Stewardship God's Way
We are made in God's image, so how should this impact the way we steward the resources entrusted to us?
What does it take to become a good steward? The term is referenced in the Bible, but its meaning far extends beyond simply money. It has to do with the heart. Here's an excerpt from Jim Minor's book, Church Shouldn't Suck The Life Out Of You, on stewarding God's way.
At one point in His ministry, Jesus was asked whether it was right for God’s people to pay taxes to Caesar. (See Matthew 22:15–22.) This gets right to the heart of the issue, which is: How should we handle money? Today’s churches struggle with money issues more than anything else. They deliberate over such questions as these: Should we add a new program? Should we make a new hire? Should we construct a new building? Should we increase our missions giving?
To answer the question about taxes, Jesus turned the inquiry around, forcing the questioners to examine their own hearts. He said, “Show Me the tax money.…Whose image and inscription is this?” (Matthew 22:19–20). When they replied that the money bore the image of Caesar, Jesus instructed them to render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s. (See Matthew 22:21.)
How do we know what belongs to Caesar? We know it does if it bears his image. That which bore Caesar’s image had the power to buy things in the kingdom of Caesar. It was the currency of the Roman Empire. If you wanted a donkey or a home or food, you simply had to take care of your money. That which bore the image of Caesar worked in the economy of the natural world, and even though the style of coin has changed, that truth still applies today. Take good care of your money, and you can enjoy all the things that money can buy.
But there was a second, more important, part to this story: “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” (Matthew 22:21). How do we know what belongs to God? Again, we know because it bears His image. And what is it that bears God’s image? It isn’t a coin or a mountain or a lake or even the stars of the sky. God put His image on something to declare that it belonged to Him—He put his image on mankind. Humanity bears the image of God. (See Genesis 1:27.) In the same way that taking care of that which bears Caesar’s image brings you purchasing power in the kingdom of Caesar, taking care of that which bears God’s image brings you purchasing power in the kingdom of God.