Pastor Shane Ham : The Nature Of Stewardship

Where Your Heart Is · 46:16 · Recorded September 10, 2023

The Nature Of Stewardship

Matthew 25:14-30 (NIV) 14“Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his wealth to them. 15To one he gave five bags of gold, to another two bags, and to another one bag, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. 16The man who had received five bags of gold went at once and put his money to work and gained five bags more. 17So also, the one with two bags of gold gained two more. 18But the man who had received one bag went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. 19“After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20The man who had received five bags of gold brought the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five bags of gold. See, I have gained five more.’ 21“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ 22“The man with two bags of gold also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two bags of gold; see, I have gained two more.’ 23“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ 24“Then the man who had received one bag of gold came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25So I was afraid and went out and hid your gold in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’ 26“His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest. 28“‘So take the bag of gold from him and give it to the one who has ten bags. 29For whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. 30And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

What it is:

Stewardship is a fundamental orientation to life.

It means the administration or handling of the property of another.

Genesis 1:3, 6, 9, 11, 14, 20, 26a (NIV)3And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light… 6And God said, “Let there be a vault between the waters to separate water from water.”… 9And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.” And it was so… 11Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation… 14And God said, “Let there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night,… 20And God said, “Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the vault of the sky.”… 26Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness…”

Everything on the planet is only to be managed by us.

Genesis 1:26 (NIV) 26Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

Anything I own, I don’t really own.

Deuteronomy 8:10-18 (NIV) 10When you have eaten and are satisfied praise the Lord your God for the good land he has given you. 11Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day. 12Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down, 13and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied, 14then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. 15He led you through the vast and dreadful wilderness, that thirsty and waterless land, with its venomous snakes and scorpions. He brought you water out of hard rock. 16He gave you manna to eat in the wilderness, something your ancestors had never known, to humble and test you so that in the end it might go well with you. 17You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.” 18But 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 ancestors, as it is today.


If I stop obeying God, I will start forgetting God.

If I start forgetting God, I will start acting like I am God.

Where I begin:

God says, Go back to my commandments and my laws.

Genesis 2:16-17 (NIV) And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”

Freedom comes from knowing the truth and living by the truth.

Stewards will trust God and act according to his word!

Growing Deeper Together

Use these points throughout the week as part of your quiet time, in your small group, or over coffee with a friend to help you apply what you learned in today’s message.

  • Shane stressed that he wants us to properly understand the nature of stewardship. What has been your experience? Has this word/concept caused you confusion, angst, frustration? Joy, contentment? What in your history has caused that? How can you rightly position this in a biblical way or help someone else?
  • Take some time with each of these verses this week as you ask God to remind you of his great power in this world and his great blessing in your life: Exodus 19:5; Psalm 89:11; 1 Chronicles 29:11-12; Psalm 50:11-12; Psalm 21; 1 Corinthians 10:26; Psalm 24:1; 1 Corinthians 6:19
  • Shane talked about two roles – ours and God’s. Do you agree with these? Why or why not? How will you operate differently to live and act according to these? Who will you ask to walk alongside you as you do?

Pastoral study references, attributions, & recommendations: Money, Sex, & Power, by Richard Foster; Not Your Parents’ Offering Plate, by J. Clif Christopher; Financial Peace, by Dave Ramsey; Generosity Ladder, by Nelson Searcy