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The following sermon was preached on October 14, 2004 at the gathering of the rostered persons of the Minneapolis Area Synod.
The focus of the gathering was for the rostered persons to dialogue about issues confronting the church regarding ordination and same sex orientation.
Texts: Genesis 15:1-6, Psalm 33:12-22, Hebrews 11:1-3 and 8-16, Luke 12:32-40
The myth of scarcity reigns. But when I see more clearly that God provides countless leaders in sharing the gospel, I can celebrate the goodness of God in giving to us the kingdom. Then Faith becomes a treasure.
A temple talk.
There are three key thoughts in this message:
1. God is Gift
2. Giving is getting, and
3. You and I are God's gifts to this world.
In this sermon, Pastor Foss tackles the challenge of materialism (Afluenza):
"The great delusion we live with is that we really can buy happiness. So, let's listen to those who had incredible wealth in the past. W. H. Vanderbilt said, "The care of $200 million is enough to kill anyone. There is no pleasure in it." John D. Rockefeller put it this way, "I have made many millions, but they have brought me no happiness." Andrew Carnegie said, "Millionaires seldom smile." (Alcorn,The Treasure Principle, p. 50) And when we look at those who have come into sudden wealth-lottery winners, for example-we discover that their lives are more miserable after the windfall than before. The happiest billionaire I know is a man who has decided to "die broke" by giving away his entire estate while he is still alive. His joy is now in giving to great causes for Christian ministry."
This is the third of four sermons on the theme, 2002 Eternal Treasures.
The following sermon won Honorable mention in the 2004 annual intern Stewardship contest. The prize is designed to enrich and strengthen the practice of stewardship in the church by advocating preaching and teaching that promotes the stewardship for financial resources.
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