If you don’t learn to pass the ball, it will cost you the championship.
Handing “the ball” off requires a level of trust. It is a relinquish of attention and control. Can you think of times in your life, at work, at home where you tried to keep “the ball” and the consequences were unfavorable?
For the month of March, Faith Promise has been using basketball analogies in relationship to financial decisions. When you watch a basketball game, you are following the ball. Everyone is watching who has the ball and where the ball is going. Players are trying to steal the ball and teammates are trying to get the ball passed to them. Imagine “the ball” is money. Just like in basketball, God wants you to pass the ball. As Christians, we believe everything we have comes from God. He doesn’t provide us assets to hoard and destroy us. They are given to be used to glorify Him.
Read Matthew 6:19-21.
1. What does this passage say about people? Have you ever met someone who you could see treasured worldly possessions? What possessions do you treasure?
Read Mark 10:17-22.
2. In this story, we see a young rich man who desires eternal life. What is Jesus asking for from the man?
3. Have you ever felt that God has asked you to give up something that was impossible?
Read Luke 16:11-15.
4. What does this passage say about being obedient to God’s word and trusting God?
Read Matthew 23:23.
5. Pastor Chris talked about the Pharisees in this passage and how they were tithing. They were giving 10% of even their herbs. What was upsetting about how the Pharisees where tithing? What does this say about what God thinks our money?
6. Why does God want our first fruits?
7. Pastor Chris said that giving God the first fruits, the fruits which God provided to us, was a measurement of spirituality. He also explained that in basketball when you pass the ball it’s called an assist. Pastor Chris said that God provides us assets so that we can assist others. Who have you assisted in the past, and who can you assist in the future?
8. When we think back to “the ball” analogy and how it relates to money, to trust, and to control, why does God want us to pass the ball to Him?
9. According to Pastor Chris, there are two things that hold you back from passing the ball if you are a believer; fear and greed. What are some ways to overcome these obstacles?
10. What additional ways are there to “pass the ball” other than tithing?
As we as a church grow and develop hearts of generosity and obedience, how can let others see Him in us through the new growth? Pray for those in the community who need the assist and those who can pass the ball. Pray for God’s direction and discernment for passing the ball and for helping us with the courage to trust God with our money.
Are there others in your life at work, home, or school who could benefit from hearing today’s message? How large do you think God’s kingdom would expand if we at Faith Promise all gave at the CORE level? What would the world think if they saw 8,000+ people trusting and being generous at that level?
We encourage groups to try the Discovery Bible Method as an alternative to these discussion questions. You will find details for this Bible study method here. For this week, please study Mark 10:17-22.
1. Encourage your group to discuss how hard it can be to trust God and how rewarding it is when you do. Be careful-do not allow this to descend into gossip about others! The point is to observe the pitfalls of trusting in earthly wealth. Do the members of your group have a budget? Is anyone interested in signing up for financial peace?
2. Encourage the group to share stories about when they trusted God. The stories can be related to financial decisions or any life situation. What were the outcomes? Did this strengthen their faith?
3. Encourage your group to discuss ways they overcame the obstacles of fear and greed.
4. Discuss ways that being obedient and generous can bring others towards God.
5. Our purpose is to be the light that shines and the salt that preserves. The Pharisees were following the financial part of the law, but neglecting caring for others (justice, mercy, etc.).