STEWARDSHIP: A WAY OF LIFE
Since God is the one Creator, Sustainer, Sovereign, and Supreme Being, He possesses absolute authority He is the one to whom everyone must answer and is the owner of everything (Ex. 19:5). The earth is full of His riches (Ps. 104:24). Everything in the universe and everyone on earth owes allegiance to Him. All creation is subject to Him.
The same is said about Christ, God the Son. In Colossians 1:16 Paul States,
For in Him all things were created, things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities. All things were created through Him and for Him.
Paul highlights multiple areas in which Christ has authority—over creation, over the Church, over death, and finally “in everything.” Christ is both before all things and encompasses all things (“in Him all things hold together”). Therefore, Christ is supreme.
The supremacy is essential to our view of and worship of Christ. The supremacy of Christ affirms that Jesus is fully God. He is not simply a man greater than the rest but is truly above all creation, as only God can be.
Psalm 24 Begins by saying, “The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it;”
When it comes to stewardship, we need to have the perspective that starts with God as ownership over all things and all people. A clear biblical example of practical stewardship is Joseph. Born into a large family, Joseph alienated his brothers with his brash expressions and dreams of ruling over them. Their growing hatred led them to sell Joseph into slavery. In the book of Genesis, we read:
Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt. Potiphar, an Egyptian who was one of Pharaoh's officials, the captain of the guard, bought him from the Ishmaelites who had taken him there. The Lord was with Joseph so that he prospered, and he lived in the house of his Egyptian master. When his master saw that the Lord was with him and that the Lord gave him success in everything he did, Joseph found favor in his eyes and became his attendant. Potiphar put him in charge of his household, and he entrusted to his care everything he owned. From the time he put him in charge of his household and of all that he owned; the Lord blessed the household of the Egyptian because of Joseph. The blessing of the Lord was on everything Potiphar had, both in the house and in the field. So Potiphar left everything he had in Joseph's care; with Joseph in charge, he did not concern himself with anything except the food he ate. (Gen. 39:1–6a).
Like Joseph, we have responsibilities to manage well, but our responsibility is much broader than our family or our home. Our responsibility extends to the household of faith, the Church, and to Creation itself. Whatever God has entrusted us with in, our spheres of influence, we are to lead and serve in them as if we were managing it for God.
Stewardship is an act of worship. God wants us to acknowledge His ownership over everything by demonstrating our stewardship. God wants us to be like Him, and we are never more like God than when we give. John 3:16 teaches that God loved the world so much that He “gave.” God gave the body of His Son as a sacrifice for sin. We are commanded to reciprocate His immeasurable generosity by giving our bodies to God as living sacrifices (Rom. 12:1).
Stewardship is an act of service (2 Cor. 8:5). Servanthood is a powerful form of stewardship because it involves the giving of our virtue and vitality. We are told to offer God our first fruits.
Stewardship is an act of giving. Because we have received, we give. We give of what we have. This includes our time, talent, and treasure (Ps. 24:1; 1 Tim. 6:7).
Stewardship is the drawing near to God by faithfully trusting in Him. The word sacrifice, KORBAN, in the Old Testament, is defined as to draw closer, meaning drawing closer in our relationship to God. God’s desire is to draw His people close to Himself into an ever-deepening relationship of love. When one truly shifts their perspective from one of sacrifice to one of engagement and drawing closer to God, then you are in the position to enjoy the benefits of your own giving.
As we follow Christ, as we seek the Kingdom of God each day of our lives, we should seek to be cheerfully, generous, and faithful stewards of what God has entrusted to us.