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Biblical Stewardship For Our Times

Ronnie D. Joyner, D.Min

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Ronnie D. Joyner Ministries, Inc. Breaking Free From Financial Bondage is a publication of The Ronnie D. Joyner Ministries, Inc. This ministry is a Virginia corporation with 501 c-3 non-profit status. Through varied tentacles of ministry, we minister according to our scripture of origin, Revelation 3:7-13 to provide Christian Education to individuals, organizations and other groups as well as to distribute and help provide Christian Education materials to affect change in individuals for effective and productive living. Pastor Ronnie D. Joyner, D.Min., is president of Ronnie D. Joyner Ministries, Inc. He has been in ministry since 1974 and in the pastoral ministry since 1975. Dr. Joyner is a graduate of Norfolk State University (B.A.), the School of Theology-Virginia Union University (M.Div.) and the School of ReligionHoward University (D.Min.). His doctoral dissertation, “An Experience in Networking: A Clergy and Church Response To A Community In Crisis� describes how clergy, the Social Service Bureau and community help agencies in the 23324 zip code zone restored services to more than 600 families who were affected by the 1981 Reagan Budget cuts. Being evangelistic, this ministry seeks to provide guidance, teaching and information through appropriate formats of communication such as print, audio, visual, public speaking, seminars, and workshops. We have positioned ourselves to engage in educational and charitable activities and to solicit, hold, receive, invest and seek contributions, gifts or services to make donations for the public welfare for charitable, scientific and educational concerns. Utilizing all means placed at our disposal to get the gospel out and reach the unsaved to the utter parts of the world, we are poised to enter into transactions and/or businesses that would or tend to foster the success of the above stated purposes and to carry on business of any kind that is not prohibited by law. Ronnie D. Joyner, D.Min. P.O. Box 1446 Norfolk, VA 23501 Phone: (757) 424-5776 E-Mail - RonnieJoyner@Cox.Net Copyright (TXu1-784-078) 2011 - Ronnie D. Joyner All Rights Reserved. Breaking Free From Financial Bondage ~ A Biblical Plan To Take Control Of Your Finances is copyrighted and all rights are reserved by The Ronnie D. Joyner Ministries, Inc. and the copyright laws of the U.S.A. No part of this publication may be reproduced transmitted, transcribed, stored in a retrieval system, or translated into any language or computer language in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, or magnetic, optical, chemical, manual or otherwise without the prior written permission of The Ronnie D. Joyner Ministries, Inc. P.O. Box 1446 Norfolk. VA 23501.

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Breaking Free From Financial Bondage Pastor Ronnie D. Joyner, D.Min.

In a day of economic highs and lows, what does the Bible say about Stewardship? This examination of some biblical texts will help us undergird ourselves with biblical stability. Biblical Stewardship is not divorced from these times of recession and depression our country and the world are confronted with, but rather, we seek to affirm that biblical answers are needed to guide us through these times. Stewardship is a life encompassing concept. It not only deals with dollars and cents, but it has everything to do with our total person. If we are not good stewards, all that we handle will not have meaning nor value. Herein, we will be careless, unconcerned and prone to make burdensome mistakes with all that comes into our hands to manage. There are many who find it hard to hold on to what comes into their hands. I believe you want to be able to control what comes into your hands to the best of your ability - Am I right or wrong? Your willingness to receive the proper spiritual support and guidance is what will help you to become a good steward. For too long we all have been bad stewards. In this regard, you should want the best teacher and the best teaching to inform you and your abilities. The best teacher is our Wise Owner-God, and the best teaching is found in His Word - The Holy Bible. In this pastoral work, I am offering counsel which has been developed from my 38 years in the gospel ministry. I am not a certified financial planner, but, I am writing from interaction with prayer requests, bible study questions, pastoral pre-marital counseling, excuses for non-participation in the financial support of the church, financially stripped members, building expansion ministries and those who just do not know what to do with a dollar. I share with a I Timothy 3:5 perspective, "For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?" KJV. I am also writing from a prophetic perspective. A great wave of anointed prosperity is about to be released in the Body of Christ! The End Time is ushering in the need for financing the gospel message - "And this good news of the kingdom (the Gospel) will be preached throughout the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then will come the end" Matt. 24:14 Amplified.

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Toward this end, the Body of Christ has to be ready as stewards to manage this increase with a Kingdom Perspective. So, it is important that each individual gird up their loins in this kingdom requirement. Each family must secure this trait in their dispositions as reflecting the light of this End Time demeanor. Each church must position itself not only to preach debt cancellation, but be pro-active in being an example itself and lead its members in the same direction. Such a calling will usher in Our King. This work is also written from personal experience. I have not always been able to say what I am saying in this work, nor could I recommend such. It has been a blessing for me to release this information from my spirit and into yours. This may be a bible study to some, it may be a sermon of sorts, my desire is that it will be a source of Good News. I want you to say, "I got this just in time to make some key decisions" or I wish I could have had this 5 years ago, maybe I would be further down the road. " When you turn these pages, you will find inspiration, information and a call for introspection. Freedom from the bondage caused by ignorance "in just knowing how to live" is truly a refreshing quest. It is my prayer you will obtain yours. What more will you find as you turn the page? In this submission I will deal with The Problem as the request has been made I Need A Financial Blessing. In my second submission we will explore The Promise There Is A Way Out. The Role of the third submission is to help you get established in The Principle of stewardship as outlined in The Luke 6:38 Stewardship Principle. Our last concern will showcase The Plan ~ Cooperative Economics. Being in bondage is not the will of God for your life, getting out is. I pray that your Exodus from the Egypt of Economic Slavery will allow you to cross the Red Sea of Revelation and Redemption, and as you enter into your new Freedom, that the God who made it all possible will be Glorified.

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The Problem: I Need A Financial Blessing For four years at the 4:00 P.M. hour until 5:00 P.M. - I was a co-host of a ministry entitled - Crusade For Christ, founded by my dear friend and spiritual father, Bishop Levi Willis, Sr. who went home to be with God on February 20, 2009. The ministry format was a "spiritual call-in/talk show" with prayer and inspirational/biblical counseling. Persons had the opportunity to request prayer for areas of their lives in which they were experiencing toil and trial. Out of all of the requests we received for prayer approximately 80% of them bear the title of this chapter, I Need A Financial Blessing. The immediate question is Why? What causes one to have the need of more of what they have not handled properly in the first place? Pondering the request a bit closer it seems very fair to reason that the need of more money is not the answer, the need to better manage what you have is. Management of our money is a picture of the keys to management of our lives. So in a real sense when a person says that I Need A Financial Blessing, the deeper request is "I need to understand the keys of management for my life. Additionally, I need to understand and appropriate the blessing of management in my life and then _the authority of God as manager of my life�. There are a few terms we wish to introduce here just in case you are unfamiliar with them. Management and Steward are .two key words. Management and steward originate out of the Greek term oy-kon-om-eh'-o and mean to take care, in the instance of a house or an estate. They also have reference to being the caretaker of that dwelling, its manager or overseer. Both are fiscal terms and have to do with the area of the Economics of that house or estate which is the expending of the necessary funds to properly run that house or estate. Mismanagement or being unfaithful as a steward is the culprit in most financially tangled lives. I Corinthians 4:2 states, "Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful "KJV. If one is not found faithful, one is then in unfaithfulness or entangled in mismanagement. How do we get in this entanglement?

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The specific reasons that determine an individual's financial entanglement can be found in I John 2:16, "For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. " (KJV). The three determiners of one's financial entanglement are suggested by John to be of the world. Being of the world is the opposite of being found faithful. Lust (ep-ee-thoomee'-ah), desiring that which is forbidden and Pride (al-ad-zon-I'-a), being a braggart or one that boasts out of self-confidence, are adversaries of biblical stewardship. Do you remember what determined the forfeited rights of Adam of Eve in Eden? Genesis 3: 6 says, "And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desire to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. " These primitive determiners are still the driving forces behind ones' financial entanglement. How many times have you seen that certain something, while window shopping or thumbing through a magazine, and the desire to have it stood up within you? A war was started within you, a "should I or should I not" entanglement evolves. The bottom line is "I don't have the money now, but if I write the check for it tonight or place the order tonight by the time my check hits the bank I would have placed the money there." How many times have you let something you saw lead you to write a check on money that was not in the account? When we do such we've robbed ourselves at this juncture. We've let what we see (lust of the eye) dictate how we should unwisely spend our money on an item (s) which we wish to claim for ourselves (lust of the flesh) so that we can "feel good about ourselves" and have others say how well we look (the pride of life). How many times have you robbed yourself? Oh, I can hear you say now, "Pastor, I don't call this robbing from myself when I spend the money I worked for. I call this taking care of myself." Let's cut through the red tape of excuses and hit the heart of the matter. Whatever we spend our money for, unless it is in keeping with God's Kingdom perspective, it has been a repeat of Genesis 3:6 and I John 2: 16. Genesis 3:6 says, "So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise; she took of its fruit and ate; and she also gave some to her husband, and he ate" RSV. I John 2:16 say "For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life is not of the Father but is of the world" RSV.

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What is God's Kingdom perspective you may ask? It is found in Matthew 6:1-34. This body of teaching is one of the most specific perspectives teaching all entangled persons should personally review. It centers one upon the attributes of becoming a Kingdom Minded person and not one lured by the standards of the world. One of the underlying themes of this Matthew teaching is how we must take the gifts God has given us and utilize them for His glory. The essence of living according to the Kingdom implications of these verses, are derived from a spiritual basis. This is the consistency of the teaching. When viewed, these Kingdom principles are solid and dependable pathmakers for all who follow them. When one fail to observe these principles the world's standard are employed. There are so many ever changing and amended regulations today in corporate American that it is highly inconceivable to know who holds the reign to the flow of the workforce and the benefits they have been promised. Those who hold the entrance and exit doors to the glass ceilings are the new determiners of this job question. But Matthew shares that the Seeker of the Kingdom will have sufficiency in all things, and benefits beyond, "But seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and his, righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” v. 33 KJV. Financial entanglement is also determined in other ways as well. Have you ever heard of the Guest Family?" Such members of this family may include Mr. Unexpected, Mrs. Unplanned For and Master Unannounced. When these “guests” show up they usually bring their own furniture such as sickness or the breakdown of the necessities in your life, a water pump on your car which is not covered under your warranty, or the hot water tank in your house bursts, usually on the coldest day of winter while you are taking a shower. The “Guest Family” will not ask if they can move in, they just do and when they do, they often make us shift here and rearrange there, they make us move things from their usual places, displacing the normal and creating new problems. It is difficult when you cannot experience being home and enjoying it in 7

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a homey way, in that "guests� have arrived. They don't tell you when they are coming, nor how long they will be there, and to make matters worst, they begin to make your home their home. When Mr. Unexpected, Mrs. Unplanned For and Master Unannounced show up, they end up becoming new members of your family. New needs arise, requiring new challenges, new answers, and new arrangements. When you cannot truly feel at home in your own home, and "The Guest Family" want to become permanent family members, the eeriness and paranoia they bring is a nerve-racking experience. Remember the request, I Need A Financial Blessing? It really is another way of saying Help Me !, I have some things going on with me that I cannot handle any longer and do not want to entertain any longer. If the "Guest Family" brings disarray and havoc, then those who are at home need an inhouse security system to insure themselves against the entanglement caused by the "Guest Family." Since the probability of the "Guest Family" showing up is so very high, then the in-house security system should have the following components: 1. A Proper Management Answer formatted for Mr. Unexpected: Summarize Your Present Financial Situation or undergird your financial area with spiritual safeguards. A great biblical text to follow is Matthew 24:43 KJV. 2. A Proper Management Answer formatted for Mrs. Unplanned For: Establish Financial Goals or plan ahead for the unplanned for. A great biblical text to follow is Matthew 25: 27 KJV. 3. A Proper Management Answer formatted for Master Unannounced: Increase your cash flow margin and control your cash flow. A great biblical text to follow is 2 Corinthians 9:10,11 KJV. If proper management is needed to meet the demands made by the "Guest Family," it seems then that mismanagement is a primary cause for the request, "I Need A Financial Blessing�. Mismanagement is the primary plague in the steward's community. Who is a steward and how can one keep mismanagement from becoming a plague in their lives? A steward is a manager of another's goods. A steward has 8

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been entrusted by someone to oversee, handle and care for those goods and services as if they were his or her own possessions. How can a mismanager learn proper management? Here is a decisive discipline which can turn the economic circumstances around for many persons. Some have suggested the use of financial counselors, CPAs and other financial planners. Still some have gotten great help from seminars initiated by those who had money then lost it and regained it again. These financial wizards are now millionaires and making more millions teaching others the how to's of our capitalistic society. The Old Testament as well as the New Testament references the use of stewards as financial caretakers. Here are some indications. In Genesis 15:2 ben-meshek is the hebrew for steward, and here refers to "son of acquisition." Taking a closer look at Gen. 15:2 and 24: 1-67 we observe that the section references Elizer and Abraham. Elizer is the steward of Abraham. He is the manager of all of Abraham's possessions. He has been entrusted to handle and care for his goods. He was accountable to Abraham and handled Abraham's property as if it were his own. He had an intimate loyalty to Abraham, and sought God's direction in caring for the possessions. Other Old Testament citings are helpful to recount. Genesis 29 and 30 relate Jacob being the steward of Laban. Genesis 39 relates that Joseph served as Potiphar's steward. Joseph served so well that in Genesis 44:1-4 we see where he assumes a position of authority in Egypt and obtains a steward himself. Sheba is noted as "this treasurer. . . which is over the house" in Isaiah 22:15. In the New Testament, Matthew 20:8 indicates how this steward acted as a foreman on a ranch or vineyard; Luke 12:42 is a description given by Jesus of a faithful and wise steward; Luke 16:1-8 describes a parable of the unjust steward; Acts 8:27 references the Ethiopian Finance Minister of Candace, Queen of the Ethiopians and Titus 1:7 enunciates one of the characteristics of a Bishop. Three of the most familiar passages wherein Jesus used the references to stewardship are Matthew 21:33-46, Matthew 25:14-30 and Luke 19:12-27. One can keep mismanagement from becoming a plague in one's life if he or she practiced the biblical teaching of being a steward. Get the clear idea in mind that it is no longer your money but God's and that accounting 9

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time is always just around the corner and you don't want to be caught being unfaithful. For every self-inflicted practice brought on by a mindless disregard for future bondage and the surrender into the magnetism of economic pressures, the biblically astute steward should view their possessions as God's and treat them as such. This biblical perspective is key- "But seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you" Matthew 6:33 KJV. We must always remember that all which belong to the Kingdom is under the domain of God. Kingdom, is bas-il-e'-on (gk) and mean of a foundation of power; a sovereign, in the realm of that royal rule and court. Our view of money should then take on another dimension, that being in the dimension of God:  Under God, money should be regarded as belonging to Him and through His Foundation of Power all your needs will be met.  Under God, we should not tolerate abuse or misuse of The King's money while in our hands, and recognize that He is Sovereign and those funds should be used for Sovereign purposes. 

Under God, His money is noted for being in the realm of His royal rule and subject to those directives of His Court.

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We then should have a "higher view" when it comes to the use of "our or my money." Such a view should shift into being God's money. God is the owner and we are His Stewards. Wherein we use to put ourselves at the disposal of debt and allow ourselves to become its slaves, with this new godly perspective, we are set free and liberated from the lure of debt and its slavery. Money and the mismanagement it breeds should no longer have our debt serving as our taskmaster and controlling our thinking, our living and all we do. Debt should no longer tell us what time we have to get up, how long we have to work, how much overtime we hope we can get, how much sleep we can get, how short of a lunch break we can take, etc. Debt should no longer be our controller. Debt should no longer make us worry, become frustrated and feel so helpless when we are in its grasp. Some persons don't handle these pressures very well. They haggle with health problems, some struggle with 10

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psychological bents and even life taking measures are contemplated and acted out. If debt is controlling, then you must decontrol its interests. We must take debt into the chamber of God's Perfect Place and see it transformed. Here are some points to remember, Psalm 100 is our guide

text: Make a joyful noise unto the Lord all ye lands *Cry out! I'm Coming Out Of Debt. Most people don't make a Joyful Noise when they are in debt, it is usually just the opposite. But when you worship, practice the presence of God in this area of redemption, that joyful noise will be made. Say it, "I'm going to worship my way out of debt”. .

Serve the Lord with Gladness: come before his presence with singing *Put a song of deliverance in your heart and mouth! Here is a little tune the Lord gave me that you may sing as you come before His presence with singing: ( To the tune of I’m Going Through) "I'm coming out of my financial mess, I'm coming out of my financial mess, I'm coming out of my financial mess, The Lord is bringing me out of my financial mess."

Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us and not we ourselves. We are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. *Remove the items God has given you from debt's grip.  Give those items back to God and rededicate yourself to be His steward working from His standards, keep singing.  Be a Tither, and as you grow financially let the tithe grow also until you will be giving God the 90% and you are blessed to live off the 10%. (We will deal with" The Power Of Bringing " in chapter 4).  Become Intelligent about your Deliverer! Make yourself accountable. Get up daily knowing you need his direction, stay with him all day and within the principles he outlines, Stand on his word as the directive for your new empowerment (You may be in brown grass now, but, Greener days are just beyond your wilderness!).

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Enter into his gates with thanksgiving and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him and bless his name. *The Gates of Blessing Are Before You, Walk Through Them! Avoid the use of debt by following a spending plan and budget what you have. Prayerfully, make decisions of authority and victory item by item. It took some time getting in debt, it is going to take some time getting out, but Get Excited About Coming Out. Celebrate the new entrance into His gates. His name is your password – Bless His Name! For the Lord is good: his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations. *Let His Goodness Replace Your Bad Decisions! Recognize that every dollar saved from essential and non-essential expenses directly increases your cash flow and an increased cash flow is an act of God's mercy. *Avoid the pitfalls of a consumptive lifestyle and become a producer, manufacture something that someone else needs – this is the key to his mercy providing enduring blessings to generations of your family. *Here is a simple example. One of my dear members, Pat Merritt, did not buy her beautiful wedding dress for her wedding day, she made it with her own hands. She saved more than $500 by making it herself. Suppose she would have placed that $500 in a very good investment and on her and Dwayne's 25th wedding anniversary decided to take a second honeymoon? Do you know that $500 earning 9% for 25 years would now yield them $4300 for their trip! I hope you can see yourself in a better light at this juncture. Come to grips with your mismanagement and work toward becoming the manager God has placed in you. Pat got in touch with the manager within her when she made her own wedding dress. What has God placed within you that is a decisive connection to the manager within you? I raise the same question with you which was implied by God to Moses at a crucial time of deliverance. What is it that you have in your hand? "And the Lord said to Moses, 'Why do you cry to me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward. ' But lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it. And the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea'" Exodus 14: 15, 16. As you cross from mismanagement to better management your key has been placed in your hand by God. So, Stop crying 12

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and move towards it. The sea of mismanagement will only divide when you stretch out what he has placed in your hand. Managers must to be great worshipers. It should be intelligence gained from worship which can be applied in every segment of our lives, including our financial areas. Because of our aggressive appetites for worship, we are either children of faithfulness or children of faithlessness. An excellent definition of being faithless could be - failing to think godly before you act humanly. Godly thinking directs the child of God in all of our human actions and activities, this is derived out of worship. Children of God should be faithful children or "Children of the Faith." As Children of the Faith, we are the productions of this God given Faith. God's faith produces God's responses. We should want to be the responses of God because we dared to be used by His Faith. Even in using God's Faith, we became stewards of it. The Faith belonged to God, but He let us use it, Matthew 9:22. How has it worked? Think about it, are you where you are because of yourself or because of God? Have you been living faithfully or marginally unfaithfully? Stewards are expected to live faithfully. Stewards must plan to be faithful. Stewards must let their lives announce that they live by faith. Stewards are the possessors of the faith they have been given by God. God has entrusted us with what He knows can produce for us. The trust factor is of crucial importance. It says a lot when a person entrusts their confidence in you. They say by their actions, "I know of no one else I would want to hold this but you." Being trustworthy is developed within an individual. Trustworthiness is created in a person through the agency of learning-by-doing. This learningby-doing breeds its own character by being responsible. When others can see this quality of entrusted responsibility upon you, it is a godly credit of maturity seen in your life. The Parable of the Talents is an excellent example of learning to be trustworthy, Matthew 25:14-30. The trust factor is a crucial element of efficiency during times of faithlessness. We say a lot when we are untrustworthy. We turn our backs on the one who put their trust in us and he or she suffers because of our unfaithfulness. This may be our employer, our spouse, our children, our friend or even God. This scenario makes for an unsavory feeling. We experience a breakdown in both our horizontal and our

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vertical relationships. This breakdown is as old as the disobedience expressed in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve, and as new as our most recent scoff against God. Faithlessness is the spiritual problem that causes us to suffer plague and blight in our human actions. How can we turn this around? I have found a renewal in my faith walk as I have re-read Deuteronomy 28:1-14. The entire chapter outlines very simply the blessings granted to those for being obedient and the curses for disobedience. You and I know that these words were directed to the people of Israel from God. But let us also recognize that we are The New Israel and the same applies to us. We are the New Israel having put on The New Man-Col. 3:10, found under The New Covenant - Heb. 8:13, because of the mediator of our New Testament, Heb. 9: 15, so now we look for a New Heaven and a New Earth, 2 Peter 3:13, we will have a New Name - Rev. 2:17, in our New City-Rev. 3:12, even now as we speak with a New Tongue, Matt. 16: 17, which will provide for us to sing our New Song - Rev. 14:3. Deuteronomy 28:1,2 states: "And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth; and all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God" KJV Permit me to put these words into a liberating expression for you. Look for this to happen! If you long to hear God's voice, even while you are in your time of distress: "Listen well for his directions and instructions. Then you will begin to think as God knows you should think. Directions will come; when they do, obey them in all areas. They are the directions for fruitful daily living. As you follow His directions He will meet you in your low period and His instructions will bring you up to a new level. This new level is His choice for you. You have been chosen to be above the natural way of daily living. You will become a supernatural person while living in a natural world. The experience of living above the natural is really being blessed. It is a life from above. The world's standard is to set you up so that you may be brought down. God's standard is to set you up so that you may live above the

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standards of the world. This is the mind of God, the spirit of life which elevates. All of this will overtake you and, to keep you from going in the wrong direction, will take you in the right direction. It will consume, overwhelm, flabbergast, exhilarate and sanctify you. All of this will happen in your life if you will only do what God tells you to do. He is our God. " The revelation from God certifying our blessing is a tremendous revealed truth which you should forever cling and hold on to. Verses 3-14 carries the remaining blessings. Verses 15-67 highlights the curses brought on by disobedience. God is very specific in these 53 verses. He specifies the weighty and devastating penalty for failing to believe and obey his commands. Examine the consequences of wrong in your life and see what penalties have been brought on - guilt, sorrow, the need for forgiveness and reconciliation. Some go so far as to suggest that because of their wrong the consequences ever plague them. They suggest that God is paying them back. This is stated by those who request forgiveness of God and receive it, but fail to forgive themselves. They have "pity parties", feel sorry for themselves and have low self-esteem and frustrated self-love. Through this self-negation they end up injuring themselves. It is one thing to fall prey to the plague of debt and live from one sequence of debt to another. But for the true Christian, belief in God says you can turn this thing around. You no longer should let debt or any condition make you a societal or spiritual misfit. You have the authority to rise above it. You can do something about your circumstances. Let me make a few suggestions: (1). Find out how Jesus has already dealt with the kind of problems you are going through. Jesus is Your Door, open him and walk through the opportunities he has prepared for you! "I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more

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abundantly" John 10:9,10 KJV. (2.) Apply the principles of Jesus' deliverance in your life and see the same results take place. Take what Jesus says and make those words flesh, incarnate them for yourself and see the new you emerge! "Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And everyone that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it. Matthew 7:24'-27 KJV. (3.) Receive and Rejoice about your deliverance. Encountering Jesus will create a joyous redemption, so CELEBRATE! "The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men, come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?, Then they went out of the city, and came unto him" John 4:28-30 KJV. (4.) Maintain Freshness In Your Deliverance by Keeping A Godly Focus. Philippians 2:5 says "Let this mind" (attitude; thinking, consciousness) be in you which was also in Christ Jesus" (KJV). Obtaining the mind of Christ is securing the lifeline of your deliverance. Many "banks� use this concept when they offer you an opportunity to secure a line of credit. Be mindful however that the line of spiritual intelligence from Christ far exceeds any credit limit imposed by a bank. His spiritual intelligence helps one to be focused, aim-centered and undergirded with direction. Did you know that God has a blessed destination He has already designated for you? It is in that desire you have which fuels that insatiable drive to do, to go and to pursue. You have not always known this but in recent seasons of your life you have come to realize that God has a blessed destiny for you. You are becoming arrow shaped and aimed at the bull's eye of God. Arrow shaped is the image Christ has for you. The closer you arrive 16

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at His bulls-eye the more arrow shaped you will become. If you have asked Him to use you, stop fighting the flight toward the bull-eye. Job had such a dilemma. He said, "Behold I go forward, but he is not there, and backward, but I cannot perceive him: On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him; but he knoweth the way I take; when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold" (Job 23:10 KJV). Don't lose yourself in difficult times. Allow your flight through the difficult to produce that quality faith Christ wants for you. Don't lose your head, your life nor what you have accumulated in the Lord but let it guide you through. "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me" Psalm 23:4 (KJV). Out of every trying circumstance Christ desires for more of himself to be manifested in you. Through storm, peril, tribulation, distress, persecution, famine, nakedness or sword Christ's plan is being perfected in you. Don't let anything separate you from Him. If you allow yourself to be disconnected from God His plan for you will be delayed. If you have been separated, swayed or put off track my word to you is:  Get Reconnected!  Be Reconciled!  And Become the Image God has placed In You. Luke has some good news for persons seeking a turnaround in their lives. Chapter 7:36-50 shares a picture of a woman in need seeking her answer from Jesus. The setting is in the home of a Pharisee named Simon. Simon has invited Jesus to dine at his home, and as Middle Eastern custom is, the door was not barred to anyone. It was common for persons passing by to stop by and observe the festivities. One observer at this time was a recognized town prostitute. Verses 37and 38 relate the heart of the matter, "when she learned that He was reclining at table in the Pharisee's house, she brought an alabaster flask of ointment (perfume). And standing behind Him at His feet weeping, she began to wet His feet with [her] tears; and she wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed His feet 17

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[affectionately] and anointed them with the ointment (perfume). When a person is tired of anything that makes them prostitute, they will seek spiritual answers. When you are working for someone else and that work is aligned with a form of prostitution, you need a cleansing answer, a transforming answer. As highlighted in this story, when one seeks such an answer, one should take advantage of the opportunity to obtain that answer and should not come empty handed when seeking it. She came in sorrow and humility, but she also came with a gift. This gift was an offering of penitence. She brought a gift - which dramatized where she really wanted to be. She wanted to be an ointment, a perfume, but her role has been just the opposite. She had been less than holy in her womanly performance and had the fragrance of faithlessness and human frailty to show for it. She had been used by others for their own personal gain. As she entered into the quarters of the Pharisee with Jesus as the guest she stood behind him. He was reclined in the Middle Eastern tradition and his feet were extended behind him. She seizes this moment to release her innermost desire upon the one she knew could change her circumstances. She weeps. Her innermost desire produced the tears as she stands on the same ground with the Son of God. She needed and desired something different than His host and other guests, she wanted a need met, she wanted to be forgiven. Her weeping moved her to minister to him. The tears which had fallen on his feet had to be wiped away. . She did not use her clothes nor any other handkerchief or even a napkin which may had been on or near the table. She used her hair. She bowed her head low enough to let her hair be used as the tear mover from the feet of Jesus. She wet his feet with her tears now she dried His feet with her hair. Her head had been possibly covered because of her eastern tradition but she removed the clothe covering and proceeded to wipe His feet with her hair. I Corinthians 11: 15 states, But if a woman has long hair, it is her ornament and glory? For her hair is given to her for a covering." She removed the traditional covering to expose her God given covering. This is an act of humility and the highest of worship. She had shared her ornament and glory with other men, she had disrobed, uncovered herself in the presence of other men but she had not worshiped another man as here with Jesus. Others had paid her a fee for her services, He had given her hope just by his presence. With the vibrance of hope sending messages of renewal

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all over her she began to kiss his feet. Though a sign of deep respect, the kissing of the feet has relevance for something deeper. How many other feet had she kissed as she performed for others and what was she after? In this instance, she kissed the feet affectionately and intermittently of the one who could deliver her from having to walk or live the way she was walking and living. Romans 10: 15 states, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring glad tidings! [How welcome is the coming of those who preach the good news of his good things!"] For the first time in her life she really knew what Good News was, she knew what Good News felt like and by the way she was feeling, she knew what Good News was doing. She anointed his feet with the ointment which was a holy and sanctifying measure. She expresses her honor as she expresses her humility. As he ministered in and around, I wonder had she seen Jesus pass by some of the places she had been a temporary occupant? Had she seen some of those who she used to interact with? Had their station in life changed as a result of meeting Jesus? This Good News Man was unlike any other man she had been acquainted with. His feet meant a lot to her. "Now when the Pharisee who had invited Him saw it, he said to himself, If this Man were a prophet, He would surely know who and what sort of woman this is who is touching Him-for she is a notorious sinner (a social outcast, devoted to sin�).

This judgmental attitude of the Pharisee marked the attitude the woman had to live with because of her culture. But her Christ reflects another attitude. The Pharisee has also questioned the credentials of Jesus as a prophet in that He seemingly fails to know who this woman is. But the Christ has another level to take this setting. "And Jesus, replying, said to him, Simon, I have something to say to you. And he answered, Teacher, say it. "

It is story time. Watch out when Jesus tells a story or uses a parable because you are about to confront yourself in the revealed truth. If you really want to enter into another level of truth, walk with Jesus through such a story. "A certain lender of money [at interest] had two debtors: one owed him five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. When they had no means of paying, he freely forgave them both. Now which of them will love him more? Simon answered, The one, I take it, for whom he forgave and canceled more. And Jesus said to him, You have decided correctly. Then turning toward the

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woman, He said to Simon, Do you see this woman? " This story lies at the root of how Jesus views people. He takes this setting to heaven's level. In a real sense Jesus brings Simon up to His view of the woman. He depicts her and Simon both as debtors with the woman having a larger debt ratio. Both are forgiven of their debt and receive cancellation of the amount owed. The truth that rises out of this story is - No prostitute nor a Pharisee is able to pay their debt because they both stand in need of forgiveness and cancellation. What is pending-foreclosure, bankruptcy, warrants in debt, judgments, late payments, slow payments or a bad credit report? What are you going to do about them? I suggest that you begin to get them to the place of Jesus. Your problems will remain yours only if you do not share them with Jesus who has intelligence on how to get rid of them. "When 1 came into your house, you gave Me no water for My feet, but she has wet My feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You gave me no kiss, but she from the moment I came in has not ceased [intermittently] to kiss My feet tenderly and caressingly. You did not anoint My head with {cheap, ordinary] oil, but she has anointed My feet with [costly, rare] perfume. Therefore I tell you, her sins, many [as they are], are forgiven her-because she loved much. But he who is forgiven little loves little. "

Have you invited Jesus into your house, into your financial dilemma? Who has not been barred from your house as well, such observers as Mr. Credit Card, Mrs. High Interest Rate or their children, Little Bro. Department Store and his sister, Mini Mall. In that they have come in and sat down, who is prostituting who? Are you working for them or are they working for you? Is this the reason you are saying, I Need A Financial Blessing? Well, depended on how many debts you have, many or little, they can be forgiven! According to this story of Jesus the more debts you have, the more reasons you have to love him, the more reasons you have for him to forgive you and Good News, the more he can cancel! It is turn around time! You need to declare this IT IS TURN AROUND TIME! "And He said to her, Your sins are forgiven! Then those who were at table with Him began to say among themselves, Who is this that even forgives sins? But Jesus said to the woman, Your faith has saved you; go (enter) into peace [in freedom from all the distresses that are experienced as the

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result of sin]. " The answer for your financial blessing is in your faith. Your debts know it but they won't believe it until you act on it. Use your faith to get your answer. Faith will help you learn of Jesus and find out where your answer is in Him, then apply the technique he provides to deliver you from debt's bondage. Your distresses that you are presently experiencing as a result of less than wise decisions don't have to live any longer with you. Do as Jesus told the woman in the text, "enter into peace, that freedom from all the distresses that are experienced as the result of financial sin. " Join me in this Prayerful Request:

O

h, God my Father, I come to you in the name of your Son and my

way-maker, Jesus. I thank you for the gift of life I have in Him and the power to have my life and circumstances turned around. I repent of all my wrongs which has placed plague, defeat and curses in my life. I renounce my pride surrounding my present state of life and I request your godly intervention. Fill me now with the knowledge of your Son as I seek your forgiveness and cancellation of every debt incurred by me. May this knowledge be given to me through Your Word and made real in all my circumstances by the power of your Holy Spirit. I address my financial condition. I need you more than I need a financial blessing. Forgive me for my unfaithfulness - for not being a good steward. Take control of my life and I know my financial life will be taken care of Guide me through the difficult toward that image you have for me. Guide me out of the ignorance of debt and into the intelligence of your blessings. Teach me now, make me now and fulfill your plan in my life. I stand upon Your Word and I am more than a conqueror through you. I believe the turn around has started. In The Name of Jesus I pray, Amen.

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The Promise: There Is A Way Out

I

n our previous chapter we determined that The Problem in our lives can be solved through Christ, let us now be embraced by the direction of His Promise. What is a promise? The widely used greek term is ep-ang-elee’-ah and refers to a divine assurance of good. God has a promise to fulfill in you. The end result of the promise is that good is assured for you. In regard to your financial situation I believe God’s will for you is to be free from the burden debt brings. Did you know that there is no difference in having good debt and having bad debt? Both control you. Debt causes an imbalance in your household’s economy ~ more going out as you work to bring coming in. Uncontrollable spending is a sickness that is creating illness of all kinds in our finances. To bring our spending under control and deal with our debt problem we must rely upon the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Even now as you read this redeeming word and feel its power - His teaching is creating new life in you. Through His Spirit and His Word we are able to get in touch with the plan of God for our lives. Dependance upon the power of the Holy Spirit helps us to be weaned from trying to nurse ourselves back to good financial health. The Holy Spirit provides another dimension to this new financial health we seek. He knows the best way for us to achieve it! He knows the best way for you to get out of debt and gain control of your money. The Holy Spirit will show you where you need to make changes, and how to make them. He will begin to show you avenues of change which have been overlooked. The Holy Spirit can put control back in its proper place in our lives. Jesus has given us this added assurance: "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you" John 14:26 KJV. If you think that I have placed too much weight upon the ministry of the Holy Spirit let me give you just a bit more information. The first ministry area addressed by Jesus as he stood up in the temple, as he aligned himself in the prophetic line of Isaiah, was the ministry to the poor. Luke 4:16-21 outlines the entire section by v. 18 is the specific reference. It states, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor..." Since gospel means "good news", what is the inherent 22

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good news for "the poor" through this anointed announcement of Jesus? I would suggest that the good news is "I AM NOT POOR ANYMORE"!!! This initial area addressed by Jesus in the Luke text amplifies debt cancellation as one of the primary areas in the Jewish observance called Jubilee. The teaching outlining Jubilee is initially found in Leviticus 25:155, Deuteronomy 15:1-11, Isaiah 61:1,2 and Luke 4:18-21. These texts define the Sabbath Years for proper care of the land and the way of righteousness in dealing with other social issues. Years are divided into groups of seven with the seventh designated as the Sabbath Year. The Sabbath year is noted as a year of rest. In that year no farming was done, debts among the Israelites were to be canceled and indentured servants were to be set free. This cycle was to repeat itself seven times for a total of fortynine years. The fiftieth year was set aside as the Year of Jubilee. The regulations of the year of Jubilee were identical to those of the Sabbatical Year with one exception. In the Year of Jubilee all real estate, except that which was within walled cities, automatically reverted to the family to which it had originally been assigned. In the Isaiah text the word "meek" is used instead of "poor" however, both terms are identical in describing the afflicted area which needed the anointing of Jesus to transform. The anointing is the inducement of ministry power which is released from the source of that power namely, the Holy Spirit. Throughout the creation story in the book of Genesis we note with great importance the irreplaceable presence of "The Spirit of God moving (hovering, brooding) over the face of the waters" (Gen.1:2). Such movement by the spirit occasioned the manifestation of the spoken word of God. When God said "let there be" it was the Spirit which made it be. God's Spirit is the creative intelligence of His will. This intelligence was utilized in creation and was also manifested in recreation. Jesus was both seeded by (Matt.1:18) and empowered by the Holy Spirit - (Matt. 3: 16). The initial areas addressed by Jesus in Luke 4:18 are key areas for every person. When being “poor� is ministered to, it opens the door to complete transformation of the individual. One no longer has to be a captive or captive to anyone or anything. Blindness cannot remain a shield to sight and insight because it is replaced with the ability to see as God authors sight. Those who are bruised or crushed and put down by demonic and unjust circumstances 23

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are delivered and completely liberated from these oppressive strongholds. Such is the wholistic ministry of Jesus. His salvation reaches in every area of a person’s life. It is a mind, body, soul and spirit reformation. Our chapter is entitled, The Promise: There Is A Way Out. Mixed with the Holy Spirit and imparted through the five words in this chapter title we wish to present five promises from the Bible to help you rid yourself of debts' control and obtain the control of God over your finances.

Promise No.1 – “There” "There" denotes a place and you are seeking to get to it - in other words, God has assured that there is good promised to you while on your journey to achieving your goal. 2 Corinthians 4: 18 says, "While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal. " KJV

I don't want to make this analysis difficult but I want you to see how reaching your goal starts where you are and continues until you arrive where God wants you. The text above is from the Apostle Paul and provides counsel on how you should be looking at your conditions of life. The good news of verse 18 is that God helps us to know that beyond what we see now He has something else with eternal value. The promise with eternal value is beyond what we see now. It is in “The There." There is always there. There is there because it is not here. There starts here, right where you are now but it ends up there, where you really want to be. When moving toward your goal of becoming debt free such a fulfillment starts now, in the here. But in order to reach that goal, which is "there," you must work toward it. Working toward that goal is what our text refers to as "while we look". Looking or fixing our eyes on what is unseen - the promise, affirms the divine assurance of good inherent in God's promise. I want to suggest to you four reasons why you need to set goals: [A.] Goals provide direction and purpose. [B.] Goals help to crystallize your thinking. [C.] Goals provide personal motivation. [D.] Goals help us to know, state and practice what God's will is. Here are four reasons why many do not set goals: [A.] We have this fear of getting started, we feel we are so overwhelmed with our present condition there is

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no hope. [B.] We feel we do not have enough time to readjust. [C.] In many cases we don't know what goals to set. [D.] The Biggie: We Don't Know How.

How do you set a goal? [A.] Spend time with God - have a shut-in with Him. Take a day(s) from the routine and make it special time to commune with Him. [B.] Act on what you have received from the Lord in this communion time. [C.] Believe that what he will provide will entail the resources to begin and complete what he has told you to do. RememberShut ins with God produce clarity of Vision then the Pro-visions to see the vision through. [D.] Live in obedience to Him and let Him get the glory out of your new blessings. Here are a few examples: The woman with the issue of blood for twelve years could represent a great example here. Her goal was to touch the hem of His garment. For a large portion of those twelve years she kept repeating, "If I may but touch his garment, I know I shall be made whole" (Matthew 9:21 KJV). She finally touched him and was made whole. The twelve years of sickness was her problem but her faith fueled this fulfilled promise found in the hem of His garment. Hebrews 12:2 is another indication. It says, "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God." KJV.

Jesus' problem was the cross, the promise was the joy on the other side of itThe Resurrection! Working toward "there" should be the blaze in the pursuer. That blaze should be a perpetual inner burner toward eternal completion. Single mindedness, unwavering commitment and undenied determination should be such terms used to define your pursuit toward the goal of "There." "Let there be light: and it was light" Genesis 1:3 KJV. God as Creator used Spirit and Word to create earth. Through His re-creative ability He provided the means which are His Son, Spirit and Word. The same serve as our means of salvation, even our financial redemption. "There" is there for you-Don't stop until you get there!

Promise No. 2 – “Is” "Is" denotes one's present condition. Do you fully understand what your present condition is? Why don't you take a moment and seek to define it? What must be done to help you attain your goal? Your answer is in "Is."

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"Is" has been with you throughout your quest for financial wholeness. It has never left you. It is a constant companion. "Is" is always in the present. "Is" was in the past and was present then, as you have entered into the future "Is" has become the future present of your recent past. You have never gotten rid of "Is." The question - How can you make what "Is" become better? Ask yourself - "If I don't like what "Is", what can I do to better my present state?" You must know who has created your "Is-ness!" Your "Isness" is really derived from Him who always "Is." In most Old Testament renderings, the hebrew which renders "Is" is haw-yaw' and has to do with existence, to exist, to become, come to pass, it is always emphatic. Since you need help in this instance the Psalmist wanted you to know this so he left this definition of God as a reminder - "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble" (Ps. 46: 1) KJV. Our is-ness is wrapped up in God's is-ness. We are because He is. The New Testament also provides help - es-tee, I-mee’ and ghin'-omahee are some of the most widely used greek terms and mean to exist. These terms have to do with what is referred to as the ontological principle. This principle deals with the being of God and our divine nature. The writer of the Epistle of Hebrews provides a synthesis of thought as he affirms the existence of God while urging the believer to embrace His existence for one's own benefit. He says, "But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him " (Heb. 11:6 KJV). The promise of "Is" is that you have God on your side as you walk toward a fuller and free life. His existence makes your journey worthwhile. Your worth is tied to his existence. Since God “is”, you can face your dilemma and obtain his deliverance. More Good News is yours as well, Jesus exclaimed some 11 times, "I Am." In each "I Am" saying he affirmed his existence and shepherds us to remarkable new habitations: "I Am the Bread of Life" - John 6:35 His total provisions stamps out the need to hunger and thirst for any other and fulfills our every need!

"I Am Alive Forever More" - Rev. 1: 18 Life is livable because of His complete conquering Victory!

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"I Am the Resurrection and the Life" - John 11 :25,26 He can supremely make a way for us when all forces of life have counted us out!

"I Am the Light of the World" - John 8:12 We are provided with the best light when Jesus is leading the Way! "I Am the Good Shepherd" - John 10:11,14 He is our overseer and no hurt, harm or danger can penetrate His protection!

"I Am the Door" - John 10:9 He is the Entrance to all we will enjoy and the exit of all our joys!

"I Am the First and the Last" - Rev. 1: 17 We are complete in him because there is no greater force before or after him!

"I Am Alpha and Omega" - Rev. 1:8 He is, He was, and He is to come!

"I Am the Way, the Truth and the Life"- John 14:6. He is our direction, discipline and destiny! In every affirmation you should seek to reach the level of God's dominion and negate the demeaning attributes of satanic emulations.

In terms of getting control of your debt and changing your present condition, let us affirm our faith in His "I Am-ness� by making a Debt Cancellation List. Make a list of all the debts you owe then declare Debt Cancellation over each one of them. God's Word can provide the instruction. Declare War on your debts. Debt Cancellation is on the other side of your Amen! The Debts I Carry Before The Father To Cancel Are: Name of the creditor ________________________________________ in the amount of $ ______________. Name of the creditor _________________________________________ in the amount of $ ___________. Name of the creditor ________________________________________ in the amount of $ _________. Name of the creditor _________________________________________ in the amount of 27

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$ ________. Name of the creditor _________________________________________in the amount of $ ________. Name of the creditor _________________________________________ in the amount of $ ________. (Place the bills before you and anoint each of them with oil, pray a declarative prayer over each of them and ask God for the wisdom and finances to cancel each debt.)

The Year of Jubilee Debt Cancellation Ministry Did you know that the ministry of Jesus includes Debt Cancellation? After coming out of the wilderness and canceling the temptations of satan, Jesus entered into his own local synagogue of Nazareth - Luke 4:16. In the synagogue Jesus announced the core of His liberation ministry. The Luke 4:16-21 reference is the New Testament link to the 0ld Testament Jewish observance called Jubilee. The teaching outlining Jubilee is initially found in Leviticus 25:1-55, Deuteronomy 15:1-18 and Isaiah 61:1,2. Because of His ministry of liberation, Jesus is our Jubilee. His ministry highlights Good News for those of us who need a decisive word on Debt Cancellation and the subsequent areas addressed in Luke 4:18,19. The Prayer Ministry: The Year of Jubilee Debt Cancellation Ministry is founded upon individual prayer power (Matt. 6:6) and the partnership of prayer (Matt. 18:19,20). The basis here emphasizes the personal dialogue with God as well as intercessory dialogue to God with others. Prayer builds. It builds relationship and fortifies your faith with his presence in your midst. The Ministry of Helps: You need a spiritual answer for your spiritual problem. Your "Debt Cancellation Prayer Partners" must be assisted by your "Spiritual Financial Helpers". Physical fitness centers have personal trainers. Some persons with specific health questions must consult those called specialists. The Spiritual Financial Helpers this ministry will place at your disposal are called "captains". These middle managers will serve as personal trainers and specialists. I Samuel 22:1,2 shows us how this can happen. "David therefore departed thence, and escaped to the cave Adullam: and when his brethren and all his father's house heard it, they went down thither to him. And every one that was in distress, and every one that was in debt, and every one that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about 400 men" KJV. These "captains" will

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personally help you walk out of and into “new discipline” over debt, such as credit cards, revolving charges, distress caused by bankruptcy, foreclosures, IRS payments and credit repair, which have caused discontentment associated with these and other financial challenges. Here is one of the “new disciplines” you can begin to walk in now Psalm 118:5, “I called on the Lord in distress; the Lord answered me and set me in a large (prosperous) place ", verse 17declares “I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord", and finally verse 25 which prayerfully summarizes the answer, "Save now, I beseech thee, O Lord; O Lord I beseech thee, send now prosperity”.

You need three dimensions of cancellation! Where can you start? Start with the Distress, Debt and Discontentment Cancellation Captain. It may be that you will realize the captain in you and continue the ministry. Like David, captain intelligence comes out of unarmed ignorance. The 3 dimensions became the initial representatives of the larger army they represented. Searching for relief, many heard where David the Warrior had lodged and went there. They enlisted in the new discipline he was imparting in the Cave. He became a captain over them and began to release the power to become a captain into them. Your earlier financial decisions have been made because you did not have the full story about your decision. You did not have someone who understands the environs of financial decisions to help you before you got into debt and thereby became distressed and discontented. The calling of this reading is to help you find the healing that you need, then walk in that healing towards better financial health. Through this Ministry of Helps, you will be able to take advantage of three additional benefits in this ministry.  The Jubilee Distress, Debt and Discontentment Cancellation Empowerment Track  Sit with counselors instead of scorners and delight yourself in the law of financial liberty.

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This financial literacy is part of the curriculum of The Year of Jubilee Family Legacy Institute, a primary feature of our School of Ministry. The School of Ministry obtained approval from the State Commission for Higher Education in Virginia (SCHEV) to become a religious/theological degreegranting institution within the Commonwealth of Virginia. It is with this governance that the highest of standards is placed upon this educational covering. It is one thing to talk about becoming financially free but we believe that there should be biblical education which accompanies the talk. Additionally, this bible based financial curriculum is modeled after the Rainbow/PUSH 1000 Churches Connected: Financial Literacy for the Faith Community and the Samuel Dewitt Procter School of Theology-Virginia Union University and its Evans Smith Leadership Training Institute. These partnerships enable us to offer continuing education units to those who complete this empowerment track. The track focuses on consumer debt counseling; long term saving and financial planning; mortgage financing; education and information on how technology impacts financial services. There is one objective for this empowerment track: That each student will be empowered to create their plan of action for debt cancellation and obtain their positioning for manifestation through the promises of wealth accumulation.

Debt and Consumer Education The Year of Jubilee Debt Cancellation Ministry Empowerment Track wants to end the debt culture" which plagues many families, Toward this end, the first steps we will take in this educational pursuit will be debt and credit management. Debt is a demon in the family of "the fallen angels from heaven. It is our desire to connect you with those great managing angels who remained with Father God. Primary focus will be upon your “then" so that we can help you arrive at a more blessed "now", We will look at what the three credit bureaus -Equifax, Experian and Trans Union have in their computer banks about you and help you get it cleaned up, You deserve to have your second chance to live "the God Kind of life", You may have had some challenges in the past, but your future is clean and clear... Let's pursue it!. "Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus, Philippians 3:13,14 NIV.

Establish Credit Understanding Credit Scoring

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Home Ownership While the national rate for home ownership in the United States approaches 70%, less than 50% of African Americans and Hispanics own homes. The Year of Jubilee Debt Cancellation Ministry Empowerment Track enrollees will be taught the economic benefits of home ownership and how to secure affordable mortgages. No mortgage should put the home in slavery. "Now the men and their wives raised a great outcry against their Jewish brothers. Some were saying, We and our sons and daughters are numerous; in order for us to eat and stay alive, we must get grain. Others were saying, We are mortgaging our fields, our vineyards and our homes to get grain during the famine. Still others were saying, We have had to borrow money to pay the king' s tax on our fields and vineyards" Nehemiah 5:14 NIV.

Curriculum areas are: Qualifying For A Mortgage

The Loan Application Process Avoiding Predatory Lenders

Choosing the Right Mortgage Risk of Foreclosure The Closing Process

Investment Basics and Insurance Education Steps toward wealth accumulation are grounded in long term financial planning, investment discipline and saving. The Year of Jubilee Debt Cancellation Ministry teaches wealth accumulation through resources that focus on understanding financial services and counseling for future decisions which will affect your family's wisdom for insurance, education and other needs. The greatest investment has been made in you. It is about time you got in touch with the merits of that investment and proceeded to benefit from its varied offerings. Cash in on what the Creator has placed in you! "You may say to yourself, 'My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.' But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your forefathers, as it is today" Deuteronomy 8:17,18 NIV.

Curriculum areas are: Investment Clubs

Insurance Education Socially Responsible Investments Stock Market Game for Youth The Market System Brokerage Services (Stocks, Mutual Funds, Retirement Estate Planning, etc.)

Technology As A Resource Attention will be given to increase the understanding and use of technology as an educational resource. Enrollees in The Year of Jubilee Family Legacy Ministry will also: ďƒ˜ Join The Year of Jubilee Web Community ďƒ˜ Receive your free Internet Web Access

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 Learn to use the Internet as an economic literacy resource  Receive explanation of electronic bill payment/transfer services  Learn about privacy issues relating to Internet transactions "I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father" John 14:12 NIV.

The Year of Jubilee 3D Cancellation Ministry Empowerment Track costs entail: A one time registration fee of $30 which places you in the School of Ministry and with the Virginia Union tracking system enabling you to receive continuing education units. Books and other course materials will be extra. These items are subject to the instructors. At the end of the sessions you will receive a School of Ministry/Virginia Union Certificate. In addition to the personal benefit achieved in this educational track, you may want to continue to enhance yourself in other course offerings of The Samuel Dewitt Procter School of Theology. The Year of Jubilee Evangelistic Marketing Plan: As a second phase in this ministry, while you are moving to become educationally and economically empowered, The Year of Jubilee Evangelistic Marketing Plan will give you a $30 Thank You Credit for helping us spread the word concerning the Debt Cancellation Ministry Empowerment Track. Share this good news with 4 friends and they enroll, your course fee is paid, Share with 8 and earn $240. Evangelistic Marketing is ministering as our Lord ministered. The greek for evangelistic means to announce, declare, bring, show forth or spread the "good news" of Jesus Christ. When liberating "good news" comes your way, you should communicate it to others. What transformation has occurred in your life? Have you communicated it to others? If it has been "good news" to you, pass the "good news" on!!! Evangelistic Marketing is a ministry of revelation, fulfillment, manifestation and faith. We cannot remove ourselves from the texts of origin to see such in operation (Isaiah 61:1,2 & Luke 4:1621). It is in these texts that we see the merits of our Master's Ministry fully at work. Your debt has originated from your home, your plan of victory over your debt must also originate from your home. Would You Like to Go Back To Eden? The economics of Eden is the seeding for the economic stability which should be evident in your home. The resources and provisions of the Pishon, Gihon, Tigris and the Euphrates should resource your home as a believer. I take apostolic liberty at this juncture to plant and propose this 32

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Eden value system to be practiced in your personal Eden or your home. While you are moving from Debt Cancellation we want to help your Eden to become economically empowered. This Back to Eden Ministry has two key features, (1.) To turn your home into a model of Eden and (2.) To economically empower you and your family to live the kind of life God originally intended. Now, we do want to profit from the way Adam's family suffered as a result of eating from the wrong tree inside of Eden (Genesis 3) and the offerings made by Cain and Abel's outside of the Garden which precipitated into death (Genesis 4). Since we know where they went wrong, LET'S NOT COMMIT THE SAME MISTAKES!!! This Eden Ministry is God's idea for the home. It is the view he has for the family. The roles of the man/husband/father are seen, in addition to the roles of the woman/wife/mother. The union of Adam and Eve produces the offsprings. The laws of God which were pronounced for father and mother should be replicated in the offsprings. We have heard much concerning generational curses, it is time for us to start replicating Generational Blessings. What has God spoken into us which should be passed on to our children. It is time we reproduce Eden through the ministry of Jesus. In a real sense, Jesus is the second Adam who has come to redo the portrait Father God originally intended - Romans 5; I Corinthians 15:20-23. This Eden Ministry is not only a key benefit of our times, but the concept was started by God in the Garden of Eden. Genesis 2:8-15 says. "And the LORD God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed. And the LORD God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground--trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. A river watering the garden flowed from Eden; from there it was separated into four headwaters. The name of the first is the Pishon; it winds through the entire land of Havilah, where there is gold. (The gold of that land is good; aromatic resin and onyx are also there.) The name of the second river is the Gihon; it winds through the entire land of Cush. The name of the third river is the Tigris; it runs along the east side of Asshur. And the fourth river is the Euphrates. The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it" KJV.

Your Eden is your home, this is where God has placed you. What waters your Eden, is what God has placed there to empower it, make it fertile, productive and supportive. Eden was where God placed Adam "to work it and take care of it". This is an excellent reminder for every male, whether young or more mature and even that female who is head of her household. Eden was Adam's Home. As such there should be four "headwaters" or 33

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streams of income that are outgrowths of your Eden - Pishon (gold, aromatic resin and onyx). Secondly, the Gihon (which means "burst forth" is associated with being a principal source of water and commerce in biblical history- The Nile). Third is the Tigris which mean “fast flowing” and served as principal support for some marshy areas and on its banks Daniel saw his great vision which was later recorded ~ Chapter 10 and fourth the Euphrates. The Euphrates means “to break forth”. It is the largest river which flows out of Eden. It also served as the means of irrigation of what would otherwise be arid desert to Egypt. Eden was where God placed Adam ”to work it and take care of it”. Jesus’ earthly home was business oriented as well. His father was a carpenter (Mark 6:3). His father’s business included the household. Stewardship (oy-kon-om-ee’-ah) starts in the home, it is home based. It deals with the administration of a household and its economy. If your home does not have an internal affinity for business, you are more focused on an outside economy to sustain your home. Your family is a covenant entity. We interrelate and function as we live through this shared relationship. We relate as partners within this covenant. As partners we release our gifts and talents and profit from them. We share the profits within the home by fulfilling our assignments. Those assignments flow from the gifts and talents found in the home. The home is a place of learning and earning. Learn your value through the use of that gift. It is in this learning process that you will be able to carve a niche in the vastness of life and always enjoy refreshment. Whether you are most proficient inside or outside of the house, that will be determined by your gift. What you learn about yourself in the home will determine your place and contribution to how you profit the household. Herein you embolden your place within the covenant entity and your functioning place within the partnership. It is in this paradigm that you undergird a brighter future for your family and then yourself. The time will come that you will leave the nest of the home. What you have learned should be the springboard of your profession. From the home you have been in the laboratory and now you flow into your practice for life. What is it that you do to earn your income to build a home and sustain it? With wisdom and common sense you now assume your position on the world stage. With focus you walk into your destiny. With God you enter into His assignment – Work and take care of your Eden. If your home does not have a business affinity, let me propose one. It is family oriented. Invite members of your household to help you structure it. Put a plan in place to rid

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the family of its debt, past credit life and restoring the household to good home health. Now, let us move with the counsel needed into the portals of biblical economics. Such empowerment is not all about tangibles such as money and those things it can buy, but includes features of which money cannot buy. These features include intangibles of which only “home” can provide. This Back To Eden Ministry issues the call for you and your family to become covenant partners. As such you become evangelists who share the Good News of Christ to others. In this ministry you will be rewarded for sharing this Back To Eden Ministry. The rewards will range from 25% 55% of $50. This rewards arrangement has a theological link as promised to the first disciples – Matthew 10:40-42 and Luke 6:23. Families, working within the covenant to manifest Kingdom initiatives, should impact lives with the gospel. The daily living of individuals should receive the edge in living this gospel provides. The Eden Value System is derived from God’s Original Plan, (Gen.1:26-31; 2:7-25). Acquire our text book from Amazon which details this ministry: Lessons In Family Development As a by-product, we have also developed, The Year of Jubilee Family Legacy Ministry ~ A Biblical Initiative To Connect Families For A Brighter Future. This Ministry carries the 12 Month Family Legacy Institute Curriculum is derived from the letters that spell F.A.M.I.L.Y. and develops the first six month’s themes along with the Christian Calendar that highlight the life of Christ. The second six months carry six principles of Nguzo Saba or the cultural foundations of KWANZAA: January - The Foundation Of The Family February - The Attitude Of The Family March - The Mission and Ministry of The Family April - The Investment and Interest of The Family May - The Learning and Loving of The Family June - The Yield of The Family July - The Family and Self Determination August - The Family and Collective Work & Responsibility September - The Family & Cooperative Economics October - The Purpose of The Family November - The Creativity of The Family December - The Faith of The Family

Tuition—$600 ($50 per month Jubilee Seeds)

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L - Liberation From Legacy Killers E - Edifying Family Education G - Gathering Legacy Wealth Knowledge A - Add Four Streams Of Income To Your Family's Economy C - Creating a Christ Centered Worship Base Y - Your Covenant Yield This Legacy Quest set forth the following 7 Legacy Goals: I. II. III. IV. V. VI. VII.

Commit to 2 Timothy 2:15 and Strive for Legacy Excellence as a Student of Christ Be "A Voice" as John The Baptist extolling the virtues of The Family Legacy Ministry That you will follow Luke 10:2 and Luke 6:12-16 and consult God about your Disciples Your 12 Member Discipleship Teams will follow the effectiveness of Jesus' 12 Disciples Commit to the Daily, Weekly and Monthly Six Points of L.E.G.A.C.Y. Strive, with covenant ethics to create for yourself a $5,000 per month stream of income With Acts 2:45 and Acts 4:31-35, Help each of your 12 Disciples to achieve Goal 6

Additionally, under Promise No. 5 “Out” you are going to visit another story. It is the story of a widow and her two sons in a great time of distress. Her biblical address is 2 Kings 4:1-7. She followed the instructions of the Prophet Elisha and received debt cancellation! This cancellation was secured because she “shut the door” with her two sons and saw the instructions of the prophet work for them. Can such instructions work for you and your family today? Debt Cancellation is not only a promise but a plan you can put in place. Here is a sample of a debt cancellation for your family. With an income of $3523 per month, here is what they did: Monthly Bills

Current Balance APR

Minimum Required Payment

Actual Payment

Projected Pay Off

Interest Paid

Truck

$7629

7.00%

$320

$320

Feb.-2004

$609

Car

$7200

7.50%

$271

$271

Jun.-2004

$698

$124,000

0.00%

$955

Home Mortgage Navy Federal

36

$3600

11.90%

$85

$955 $85

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Oct.-2012 May-2015

$0 $2252


Biblical Stewardship For Our Times

NEX

$3700

12.00%

$50

Total

$146,129

1.33%

$1681

$50

Jan.-2035

$1681

Jan.-2035

$7570 $11129

Based on the monthly gross income of $3523 and the minimum required payments of $1681 the current debt to income ratio is 48%. That is for every $100 of monthly income, $48 is going toward paying off the above debt. With such a large amount going to monthly bills, many of the goals of this family are stressed. The good news of the summary above is that if the family will set a goal of eliminating the use of their credit card and add no new debts they will be able to be debt free just from proper debt management. Also, they will be able to save $7785 in interest payments if they just maintain paying $1681 per month. The Key: When one debt bas been cancel1ed shift that freed money to another bill. All debts should be eliminated 307 months sooner than projected. Once you become debt free, if you continue your program by saving the $1681 each month that was spent toward debt cancellation you could accumulate $902,000 by the time the head of the household reaches The Jubilee Age between 50-59 years old. Date Bills Accelerated

Monthly Payment

Acceleration Amount

New Monthly Payment

Projected Payoff

Interest Saved

Truck

Dec.-2001

$320

$0.00

$320

Feb.2004

$0

Car

Feb.-2004

$271

$320

$591

Apr.-2004

$5

Home Mortgage

Jan.-2005

$955

$726

$1681

Jun.-2009

$0

Navy Federal

Apr.-2004

$85

$591

$616

NEX

Aug.-2004

$50

$676

$726

Jan.-2035

$6367

$0

$1681

June 2009

$7785

Total

$1681

Aug.-2015 $1413

This proposed debt cancellation solution is a guide to help your family cancel the debts listed above. Results of actual debt cancellation depends solely on your commitment and adherence to your proposed cancellation schedule. I would like to recommend Debt Elimination and Wealth Building Software from Amazon which can serve as personal help.

Become a Debt Warrior! Let the Spirit of David rise up within you as he stood before Goliath - I Samuel 17:34-58. In a real sense, you have at least three types of debt, they may appear as Lions-(v .34-37), Bears-(v .3437) and as Goliath. These are the kinds of challenges David had to face and cancel. Notice that he did not cancel out Goliath until after he had canceled the Lion and the Bear. Don't try to attack all the debts at one time, paying 37

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them off will be done according to a pattern of debt cancellation authored by God through you. You have a gift within you waiting to be released which is the answer to your debt problem. Verse 38 and 39 of shows us how David was helped to find his gift. First, verse 38 shows us how others will give you their armor for success. Saul armed David with his armour, and he put an helmet of brass upon his head; also he armed him with a coat of mail”. Is there just one way that this victory over debt can be won? This is an excellent teaching for young people. Saul was the King of Israel and the elder person in this setting. Even if you don't use the advice of your elders, at least try it on first. Since it worked for them, it may work for you. "And David girded his sword upon his armour, and he assayed to go; for he had not proved it. And David said unto Saul, I cannot go with these; for I have not proved them. And David put them off him." Secondly, after trying what others have suggested, what do you have within you that you have proved? When you take off the suggestion of others, what are you going to put on in its place? David put on what had worked for him in previous challenges. Verse 40 says "he took his staff in his hand," Get your staff in your hand, the covenant promise of God for your life - Deuteronomy 8: 18 is an excellent staff. "But thou (you) shalt remember the Lord thy God; for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day. " Next, David "chose him five smooth stones out of the brook". Here are five for which may be helpful out of the brook of God's covenant waters:  Deuteronomy 28:1-14, notice v. 2, “And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God" KJV.  Joshua 1:8, "This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”  Malachi 3:8-12, notice v. 10, "Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of host, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it".  Mark 10:28-31, notice v. 30, "But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and

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lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life".  Mark 11:22-24, notice v. 22, "And Jesus answering saith unto them, have faith. When I take key words out of each text, I have come up with these five smooth stones: Stone Number One is Blessed! Stone Number Two is Meditate! Stone Number Three is Tithe! Stone Number Four is Shall Receive! Stone Number Five is Faith!

David "placed these five stones in a shepherd's bag." This lunch bag hung from his shoulder and was in his (scrip) pouch. David placed his five stones in the same container which carried his food for physical strength. Do you have a Spiritual Shepherd's Bag and Pouch which can feed you spiritually, financially and hold the stones of Godly Success? If you don't have one I suggest you get one. Your Shepherd's Bag should contain the covenant stones of God. You have to know where to reach as you are confronting your Goliaths. Lastly, the verse says, "and his sling was in his hand:" This phrase pinpoints the gift of David. Why would he have a sling if he could not use it? Since he could not use the armour of Saul, he could use the sling which was in his hand. I wonder if David ever interacted with the training style of the 700 members of left-handed Benjaminites who could sling stones at a strand of hair or blade of grass and not miss - Judges 20; 16. You need to know what works for you. What gift (s) you have, what talent, what have you been trained to use which can help you secure your victory? A golf club in Tiger Wood’s hand is his sling. A pair of track shoes on Jesse Owens’ feet was his sling. A peanut in George Washington Carver’s hand was his sling. With skill, precision and a strong work ethic, the sling in the right hand can secure your victory! God has trained you to use your sling, stand before this giant of debt and declare the victory assured by God. Worship yourself out of debt. This is what David did. I like to think that David became a Worshiping Warrior. Worshiping Warriors learn to attack the enemy with unrelenting disdain. Debt is a defiant demon. Its defeat must be approached with unrelenting disdain. Listen to his words to Goliath in 39

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verses 45 and 46. "Then said David to the Philistine, thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear and with a shield: but 1 come to thee in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied. This day will the Lord deliver thee into mine hand; and 1 will smite thee; and 1 will give the carcases of the host of the Philistine this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel." David undressed Goliath when he declared whom he represented. We must undress our debt - expose it, unwrap it and bring it out of hiding. Debt is bold in its dress and will boast. David undressed Goliath when he said that he had" come to him with sword, and with spear and with a shield." Cre-dits cards, or { create debt cards} are swords in the hand of debt. Revolving charge accounts with high interest rates, binding car leases/loans, house rent which goes to someone else and mortgage payments without a goal of early payoff, debts to friends, and to family are spears in the hands of debt. These spears are waiting to run us through headaches and depression. Debt also has a way of masking itself and leading us to think that we need what it has to offer. The shield was the final part of the arsenal used by Goliath as he was dressed to defeat David. But David undressed him before declaring in whose name he had come. You need to undress each bill you have. Put them all on the debt cancellation list and take them before God. Take your bills, one by one and place your hands on them and pray for God's direction in paying them off. It took some time to get into debt, it will take some time coming out, but when you begin to take authority over the debts, you will obtain your victory. Do you have enough money coming in to meet the needs on your debt cancellation list? Verses 48 is the point of confrontation. "And it came to pass, when the Philistine arose, and came and drew nigh to meet David, that David hasted, and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine." Debt must be confronted, run towards it and not away from it. Unconfronted debt will defeat you. Do you have enough in your bag to handle the debt? David had a fixed number of stones in his bag, but he needed only one of them to do the job. Could this suggest that everyone's income is fixed? Not only those who receive monthly governmental/social security checks can say, I live on a fixed income! Everyone's income is fixed by some standard. Some protocol has determined what each of us will receive. But the miracle of affirming God's miracle working power can

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work in seeming fixed conditions. Stick your hand in the bag and see what possibilities you have. Touch the Stone of Blessed. Some people have had second jobs open up to them. Touch the Stone of Meditate and additional hours of work have opened up on their present place of employment. Touch the Stone of the Tithe and see God supernaturally unfix that which seems so rigid in its fixed condition. Touch the Stone of Shall Receive and qualify for a higher paying job. Still others, through the miraculous hand of God have been promoted and received a pay increase or entered into the field of their giftedness and began to work for themselves, only because the Picked the Stone of Faith to do so. And David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slang it, and smote the Philistine in his forehead, that the stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth. " You should be mindful of God's Will when seeking additional income. The creation of additional sources of income should be God directed. Some measures we select rob us of quality family time and place strains on our relationships with our spouses and children. 2 Corinthians 9:10, 11 is one of the biblical promises you should walk in concerning this regard. "...Now he (God) that ministereth seed to the sower (you) both minister bread (provides) for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness; being enriched in everything to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God" KJV. Believe this, additional income will come to meet your debt cancellation list through the creative Spirit of God working within you. You can slay your Goliath debt with his own sword! Verse fifty-one brings closure to this saga. “Therefore David ran, and stood upon the Philistine, and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and slew him, and cut off his head therewith. And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled. " The key to getting out of debt is really found in your ability to take control. When you take control you become a better manager. Managers run things, they are in charge, David ran. Run, stand over your debts, take debts' sword from its sheath and cut its head off. In other words, Get to the root of 41

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your problem, then settle your debt issue once and for all. Why do you get in debt, what motivated you at the time to venture when you were not assured of victory. Here you became Goliath, Mr. or Mrs. Invincible. You said, "I can conqueror the debt I create." Only to find out that this Invincibility was false and deceptive. What is the alternative to debt after you cut its head off? You will make wiser decisions in the future. “And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled" Make potential debt flee. You decide, through your covenant relationship with God, when to make financial decisions and you no longer will be controlled by the giant of debt. Where Are You? What is your personal story with debt? How many areas of debt/stress are you dealing with? How much debt has your stress caused? With the U.S. economy struggling in the wake of terrorists, sizeable unpaid debt pose an even greater danger than usual: recession has sat in, layoffs are mounting and hopes are shrinking, and creditors continue to expect their payments. Ideally, experts say, your total monthly long-term debt payments - including your mortgage and credit card payments - should not exceed 36 percent of your gross monthly income. That's one factor mortgage bankers consider when assessing the creditworthiness of a potential borrower. You Have Fewer Dollars At Your Disposal: Your discretionary income -- what you have left after paying bills -- drops. That's likely to be the case if you occasionally dip into savings to cover shortfalls in your checking account, or must take a loan against your retirement funds. It comes down to, Are you able to save? Are you saving for that future wedding, your next car, your kids' education? If not, WHY NOT? You're Unprepared For The Unexpected: You can't maintain an emergency fund. An emergency fund three months to six months of expenses (more if you are worried you might be laid off)

- is intended to bail you out when your roof falls in, your car breaks down or you face some other unexpected costly situation. Debt payments should not get in the way of creating an emergency fund. You Toss And Turn: Your comfort level is a less tangible but no less important sign that you're too deep in debt. Put simply, can you sleep at night or do you stay up worrying about what you owe? 42

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You're in the danger zone of Debt When …Your income becomes less than your expenses … You Count how many times you make a purchase and just assume you'll find a way to pay for it … You ask yourself why you're really buying something … Your spending is done to impress other people … You watch to see if a bill collector's number come up on your caller I.D. You tip to the door when someone rings your doorbell and peep through a window, just to see who it is. I think you will be shocked when you count up how much you spend on clothes and food. If you and your spouse each spend $5 a day on coffee and breakfast, that's $200 a month, not counting weekends. That's money that might be better spent paying off high-interest debt. I know the wave of our time is to use the "plastic". Well, consider this, convert from credit to cash. You're less likely to hand over $130 in cash than to charge the same amount. With the onset of downsizing, jobs being phased out, the technological age fastly ushering in faster and quicker means of updating and outdating the workforce, the promise of God's word is needed in such a time. Here is an example of God's Word being faithful in such a time. Tammy, one of our faithful members, caught the Breaking Free fervor prior to becoming a member of our local church. She had been an avid attender and took to heart the Word of God as it was taught and preached. When she did become a member, one of the early challenges was the phasing out of her job. She had been a tither ever since that principle became a clear revelation of God’s will for her life. Even while looking for another job, she continued to tithe and one Sunday as she walked around to present her tithes and offerings, she whispered to me, “I got that new job as you said I would”. I later performed the marriage ceremony for Tammy to Kelvin. Kelvin, had been an attender as well, caught the vision of life together with Tammy, proposed and now they are husband and wife. An added blessing in their relationship is that Kelvin was already a tither and a sower in good soil, he was in business for himself, and now, Tammy is not only his wife, but also his business partner. My hopeful friend, you cannot sow seeds that God supplies you, in the ground he designates, and not be provided for. Tammy and Kelvin are living examples that this promise, 2 Cor. 9:10,11 is true! 43

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Fewer than 10% of the jobs in this country pay enough for a person to become financially secure. So you must hurriedly know that if you are in that 10% bracket, you better have something else going for you to meet more than your need. If you are in the 10% bracket, you need to practice the 10% teaching of the Bible. The tithe is the answer! Motivational speaker Les Brown has often said, "Most jobs pay you just enough to keep you from quitting and most people work just enough to keep from being fired�, (from a TV Seminar, 1988). In other words, some steps will have to be taken on your part to provide God with the opportunities to expand your financial horizons. Check your stewardship and the management of your present funds, then Communicate with the source of your monies, [God] and with those you must pay [your creditors]. Since God is the source of all you have, stay in constant and close contact with him. Pray to Him, Read His Word, Fast in His Name as well. Then, be available to those you owe. Don't duck and dodge, lie and hide. Share your problem with them and be faithful and honorable in the word you give them: "Providing for honest things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men" 2 Corinthians 8:21 KJV. Where possible, make early principal payments. You can shorten the life of loans on your car, house, charges (any debt with interest) by making early and additional payments on the principal. All you do is write your regular payment check, and then write a second check which carries the amount of the principle only on that second check and stipulate that it is for an additional principal payment. Example, my monthly mortgage payment is $1336. Of that amount $167.63 is paid on the principle and $950.74 on interest. So I write the regular monthly check and add an additional check for $167.63. Any early or additional payment on the principal is treated as a reduction of the remaining balance of my loan. That means it reduces the amount I actually owe. You will not have to pay interest on any principal that is eliminated! This is good stewardship of God's blessings. Some have begun using the Bi-Weekly Plan. This is utilized by splitting your one monthly payment into two bi-weekly payments during the month, which also cuts the life of the loan and provides savings over the life of it. (Not all mortgage companies participate in the bi-weekly plan. Check with your mortgage

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company to see if they do). "Take

fast hold of instruction; let her not go: keep her; for she is thy life" Proverbs 4:13 KJV.

Promise No.3 - "A" "A" denotes something specific. In the hebrew it is rendered (aw'-Ie!), in greek it is (al'-fah). In both languages it is the first letter of the alphabet and we suggest that they both represent the starting point in distinguishing the message inherent in Good News. In the case of this promise, they represent a key element in the discipline which should be evidenced by all financial freedom seekers. The discipline which must be set in place is - Add no New Debts. Please do not place your exodus from debt in jeopardy by adding additional new debt before being set free from its slavery. You are already in a weak condition, and you should be guarded in making transactions which will place you in a worse state. Jesus shared a teaching concerning adding additional weight to an already shaky situation. Luke 11:24-26 states: "When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none, he saith, I will return unto my house whence I came out. And when he cometh, he findeth it swept and garnished. Then goeth he, and taketh to him seven other spirits more wicked than himself; and they enter in, and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first" KJV. This teaching is characteristic of adding new debt while liquidating old debt. To do this is to encourage multiplied misery, digging a new grave before you are fully exhumed from your old one. Some persons have gotten a debt consolidation loan. With all debts now wrapped into a nice neat one payment solution, this arrangement has freed up some once enslaved dollars. Instead of using those freed dollars to help maintain ones freedom some have ventured into the doldrums of adding new debts, going back into slavery. Debt is an unclean spirit, a demonic, controlling force. It is sinister and diabolical. When old debt is being retired, in a sense it desires to be somewhere else doing what it does best, creating havoc. We need to protect ourselves from the return of debt with his seven friends which will make our

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latter condition worse than the former. New debt and whom we could call The Notorious Seven should be resisted. May I suggest a definition of these Notorious Seven Spirits?

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The Spirit of Jealously Numbers 5: 14 An Evil Spirit- Judges 9:23 A Sad Spirit - I Kings 21:5 A Lying Spirit- 2 Chronicles 18:21 A Vexation of Spirit- Ecclesiastes 2 The Spirit of Bondage- Romans 8:15 The Spirit of Fear- II Timothy 1:7. Each one of these spirits bring some debilitating consequences to ones financial health. When jealousy comes it brings an envious hostility to the other spirits which come. Jealousy gives rise to evilness. The spirit of evil is nestled in sorrow, depression, inferiority and distress, all negating affections. Born out of Evil is Sadness. Sadness represents the quality of all low spirits. It is having one living in the state of denial. When one is in denial one is Lying. When one Lies, facing the truth and being truthful is forfeited. Forfeiting truth is a shunning of reality and boasters vexation. Vexation is the constant annoying of being irritable induced by compliance with affliction. Vexation and Bondage are of the same family. Bondage is the servant or slave of vexation and produces the fear or rejection to freedom because of the consequences surrounding the status quo of The Notorious

Seven.

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Jealousy, Evilness, Sadness, Lying, Vexation, Bondage and Fear produce a Cycle of Curses which keeps one in spiritual deprivation. This cycle of demonic chaos works havoc in ones thinking, health quest, moral fiber and spiritual vitality. It put one out of harmony with God and His principles, causes disruptions in relationships, under cuts sound decision making, compromises the Word of God and takes away from the testimony of you as a Saint. This demonic curse has to be broken in order for one to be reconciled and restored to the Redeemer. Such a restoration will also be passed on to family members who may repeat some of the same mistakes made by fathers and mothers. Hear God outline His attitude toward The Notorious Seven-Deuteronomy 28:7 “The Lord shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways�.

Remember, enemies are not your friend. "Thou shalt not bow down

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thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children. unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments" Exodus 20: 5,6 KJV. When we "add new wine to the old wine vessel, the new wine will burst the vessels and be spilled and the vessels shall perish" Luke 5: 37 KJV. When spillage takes place, it is the same as losing. When we add new debts while we are trying to rebuild a healthy financial state, we lose. We should not want to be losers. We should be "more than conquerors through him that loved us" Ro. 8:37 KJV. As a conqueror we have the advantages afforded us to resist the temptations to add new debts, and see the wisdom of being patient. Conquerors maintain a vessel yielded to God and His directions. We must align ourselves with Him and abide in His vineyard of fruitfulness. In adding no new debt, we should pursue a promise which has provided consistent character. Can you stand A Resurrection? Are you ready to come forth from the grave of debt? I refer here to the story of Lazarus, John 11:1-44, at this point he is already dead and in the grave, just like you, already in the grave of debt. Jesus is standing in front of the grave and begins to pray. His prayer carries a word I want you to see as it becomes a turning point in the deadened situation of Lazarus. The word "always" is found in the prayer Jesus prays to his Father in verse 42. The word appears in four leading translations of the Bible. "And I knew that thou hearest me always" (KJV.) "..though I knew that you always listen to me" (Goodspeed.) ".. I know that you always hear me" (Phillips.) "/ knew you always hear me" (Beck.) In the greek always is pan'tot-eh and denotes when or every when, in our vernacular we say whenever. Jesus had maintained such consistency with His Father that whenever He prayed He knew something would happen. Build your relationship with the Father through Jesus Christ so that in the when or whenever of your walk with him, what you pray for will find place and power with Him. Peter has a great Word Of Promise for you. He says, "To everyone who shares with us in the privilege of believing that our God and Savior Jesus Christ will do what is just and fair. I pray that God will be kind to you and let you live in perfect peace! May you keep learning more and more about

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God and our Lord Jesus. We have everything we need to live a life that pleases God. It was all given to us by God's own power, when we learned that he had invited us to share in his wonderful goodness. God made great and marvelous promises, so that his nature would become part of us. Then we could escape our evil desires and the corrupt influences of this world. Do your best to improve your faith. You can do this by adding goodness, understanding, self-control, patience, devotion to God, concern for others, and love. If you keep growing in this way, it will show that what you know about our Lord Jesus Christ has made your lives useful and meaningful. But if you don't grow, you are like someone who is nearsighted or blind, and you have forgotten that your past sins are forgiven." 2 Peter 1:2-9 Contemporary English Version.

Promise No.4 - "Way" "Way" indicates direction. Some of the most frequently used hebrew terms are deh'rek, and yaw-Iak'. Both have to do with the figurative and literal causations of walking. It is hod-os' in the greek and has to do with mode or means, a process, in route on a journey. In this case we suggest, maintain singleness of purpose. "Staying focused" is the call word here. Single mindedness is a virtue that soon must be engaged. The decision must be made and adhered to. Jesus suggested a key prescription. Luke 9:62 states: "And Jesus said unto him, no man having put his shoulder to the plough, and looking back is fit for the Kingdom of God" KJV. Being indecisive reveals some reluctance to remain focused. Jesus points out that the Kingdom or the domain of God has no room for those who are looking back nor being doubleminded (James 1:8), double-tonged (1 Timothy 3:8), when they are called to go forward. What way have you gone lately? Jesus again says "... if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light" (Matt. 6:22 KJV). The primary reason for getting free from financial bondage is to please God and be a blessing in His Kingdom. . This is the single purpose. Dale and Sandy Larsen in their booklet Moneywise, raises a relevant question for consideration - God or Money? (Do we have to Choose?) In this inductive bible study, they ask the reader to review Matthew 6:19-34 and Exodus 20:3-4. They then quote David Neff from an article he has written for the magazine, Christianity Today. Neffs quote sets the tone for questions the Larsens raise and also will help us acquire a single focus in reaching our goal. "Those who affect an attitude of detachment, claiming to be beyond

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Mammon's power while retaining a 'normal' North American lifestyle, are probably fooling themselves. Likewise, those who emphasize divesture, stripping themselves of the weight of unnecessary wealth and belongings in order to live a spiritual freer life, may miss their goal if they fall into the 'simpler-than-thou' trap. There are ditches on both sides of the road: one is legalism, the excessive focus on behavioral standards; the other is spiritualizing, the denial of the power of the physical reality if only one's inner attitude is right�, Neff. 1. It is obvious that a rich person can fall into the trap of worshiping money. How could a person with limited finances fall into the same trap? 2. What frame of mind allows money to become a god? 3. Read Matthew 6: 19- 24. This passage describes a great contrast between two attitudes. How would you characterize the people who have each of them? 4. "Treasures on earth" can be seen and touched, but how would you define "treasures in heaven?" 5. What happens to people who try simultaneously to serve two bosses? (Think of practical results in addition to the exact words of this passage.)

6. How do they shed further light on Jesus' stern words "You cannot serve both God and Money?" 7. Respond to this statement: "Jesus did not say 'You cannot have both God and Money' but only 'You cannot serve both God and Money.'" 8. Name some circumstances in which the choice must be made between serving God and serving money. Describe the process by which each choice might be made. 9. In your own use of money, what evidence could an observer find that you are serving God? That you are serving money? 10. Read Matthew 6:25-34. Why does thinking about money so often result in anxiety? 11. Describe the contrasting emotions and spiritual health of a person" seeking first God's Kingdom" and of a person "running after all these [other] things."

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12. Recall a time when you experienced the truth of Matthew 6:33-34. Describe what was going on, how you felt, and what you learned about God through the experience. Though there is only one true God, money can be elevated to the status of a false god that is, something that controls our thinking, emotions, and decisions. Serving this "god" results in anxiety and lack of faith in the true God. We must continually decide which we are going to serve. 13. How much time do you consume in worrying over money? When you are considering a new activity or venture, do you think first of its financial feasibility or of its importance on the "Kingdom" scale? Spend some time this week measuring your money anxiety level, and come up with some ways to bring it down. Be careful in the focus you bring to such a needy area. Luke 16 describes three focus teachings on anxieties. In verses 1-13 Jesus relates dishonesty with the true discipline in managing our funds. Verses 14-18 helps us to understand the standard or laws of God governing love, faithfulness and commitment over against making ourselves look good before men. Finally, verses 19-31 describes the outcomes of those whose perspectives are clearly divine oriented (poor beggar Lazarus) and the consequent belated arrogance accompanied with a non-divine perspective (the rich man).

Promise No. 5 – “Out” "Out" denotes an exit. Its hebrew derivative is min-nay' and its greek associate is ek or ex. Both represent the point from which motion or action proceeds. In this case) exit debt and enter new life. This workbook is undergirded with a coming out motif. When we think of exiting, we tend to associate it with walking through a door from the inside to the outside. I hope you can see yourself moving from the inside of debt's confines and entering the new found God blessed existence. I like to think that God has opened the door for us in this instance and welcomes us on His side of living. Living on God’s side of the street is living in the Exodus. The promise to live there bas been made) but what does it take to get there? It is about time that you start packing, exit time has been promised! Can you see it yet? Well, 2 Kings 4:1-7 carries a story which might give you some needed inspiration. Now there cried a certain woman of the wives of the sons of the prophets unto Elisha, saying Thy servant, my husband is dead,: and thou

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knowest that thy servant did fear the Lord; and the creditor is come to take unto him my two sons to be bondmen. And Elisha said unto her, What shall I do for thee?, tell me, what hast thou in the house? And she saith, Thine handmaid hath not any thing’ in the house" save a pot of oil" vv.1-2 KJV. Coupled with the sorrow and grief of the recent death of her husband, this widow woman is now faced with a financial dilemma which could alter her entire lifestyle. She was a minister’s wife so you can take heart, spiritual people face financial dilemmas as well. We also see where she went to get help from the man of God, possibly her pastor, “the local prophet" Elisha. The reason the widow was so concerned about the debt is because a creditor was after her. David Copple, in his book Heaps, suggests that "probably some young auditor, wanting to make a name for himself with his governmental agency, began going through the books 'with a fine tooth comb.' Perhaps he was trying to collect on student loans or was checking the obituary columns and putting the information into his 'state of the art IBM abacus to see if any inheritance taxes or forgotten loans were owed to King Jehoram. Needless to say, the auditor must have spotted a pattern directly relating to Obadiah's line of credit. Doubtless, he discovered the ledgers containing the unbalanced accounts that revealed the money that was never paid back by Governor Obadiah. " "'That's it! He probably exclaimed gleefully. 'I'll go down to the county courthouse and get a lien on Obadiah's estate property.' "But when he got to the courthouse, I imagine he found that Obadiah had a recent first mortgage, so there was little equity in the house. Besides that, his widow might have had to sign a second mortgage with her friendly neighborhood savings and loan just to be able to bury her dearly departed husband. A check with retailers' credit showed that Obadiah owed so much that there was nothing on which to place a lien." "'There is nothing left, 'the auditor surmised. 'But, the records do show that Obadiah has two sons.' "Jewish law allowed the creditor to indenture the sons of Obadiah for six years each, so undoubtedly the smug official marched down to the courthouse again, this time to file notice of intent to indenture." (Copple, p.53 ) "When she received the registered letter containing the bad news, Obadiah's widow almost lost it! The toll of this experience seemed 51

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unending. She started to lose sleep, became irritable and withdrawn. Her appearance showed evidence of domestic stress and strain. Her hair was not tidy, she began to lose weight. Neighbors started to talk. Her predicament became the talk in the beauty salon and in other key venues surrounding Samaria. Just when she would have reached rock bottom, she reached out for counseling and help, she came to Elisha. Let's say to continue the analogy of keeping her family together, that she owed at least $108,000.00 plus the funeral bills and probably more". "'Sister Obadiah, 'Elisha may have said, 'you've got a great need.' 'Owning all that money. . . no job. . . your welfare cut off. . . the threat of losing your sons, you are in a great jam'." Elisha's words were a classic understatement. The only help he could direct her faith was where she was about to lose, her house. The insight of Elisha led him to work with what was remaining. "'Well, the prophet tells her, 'what kind of seed faith offering do you have?' 'Nothing, she replied woefully, 'except a pot of oil.' I looked up the hebrew word for pot, and the true meaning here is flask, or an alabaster box. The word for oil means grease, espec. liquid (as from the olive, often perfumed); a figure for richness. . . 'It has multiple uses. It can do more than one thing, it can be used in more than one area. You can cook with it, use it as medicine, consecrate/anoint/worship with it and even barter or use it as a medium of exchange. Then he (Elisha) said, "Go borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbors, even empty vessels; borrow not a few� 2 Kings 4:3. Sister Obadiah's reply, "except a pot of oil" bears some additional emphasis here. While there is a great degree of hopelessness apparent in her assessment of seeding for a miracle, the evidence of an "except" is key to her turnaround. When one can remember what may seem to be so trivial, that "except" may be an inherent factor for a miracle. In a real sense God leaves just enough for the possibility of a miracle in that pot of oil. I hasten to have you not overlook what God has left to usher you into the marvelous regions of a miracle. What may appear to be insignificant, if not overlooked, could very well be what God has left for your storied experience to find a

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redeeming end. Sister Obadiah and her sons went out and borrowed every vessel they could find. Persons in the community were already talking about her and thought she was about to lose her mind. Now here she comes asking to borrow some vessels. Notice Elisha's word of revelational instruction did not tell her to borrow money. She needed money but she was also up to her neck in debt because of the mismanagement of money. Here he seemingly circumvents the direct request and use of money to remedy her situation and gives her a means of acquiring funds needed by tying it to a means of creating a medium of exchange for funds needed. To "borrow empty vessels" points to making a request with an intention to return. How the vessels would be returned becomes the miracle of the request. The empty vessels were containers fit to be filled. Here we have an unusual request and an equally unusual set of circumstances dictating the fascinations of the return. Through this divine act of transforming counsel, Elisha was teaching development skills to Sister Obadiah and her two sons. The adage of "using what you got" is operative here. When circumstances have become so distasteful, when hope of a brighter day have fallen prey to the ignited flames of death and living debt, look for what God leaves for you in the “except" categories of life. Don't give up until there is an "except" which can provide an exit out of the possible indenturing prisons of life. She possibly taped the names of the vessel owner on the bottom of each vessel so they would be easily returnable. This stirred conversation throughout the community. Some may have asked, "Has Sister Obadiah been by your house? Did you let her borrow one of your vessels?" In few cases the answer was no, in many others, the answer was yes. I imagine that if she took seriously Elisha's admonishment to 'borrow not a few,' she probably had Obadiah, If., running over to the Carnation Dairy Farm to get their spare cream cans and her other son scurrying to the neighborhood Exxon Station to round up their extra oil buckets. These empty vessels were to come from Sister Obadiah's neighbors. Elisha knew something about her neighbors, he knew they could provide her with some empty vessels. He knew that if she only asked, they could come up with some empty vessels. He did not tell her to ask them for money or vessels with something in them. 53

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The instructions were to ask for empty vessels. Could the neighborhood have provided her with what she needed or the real question, did they care enough or were they willing? What is the complaint of most cities today, they don't have enough to do all they want to do in the neighborhoods. To tax or not to tax is the question. To further burden the people in requesting more while the times have ushered in a spirit of indenturing is part of the quandary we are captured in. What kind of neighborhood was it which had the heart to supply a struggling widow/single parent, grieving from the death of her husband and the forecast of darker days from the possible indenturing of her two sons, with vessels with nothing in them? That was the request, not a handout, just a hand. Let me have the empty vessel, God has outlined the means for filling the vessels. God has a way of ministering our deliverance in ways which help us to see Him as our source while our neighbors become our resources. Every community has some resources which can be tapped. Every household has some empty vessel which can be given to someone in need. Just making the request sends a message throughout the neighborhood. It also becomes a marketing tool used by God. How do you market a miracle? I think in this instance we have a good example. Not only will he help Sister Obadiah in this instance but he will help the entire neighborhood. He will use this woman and her sons to have the entire neighborhood view him as Provider. Isn't that a tremendous position to be in? Have you helped your neighborhood see God as Provider/Blesser in recent days? Can you detect any circumstance of recent days which may be a sign that God is at work marketing our neighborhoods/communities and families for a miracle? Are there any dead fathers/husbands, widowed women/mothers, indentured sons or daughters in your home/community? They hauled all the OPV's (Other People's Vessels) home and waited for the next instructions from the prophet. This set of instruction called for a period of consecration. When God gives you something to do, sanctify it, set it apart for his use. In addition, this consecration was a worship experience at its best. When viewed, worship should be a productive theme during the time of debt cancellation. Why worry when you can worship? Worship moves the strain of worry away. Worship replaces the setting with the

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alternatives of God. Worship centers itself upon the core of your pain and moves one into the presence of the God. Such a movement is motivational and rekindles dashed hopes, dreams and aspirations. Worship restores inspiration as it helps one reach the place and presence of God. Worship points us there, where God is. Since Sister Obadiah's home/family was in jeopardy, Elijah tells them to go there, with all of the collected vessels for a miracle, and worship there. At the point of our need, we must be moved to worship there. When we do, God will pour relief into that situation, “'And when thou art come in, thou shalt shut the door upon thee and upon thy sons, and shalt pour out into all those vessels, and thou shalt set aside that which is full. So she went from him, and shut the door upon her and upon her sons, who brought the vessels to her; and she poured out " 2 Kings 4-5. "Do you wonder why Elisha told the widow to get alone with her sons before beginning to pour? Elisha knew that it would be such a huge miracle that no one would believe it. No one, that is, except the widow and her sons. In addition, "secret closet time" was needed in order that a public note could be passed on to all who had lent Sister Obadiah the empty vessels. Secret closet time is private consecrated time with God (Matthew 6:6). This family had to shut out the community while they shut in with God. Periodic secret closet time should be spent by all families. Especially when jeopardy is so apparent and when needs are so great. "Can you imagine what it must have been like as the widow readied herself? 'Oh, if I break this container, what will happen? I hope I understood Elisha's instructions. I mean, the oil in this alabaster flask won't even cover the bottom of this barrel. Worse yet, if I break the flask open, pour out the oil and nothing happens, it will spoil and when I die my body won't be anointed.'" She followed the instructions, poured out from the limited supply into the emptiness of the empty vessels. How many times have you had only a little to work with while facing numerous needs? Debt places numerous needs before you but if you just pour out, payment by payment, into debt by debt, after while something miraculous will have happened. But the woman did break open the flask and did begin pouring. . . and

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pouring. . . and pouring. Eventually, every vessel in the house was filled to capacity! While she was pouring the oil out God was pouring into the oil His miraculous need meeting ability. He stretched the bounty of the oil to meet the needs her household was facing. God can turn our burdens into blessings. Whatever the oil you have let God get to work in it. What was the limit of her blessing? It was the number of vessels she had borrowed. 'And it came to pass, when the vessels were full, that she said unto her son, Bring me yet a vessel. And he said unto her, There is not a vessel more. And the oil stayed "2 Kings 4:6 Every oil man likes a leveraged deal. Real estate investors drool over the 'nothing down' package. Well, the widow suddenly found herself in the midst of a tremendous, leveraged, little down windfall. She had been used to living in poverty and debt so long that she didn't even know what to do with all that special miraculous spikenard oil. "Then she came and told the man of God. And he said, 'Go, sell the oil and pay thy debt, and live thou and thy children of the rest." 2 Kings 4:7 I can imagine that she took the vessels back to those she had borrowed them from. But there was an expectation awaiting her upon arriving at each home. Many in the community knew what she was going through and how Elisha had helped her through these instructions, now after the door has been opened and the vessels returned, something overwhelming is happening. She borrowed empty vessels, but now the returned vessels are filled with Miraculous Oil. How do you sell Miraculous Oil? In a real since it sells itself. She possibly used some on her own body first. Its use had removed stress because of its innate properties. Its fragrance added a freshness to her disposition. She spread it in her hair and it changed her demeanor. She sipped a little and it settled her nervous stomach. This oil of Sis. Obadiah provided a personal miracle in the midst of her personal misery. Donations are given by several neighbors. Some used the oil on sick bodies, others for cooking, still others for fragrance, the results were phenomenal. People began to talk about the oil in the same areas where they had talked about the depressing conditions of Sister Obadiah. They speak of

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the new life which has come to them and others want it as well. The oil sold itself. Associated with Prophet Elisha the word is all over the community that a tremendous blessing has come to Sister Obadiah and her sons and many wanted to celebrate with her, others wanted to purchase the oil for their own use. Additional oil is requested, she supplies it until it all runs out. At the close of this experience, her sons are with her, not indentured, not working off the debt of their deceased father, but home with their mother. All her debts are paid and she has enough for all three of them to live on. Here is a living miracle. At one time this woman was desperate. But now she is living in some supernatural blessings. 2 Chronicles 20:20c says, "...Believe in the Lord your God, so shall ye be established; believe his prophets, so shall ye prosper". Thank God that the same provision is available to us today. We can exit debt and enter new life. Debt will have us indenturing our sons and daughters if we do not live with a godly/parental sense for tomorrow. Debt was still alive after Obadiah's death and will be alive after yours and mine. Uncontrollable debt left unpaid may shackle the futures of our loved ones. To remedy this, families must seek to endow themselves. To endow mean to secure that family with enough liquid and invested income so as to protect them from being indentured or working off the debt left behind from the death of the primary provider. Financial security for your family starts with grappling with the purpose of your family under God. Each family should ask themselves, "how long does God desire that we glorify him?" I suggest that we must glorify God generationally. If we pass on anything, we must pass on the gratitude we've attained from the many graces of God in our lives. We really should break generational curses and open the floodgates to generational blessings. When you begin to practice the principles of God toward generational blessings there is a commensurate level of answers you will begin to ascend toward. Thereby, you should begin to develop a Plan of Action. This plan should be based on prudence and the ability of a person to govern and discipline themselves by the use of godly discretion. In other words, model God in developing your Plan of Action. "Do not be disturbed, then, when a man grows rich, and there is no end to his household magnificence-he cannot

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take all that with him when he dies, magnificence will not follow him to the grave, though while he lived he blessed his soul: and men will praise you, when you have faired well. Man, for all his splendor, if he has no prudence, resembles the beasts that perish" Psalm 49: 16-20, Knox. Every family head should come to grips with some relevant facts which will help in the development of a plan of action to secure your family for the future. You may ask, "When is the right time for me to get started with this plan of action?" The answer is, How much time have you wasted? How much time do you have? What about NOW!!! Your Plan of Action begins... Ecclesiastes 11 :4-6 makes it very clear, "He that observeth the wind shall not sow; and he that regardeth the clouds shall not reap. As thou knowest not what is the way of the spirit, nor how the bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child: even so thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all. In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thine hand: for thou knowest not whether shall prosper, either this or that, or whether they both shall be alike good" KJV. The bottom line: Get Started Now! Consider these frightening financial facts: by 65 years old, 45% are dependent on relatives, 30% are dependent on charity, 23% are still working and 2% are financially independent. The incomes of doctors, lawyers and most professionals hit a high by the time they reach between 47 and 48 years old and plunge rapidly after age 54. By age 65, 11 out of 12 women will become widows, 80% of all Americans will owe more than they own and 20% of your income will be used for consumer debt repayment. (Phillip Lowe, Certified Financial Planner).

Early, the children of our families should be taught the value of preparation for the future. Such principles should be taught when a child learns to count. I sat down with a messianic Jewish mother recently and received an eye opener of life from early childhood to the 13th birthday of both Jewish boys and girls. This time period is spent in a strong ethnic learning process which entails becoming astute in economics. While the girls are taught the varied areas of womanhood, the boys are trained to handle their "endowment portfolios." This financial package is one of the primary items examined when a young man asks for a female's hand in marriage. This financial package is an 58

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indication of the young man's ability to take care of the woman and the family that will be coming through their union. Here is the challenge to create A Plan of Action. Just think, this may be a key to the financial success of those of the Jewish race. They teach ownership early and pass acquired holdings on to those who are groomed to carry on the legacy. It is my prayer as well as part of my plan to do the same for my two sons, and help generate the same kind of process through my parish. When the conversation had ended with the dear Jewish sister, she made it very clear that the entire lifestyle process outlined above was carried out through their local synagogue. The church and adherence to the commands and principles of God enabled them to reach this level for stability of home and reciprocal character. Toward this end, we must start Biblical Family Training Institutes at our local churches which will teach the Rites of Passage principles and at the same time help to build upon the spiritual endowment themes of pass generations and place our best foot forward for the next generation. We must become more intentional to leave a legacy instead of lack behind. Your Plan of Action is important, it helps you to see where you are so that you can see where you have to go. Where do you want to be in the next five to ten years. No plan, no action. Prayerfully create a plan and watch God and his blessings. Remember! "People who don't take care of their relatives, and especially their own families, have given up their faith. They are worse than someone who doesn't have faith in the Lord" I Timothy 5:8 Contemporary English Version. Your Plan Of Action Should Encompass The Two A's: 1. Analyze Your Present Stewardship 2. Activate Your Alternatives

Analyze Your Present Stewardship Monthly Income Salary ____________ Investments (Personal or Club) ____________ (Money Market, Stocks, Bonds, CDs, Mutual Funds) ____________

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Rental Income Non-Retirement Income ____________ Child Support ____________ Alimony ____________ Home Based Business Income ____________ Personal Stream Income (Teaching, recycling items such as aluminum cans, grass cutting, painting, writing, etc. ____________ Other ____________ Total Gross Income ____________

Monthly Living Expenses Tithe( 10%) ____________ Taxes (Federal) ____________ (State) ____________ Social Security ____________ Mortgage/Rent ____________ Mortgage/Rental Insurance ____________ Alimony ____________ Child Support Child Care ____________ Pre-Planning for Death Taxes ____________ Water ____________ Electricity ____________ Gas ____________ Sewage ____________ Garbage ____________ Telephone ____________

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Cable ____________ Satellite TV ____________ Maintenance ____________ Repairs ____________ Furnishings ____________ Household Help ____________ Other ____________ Food Expense ____________ Transportation Expense Type Of Vehicle (Auto/Truck) Payment ____________ Insurance ____________ License ____________ Taxes ____________ Gas ____________ Oil ____________ Maintenance ____________ Wash/Wax ____________ Total Expense ______________ Recreational/Entertainment Expenses Vacation ____________ Dining Out ____________ Babysitters ____________

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Movies ____________ Insurance Expense Life ____________ Medical ____________ Disability ____________ Dental ____________ Homeowner's ____________ Other ____________ Debt Expense Credit Card (s) ____________ Bank Loans ____________ Installment Notes ____________ Clothing Expenses New Clothing ____________ Dry Cleaning ____________ Total Expense ____________ Savings & Investments IRA ____________ 401(k) ____________ Other ____________ Total Expenses ____________ Medical Expenses (not covered by insurances) Doctor ____________

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Dental ____________ Medical ____________ Prescriptions ____________ Other ____________ Total Expenses ____________ Miscellaneous Expenses Education ____________ Legal ____________ Subscriptions ____________ Allowances ____________ Gifts ____________ Barber ____________ Beauty Shop ____________ Cosmetics ____________ Toiletries ____________ Other ____________ Total Expenses ____________ Total Income ____________ Less Total Expenses ____________ Total ____________

After you add up your Total Income then subtract your Total Expenses you will determine your Net Worth. Net Worth is the amount of money you would have if you were to sell everything you have and payoff all your debts today.

Assets Checking. Savings and Money Markets

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Stocks, Bonds, CDs IRAs, Mutual Funds Other Non Retirement Assets Current Life Insurance Cash Values Home Market Value Retirement Assets

Liabilities Home Mortgage Balance Other Debt Balances

Net Worth Total Assets

Total Liabilities

To make progress toward your goals, your net worth must increase over time. Ask yourself, what little things can I begin to do now that will make a world of difference in my present financial condition? "Who despises the day of small things?" Zec. 4:10 NIV. The more you begin to work with the small things, the more God will make revelations about larger things. Before we get to the Alternatives here is a revelation for a way to add income while placing it on the expense side of your budget. It is with a Heavenly Account. Your heavenly account may be associated with any biblical text relating to financial promise, but I will use Philippians 4:17 – “Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that may abound to you account”. I must admit, I am using “account” in the checking sense. The routing number – Philippians is the fiftieth book (50) in the bible, and then I place the fourth (4) chapter and the seventeenth (17) verse in place to round out the heavenly routing number 50417. Usually there is a banking code next on the regular checking accounts, for this heavenly account, we will use a cross +. Now the account number: The account number is derived from the first name of an individual. Biblically, there are no last names of individual used in scripture. Refer now to the telephone pad to derive the last part of this heavenly account number. Take my first name, RONNIE, from the phone pad, my account number is 766643. So, my heavenly account is routed from the Word of God and directed to you, the Child of God ~50417 + 766643. In this account I will place my 10% which is the tithe to me after my tithe to

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God. These “favor deposits” are derived from instances of favor from God, while the interest derived is accrued through “Heaven’s Favor System” – Psalm 5:12.

Activate Your Alternatives Here are Ten Commandments I. Thou Must Worship! 1. "Give unto the Lord the glory due his name: bring an offering and come before him: worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness" KJV. A. "Give unto the Lord the glory due his name"~In that God has given you another day, start it out with a Glory Response! B. Return your thanks with Glory (haw-lal') which means to say thank you, to rave, to praise or to celebrate! 2. "Bring an offering and come before him"~ "Min-khaw" in this instance represents a sacrificial offering brought to God. A. As a practice in creating an offering, the animals were fed a nutritional diet so they could be used as an offering. B. In addition to celebrating The Lord's Supper each morning, a Glory Offering of $1.70 or more should be presented to God through private worship in accordance with the verse. I made a Glory Box I place it in daily > {God's Stock Market} C. The planting of $1.70 daily will become $51.00 after 30 days. That equates to a Jubilee Seed. Jubilee is our quest. Leviticus 25 outlines the covenant teaching preventing overworking the land, calls for regular land redistribution and negated the perpetuation of servitude. According to Deut. 15:4, an additional Jubilee teaching, these actions were intended to eliminate poverty. 3. "Worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness"~This act of Private Worship makes a holy statement~"this is my personal attentiveness toward God". A. Private Worship provides access to the beauty of God's holiness. Beauty had-aw-raw' is an adverb and indicates the quality of my worship. In this instance, you will derive out of worship how you approach Him in worship. B. This consecrated and dedicated prompting will derive a beautiful response. The directive says, desire a more beautiful lifestyle as that perfecting outcome.

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II. Thou Must Eliminate All High-Interest Debt In today's low-interest-rate environment, it's is not smart to transfer your balance from a high-interest credit card to one with a lower rate, or to consolidate your debt and pay it off with a low-interest home equity loan. It's not smart to celebrate being debt-free by charging your way into debt all over again. Suppose you make only minimum payments on your debt. Say you've got a $3,000 balance on your credit card. If you just pay a 2 percent minimum on your remaining balance every month and you're charged 17.99 percent interest, it will take you 37 years to payoff the whole amount. At the end of those 37 years, you will have paid nearly $11,000. Even at a more reasonable rate -- say 14.98 percent, the national average -- full repayment would take 26 years for a total of $7,440. Some cards companies add more than the interest rate. Some companies have added an amount for account protection, a late fee, an over limit fee, and a finance charge. The bottom line, impose a moratorium on the use of your credit card. Try this even if the company will not comply: Contacting the card company, asking for their assistance which may involve termination of the card, freeze the accrual of the interest rate and pay on the frozen balance until you pay it off. Serious debt problems requires serious debt discipline. The children of Israel talked with God and Pharaoh before they left Egypt. You should do the same. III.

Thou Must Keep One Month's Living Expenses In Your Checking Account

Set a goal: Make some major spending adjustments. Work towards getting one month of living expenses in your checking account. Goals were made to be achieved. Determine to do it. Need some help? What do you do with the change in your pocket daily? Why not put it in a glass jar, a plastic container and save it towards a designated goal. What is the Spirit of God saying to you about your change? Change can turn into large sums of help if you plan for it. Stop saying what you don't have and start telling what money you have to start working for you. Men, do you get a hair cut every week? What about designating three months and instead of getting a hair cut every week why not get one every two weeks. Take the two weeks savings and put it in that glass jar or plastic container. Small things can grow when you put your mind to it. Ladies, what about that beautician visit? Why not give it a try? What about those nails? Can they last for two weeks? The other thing we want to keep in mind, we don't want to hurt our brother and sisters who are barbers and beauticians.

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They have to make a living as well. IV.

Thou Must Keep 3-6 Months' Living Expenses In A Money Market Fund (Cash Reserve)

Goal No.2: After getting ahead one month in your living expenses, work towards 3-6 months of living expenses in a Money Market Fund. This is your liquid nest egg or a rainy day fund. Most of us have been use to living from pay check to pay check. But air conditioners can blowout on you just when you have a temperature breaking day. Stop spending all of the "extra" money which the Lord has been blessing you with. Open a Money Market account and start putting it in there. Why a Money Market account? Such an account afford you with the benefit of earning interest off of your monies while having check writing flexibility. V. Thou Must Put Savings For Major Purchases In A Money Market Fund Don't wear yourself out dealing with deep dipping in your checking account. Expand your preparation from your Cash Reserves into the place for your major purchases. An excellent note to remember: Start paying for your new appliances before you need them. Put those funds in a Money Market Fund. Start paying for your new vehicle before you need it. Put those funds in a Money Market Fund. When you put the funds here month per month, the favor of God will rest upon you and your developing seeds for future purchases. VI. Thou Must Invest To Meet Long Term Goals In: * Growth Mutual Funds *Money Market Funds * Asset Management Account (This is where your Credit Card credit line could be derived. Control your own financial destiny instead of another card company.) * Real Estate or some secured income producing instrument VII. Thou Must Make Your Home Your Castle a. There are tax advantages in home ownership through the opportunity for appreciation, and in creating equity and cash value. b. Payoff your mortgage debt and live in your home for free (aside from

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utilities and property taxes) VIII. Thou Must Tax Defer Your Income and Growth Until You Retire a. IRA ($2000 annual contribution; taxable earnings from all sources fall below $35,000. b. SEP/Koegh Plans: for self-employed c. 401 (k)/403 (b) Plan for employees of for profit and non profit businesses. d. Non-Qualified Deferred compensation Plans: for highly compensated executives. e. The Accumulator Cash Bonus Annuity IX. Thou Must Join or Create An Investment/Wealth Building Club

(Deuteronomy 8: 18) 1. Start with a small covenant core group. Jesus had twelve. The ministry can have as many members as you want, but it is best to start with a core group of no more than three to five biblical success-oriented people. You will grow because success attracts attention. Joshua 1:8 is a great guide text: "This book of the law shall not depart out of they mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success" KJV. 2. Set and collect a financial commitment. One of the first ways to determine who is serious about the process is to see who puts their money down. * A Ministry fee of $30 per month should be set, ( $1.00 per day) collected and placed in a money market account that requires the signatures of at least two ministry members before any funds can be drawn out. a. Avoid personality conflicts, stay Jesus Centered and Kingdom Minded. Your initial group should remain focused on the teachings of Deuteronomy 8:18 and Joshua 1:8. Every member should clearly understand his or her responsibilities and the process of making decisions. If the group later grows and wishes to become a non- profit entity, an "S" Corporation or a regular corporation, be led of the Lord. b. Learn from your early efforts, repeat the success and correct the mistakes, and thank God for every opportunity to serve Him and his people. Here is a list of possible events:

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1. Marriage Seminars 2. Dinner/Fashion Show 3. Special Day Parties (MLK, Jr., Valentine, Christmas, etc.) 4. Foreign Country Tours (Holy Land, Steps of Paul, England, etc.) 5. Three on Three Basketball Tournament 6. 21st Century Church Growth Conference 7. Biblical Audio, Video & T-Shirt Sales 8. Debt Cancellation Workshops 9. Creating A Deut. 8: 18 Wealth Building & Investment Club Seminar 10. Biblical & Academic Competitions Opal Palmer Adisa, in her article, "An African Tradition's Lesson in Economic Empowerment" offers a similar suggestion when it comes to starting a Wealth Building Ministry (WBM). She says, "have each participant establish goals for their money, and identify and state why saving is important. Build a network of friends and create events for all participants to engage in to further build trust and a sense of responsibility for each other." X. Thou Must Start A Home Based Business As A Means Of Creating A Second Income Did you know that you are presently paying for services in your own home and business which now can aid and assist you towards your debt cancellation and financial security? What are these services? They are your present telephone (local and long distance as well as calling cards), internet access and paging services. Because of deregulation in these industries, you can financially benefit from these services you have been paying for over the years. Ronnie D. Joyner Ministries, Inc. has positioned itself so that you can take advantage of such an opportunity. The company we have partnered with to provide such services is Amazon. Additionally, when is the last time you went shopping and earned money while you spent necessary money? Because of this partnership we have a one stop place we can acquire the necessities of life for inside and outside the home as well. In Amazon we have a 21st Century answer. Become debt free and become a business owner through this ministry. 69

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Here is a letter of thanks I received from Janice Lee Beverly, an entrepreneur after I interviewed here on my radio show, which aires daily 11am, 3pm and 8pm est. on www.HotJoyRadio.com > Click here to listen Tune In App.

HERBALIFE

Nutrition For A Better Life

Janice Lee-Beverly Independent Distributor

Business Phone: (877) 837-3734 Website: Janice LeeBeverly.theonlinebusiness.com Email: www.mygreatshapetoday.com/janices-health-products Access code: healthy

July 30, 2012

Dear Dr. Joyner, I like to convey my sincere thanks to you and the First Lady for the courtesy you extended to me, during the July 24th radio interview. I am truly touched by your generosity, your spirit, and willingness to help me expand my business. The interview not only bolstered my confidence but has become an unforgettable part of my memory. I am indeed fortunate to have connected with you. It was just what I needed but never expected. Again, thank you for all your efforts to arrange my interview and for allowing me the opportunity to be a part of your long and outstanding legacy. It is quite encouraging to see people reaching out and doing great things for our community. I too, want to reach out and touch others and help them live a quality and productive life and because of you I’m even closer to pursuing my dream. Sincerely,

Janice L. Lee-Beverly

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The Principle: The Luke 6:38 Stewardship Principle Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again. Luke 6:38 KJV. Luke 6:38 is a key text in the consistent biblical teaching on 'principles. Principles are fundamental laws and teachings whose inherent lessons become the standards for proper conduct. As a principle in this instance, Luke 6:38 is a spiritual axiom upon which values, relationships, attitudes and responsibility are built. Problems don't have to remain a fixed burden in one's life if you can align yourself with the right principles. Promises can evolve into solutions when there is the right principle attached. Luke 6:38 provides such a principle our financial problem and biblical promises can run its thread through and weave a needed salvation for our lives. Let's get a better handle on Values, Relationships, Attitudes and Responsibilities. They are primary and important sections in the construct of our lives . As we move through this stewardship rendering, we will find that there are values or outlets of standards, conduits of discipline which can be used when the principle of Luke 6:38 is utilized. We will further see the dynamics of consistency this principle releases as relationships are viewed as axioms for redemption. The prefix, "re" suggests again, anew, going backward in order to go forward, is an interjection which implies emphasis and in this instance the emphasis will be to reconnect and review the features of faith to sustain us in the quest of godliness. One's spiritual position will be under examination. This undergirding will be reviewed in attitude. Attitude has to do with the motivation or genesis of our functioning as a godly people. If the right principle is in place, then right action should proceed from it. Then finally, this principle births responsibility. It helps define the quality of a person. A persons' quality is revealed when righteous sensibility becomes the basis of one's reaction. In this instance you are ultimately the moral agent of accountability. Values, relationships, attitudes and

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responsibility, these are the offsprings of the Luke 6:38 principle. On most Sundays we recite this text before we present our tithes and offerings unto God. We use Luke 6:38 as a biblical guide and principle for stewardship and living. The entire chapter is filled with the teaching of Jesus. His teaching provides an excellent monologue on the virtue of being dialogical and building fruitful interactive relationships. A brief overview of the text is helpful. Verses 1-10 gives us the relationship principle of eating and healing on the Sabbath. In verses 12-16 we see the relationship principle of prayer as well as Jesus' selection of the 12 disciples. In verses 17, 19 we are taken to a healing session with persons from Judea, Jerusalem and the seacoast of Tyre and Sidon and shown how Jesus provided healing for their tormented conditions. Verses 20-23 allows us to hear Jesus speak about the principles of those in Kingdom relationships. Verses 24-26 gives caution to those relationships with material possessions, personal images, carefree lifestyles 'and public opinions based on the wrong principles. Verses 27-37teaches the supremacy of the principle and place of Love as it relates to one's enemies, the need for mercy and equity in judging matters. Verses 38-49 continues the parameters of His principles in appropriating them relationally. Luke 6 is an excellent body of teaching in revealing the principles of Jesus as they give rise to the promises inherent in Kingdom alignment as we engage them to overcome the problems which beset us. Notice the evolving principle in Luke 6:38. The command Give starts a process which informs an established principle. In its greek form, didomi is a verb which describes the activity toward another. It is modified by its connection. It is connected to- "and it shall be given to you, good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over. . . " The "it" in this segment of the text is more than just a neutral pronoun, but rather "it" is used as the subject of a verb that expresses the character and condition of the command "give." When one obeys the command, look at the response: o Good Measure - (kalos) expresses the value or virtue of "it." o Pressed Down - (piezo) expresses the positioning, packing or squeezing of "it."

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o Shaken Together - (seimos) expresses the agitation, or created commotion involved with "it." o Running Over - (huperekchuno) expresses the overflow, exceeding abundance, the richness of "it�. This Luke 6:38 principle provides an understanding of the worth and value of that in which we give, the performance or function of that gift as it is compacted into a utilized assembly, then the excitement this gift precipitates as it is placed in relationship with its receiver and finally, the abundant inundated surplus with inherent richness.

There are four areas to be explored in this segment: A. A Personal-Practical Principle B. The Principle In Practice C. Practicing The Principle D. The Precipitation of the Principle This teaching from the lips of Jesus comprises lifestyle directives. These directives help you obtain the best principled instructions for living in order that you may experience the best in living. At the core of this teaching is a cycle process, a stimulus - godly reacting to that previous action through giving. Here we have an eternal process which has been in continual flow since God was God and is still prompting life to respond. I trust that you will come to know that you are a primary gift in this cycle process. I trust that you will see yourself as a necessary gift in this eternal process. You have value in this eternal movement because this is: A Personal-Practical Principle Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again. Luke 6:38 KJV.

We are at the starting point of this principle's cycle movement, and at this point you are the important person. God's cycle of blessing is a revolving, revolutionizing reality that when properly considered gives a whole new perspective about living. "Give, and it shall be given unto you ‌" The family and its home become an excellent starting place to begin exampling this personal-practical principle of Luke 6:38. Fathers should be givers, in like fashion, the wife and the parent's example should be taught to their children. A family of givers is a principled derivative of Luke 6:38. Families with principles negate the tragic themes of our day where we find so many families

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fragmented. Fragmented families are usually headless, thus, there is a strained hope for the body of that family. In giving His life for the church, and the subsequent fragmentation or scattering of the sheep, (see Mark 14:27), Jesus' teaching emphasizes that the heads of families, like that of the church must give of themselves for the life of the ones they love, (see Ephesians 5:23-33).

Fathers: I Timothy 5:8 says, "But if any provide not for his own, and especially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel" (KJV). Provide is prom-er-im-nah' in the greek and means to care in advance or thinking of those you love in advance of necessary action and helping them to maintain what has been acquired. Such a mentality of a family head is a blessing to a family. The text suggests that this family head should be a male by the inference of "his" in the text. But suppose there is not a male head in your family.

Mothers: You may be a female and head of your household, well, if this is your lot, here is some biblical and scriptural support. Romans 16: 1,2 relate a brief but full and enriching example of Phoebe. History records that she had become a convert of Paul, attended to him and others and was a business woman/widow of consideration and wealth as well. Of memorable note, she carried what we know as the Book of Romans from Paul at Cenchreae to the saints at Rome. Being a female does not disqualify you from being the head of the household. As a matter of fact, the role of females is that of "helping" the male to "meet" the family's fullness, Proverbs 31: 13-31. Taken from the "rib" of Adam, Eve embodied the theology of ribology which has become the biblical principle for male/female bonding in marriage. This concept is Cleaving, Genesis 2:24. Cleaving, daw-bak', is the process inherent in this theology of ribology and means to cling, abide fast and be joined- "the two of them become like one person. It should be a personal-practical principle when the husband-wife work in partnership to fashion a clinging, abiding and joined family. Husbands should take this responsibility personal, and the wife likewise. The practicality of this principle undergirds the lifeline of the family. No greater picture of beauty could one ever see is one which is of a husband and wife 74

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fulfilling this practical principle. The practice of clinging, abiding and being joined is a powerful model to be duplicated by the children. This heritage of stability must be passed on as an heirloom in every family. Any other practice which disrupts the stability of family life and inhibits its sanctity should be nullified. Godly safeguards are given in God's word and should be adhered to.

Children: Children are personal with God. They are in need of oversight, care and provisions. We must also remember that what is personal with God should become personal with us. Here are some parental directives given to some select children. I hasten to suggest that every parent should read Proverbs 22 in its entirety. The depth of insight should be lessons we lead our children to turn into bedtime wisdom nuggets. If a child can take a nugget of wisdom with them as they sleep at night, they will wake up with cornerstones for daily living. Here is an example. We have heard, stated and quoted Proverbs 22:6 hundreds of times over the years. "Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it." This is the proper ethic for quality parenting. But continue to read. Look at the verse ahead of it and the verse after it. First v. 5, "Thorns and snares are in the way of the forward: he that doth keep his soul shall be far from them". Our children must be taught to detect the thorns and snares of life. This is a guard for success our children must be apprized of. Then we come to verse 6 which is the training we should carry them through which alerts them to the thorns and snares. But the next verse has to do with the financial mentality a child should be apprized of early. It says, "The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender�. Just this brief examination of three verses prompts one to go a little deeper. With the degeneration of values and ethics among Generation X, parents need to ensure that Generation Next are properly prepared. I Chronicles 28:1-20 is the account of God's personal selection of Solomon to build the Temple, after David his father, worked to perfect the plans. At this time King David stood before the people and proclaimed Solomon's ascension to the throne of the Kingdom of the Lord over Israel (28:5). At the same time he told the people that God would not allow him to build the temple because he had been a "man of war, and had shed blood" (28:30). Thus, the God of Israel chose Solomon to build his house and his courts: for God had chosen him to be his son, and he would be his father (28:6). But the key factor to Solomon's fulfillment of this holy task was dependent upon his obedience to the commandments and judgments of God. 75

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Two very personal expressions are indicated which moved the heart of God. David indicated them to Solomon, "My son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve Him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thought: if thou seek Him He will be found of thee; but if thou forsake Him, He will cast thee off forever" (28:9). A perfect heart and a willing mind are necessary to be in right relation with God. Such virtues speak of the essence of that relationship. In Hebrew perfect heart is laev-sha-Iaem and willing mind is translated as neh-fesh kha-feh-tsah, which also literally mean willingly, with pleasure, gladly. These expressions describe the practical essence of one's regard for God and that relationship. It is generic with the qualities Jesus outlined in Matthew 22:37, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind" KJV. It is again reiterated by Paul concerning the liberality extol1ed by the churches of Macedonia. "Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia; How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality. For to their power, 1 bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves; Praying us with much entreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints. And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God" 2 Corinthians 8:1-5 KJV. Before you can receive from God, you first must be in right relationship with him. Personal1y practice this and then see the principle of God begin to work for you. The Principle In Practice "...good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over..." Luke 6:38 shows us how a family can become financially empowered. Being empowered is acquiring the economic supply to meet one's economic needs. More simply stated, it is having the financial ability to take care of life's necessities without the stress and strain caused by going without. That old adage, "robbing Peter to pay Paul" can be appropriated here, the headache of being financial1y hindered and dependent are associated variables. You and your family need to become the practice of this principle. Your family

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need to work on becoming empowered. This should be your spiritual goal and your holy commitment. When one is economically empowered, stability, control and feeling good about oneself are at work. Achieving this empowerment must be a principled practice. Here is an example: Do you remember the water pump that provided water for so many of us? You remember that water pump, in your back yard, or' your grandparent's back yard, which had a handle, a top with an opening, and a spout from which the water flowed. A long pipe was enclosed in the diaphragm and ran down into the water table in the ground. The key to getting water from such a pump is an excellent example of what the principle in practice could dramatize. The drama of getting water from this pump was occasioned by what we refer to as priming. Priming was the act of pouring water through the opening in the top of the pump to provide the inner mechanics of the pump, usually a heat dried gasket, with a good soaking so that it could expand, and thus provide an unlimited supply of water. If there was no priming, there would be no water received. As a principled practice, priming must be a consistent operative for every family. It is the activity which allows the process of a blessing to be configured. It is the call for a need filling response. It is the calling forth of that which has been already directed by God to happen for you and your family. Priming is when parents make the effort to go to work in order that the work done would compensate them. Parental compensation is necessary if the household will be provided for. The responsibility of the parents is to follow the principle, practice it that it can be taught to those who must learn it. Herein is what I like to refer to as The Family Cycle of Blessing. This revolving practice is the nucleus for the evolving empowerment of that family. When that family practices giving to God, the opening at the top, and to the needs of his Kingdom, the handle of the pump, that which follows is a blessing from God, from the spout, "and God will give to you. " The practice of this principle has biblical roots. Read these episodes in

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the lives of these faith warriors and see how God gave to them when they determined to enter into The Cycle of His Blessings. Such notables are: Abraham and Melchizedek - Genesis 14:13-24; Jacob in Bethel-Genesis 35:1-15; David at the beginning of construction of the Lord's House - I Chronicles 29:1-30; Solomon at the completion of the House of the Lord-II Chronicles 7:8-22; Agur's word of prophesy-Proverbs 30:4-9; Jesus' teaching of the Sower-Matthew 13; Paul's teaching concerning Sowing-II Corinthians 9:6-15. The list could continue and it is virtually inexhaustible. Luke 6:38 becomes a principled practice in the management of our households and our private affairs. If our family histories have been filled with blemishes, burdens, bad credit reports, inability to qualify for that loan we thought could help us reach that financial place we have sought, Take heart, examine where you have been priming. What have you been pouring into? What practice has become a principle for you? Priming with no response? Our text at this juncture has reminded us that "God will give to you." Priming in the name of Jesus, at the pump of His Kingdom will provide "the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen" Hebrews 11:1. God Is The Ultimate Giver!

Practicing The Principle "...shall men give into your bosom..." When you practice the Luke 6:38 principle, it has endless possibilities. One glaring truth is quite evident: You Cannot Practice The Principle Without The Principle Providing! Anyone who follows the principle will find that they prosper from its use. There is prosperity in the practice. Put the principle to the test, practice it. As I stated at the outset, The Philadelphia Fellowship (Baptist), the church I am privileged to pastor, quote this text nearly every week prior to presenting our tithes and offerings unto the Lord. Even in the quoting of this principle our stewardship volume has increased. We believe in the Gifts of the Spirit-I Corinthians 12 and the Fruit of the Spirit, Galatians 5:22,23. The congregation is gifted to produce fruit. We seek the gift of every member to be surfaced so that each may be edified and God glorified. We then seek to help that person direct that gift toward some fruitful goal-Mark 1:17. We hold that Acts 2:41-47 is the fulfillment description of the church and out of it four specific areas are emphasized that the stewardship of talent can be properly utilized-Worship-v.4l, 46a, Education-v.42, Fellowshipv.42c, 44,45, 46b and Outreach- v.47. When you practice the principle, 78

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prosperity is attained. A definition of prosperity is being provided for through an unlimited supply. This definition is not only conducive for your financial relations but for your total lifestyle because, God prospers those who practice His principles. Do you need a revelation of financial transformation? Would you like to experience some significant changes in your life regarding your present financial lifestyle? I highly recommend you get under some sound doctrine with financial health being taught and a transformation will take place! In First Samuel 22 we have an example. David, anointed to be the next King of Israel, was fleeing from Saul, the current King, who was jealous. David was soon joined by a strange band of followers, because of their circumstances, we could call them "The 3-D Army." I Samuel 22:2 says, "And everyone that was in distress, and everyone that was in debt, and everyone that was discontented, gathered themselves unto him; and he became a captain over them: and there were with him about four hundred men" KJV. All of these of "The 3-D Army" were in trouble. Many of them were David's own relatives. But what was done by David is key for what many of us, including you, must do. David began lifestyle motivational sessions. He began to teach a message which was positive even though they were living in some negative times. Biblical history reflects that during the time of this I Samuel writing, David began these lifestyle motivational sessions. According to 2 Chronicles 1:15, by the time Solomon became King of Israel, "silver and gold were as plenteous as stones. " These sessions were somewhat military influenced, in that "he became a captain over them," they were taught to be disciplined, diligent and to be a strong financial disciple. These sessions were very motivational and filled with inspirational encouragement. What do you need to hear when you are in distress, in debt and very discontented? You need to receive a disciplined, diligent and discipled word which can only come from - The Word Of The Lord! Here is an excellent example: "Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor

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standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper"

Psalm 1 : 1-3 KJV. There is nothing more needed for those who are distressed, in debt and discontented, than the Word of The Lord. Psalm One provides for us, a springboard whereby we may suggest a few helps. There are three positions or relations one must beware of if you, are going to create change for yourself, they are Walking, Standing and Sitting. If you want to change your present cursed status, find out how to become blessed. The text suggests that you consider those you are walking with now and receiving counsel from. Walking, haw-lak' represents your lifestyle, how you are living and the frame of reference you are using as the standard, counselor advice for your lifestyle. While walking represents your lifestyle, Standing represents your convictions. One's beliefs will be determined by who one stands with and where they stand. The text suggests that you should not be standing with sinners. Sinners is rendered khat-taw' and mean one who is a criminal, accounted as guilty, an offender. As a believer, your convictions or beliefs should not be from those who do not embrace the teachings of Jesus, your savior. Watch the influences from those in the media, the talk shows, the infomercials, and those of the financial world who practice the quest of uncertain riches - I Tim 6:17. Let your fundamental and basic belief in Christ chart your course for daily living "Give us this day our daily bread" Matthew 6:11 KJV. A third position or affiliation is that of Sitting, (yaw-shab') in this instance, with scorners. Scorners are those who speak a foreign language, or a language different from those who listen to the voice of God. As a matter of fact they speak against God's voice, they mock or make jest of God's language. To sit with such people carries the connotation of being married to them and their philosophy. Such a union conditions those associated with the

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consequences that scorners will experience verses 4,5. As a Child of God, your demeanor should not be such. What should be your demeanor? The text continues in suggesting the demeanor you should have. "But his delight (khay'-fets),pleasure, inclination, or like, is in the law (to-raw'), statute, custom, or manner, of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate (haw-gaw'), ponder, takes pleasure in or study, day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted (shawthai'), lifted from one place and set at another place, by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season, his leaf (aw-leh'), what is fruit, foliage or that which ascends from, also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper (tsaw-lay'-akh), to be profitable, caused to be prosperous. With this kind of lifestyle motivation one can do nothing but receive.

The Precipitation of the Principle "...for with the same measure that ye mete withal..." Since there will be a return forthcoming, what kind of management posture should you have? How do you manage "a full measure, a generous helping, poured into your hands - all that you can hold?� The key management segment of the text is "poured into your hands-all your hands can hold". Receiving the blessings of God must make one a responsible manager. Since the principle will produce some precipitation - We Must Prepare For It! I have termed this segment as The Precipitation of the Principle. I have used what many would refer to as a weather term or one associated with rain. Precipitation is associated with how much, the amount. In other words, what is the level of prosperity this principle provides? You determine it! When a person gives, it starts a cycle of action and reaction. "Give," starting the cycle process, "and it shall be given to you." What is this it? It is used here as the subject of a verb that expresses the character and condition of the blessing one will receive from God after giving. It could be money, but it could also be love, joy, peace, etc. What we insert in it is the essential key to understanding our blessings. If you needed love, give love and love will come back to you. If you needed joy, give joy to others and it will come back to you, if you needed peace, give peace and it will come back to you. Then, of course, if you needed 81

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money, give money, and it will come back to you. We will explore this possibility shortly, read on. You determine your return or precipitation. Now, you cannot hurry blessings. They, like all fruit, take time. Jesus put it this way, "Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it brings forth much fruit" (John 12:24 KJV). Much fruit comes from planted seeds. More life producing activity is going on under the ground that we cannot see, than that in which we can see on top of the ground. What is taking place under the ground is that the roots, the anchors, the primary and necessary support is originating. When Jesus says, "Give, and it shall be given to you, good measure. . . "he is essentially saying, you may not see anything right now, but your blessing is taking on proper rooting. Don't get impatient, your blessings are growing a root. Cultivate your developing crop- fertilize it, water it, nourish it - that the ground may yield a great increase. When the root has grown enough under the ground, God will let it come forth on top of the ground. The good measure is already an inherent part of what you gave. Likewise, the pressed down, the shaken together and the running over. The increase will come, and when it does it will be precipitating in your life: Stewards must have the full intelligence of what they are stewards over. Being a manager is maintenance at its best. From the inner court to the outer court, from the front door to the back, everything God has blessed the house to acquire should be properly maintained by the insight of being faithful. Exodus 35 relates how Moses gathered the congregation of Israel to tell them of the need to build a new sanctuary. Throughout the chapter we see how much the people gave to complete the task. But look what happens in the next chapter. Exodus 36:4-7 states "the wise men, that wrought all the work of the sanctuary, came every man from his work which they made (manager) and they spake unto Moses, saying, The people bring much more than enough for the service of the work, which the Lord commanded to make. And Moses gave commandment, and they caused it to be proclaimed throughout the camp, saying, Let neither man nor woman make any more work for the offering of the sanctuary. So the people were restrained from bringing. For the stuff they had was sufficient for all the work to make it, and too much." 82

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Inquiring ministry heads should want to know how such motivation of a congregation was able to take place. I cannot count on one hand, in close to 40 years as a minister/pastor that I have had this problem as stated in the Exodus text. Usually, it is just the opposite, we never have enough. But, pondering closer, there have been times when God sent us an abundance of things in which we thought was too much, but these items were in our estimation - useless, and we got rid of them. I wonder, when we rid ourselves of what we feel is insignificant and too much of it, was it a test from God to see what kind of steward we would be with them? How many times have we limited the precipitation of blessings in our lives as a result of determining what kind of precipitation we wanted? Take Israel's plight for 400 years, they suffered at the taskmaster's hand, being driven to even make bricks without straw - Ex. 5:4-9. Oppressed, dying side by side under such a demonic spirit, one wonders, could such a people ever become motivated? But to redeem the lives of Israel, and to render the supreme knowledge of God among other nations, God took Israel to one of their lowest points to lift them to a new standard. This new standard was learning to depend solely upon the God of their Exodus. The God of their Exodus had made a promise, Exodus 3:21-22 says, " And I will give this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians; and when you go, you shall not go empty, but each woman shall ask of her neighbor, and of her who sojourns in her house, jewelry of silver and of gold, and clothing, and you shall put them on your sons and on your daughters; thus you shall despoil the Egyptians". There is transforming power through the promise of The God of Your Exodus. Exodus, it is time that you receive the promise and come out of your former state. Are you due for an Exodus? You need to wrap yourself in the promise of the God of your Exodus so that you can "despoil the Egyptians". Living in the promise of the God of Your Exodus will empower you to gain the faith needed to despoil the Egyptians. Living in the promise of This God releases the "favor" of this God. God's favor will provide precipitation. Just don't get sidetracked, impatient. Israel had to endure

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imposed slavery for 400 years. Do you think they got sidetracked, impatient? God spoke to and gave them favor with their "neighbors". Their neighbors were the Egyptians. They had been slaves to their neighbors. Then after 400 years, God turned slaves owners and taskmasters into neighbors. Could it be that your debts can become your neighbors and what had you bound, God's promise and God's favor will have you despoil your debt? Insert any form of slavery in the place of debt and I believe the same thing The God of Israel's Exodus did for them, He will be the God of your Exodus. Exodus means to exit, get out, come out. But it has to be the God of it who will cause it. Don't be sidetracked but become a seer and don't be impatient but turn impatience into a blessed wait as your time for blessing arrives. A story is told of a pastor and deacon who went fishing one day. As they had arrived at the fishing spot, the deacon replied, "Pastor, everything we catch today will go into your basket." With delight and anticipation, the pastor responded, "Okay brother, let's get started". Within seconds of casting their lines, the-deacon felt a tug on his. "Pastor, I believe we have our first catch." With a big smile on his face, the pastor put his rod down and picked up the net, steady as the little boat would allow, he slowly talked the catch into the net and pulled it up out of the water. The eyes of the deacon and the eyes of the pastor were fastened on the catch, and both said at the same time, AN EEL! As the pastor was getting ready to throw the eel back into the water, the deacon touched his hand and reminded him, "Pastor, didn't we agree, that everything we caught today would go into your basket?" "Yes" replied the pastor, "but not an eel, I will throw it back." And just at the time the pastor was about to throw the eel back, with the eyes of the deacon upon him, in an instant it dawned upon the pastor, "How many times has God started out with eels in blessing us and we threw them back because it wasn't what we wanted? My question to you is, how many eels have you thrown back? With even greater regret, how many eels do you wish you could get back? An even pivotal question now is, what eel has the Lord given you lately that you will allow Him to use as a means to greater 84

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blessings? At times God will start out with an eel before he will give us a trout, a flounder or a spot. Jesus' words resound here, "...thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: ..." Matthew 25:21c KJV. Again he says, "He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much" Luke 16: 1 0 KJV. Paul says to us, "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation,(like an eel) and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself(like an eel) and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knew should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father" Philippians 2:5-11 KJV. Faithfulness in the few things or the least is tantamount to the humility Jesus entered into in order to bless us with abundant blessings. This teaching is consistent with the growth we associate in the principle of Luke 6:38 as it starts out with good measure, then pressed down, shaken together and finally running over. I would strongly suggest, that unless we first give, the other responses would not take place. Your giving gets the process started. The process is divine in its automation. It is part of the fixed principle of God. Stewards Over Values, Relationships, Attitudes and Responsibility Seeking to acquire land and a House of Worship/Ministry Center? What about a plan to finance a debt free campaign over all of the indebtedness for your membership, and their households? Say that you wish to set forth a generational finance ministry to endow aspects of your God-given ministry? Prayerfully consider Luke 6:38 in a practical way to underwrite the costs surrounding the above ventures. Please consider this Bible - Based Ministry and prayerfully respond. Inherent are not only covenant blessings for The Luke 6:38 Giving Ministry, but for you as well. So then, the Luke 6:38

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Giving Ministry is Mastering Life from the Lord's perspective. It is biblical in its basis, wholistic in its intent and redeeming for those it shall embrace. This ministry seeks to model the Kingdom Building Life Style of Jesus. Such a model bases its broad based approach to the inner life of an individual and its impact upon the community they are a part of. Toward that end, you will move through one year of Disciple Development. You will cover four primary areas in 13 week intervals: For 13 Weeks we will cover Building Spiritual Values, for the second 13 weeks we will cover Building Spiritual Relationships, for our third 13 week period we will look at Building Healthy Attitudes and completing our final 13 weeks Learning to Be Responsible will be our focus. A strong biblical teaching should accompany such a focused ministry. Course Outlines have been developed. These course outlines help us enter into the awe of glory found in our Worship study track as you focus on Values. We then are led to go higher in learning as we set forth proper lifestyles in our Relationship study track. Growth and maturity will be by products for many who will embrace the tenets acquired through a very revealing study track focusing on spiritual gifts and attitude development. Finally, we seek to become better managers and more responsible persons as we gravitate to the study track in the area of Being Responsible. A Time For Kingdom Empowerment Through Teaching and Giving Luke, the author of the gospel bearing his name and also the book of Acts helps us to connect individual stewardship in Luke 6:38 with the covenant community stewardship in Acts. Acts 2:41-47 states, "Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls. And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers. And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from

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house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, Praising God, and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved" KJV. This Act 2:41-47 text is the core of any New Testament teaching ministry. I like to think that this text fulfills Matthew 16:18 when Jesus said that "upon this rock I will build my church". The teaching of the Apostles, or "the apostles doctrine" was the on the job training they received while with Jesus during his three year earthly ministry. They now pass this teaching on to the new converts. This growth of the New Testament church is the pattern every local church should follow. When we practice the teachings of Luke 6:38, I am excited about the results it has provided over the last 2000 years. Luke 6:38 is the Biblical base for Cooperative Economics. In its native tongue of Swahili it is referred to as Ujamaa. It is not a new kid on the block, its teaching has secure roots in what I refer to as Biblical Economics. Economics in the Greek comes from the same word which stewardship is derived oy-kon-om-ee'-ah and means the administration of a household or estate specifically a religious or spiritual economy - stewardship. Ujamaa suggests that those of a covenant community build and maintain their own businesses, control the economics of their community and share in all its work and wealth. In the Early Church we see where the principle was practiced. Acts 2:44, 45 as well as Acts 4:32, 34, 35 are references we’ve cited: Acts 2:44, 45 "And all that believed were together and had all things common and sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men as every man had need. "(KJV). Acts 4:32,34,35 reads: "And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul; neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common‌ Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as 'many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold‌ and laid them down at the apostles' feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need". (KJV) . These passages echo the content and vision of Koinonia. Koinonia describes the inner life of the community or fellowship as evidenced by the 87

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Early Church. It defined the spiritual behavior among them. Cain Felder, Professor of New Testament and Languages at Howard University, says that "Luke describes a socio-economic ideal that would rival the best at Qumran, or among the Therapeutae of ancient Egypt." The Essenes were those living in Qumran and this "covenant community" believed that they constituted the "Israel of God," the spiritual seed of Abraham (Rom. 9:6; 11 :5) or the remnant which preserved "the faith which was once delivered unto the saints" (Jude 3). Those of the Therapeutae were monks who studied the Laws and oracles of God that they might be preserved until the coming of the Messiah. The Essenes were the faith preservers of what later would be called Christianity. The key theme which characterized the life within this intertestamental fellowship was their belief. Their belief bridged the gap between the Old and New Testament and laid the spiritual ground work for the internal life within the New Testament Christian Church. Acts 2 and the succeeding images which reflect the uniqueness of Koinonia serve as a basis of Cooperative Economics. Cooperative Economics within the "Covenant Community" are co-existing concepts. They are the pivotal ideals which had Israel living by principles which guided their actions toward one another. In a real sense, they lived for each other and erased any blemish of an unhealthy fellowship. When they erased the blemishes of their fellowship, they literally enabled every member of the fellowship to exist on an equal level of existence and interaction. I believe the pattern outlined above should give us guidance in developing a ministry which can enable new covenant relations within the Covenant Community.

The Luke 6:38 Tribal Giving Ministry Tribal Life is the life center of any church. Tribes are as old as the 12 Sons of Jacob – Gen. 49:1-33. Outgrowths include the 12 stone pillars – Ex. 24:4 and the twelve staffs – Numbers 17:6. In each of these references government is implied. When Jesus started his earthly ministry he chose 12 disciples who later became the 12 apostles – Luke 6:13, upon which the 12 foundations of the Heavenly Jerusalem will be built – Rev. 21:14. The Heavenly Jerusalem will have 12 gates and 12 angels – Rev. 21:12. The 12 88

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gates will have 12 pearls, each gate a single pearl – Rev. 21:21. The measurement of the New Jerusalem is a perfect square, 12 thousand stadia, its length, width and height are equal – Rev. 21:16. Tribal life holds the essence of the fellowship. Being the life center and essence of the fellowship, it is in each tribe that we learn to relate to one another. Such learning grounds each member in the faith of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and then it helps us to see that faith flower throughout the congregation. Tribe members give of themselves ensuring that their relationship with Jesus Christ is first and foremost. You give of yourself to ensure that you nurture and share that relationship with those he has placed in your life, your family, friends and with those of and outside of the household of faith. I love the teaching of Jesus. In Matthew 10:1-42 he related so effectively to the 12 disciples that they end up becoming 12 apostles. The person of Christ is so dynamic that lives are changed by him. As a covenant tribe member, you should be instrumental in creating the same kind of atmosphere. The teaching of Jesus is more than a curriculum, but a cause for a change. Become empowered with a strong relationship with Him, then pass that power on to someone else. Sin is the greatest virus mankind has. What does recent tests show of its infectious ability to destroy a Healthy Church? The tribal life is important because therein lies the life of the Church. A strong Church is determined by its strong resistance against the viruses sin can introduce in it. The importance of our priestly character and relational order will sustain the health and life given us by Our Lord and Christ. What he did at Calvary still works!!! Tribes must: A. Be responsible for building covenant relationships with your covenant associates and set the tone for the nurture these covenant cells will need. In this regard you should be concerned with the personal effect of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in the lives of those within your Covenant Cell- Ephesians 4:12,13. B. Nurture should transpire through providing a spiritual covering through prayers, advice and experience as you are inspired through the Holy Spirit and Word of God Ephesians 4:14,15.

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C. Help those within your Tribe to move from dependency toward development Ephesians 4: 16. D. Empower people to discover and use their spiritual gifts and motivate them by example, more than by shame, guilt or "oughts."- Acts 2:42-47.

A Mandate for The Tribe Leader and the Tribe Members: We must to exchange phone numbers, e-mails, maintain personal relationships, share in fellowship times, birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, ball games, shopping, etc. Let the Spirit of God create and direct the expanding inner reach for Kingdom responses within your tribe. Interact through biblical instruction, encourage fellow tribe members to come to bible study together, plan to sit with each other in public worship and ensure that we attend class sessions and meet the course objectives. What shall be the Biblical Implication of your Tribe? What does it mean? What shall be the color (s) of your Tribe? The Christian Calendar offers suggestions. Don't forget your Banner!!! On each 4th Sunday we celebrate Total Praise Sunday. This is the Sunday Each Tribe Will Show Forth Their Praise of God!!! - I Peter 2:9; Matthew 10:142. The Christian Calendar And Colors: Christmastide is the season when his birth is celebrated. The Advent Season, covers the four Sundays before Christmas and prepares the worshipers for Christ's coming. Colors surrounding this period are violet or purple. Violet denotes mourning and penitence and is also symbolic of humility, suffering, sympathy and fasting. Purple, equally appropriate is frequently used instead of violet. Purple is the regal color referring to the triumphal entry of the King of Kings who was of royal (Davidic) descent and who is the Ruler of many hearts. Purple is also the color of penitence referring to the purple garments put on our Lord when they mocked him John 19:2; Mark 15:17.

Epiphany concerns itself with the manifestation of Christ beginning on January 6 when Christ was shown to the wise men of the East. White is the associated color for

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Christmastide and the Epiphany period. White is the symbol of purity, innocence, glory and perfection. The pre-Lenten especially the seven weeks of Lent itself are associated with sacrifice. Violet or purple are the associated colors. Easter and emphasize the resurrection of Christ.

the Creator, light, joy, Sundays and more Christ's suffering and the Sundays following

All Sundays in Lent - Violet or purple all other days in Lent up to Good Friday and Holy Week - Violet, purple or black. Black is the color of grief and sorrow. Maundy Thursday - violet or if the Holy Communion is celebrated - white. Easter and the Sundays following emphasize the resurrection of Christ, white is the color. His ascent to heaven is marked on Ascension Day, the 40th day after Easter-white is the color. Pentecost or Whitsunday-50 days after Easter, recognizes the descent of the Holy Spirit, colors are red or white. Red depicts divine zeal on the day of Pentecost, and refers to the blood of the martyrs of the Church. The Sunday after Pentecost is the Festival of the Holy Trinity- White is the color. The First Sunday after Trinity, Green is the color. Green is the universal color of nature signifying hope. The Sundays following are designated as Sundays after Trinity or Sundays after Pentecost-Green is the color. There are from 23 to 27 Sundays after Trinity, depending upon the date of Easter, which may vary from March 22 - April 25. Sometimes the last Sundays in the Trinity season are cal1ed Sundays in Kingdomtide. Kingdomtide colors are Red which includes Thanksgiving. To these five colors of the church year we may add gold, since it is used on fringes of the hangings. Gold refers to worth, virtue, the glory of God and Christian might. In some African American and other Asian, Indian and Hispanic churches different prints are used to accent these five Christian colors.

By exampling "radiance and bright" the Tribe’s apparel can model the sacredness of colors. I trust you as a Tribe Member can be a pacesetter in this regard throughout the worshiping congregation.

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The Plan: Cooperative Economics

G

od's Word provides solutions for all of our needs. One evident need is

establishing our families from a spiritual basis. The key component in this effort is our spiritual relationship with God. What are the cooperative parameters of this relationship? The book of Genesis captures the creative nature of God and especially the cooperative nature of "the Spirit" (roo'-akh), the rational, life functioning breath of God moving upon the face of the waters" (Gen.1:2). Later, in Gen.1:26 we encounter the inclusive wording of God in the creation of man as he says, "Let us (hammiest which is the plural of eg-o') make man in our (haemin' which is also the plural of eg-o') own (ez-rawkh' which means native, or ko-hane' which is to be one officiating, a priest or principal officer or possessing the owner image), after our likeness: and let them have dominion over". I stand in the school of thought which affirms that the genesis of all of life is a production of God's word being spoken and then becoming manifested by the function of the Holy Spirit. The marvel of it all is that there is a Trinitarian factor as the essence through which all unity in life is founded. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit are in total inclusive essence in every facet of life and living. This cooperation serves as the founding principle of our discussion of Cooperative Economics. Foundationally, it is necessary to make the point that God is a cooperative being. Creation is primary evidence of this graphic nature revealed, Gen. 2:7-25. God established the standard of worship, v. 2, rain is given as a provision for the generations of life, vv. 4-5, God gave Adam a home vv. 18-20, the home was in a very fertile and productive environment, vv. 8-17, then finally, vv. 21-25, the creation of companionship. Was God "cooperative" with Adam and Eve? All of the blessings Adam and Eve enjoyed were originally spoken blessings, "And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth,

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and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the flow of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth" Gen. 1:28 KJV. The economics of creation has to do with how God managed creation. As owner, he was in charge of all he created. Nothing suffered as a result of his ownership, and nothing ever suffers when he is left in charge of it. Problems rose in Eden when God's authority was disregarded and disobeyed (Gen. 3:14-24). When Adam and Eve disobeyed God disobedience served as the new ground of development used by God to establish the ground rules for life outside of Eden. Eden was perfect, and there had to be perfecting rules which would be respected outside of Eden and hopefully provide a way whereby we would one day get back to Eden. What was to be experienced as a cooperative partnership inside Eden is now a process whereby we are seeking to become what God originally intended us to be, we have what we could call a "perfecting stewardship" outside of Eden. God is the same but the rules are different. Outside of Eden, the serpent would have a new role, vv.14-15, childbearing and relations between Adam and Eve would be different, v. 16, hardship for man would be the saga of his presence outside of Eden, vv. 17-19. Other precipitating conditions evolved as a result of Adam and Eve's disobedience, worship continued, but fraternal premeditated murder has to be dealt with, Gen. 4:5. Outside of Eden, being a fugitive and a vagabond were introduced, v. 12. Life outside of Eden has evolved in how we live life today. Our quest, get back to Eden, renew the standards God had originally intended for us to enjoy and regain that place of God created for us. Our answer, follow the example of Jesus Christ, "And so it is written, the first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven. As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly... " I 93

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Corinthians 15: 45-49 KJV. In following the example of Jesus Christ we are led to the coasts of Caesarea Philippi and hear Jesus declare what he will build his church upon, Matthew 16:13-19. This church of Jesus Christ is built upon that which is revealed by God which identifies Jesus, clarifies his person, his mission and his redemption. In actuality, the church really came into being on the day of Pentecost as indicated in Acts 2 and the development is detailed throughout the book of Acts and the succeeding New Testament writings. As his followers today, we are to be bearing his teachings in every area of our lives. We are his stewards, trying to get back to Eden. As we pursue that goal, our quest should be spiritual, clarifying the person of Jesus, his mission and his redemption. We should be modeling his principles and practicing them for the Kingdom enhancement found in them. Our culture, customs and character should be that of Christ. His lifestyle is the means by which we please God and will obtain entrance into his emerging Kingdom. Our calling is to help persons rededicate themselves to God, the standards of family life and recommit oneself to the values and practices that a community in a struggle must adopt in order to thrive and grow. Like his heavenly father, Jesus practiced a cooperative lifestyle and shared the parameters of it with us. Matthew 16: 19 says, "I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven" KJV. When you are in partnership with heaven and mutual respect is the primary agreement in the relationship, the dividends are tremendous. Here is a healing, a body of solace and strength in the perfecting rules found outside of Eden. Here Jesus, our Mediator, is bridging the gap caused by the fall in Eden. When we can begin to practice the principles outlined by our Mediator, we then can begin to work within godly perspectives with others. The values and practices that a community in a struggle need to employ are revealed 94

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when we start working together. My doctoral dissertation was entitled, "An Experience in Networking: A Clergy and Church Response to a Community In Crisis". The Crisis: My dissertation reflected my participation in the creation of the Chesapeake Resource Network (13 Churches, Department of Social Services) and its community response to the 1981 Reagan Budget Cuts (some $280,000) wherein some 600 families in Chesapeake VA would no longer receive emergency (help) services due to those budget cuts. Those emergency (help) services included food, clothing, temporary shelter and help in paying utility bills. Networking is a coming together to centralize perspectives and unify resources to handle difficult situations. Economic problems, psychological impact on persons and their families is the scope upon which the award winning Chesapeake Model focused. (Howard University Divinity School 1400 Shepherd Street NE, Washington, DC 20017).

Joanna Macy, in her book Dharma and Development, makes five evaluations relative to the impact of working together. She says: (1.) It builds solidarity, cutting through the social and political divisions within a community in a way that seldom happens when interaction remains on the verbal level alone. It is harder to dismiss or stereotype a person whose views or background may differ from yours, once you have built a road of mutual trust and respect. (2.) It focuses a community's attention on the physical and social conditions in which they live. The process of selecting and planning a common work project raises 95

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consciousness, as local people confront their own situation, discuss it together, and begin to take responsibility for it. (3.) It evokes and instills community leadership skills. In the process of organizing the work project, men, women and even children discover and develop their abilities to motivate and coordinate contributions of time, tools, food and labor. (4.) It emboldens people to speak out. Those who have been more passive, apathetic - or timid are more likely to share their views with other members of the community after they have physically labored together. (5.) It bestows a sense of ownership; when the government builds a school or community center, people have gone in the night to steal the hinges off the doors; but when people build by their personal energy, nothing is touched - they even repair it as if it were their own house. A Buddhist proverb states: 'We build the road and the road builds us. '"

We are helpers one of another. When we start cooperating with each other in every way of community enhancement that “crab mentality" will cease. Working with each other creating partnerships has benefits which have been placed on hold by God and await us as we journey back to Eden. As an alternative to despair welfare and the dismal difficulties of economic lynching, downsizing, cutbacks and cut outs, Cooperative Economics is a godly option left for us to build upon. Within this structure God's spiritual standards are featured and each person a viable partner. I believe Cooperative Economics has substance spiritually as well as culturally. Kwanzaa of which Cooperative Economic is a part, is celebrated December 26 January 1 annually since 1966. It was started by Dr. Maulana Karenga, of California State University in Long Beach. Kwanzaa is based on African harvest celebrations principally those of southeastern Africa. The elements of ingathering or harvesting of people, the fruit or product of the nation, reverence for the Creator and creation, commemoration of the past and recommitment to moral, spiritual and cultural ideals are primary features. It is borne out of celebratory and self-affirming consciousness rather than a reactionary spirit. Here are the seven principles: Umoja (Unity)

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To strive for principled and harmonious togetherness in the family, community, nation and world African community.

Kujichagulia (Self-Determination) To define ourselves name ourselves, create ourselves, and speak for ourselves instead of being defined, named, created and spoken for by others.

Ujima (Collective Work & Responsibility) To build and maintain our community together and make our sisters and brothers' problems our problems and solve them together.

Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics) To build our own businesses, control the economics of our own community and share in all its work and wealth.

Nia (Purpose) To make our collective vocation the guiding and developing of our community in order to restore our people to their traditional greatness.

Kuumba (Creativity) To do always as much as we can in order to leave our community more beautiful and beneficial than when we inherited it.

lmani (Faith) To believe with all our heart in our Creator, our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders and the righteousness and victory of our struggle.

A covenant community holds in trust one another's existence and must do all one can to "be" for one another. It implies that those who make up our families are in an agreement of common unity and must work to maintain our unique traits. These traits are God imposed and must be maintained by his directives. The covenant community should build and maintain their own community together and make our sister's and brother's problems our problems and solve them together. Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ should apply the principles of Christ and become ministering advocates of evangelism and discipleship in every segment of life. Churches must join in and revive the Co-Mission as found in Matthew 28: 19,20 ~ "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

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Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen" KJV. Church members must become Co-laborers and "Labour not for the meat which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth unto everlasting life, which the Son of man shall give unto you: for him hath God the Father sealed" John 6:27 KJV. We must not be so exclusive that we will not reach others with this inclusive gospel. We must be evangelistic about life and living that everyone we come in contact with should know that there is something redeeming about our lives. We have not been saved to shut down , turn others off with our lives, but rather we have been saved to open up the communication lines that He can do the same for others. "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together" Romans 8:16-17 KJV. Co-Mission Churches must start ministering in a more cooperative fashion and share the collective financial blessing which come from God. I know that every church has a "mission" which is specifically theirs as a result of their existence in God. But, what if you could identify at least 5 churches in an area and let those churches come together and decide to advance 5 areas of ministry in a cooperative way. Before we talk about getting together as churches, let us become biblically qualified to fulfill our tasks as stewards or trustees of God. One joint mission venture is a major Sending Out The 70 Evangelistic Campaign (Luke 10:1-2) in your community against drugs and violence. Walks through the communities with banners, singing, and praying at volatile points, such as where drug deals go down or where victims have fallen from bullets. This campaign could also include canvassing of the community with tracks and personal visitations in the homes where received, equally, non-traditional preaching, teaching and healing services (s) in a select section of that community could also be considered. I have personally coordinated such a ministry and ministered towards liberation over drugs and taking our community back. .

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These churches could also come together at one designated church yearly and have a banquet to raise funds for the students who are graduating from high school and award scholarships for college. There is another side to this and that is having Career Days on some appropriate weekends with counselors and advisors present to help chart the course for those students. Thought should also be given to post graduate studies for students whose selected fields require it (Ecclesiastes 12: 1-6). Churches of like spirit could form a corporation with a board of directors from their memberships and enter joint mission ventures such as starting businesses through their churches. We could move from just having a radio broadcast ministry to own the radio station also not just have a T.V. broadcast ministry but who owns stock or a part of the entire T.V. station/network, such as BET, Daystar, The Word Network or The Trinity Broadcasting Network. Another area could also be securing franchises for employment of their members and persons of the community through such chains as Burger King, McDonald's, Subway. "Providing for honest things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men" 2 Corinthians 8:21 KJV. When it comes to purchasing power, say a church van, copiers, computers, paper, bathroom items, etc., that we create cooperative purchasing with designated vendors to keep the costs low and turn money over in our own community at least three -five times before it leaves (Luke 16:9). Suppose 5 churches came together to sponsor a Child Development Center at one of the churches or some agreed upon site and staff it with members. These churches could qualify for local, state and federal monies or position themselves financially to build an Assisted Living Facility or Senior Citizen's Facility in their area for its aged members and members of the larger community. These five churches could pool their resources and cooperate with each other to alleviate themselves of any encumbrance which may keep it from remaining focused on its sole mission, that of winning the lost and caring for them in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Co-Laborers Laborers will have the unique opportunity of partnering with others of like temperament to launch Kingdom Events for the cause of Christ. The profits generated by the selected projects will be used to underwrite radio broadcasts, tape ministries, and other evangelistic and discipleship ventures. A Ministry On Evangelistic Endeavors may be formed whose sole priority would be that of promoting events for the churches and also creating a source of income for themselves. Say for instance you partnered with a local gospel radio station and made arrangements to bring John P. Kee to town. Acquiring a suitable facility which would accommodate overhead and profit would be part of the arrangements. Marketing could be brokered with the radio station and the station could use its influence with a hotel for rooms for your guest. Learning by doing will help this ministry know what to do the next time around. The word of God must inform our ventures cooperatively. Take for instance Deuteronomy 8:18. This text could serve as the base text for what we would call A Wealth Building Ministry. Deuteronomy 8:18 states: "But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day" KJV. A Wealth-Building Ministry- sponsored parties for members of their West Indian Community. The parties became such hits that their most recent party ended up with 2000 people in attendance paying $15.00 each to get in. In other words, they generated approximately $30,000 in one night. The Cooperative Success Key: A God-Given 'Kingdom Glorifying' Idea, Advance Planning, and Plenty Publicity. Do not underestimate the power of Cooperative Economics (trips, parties, contests, sporting events, etc.) in order to raise money for kingdom purposes and kingdom people. Do you like the idea of a Deuteronomy 8:18 Wealth-Building Ministry to get such events accomplished. The opportunities are unlimited when it comes to being a Co-laborer in these Cooperative Economic Ministry ventures. In the words of that old spiritual,

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"Let Jesus Lead You, All the Way." Joint Heirs There are two ministries I want to refer you to here, they are The Bible Based Family Building Ministry and the Acts 2:45 Family Enabling Ministry. When we refer to being joint-heirs with Christ, we are interested in embracing his blessings which are inherent in his ministry. "Do ye not know that they which minister about holy things live of the things of the temple? and they which wait at the altar are partakers with the altar? Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel" 1 Corinthians 9:13-14 KJV. The Bible Based Family Building Ministry is a cooperative ministry. It is built on biblical and cultural principles. Luke 6:38 along with Acts 2:42-47 are the primary biblical texts. Cooperative Economics and Collective Work & Responsibility, another principle of Kwanzaa, are the cultural principles employed. Both texts were written by Luke and details covenant relationships. The Kwanzaa principles, are moral values principles and teaches that the challenges we face can be answered through categories of commitment. The commitment in this ministry is in producing and packaging bible based, culturally sensitive material, then market it among those of our immediate and surrounding covenant community. Our marketing grows out of a concept we have derived, called Covenant Community Marketing. This concept originates from the counsel Jethro gave to Moses in Exodus 18:13-26 and from the New Testament teaching of Jesus with the 12 disciples along with Koinonia, life among the constituency of the Early Church as found in Acts 2:42-47. This Family Building Ministry has two objectives: Be Evangelistic and Provide Discipleship. The Evangelistic thrust is designed to reach as many individuals and thereby reach their "families" with the gospel of Jesus Christ. We have developed biblical models for adults and teens. The adult model is under the theme- The Bible Based Family, the teen model is underWAIT spelled backward T.I.A.W. represents There Is Another Way! Our

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marketing thrust is through biblical success lessons and teen development kits, such as this you are reading now, published weekly, monthly and bimonthly, and covering core areas of living such as - Your Spiritual Life, Your Health, Biblical Economics, Holistic Christian Education and Your Legal/Political Life. We utilize weekly audio series based on monthly themes, a well rounded newsletter with bible based helps and video presentations with study guides to generate righteousness in the lifestyles of our adults and teens. The monthly themes originate out of our Family Legacy Curriculum. Our Biblical Resource Center, carry musical and teaching audio, CDs, music and teaching video, books, magazines and curriculums, all designed to help win someone to Christ. Cooperative Economics provides the opportunity for members of the covenant community to market these spiritual materials and earn from 25% to 50% income from the sales they make and Performance Bonuses for their discipling and management skills. Whether as a Family Fund Raiser or as an income producing venture with long term income opportunities, The Family Building Ministry is an excellent evangelistic/discipleship and cooperative economic arrangement. This concept has been perfected by Rich DeVos and Jay Van Andel co-founders of Amway. Instead of the products they market, our line of material is strictly christian/cultural materials as outlined above. As a discipleship ministry, the Family Building Ministry is a teaching, instruction and development ministry. It is an equipping and enabling ministry directed to the family. It is empowering the family in the tenets of the Bible. It is a team approach in what we call Covenant Community Counseling. Covenant Community Counseling is the internal ministry of the covenant community. It is the godly advice, spiritual direction and righteousness sharing needed to maintain the common-unity of the family or covenant community. It is the teaching of the spiritual, moral and cultural principles for effective living and the correspondent modeling of these principles as they serve as principles to be passed on to the forthcoming generations.

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Covenant Community Counseling is the type shared by Jethro to Moses, Jesus to His disciples and modeled after the Early Church's theme"continuing steadfast in the apostle's doctrine" Acts 2:42. This kind of principled practice will offset the unprincipled neglect which is pillaging our families today. We wish to see this bible based material become an alternative to what is presently entering into the hands of families. Through Covenant Counseling we seek to replace guns, knives and harmful chemicals with a broad line of high quality bible based, culturally sensitive material which includes books, manuals, audio teaching tapes, video cassettes done for us and by us which pertain to building up the Christian Family and deepen our faith walk as the people of God. Covenant Community Counseling is lifestyle discipleship. We provide A Lesson In Family Development from Exodus 18:13-26 as an example of the counseling technique. The Bible Based Family & A Plan for Economic Empowerment is published by Beckham House Publishers and can be obtained from the our Biblical Resource Center, just click here and indicate your request > The Bible Based Family & A Plan for Economic Empowerment for $14.95. The Acts 2:45 Family Enabling Ministry: Relief from the storied times of cutbacks and downsizing can be achieved through the uniqueness of the Family Enabling Concept. Acts 2:45, 4:32-37 should be reexamined as Koinonia provides help here. Koinonia is modeled in a well known concept in African American life through the principle of Cooperative Economics. Cooperative Economics teaches us to think cooperatively, live cooperatively and share cooperatively. Such a socio-economic ideal is evidenced in cultural communions known as an Esusu, susu, ekub, box-hand, asue, partner, partnership, collective in some Caribbean/African communities, Hui in Chinese, Hoi in Vietnamese, Tanomoshi in Japanese and Kye in Korean. The purpose of these cooperatives is to provide members of these communions with needed support that the lifestyle of their families would not be jeopardized. These communions are financial in nature and teach trust and the values of family in the most native sense. They have been known to be the seeding for businesses being launched, serving as an economic thrust for new and emerging entrepreneurs, and as an incubator for family

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businesses and a key to survival in some needy times. Jawanza Kunjufu, in his book, Black Economics: Solutions For Economic and Community Empowerment, provides an example of the Acts 2:45 Family Enabling Ministry. He says, "I developed a concept called the Ujamaa - (Cooperative Economics) Meeting. I conduct a community meeting and there are certain rules established. The first rule is that everyone has to bring $100 to the meeting. The second is that everyone has to bring a business plan. The third rule is that everyone agrees whoever has the best business plan after the presentation and the vote will receive all the monies that were collected from the participants. The fourth rule is that the person who receives the money will attempt to do as much business as possible with the existing people inside the room. We will then meet the following month and repeat the procedures until as many people as possible have now received the monies from this group to start their own businesses" (Kunjufu, p.l07). With shrinking resources in times of cutbacks and recession, alternative ways are essential for the economic sovereignty for all of us as we attempt to carve out a place in America. This ethic has helped many families in some variety of ways in some unpredictable times. This ethic must not die or we as a people will die because we did not help it to live. Rich Devos, in his book Compassionate Capitalism put it this way. "Success is never achieved in isolation. I don't know of any successful person who wasn't guided along the way. I don't understand when successful people lack the urge to help others. When they refuse, they break the cycle of loving care that enables each new generation to succeed. A lack of compassion in one generation always has an effect on those that follow. Helping others to help themselves breaks down the paternalism and degrading dependency that has characterized so many attempts to end poverty. "

Helping Others Help Themselves (A Case Study ~ John 21:4-14) Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realize that it was

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Jesus. He called out to them, "Friends, haven't you any fish?" "No," they answered. He said, "Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some. " When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish. Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, "It is the Lord!" As soon as Simon Peter heard him say, "It is the Lord," he wrapped his outer garment around him (for he had taken it off) and jumped into the water. The other disciples followed in the boat, towing the net full of fish for they were not far from shore, about a hundred yards. When they landed, they saw a fire of burning coals there with fish on it, and some bread. Jesus said to them, "Bring some of the fish you have just caught". Simon Peter climbed aboard and dragged the net ashore. It was full of large fish, 153, but even with so many the net was not torn. Jesus said to them, "Come and have breakfast." None of the disciples dared ask him, "Who are you?" They knew it was the Lord. Jesus came, took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish. This was now the third time Jesus appeared to his disciples after he was raised from the dead.

Covenant Partnership 0n Wednesday June 7, 2000 when we held our first prayer and founding meeting for The Philadelphia Fellowship (Baptist) our records show that 156 persons were in attendance and that 153 persons became "Founding Members" on that night. I shook my head and knew without a shadow of a doubt that The Philadelphia Fellowship (Baptist) is the place where Casting Your Net is assured of tremendous blessings. Equally it is the place where Covenant Partners will find designated blessings in the 153 and beyond dimensions. John 21:11 specifies the place and number of designated blessings for those who follow the instructions of Our Lord. We have sailed upon the waters of ministry for the last twelve years, and been docked in 11 different locations or ports of call. Our congregational number has grown to over 600, but because of movements from place to place, we now have a consistent 250 who attend from week to week. In the meantime, since 2001, we have been paying for the 3 acres of land which will be the site of our House of Worship and Ministry Center. In the Spirit of the Covenant which exists between the sisterhood of churches and believers, Thank You for partnering with The Philadelphia Fellowship (Baptist) as we build our 25,000 sq. ft. House of Worship and Ministry Center. We have been longing to reach and teach the designated unsaved population with the gospel of Jesus Christ out of our own 'Ship of Zion'. Like the 153 fish caught by the disciples, which is the zoological 105

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number distinguishing every species of fish, again, Thank You for helping us come out of our “night time” of catching no fish into a new morning of reaping a great harvest by “casting your net on the right side”!

A Sermonic Closing

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alachi was moved by God to speak prophetically to Israel within the same spirit of Cooperative Economics. I have placed such a word in sermonic form and offer it to you and yours for inspiration in this closing chapter.

The Power Of Bringing Malachi 3:10 "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this," says the LORD Almighty, "and see if! will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it" NIV .

Our lesson highlights the Tithe. The initial word of v.10 captured my spiritual attention. Let us examine its importance in relation to the other keys to blessing found in the text. The initial word is "Bring". "Bring" in the hebrew mean to empty out, and has reference to what a covenant person is responsible for as they come before God. Additional implications denotes that "bring" references release time, a from me to God moment. When one "brings" it is a personal point of exchange between the one who has gathered and who now presents it back to the one who has provided. "Bringing" is the statement of achievement. It is when one has gotten to a point where they can give back after so many have given to them. All of us are bringers. You bring your life's story with you where ever you go. You bring it because it is forever being produced, forever being written. Your story is a representation of your journey in life up to this point. You bring happy times, sad times, times you wish you will never forget and times you don't ever want to remember again. When you bring yourself, it is a presentation of your story. Whether it is pleasing to you or not, whether you are satisfied or not - you are what you bring. Malachi speaks in the tenor of God as he specifies what one should bring into the storehouse. He says, "Bring ye all the tithe into the storehouse". This is a statement of Good News for the bringer. It is good news because it informs the bringer that what you are bringing is really an emptying in the recycling center of God. The storehouse in the text is really the recycling 106

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center for the blessings of the bringer. Continue reading the text and you will see how it flows toward recycling.  First, "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, starts the cycle.  Secondly, that there may be food in my house gives us the purpose of .the cycle, or the arc of the cycle turning in the direction of the right denoting the rightness to bring.  Third, Test me in this, " says the LORD Almighty, or the Lord of Hosts brings us to the bottom of the cycle, the base upon which bringing rests, every bringer brings so that they can see God go to work for them.  Fourth, "and see" - Here He goes, He works on the upward left swing with your tithe and an exchange takes place. What you brought and gave in earthly tangible obedience, he now translates it into what you need. Out of the accumulation, stock, supplies, storage, treasure, divine warehouse, abundance and redeeming repository of his storehouse He produces a manifestation for you and announces it to you and everyone.  Fifth, "if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it".

From all the tithe to not having room enough to receive it is a tremendous promise from Malachi's God. Note the command "bring all the tithe". Agriculturally that is a tenth of your crops. Sacrificially that is a tenth of your livestock, your cattle, your flock and your herd. Ceremonially, that is the devoted tithe of the self. "All the tithe" represents the fruit of your land, the fruit of our produce and the fruit of your personal labor. The land, where you have spent your time, your produce, how you work your talent and your personal labor, the creative derivative of your treasure. “All the tithe” from these entities are to be brought into the storehouse. The storehouse is the place where good news can be gained while we empty what we bring into it. Bring all the tithe - your tithe of pain, your tithe of hurt, your tithe of abuse, your tithe of misunderstanding, your tithe of stressful depression, the God of Malachi says that He will turn such a tithe into meat for His house. He will turn it into what you need. A 10% deposit with God can make 100% of difference. “Bring all the tithe” - empty it, release it. Don't let another day rob you of your promised fruit. No day has been so lengthy that you have been robbed of short but sustainable relief from this God. No night has dissipated your prayer life, nor robbed you of your faith in God who has worked the night shift to bring forth his promises for you. No ruptured relationship shall

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take away a second chance to fall in love again. No doubt of self and the motivation from the God of your future will ever leave you in the hands of hopelessness. “Bring all the tithe”. You don't mind bringing full containers of pain and emptying them and have them recycled into peace which passes all understanding. You don't mind bringing full containers of hurt, abuse, misunderstanding and stressful depression and emptying them in His storehouse and have them recycled into Love which covers a multitude of faults. What do you need changed? Where do you need something made over, not just to look different, but to become different emboldened with a new perspective? Bring all the tithes of these items into my Father's storehouse. My Father's storehouse will receive these tithes but in some cases cannot because they are tied up in bondage by our own selfish decisions. This was part of the underlying problem with those in our text and it is yet our problem today. The God of Malachi recognizing this dilemma suggested among other corrective measures, the tithing plan to bail them out. God's Tithing Plan is the answer for your debt problem. Your debt problem keeps you from tithing.  The US Department of Health & Human Services states that 96% of all 

  

Americans will retire financially dependent on the government, family or charity. North American Marketing reported that installment debt, including auto loans and credit card balances, topped a record $ 1 Trillion-over a 30% increase in just the past two year. 50% - 70% of your minimum monthly payments only pays the interest on most credit card accounts and the average consumer takes 23 years and pays 2.4 to 3 times what they owe to pay back their debt. In a Federal Reserve Study it was found that on average, the typical credit card purchase is 112% higher than if using cash. Over 40% of US families spend more than they earn. (This means 4 out of 10 people spend more than what they earn) Only 2% of homes in America are paid for. - Simmons Enterprises

The tithe and your own time and personal talent must be tapped to remedy your blessing bondage. Blessing bondage was another issue with those addressed in our text. Their worship of God was hindered because of their misplaced value system. When value systems which create an Enron, Worldcom, AIG or any corporate entity which cannot sustain itself by recycling blessings, you should not place your future holdings into it. Genesis 2:15 states, "The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it" NIV . 108

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Your Eden is your home, this is where God has placed you. What waters your Eden, is what God has placed there to empower it, make it fertile, productive and supportive. Eden was where God placed Adam "to work it and take care of it". This is an excellent reminder for every male, whether young or more mature and even that female who is head of her household. Eden was Adam's Home Based Business. As such there should be four "headwaters" that are outgrowths of your Eden - Pishon (gold, aromatic resin and onyx). Secondly, the Gihon (which means "burst forth" is associated with being a principal source of water and commerce in biblical history-The Nile). Third is the Tigris (which means “fast flowing" and served as principal support for some marshy areas and on its banks Daniel saw his great vision which was later recorded Chapter 10) and fourth Euphrates "to break forth", the largest river which flows out of Eden. It also served as the means of irrigation of what would otherwise be arid desert to Egypt). Your debt has originated from your home, your plan of victory over your debt must also originate from your home. Would You Like to Go Back To Eden? The economics of Eden is the seeding for the economic stability which should be evident in your home. The resources and provisions of the Pishon, Gihon, Tigris and the Euphrates should resource your home as a believer. I take apostolic liberty at this juncture to plant and propose a Home Based Business with the potentials outlined originating from these four "headwaters". The Levitical writer declared "even of whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the Lord" 27:32b. This rod denotes what comes across the door seal of your home. What time and talents are lazy in your home? Have you emptied the laziness so that the industry of God's insightfulness could become manifested? What music have you been working on that God is trying to get you to finish so that it can bless others? What poem, what play, what have you sown, painted, cultivated, developed, drawn, built, edited, crafted, developed which can bring glory to His name and lift yours in the corridors of blessings? The Lord of Hosts is the master at taking accessing your time and bestowing your talent to the fulness of its potential. What is a basketball in Michael Jordan's hands? What is a scaple in Dr. Ben Carson's hands? What is time in Mr. Whittenhauser's hands? Need some references? Ask Moses about the staff in His Hand. Ask Solomon about wisdom in his hands. Ask Paul about a pen in his hands. Ask Jesus about nails in his hands. Bring all the tithe empty all the tithe, release all the tithe in my Storehouse, 1 will make meat out of it. 109

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Finally, What you bring is what God uses to Pour back into your Life. The text says, "see if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour you out a blessing that there shall not be room enough to receive it". When I read the text, I got fascinated with the section "I will open the windows of Heaven and pour out ‌" What fascinated me was the timing of the Lord's opening of the windows. I want to suggest that before the windows are opened, he keeps them closed to prepare what he will pour out. What is going on behind closed windows in heaven should excite everyone who tithes. Behind closed windows in heaven is the recycling period of the provider. He is transforming the tithe which will transform our setting. When God is in His transforming chamber, Confusion is being turned into creation, calamity is being turned into calm, terrorism is being turned into a planned blessing, ground zero becomes a monument to all of the moments we've neglected' His providence and trial is being turned into new triumph. His creative chamber is His secret closet. His creative chamber is His pavilion, His creative chamber is the secret place of His Tabernacle, His creative chamber is where our prayers go when we talk to Him. Behind Heaven's closed windows is the everlasting one working on our temporary problem to bring forth a lasting strength out of it. Behind heaven's closed windows God holds our blessing in his hand and it becomes what he knows is best for us. Pain can't stay pain in His hands, Hurt can't stay hurt in His hands, stress can't stay stress in His hands, Poverty can't stay poverty in His hands, being broke busted and disgusted cannot remain while in His hands. Behind Heaven's windows He takes the pain and brings a baby out of it, a new husband, a more trusted wife. A boy that can become a good man, a girl whose future is only temporarily slowed by an untimely pregnancy. Behind the closed windows of heaven - hurt becomes help for your starting your own business. Stress becomes clarity of calling and you birth a new ministry. Poverty becomes prosperity and you build new wholesome relationships. Being broke becomes being mended, Being busted becomes being restored. Being disgusted becomes being in Church School, in Bible Study, in private worship, leading others in public worship, talking in tongues and walking in a prophetic word released in your spirit - Just because God went to work on your behalf behind the closed windows of heaven. Bring All your tithes, don't leave any behind. Your tithe is what God uses to open the windows of heaven for you!

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Bring All your tithes, don't leave any behind. Your tithes is what God uses to pour your blessings into your life. Your potential blessing is in your present tithe. Jesus brought forth the tithe while he was on the Cross. What he brought forth has brought us the presence and glory of potential blessings. 1. He bore our shame and guilt with the Crown of Thorns pressed on His Head 2. One beam was on His back - stretching horizontally 3. One beam bore His body - stretching vertically 4. There was one hole into which the cross was placed 5. One nail was driven in His right hand 6. One nail was driven in His left hand 7. One nail was driven in His Crossed Feet 8. One spear pierced His side 9. On the Cross he died and was placed in a borrowed grave 10. Three days later he was raised from the dead and ever liveth The Son, Our Tithe - forever recycles our sin. Such cleansing is modified in the words of that great hymn of the redeemed - "What can wash away my sin, nothing but the blood of Jesus, what can make me whole again, nothing but the blood of Jesus". Heaven came from behind closed windows and hung a scarlet thread on every heart to remind mankind of our Savior's perfect work. "God so loved the world that he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life" Jn.3:16. Such affirmation is resounded in the spiritual of my formative years - "You can't beat God giving no matter how hard you try. The more you give to Him, the more He gives to you. So just keep on giving because it is true, you can't beat God giving, no matter how hard your try".

A Final Word to the Church Every member of the body of Christ is a steward. As stewards, we have been entrusted with the gifts of God for our living purposes. Whether we are a good and just steward or a bad and unjust steward, that determination is

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made relative to our obedience to Christ and the principles of stewardship he followed- Luke 16:1-15. Biblical authority sets the guidelines for proper management of God's gifts to us as we exemplify being His steward. As we have stated, the first biblical evidence of the giving and receiving of tithes and offerings is in the Old Testament. Abraham was the giver and Melchizedek was the receiver (Genesis 14:20). Melchizedek held two offices, one was King of Sodom and the other, "he was the priest of the most high God"- Gen. 14:18. God established the order of the priesthood as the receivers of his tithes and offerings in the instance of Melchizedek. In the New Testament, the apostles became the receivers of and the distributors of the financial remunerations of the local church - Acts 4:34,35. Later, reference is made to the qualifications of one who will hold the office of a bishop/pastor. Such a person must be able to rule his own house with the same kind of rule or standard to take care of the church of God. Such excellence of stewardship should be so practiced so that bishop/pastor should not be greedy of filthy lucre - I Timothy 3:3,5. I Timothy 5:3-16 outline the spiritual posture of widows and that ministry which the church is responsible for in ministering to them in the absence of that widow's family. The church should be additionally sensitive in reading this text and pull out of it the characteristics of "the new widow" or those of today's community of faith who fit this description. Such an analysis will help the steward act priestly and fulfill v.5. The new widow is an outgrowth of the lack of self control to a large extent and the eroding of biblical standards regarding male and female roles and functions. In too many instances, women are still treated as objects for manly pleasures and disrespected as helpmeets who share equally with their spouses. In other instances, bible based marital covering is talked about in premarital counseling, but failed to be a practice in the marriage. Too many couples are saying the right thing just to get to the bedroom and forget that the covenant of marriage is really sealed in the prayer room. Widowed conditions are posed by what we could call the absence of'. Absence could include that head of the household, the absence of the father and mother of that foster son or daughter, and the untimely death of "the provider" of the family. These "widowed conditions" raise additional possibilities to be considered by the watchful eye of the church through the ministry of deacons, deaconess and trustees. When v. 5 is fulfilled, the stewardship due

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to be expressed will be expressed by the caring congregation. This is the true ministry of a church with a steward ministry mentality. What belongs to God's must be handled with the mind of God and what is Caesar's must be handled with the intelligence required for Caesar. A church as steward should be gifted with God's mind in financial things and intelligent about the requirements of Caesar. Hearing Jesus and Paul on this functioning entity in the life of the church we assert the following: Matthew 22:21 and Mark 12:17 - "Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's and unto God the things that are God's. " In commonality, Paul asserts in Romans 13:1-8, "Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore he who resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of him who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God's servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain; he is the servant of God to execute his wrath on the wrong doer. Therefore one must be subject, not only to avoid God's wrath but also for the sake of conscience. For the same reason you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing. Pay all of them their dues, taxes to whom taxes are due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due. Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law." These ordinances do not conflict with those we observe daily. As a matter of fact they compliment each other. These ordinances are active powers that are ordained of God and detail our stewardship responsibilities. One great challenge to churches today is how they apply the stewardship principles utilized in I Kings 17, especially when a church is financially strapped, but in need of additions in its ministry. Pressing this theme even further, can we be stewards who are so close to God that we can interpret the dreams of our times and position ourselves in a blessed financial position? This gifted principle of Joseph as outlined in Genesis 41:33-36 is one a perspective and insightful steward must have. Stewards must have the full intelligence of what they are stewards over. Being a manager is maintenance at its best. From the inner court to the outer 113

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court, from the front door to the back, everything God has blessed the house to acquire should be properly maintained by the insight of being faithful. The outer court of the church, its total landscape should reflect the image of a living God. When persons pass or enter that spiritual campus, they should be reminded of Eden, no more and nothing less. Exodus 35 relates how Moses gathered the congregation of Israel to tell them of the need to build a new sanctuary. Throughout the chapter we see how much the people gave to complete the task. But look what happens in the next chapter. Exodus 36:4-7 states "the wise men, that wrought all the work of the sanctuary, came every man from his work which they made (trustees); and they spake unto Moses, saying, The people bring much more than enough for the service of the work, which the Lord commanded to make. And Moses gave commandment, and they caused it to be proclaimed throughout the camp, saying, Let neither man nor woman make any more work for the offering of the sanctuary. So the people were restrained from bringing. For the stuff they had was sufficient for all the work to make it, and too much." Inquiring ministry heads should want to know how such motivation of a congregation was able to take place. Take Israel's plight for 400 years, they suffered at the taskmaster's hand, being driven to even make bricks without straw - Ex. 5:4-9. Oppressed, dying side by side under such a demonic spirit, one wonders, could such a people ever become motivated? But to redeem the lives of Israel, and to render the supreme knowledge of God among other nations, God took Israel to one of their lowest point to lift them to a new standard. This new standard was learning to depend solely upon the God of their Exodus. The God of the Exodus had made a promise, Exodus 3:21-22 says, "And I will give this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians; and when you go, you shall not go empty, but each woman shall ask of her neighbor, and of her who sojourns in her house, jewelry of silver and of gold, and clothing, and you shall put them on your sons and on your daughters; thus you shall despoil the Egyptians."

From poverty to prosperity was the promise of God to Israel. The promise is yet providing. Exodus 16 outlines the blessing of God for Israel while in the Wilderness of Sin. Sin is found between Elim and Mt. Sinai. Israel complained to Pastor Moses for the progress they had achieved after leaving Egypt. I know it is a bit paradoxical to think that people complain about progress. Like congregations from time to time, reflections on the past take priority over the promises of God for the present, and they will

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complain. In Exodus 16 we have the foundation of trust and belief in God. This Exodus text is a strong biblical foundation for the segment of The Lord's Prayer that highlights, "Give us this day our daily bread." Here is the daily blessing release that God gave Israel while they journeyed. With people priorities change, but with God, his promises never change! Notice verses three and four - "And the children of Israel said unto them, would to God we had died by the hand of the Lord in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the fleshpots, and when we did eat bread to the full; for ye have brought us forth into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger. Then said the Lord unto Moses, Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a certain rate every day, that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my1aw or no�. What has God said that can be practically used to leave poverty's dark door and enter into a promise - filled future. I believe every steward must be biblically knowledgeable. A biblically knowledgeable trustee must be acquainted with the Covenant Promises of God. God has never given a vision to a pastor and people without giving provisions to see that vision through. In a real sense, when the vision is given, it is already done in the mind of God, it only has to be manifested through a faithful people. Therefore, in order to build the Covenant kind of faith in ministry leaders, churches must place a greater emphasis upon stewards as bible students. They must attend bible study, church school and be active in bible training. They must enter into a survey of biblical events which will help in seeing the hand of God reveal itself in some famined, vision questionable and highly suspect times. Biblical examination must help the serious steward come to grips with God's promises which can sustain a move of God in seeming unsustainable times. Such questions as, What did God instruct Adam and Eve to do in Gen. 1:26-29, should be points of investigation instead of other demon derived points of investigation, interrogation and discrimination. Stewards can keep mismanagement from becoming a plague in key areas of life. Such a steward need to be practicing the biblical teaching which informs godly stewardship. With such authority from God's word, a steward will develop the right attitude when it comes to ministering in financial affairs. Each steward will know that it is no longer their money, but God's money and that accounting time is always just around the comer - Matt. 25:14-30. 115

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It is apparent that many people have money problems. Could it be that there is a lack of biblical stewardship knowledge to turn the two fish and barley loaves into a banquet from week to week? Caretakers of God's money are commanded to be managers. Managing money has to do first with having love for God, then following proper biblical guidelines to care for the fiscal affairs of those with money problems I Samuel 22:1,2. One of the characteristics of a bishop/pastor/elder is "as God's steward, blameless" Titus 1:7. Acts 4:34 and 35-highlight the designated receivers responsible for the funds of God. These funds were laid at the apostles' feet. "There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostle's feet; and distribution was made to each as any had need." With such a lofty biblical responsibility, if that apostle or bishop releases this responsibility to other hands, those persons must bear the spirit of that bishop or apostle. Any steward, with another spirit or motivation will bring illness to the financial situation in particular and to the church in general. Such a steward is out of Godly order. Stewards must be tithers, offering givers, not thieves and robbers, not cursed spiritually, but praisers, worshipers, prayer warriors, ministers of the first magnitude and obedient servants. Are you familiar with Melon, King of Persia; Balthasa, King of Arabia; and Casper, King of lndia? These are the names tradition has ascribed to "The Three Wise Men." Stewards must be wise men and women who will follow the star of Jesus and come to worship him. A key stewardship teaching is found in Matthew 2: 11. lt says, "and when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshiped him: and when they had opened their treasurers, they presented unto him gifts, gold, and frankincense, and myrrh�. Stewards should be such worshipers that they should encourage others to open their treasurers and present more than just money. The gift of gold should serve the purposes for gold, but frankincense and myrrh have place in the House of God. Stewards should identify the significant place for frankincense. This fragrant gum should bring a sweet anointing into the prayerful considerations for income and expenses. This fragrance should induce faith. Myrrh, an aromatic gum should denote the ministry of a steward. The aroma of worship should be personally reflected in each individual and the gum substance should be exemplified in the depth of maturity. This is a great revelation of us who have found Jesus Christ. As his Kings and Queens, we should do as these "wise men" - worship him. 116

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Stewards must be faithful and fiscal. They must be communicators, in touch with the best financial instruments through which the church may assign some of its liquid assets for future ministry endeavors. Since we are not to be borrowers but lenders, (Deut. 28:12), funds should be properly assigned so that the church can obtain lending capability. When a Church can reach lending capability, it will never have to rely on some other institution for borrowing. Jesus made this position of capability clear in Matthew 25:14-30. It is the story or parable of the Talents. Verse 27 says of Jesus - "Then you ought to have invested my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have received what was my own with interest". Stewards should be astute in money management. Those on Wall Street should be taking pointers from those you manage the funds of Him who live on Golden Street. Stewards should be planning, announcing, teaching and encouraging the membership in the area of Godly Stewardship. One of the most consistent elements of our economy is the insurance area. It is part of the cement that is holding the economy together. Insurance hold our deposits secure in our banks. Insurance is the safeguard for the lost wages in worker’s compensation. Insurance makes it safe to drive our cars and to live in our homes. These safe havens of daily living provide some level of comfort in these nervous times. Here is another insurance based help.

HOW TO START YOUR OWN BANK (Using the Irrevocable Trust to Provide Estate Liquidity)

Although it can be a lengthy and highly technical document, the irrevocable insurance trust is a remarkably simple solution in concept. It's your own taxfree "bank" for paying estate taxes or meeting other cash needs. By executing such a trust, you will be saying, "I'm going to take this insurance, put it over here and lock it up." But you will not throwaway the key. That's because. . . I. The trust need not be really irrevocable. Things change. The law changes. Available insurance contracts change. So do beneficiaries. The facts which influence your decisions change. Therefore, a well-crafted irrevocable insurance trust gives someone the right to amend the document in response to changes. You are not required by law to give someone the right to amend the document, but if you do, your beneficiaries can avoid the traps

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associated with the traditional irrevocable trust. II. Premium Payments and Related Paperwork. Premiums must be paid on life insurance policies in the trust. The law would treat these premium payments as taxable gifts by you to the trust beneficiaries -- unless you take specific steps to avoid this result. The method lawyers have developed to handle the problem is called a "Crummey" clause, named after a taxpayer who litigated the issue of taxability in a similar situation. The idea behind the Crummey clause is that the trustee gives the beneficiaries an opportunity to withdraw from the trust the amounts you give to the trustee to pay the premiums. Despite what you've heard about $12,000 "annual exclusion" gifts, current law actually limits each beneficiary's withdrawal right in most cases to $5,000 annually, so premiums in excess of that amount per beneficiary will use up part of your $2,000,000 applicable exclusion amount. (There are some practical ways to increase the $5,000 limitation to $12,000.) In order to preserve the legal effect of the Crummey clause, you will want to transfer other assets to the trust in addition to insurance policies. A $1,000 money market account in the name of the trustee may be sufficient. III. Reduction of Estate Taxes. Except for making sure your generationskipping transfer tax exemption is fully utilized, traditional revocable and testamentary trusts have very little impact on reducing your transfer taxes. They simply defer taxes until the second death. The irrevocable insurance trust, however, can be expected to save your estate as much as 45% of the value of the insurance proceeds paid to the trustee (without taking state death taxes into account). The reason for this dramatic result is that -- in a technical, tax sense -- you do not "own" the policies or their proceeds. Technical ownership is avoided through several restrictions on what you can do with trust assets. Those prohibitions are all part of the plan to keep you from owning the trust assets. IV. The Blessing of Ownership without the Burdens. Under the usual rules of taxation, in order for an asset to be available to pay estate taxes, it must also be taxable. In this trust, you have the best of both worlds. This result is achieved largely because of the structure of the trust. This structure makes the cash available without making it taxable.

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V. Administrative convenience down the road can be gained by permitting the trustee to consolidate this trust with any other trust for the same beneficiaries. Key provisions of the irrevocable trust should be made to "mesh" with any other trust you may have written for the same beneficiaries. VI. Versatility. Also known as an "ILIT" (Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust) this trust can be used to avoid taxation on group term policies, split dollar policies and "wife" insurance, among others. Kenneth Royster 500 E. Main Street Suite 830 Norfolk, VA 23510-2204 (757) 627-6603 (Visit www.HotJoyRadio.com and review the excellent Legacy Teaching by Mr. Royster) The contents of this publication are intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice or legal opinion with respect to any specific facts or circumstances. Readers with specific legal questions should consult a lawyer concerning their own particular situations.

Conclusion I know you feel just like I felt when I caught the vision. YOU CAN BREAK FREE FROM FINANCIAL BONDAGE! You have God-given rights to do so. I believe in a person being totally saved - mind, body, soul, and spirit, this is holistic. I join the Apostle when he saluted his readers, and I salute you with the same redeeming Word: "Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth" III John 2 KJV. Your struggle to get out of that financial rut is over. Take authority over it now, in the Name of Jesus! Your problems have only been temporary. They've caused temporary setbacks, temporary pain, temporary havoc and temporary headaches. But the eternal message of Christ is that these problems will not and cannot last. "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but 119

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will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it". I Corinthians 10:13 KJV.

Make the Break! Be Free From Financial Bondage! Beyond Your New Financial Life I am sure you know that having enough money to do the necessary things in life is only part of the picture. There are some things in life money cannot buy, such as your relationship with God. I am a Christian Minister and I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. You may be of another faith persuasion, but I challenge you to have, maintain and nurture your relationship with the Almighty God. Being God's Son, Jesus is also my personal Lord and Savior. I love him and appreciate His dying for me at Calvary. My pressures and cares are shared by Him and the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit sustains me daily. If you desire this divine presence in your life, why not pray this prayer: Dear God, I want You in my life. I have tried to live my life apart from You. I have committed wrong and I ask for Your forgiveness. Jesus, I acknowledge that You died for my sins and I ask You now to come into my life. Give me that same life You had on Your Resurrection Day. I will use it and let it use me. Thank You for saving me. In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.

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The purpose of this book is to call the straying masses back to the God of the Bible. As a pastor, I am concerned with the renunciation of the biblical principles upon which the best of life is to be built. Such virtues as manhood and being biblically challenged to reflect soundness in fatherhood. For women, being virtuous as one being prepared by God to assume the best in motherhood and a true godly helpmeet. I believe such virtues expressed by parents could produce a wholesome generation of children whose moniker is not that of an X but rather The Cross

$18.95 ISBN~ 9781598002638 p.108 123

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Sources Consulted: Adisa, Opal Palmer. An African Tradition's Lesson in Economic Empowerment, New York, NY: Black Elegance, 1996. Copple, David. Heaps, Tulsa, OK: Christian Publishing Services, Inc., 1987 Devos, Rich. Compassionate Capitalism, New York: Penguin Group. 1993. Felder, Cain. Original African Heritage Study Bible, Nashville, TN: James C. Winston Publishing Co., 1993. Joyner, Ronnie. The Bible Based Family: A Plan For Economic Empowerment, Silver Springs, MD: Beckham House Publishers, Inc., 1996 -An Experience In Networking: A Clergy and Church Response To A Community In Crisis Doctoral Dissertation, Howard University Divinity School, 1983. Karenga, Maulana. California State University, Long Beach, 1966 Kunjufu, Jawanza. Black Economics: Solutions for Economic and Community Empowerment, Chicago, Ill.: African American Images, 1991. Lowe, Phillip. Breaking The Chains: Unleashing the Power of God in Your Financial Life, From a seminar in New Orleans during the Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship Conference-July, 1995. Macy, Joanna. Dharma and Development, Connecticut: Kumariam Press, 1983. Rainbow/PUSH 1000 Churches Connected: Financial Literacy for the Faith Community. Ross, Jerome. The African American Jubilee Edition: The American Bible Society: New York, 1999. Wood, Virgil. The African American Jubilee Edition: The American Bible Society: New York, 1999. The Expositor's Bible Commentary Atlas - Zondervan Publishers and The American Bible Society. Breaking Free From Financial Bondage is a biblical teaching to edify the Body of Christ. This teaching may be quoted, used for research, taught as a Bible Study, and may even become a series for a sermon. The praise and glory will go to God. Be true to the Faith and help someone else with it. I challenge you as well to let me know how much of a blessing God has made it in your life. Clip Art: Afrocentrex created by Tim Jackson, Chicago IL, 1993 Word Perfect 9 Clip Art, Lotus Freelance Graphic. Photos: The Philadelphia Fellowship Collection Pastor Ronnie D. Joyner, D.Min. The Philadelphia Fellowship (Baptist) and President of Ronnie D. Joyner Ministries, Inc. P.O. Box 1446 Norfolk, VA 23501 RonnieJoyner@cox.net (757) 424-5776.

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Phone – (757) 424-5776

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Realizing Your Covenant Blessings

Breaking Free From Financial Bondage  

This 125 page manual/workbook serves as a biblical guideline in helping an individual take control over their financial future. This manual...

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