not take anything that is yours, lest you should say, “I have made Abram rich.”
Abraham was not going to give a man the honour that belongs to God.
All our wealth comes from God and God alone.
Now we go back to Hebrews chapter 7.
The main points are… that Abraham honoured Melchizedek.
Melchizedek was not from the same priesthood as Levi.
[For when the priesthood is changed, the law must be changed also.
The main discussion is about the difference…in who the priest is.
Because if the man in charge has changed so have the rules.
And guess what dear reader?… the rules have changed.
Because the man in charge as high priest is Jesus not Aaron
[For when the priesthood is changed, there also has to be a change in the law.
Let us follow Abraham’s example.
He did not tithe because he had to.
He did not tithe to get blessed.
He did not tithe so he could have a great victory.
And he did not tithe to get rich.
He tithed because he wanted to give honour where honour was due.
Honour the Lord by giving him the first part of all your income, and he will fill your barns with wheat and barley and overflow your wine vats with the finest wines.
You can only give honour to someone if you are doing it out of free will.
If you are giving because of a rule, you may be obedient, but you may not be honouring.
I believe that the rules have changed from an obligation to a gift.
Now to the one who works, wages are not credited as a gift but as an obligation.
All of our giving in the New Testament is… “Voluntary.”
You are free to give or not to give. Your money is yours to do with as you please.
The book of Acts has a great story regarding this topic.
Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. With his wife’s full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet.
This couple were making a big mistake.
No-one forced them to sell their property and they do not seem to have been pressured into doing what they were doing.
But they were acting as if they HAD to give this money.
It seemed like a rule was in place.
Maybe they had to at least tithe on the money they received.
Let us see what Peter says about their financial obligation to the church.
[Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal?
Peter points out to the husband that the money was theirs before they sold the property and it was still their money after the sale.
This couple did not realise the rules had changed.
They were unaware their giving was voluntary.
I try and imagine how this way of thinking could influence the way I would run a church. It depends on if you were starting a church or taking over an established congregation.
“If I was taking over an established church?”
I do not know if I would be brave enough to start telling everyone they were free to give or not to give.
An established church would have financial obligations that have to be met. The church board may have made commitments to purchase a property or given wage rises to the staff.
These are not gifts, they are obligations.
How could I as the minister go in and release the people from any impression that they “have to give?”
If I told them that their giving was voluntary, they might stop giving at their present level. The income of the church may decline and I may not be paid.
It would be a lot safer if I said nothing.
But what about a new church!
“I could preach this message in the first morning service.”
I could tell everyone that ours would be a debt-free church.
And the theme of the church would be…. to get everyone in the church out of debt.
We could create an atmosphere in which no-one would feel any pressure to give.
I would tell the board not to take out any loans.
And to buy things…only when we had the money.
The church could lead by example.
The people in the congregation would see how it is done.
They would be inspired by what they saw and their faith would get a boost.
I would call it the “Debt-Free Church.”
Then I would turn the emphasis onto evangelism.
We would have such an advantage.
The media are always accusing the church of,
” Only wanting people’s money.”
Our congregation would be able to say that our church never asks for money and never talks about money.
So everyone could invite their friends and workmates knowing the minister would not get up and talk about money.
If it needed to be mentioned, that could happen at a mid-week meeting. Then people could choose whether they wanted to go.
Sundays would become celebrations of our salvation, instead of celebrating a financial target being met.
We would shift the emphasis from money onto something far more important.
“The Cross of Christ, his death and resurrection.”
Believing in Jesus.
And loving Jesus.
And appreciating his gift of salvation.
If you would like to share with us; please go to our website and leave a message. God Bless from Tony and Lorna
If you have time to write a review for, that would be great
What if someone left that conference and believed they were going to be a millionaire in a month, would their believing affect their circumstances in a positive way that may not have happened if they proceeded to go about their lives for the next month in their ordinary state of mind? In other words, if they expect something to be different in a month, will that expectation cause an actual change in their situation and would the results be measurable? Here is my idea…what if I believe to be a millionaire in a month and therefore get up every day for the next 30 days imagining the result, speaking the result and trying to feel the result? There must be some way to measure the power of my believing. It would be interesting to see whether my book sales increase and by how much. I can start writing about my experiment today. Even if the change is small it will be better than no change at all.