Michael Todd - First Ain't Second - Part 3
What's going on my friends? My name is Michael, and I want to thank you for tuning in to today's program. And I've just got a question for you: are you ready to put God first? Oh yeah, yeah, yeah, over what you eat, over your finances, over who you like, are you ready to put God in his rightful place as first? And the truth of the matter is, first ain't second. Now, I know that's not correct English but it's the truth. If you have God in second place, that means he's not first, and I want to help you put God in his proper position in your life. Why? Because it takes faith to give to God first. And the first fruits of your life must be offered to him. This is a principle that will transform everything and help you live a blessed life. I'm excited for the word today, and I want to be the first to welcome you to your transformation.
God had blessed us, and God said "Hey, not only are you gonna give the finances, you're gonna give your car away now too". And I was like "What"? And he said "Yep". And there was a young man in our church who needed a car, and the Holy Spirit said, "Give him your car". Walked up to him, gave him a dap and handed him the keys to my car and paid the insurance for a year. That hurt, but it qualified me for what God was gonna do next. So a year goes by. Now at this point we'd been living the blessed life for three years and I've given away two cars, no strings attached. So last year, I had a family member that was in need, and we came to a time of giving. The Holy Spirit said do you want to live this or do you want to talk to people about it? I said God, I want to live it. He said cool, so this is what you're gonna do. You're gonna buy a car. Hold on, the last ones were given. God, you Messin' up the formula, like I didn't have to pay nothing for it and then you kind of, he said no, no, no, you're gonna buy it and you're gonna spend $10.000 dollars on it.
"10.000, God? I don't have 10.000". He said, "yeah you do. Look." I began to look and I was mad that I found it. You know what I'm saying how you look. He said you're gonna buy it. So I called a person who had a car dealership and I said man, I'm looking for a reliable car for a single mother who has three kids. I just know I'm supposed to bless her. I don't want no strings attached, anything like that, I just want to bless her. And he's like yeah, I got this minIvan that da-da-da, 2000. I was like that will work. How much? $9.000. I was like, cool, then I can take, cool.
Me and Natalie were sitting there, I was like, we're gonna do this. We say we wanted to live the blessed life, we're gonna live this thing out. And hung up the phone, dude calls me back, says man, um, for some reason I don't never do this, but I had you on speakerphone when I was talking to you, and my daughter overheard the conversation, and she just got a brand-new 2010 Acura... and starts going on. And she said while you were talking, God said that she was supposed to give that car to the person in need, so we taking it to the detail place right now. You don't have to pay anything for the car. She's actually gonna give it to y'all to give to them. And at that moment, God says see Michael? I didn't need your money. I needed your heart. When you decided in your heart that you were gonna obey me, I sent provision.
And I don't know who I'm talking to today, but when I'm talking about putting God first, it's not even about the resources. God is the source! He has everything. He owns the cattle on a thousand hills. He owns the world! He doesn't need it from you, he just needs to know does he have the place that he could have it from you. First ain't second, and if I could get anything to this generation, if you put God first, the rest is blessed. If you put God first in everything, not just in finances: if you put him first in your relationship, if you put him first in your day, before you wake up and scroll on Instagram, just pray. Put him first. Just actually look at your Bible. Read a scripture, put him first. Worship him, magnify him, put him first. If he's first, he'll bless the rest. As I began to think about this in every aspect of my life, the first thing God blessed in my ministry was YouTube. And for some reason, relationship goals took off in 2017 or something like that, and people everywhere began to watch YouTube.
Now y'all know I'm transparent. There's something that happens when one of them ads pop up on YouTube. They pay money to be on your YouTube videos. So millions of people watched Transformation Church and watched my preaching on YouTube, and every time them ads come up, every time you skip them, thank you because the church is being blessed by not offering or a tithe. Over time that's equated to a lot of money, and the Holy Spirit said don't you take a dime 'cause the first thing I blessed, it's mine. It's mine. All of it goes back to the church. I said "Well Lord, you know... That could really help me do a couple of things." He said, "I'll still send provision. I've just got to be first."
So from that day until this, not one cent from YouTube has touched my account. It has all gone back to Transformation Church. But when I tell you that God dug up some blessings, no, no, no, stuff I wasn't going after, stuff that didn't take no more work from me, stuff that didn't make me, some of y'all in the room know what I'm talking about. It came and found me. And when the blessing hit my account, God said the only reason I could do that is because you honored me, say it with me, first. Church, I'm telling you today that there is a blessing on the other side of putting God first. Above the bills, above the mortgage, above our fashion, above everything that we considered awesome. When you put God first, he blesses everything else.
Can you imagine what it looks like when God sees his children saying oh, God's more important than that. Do you know there's no feeling like my daughter having an invitation to go spend the night at one of her cousins house and all that other stuff, but she said daddy, I don't want to spend the night. I want to go over and play, but then I want to come back and snuggle with you. Y'all, that Isbella is something different. That baby told me, daddy, I don't want to spend, me, I would always want to spend the night. I just want to be gone. That baby told me daddy, can you pick me up around ten because I don't want to sleep there, I want to snuggle with you and watch a movie with you. What she was essentially saying is daddy, I'm gonna put you first. So on the way home from picking her up, when she asked for a slushy... I mean why not? You put your daddy first.
When you say God, I'd love a house. Houses? I got houses. Vehicles, I got vehicles. I got vehicles. He said because you put me first. The last thing that I want to tell you, and this is so important as we continue to journey down this road is the tithe must be first. I've been saying it in different ways, but I just want to plainly put it out there. The tithe must be first. Bring me those treats. This is ten boxes of krispy kreme donuts. Which one of these is the tithe? You said the first one? It's the first one that leaves his hand. Because it's not necessarily this one. It's whichever one I leave first. It's not that I can have all of these, but it's whichever one I decide to take and open. Thank you.
Now I got the tithe. But now there's a tithe of the tithe. There's ten donuts in here. Which one's the tithe? It's not this one or this one 'cause we all look at it differently. Come here. Somebody be like the middle one is the tithe, the first one's the tithe, this one's the tithe. It doesn't matter. It's the first one Brett picks up, takes off his mask, go ahead and take off your mask and take some bite off. That good? Now watch this, come with me jay. Look, all of these I get to do whatever I want to do with it, 'cause the first one that left me was the tithe. But now everybody in the audience, blesses. Share those around. No, no, take them, bless other people, bless other people with them. I need everybody to see oh, snap! There's nine others. Bring the whole nine. Because I trusted God with the first one.
See there's some people that didn't get blessed on that one, but because I trusted God with the first one, now the other nine. Go give them to everybody in the audience. The audience just started shouting, some of them. Which one is the tithe? The first. Look, the people on the other side are like bring some over here! I know the people at home now, you looking for the light to be on at krispy kreme tonight. Krispy kreme, we need an actual endorsement now. We just increased your business. No, I'm just playing. Hear what I'm saying to you. Everybody hear what I'm saying. What God wants to do, he wants to do in your life but it has to be first.
Why did God accept Abel's offering and not Cain's? Y'all remember in the Bible where they both brought an offering. It was in Genesis. These are the first brothers, Genesis 4:3. I'm trying to give you Bible. I know it's taking a minute, but I hope this principle and these images never leave you. Genesis 4:3 it says in the process of time, it came to pass that Cain brought an offering. This wasn't priority. It wasn't what he decided to do. He brought an offering of the first fruit and of the ground of the Lord. But Abel also brought of the first born of his flock, of their fat, and the Lord, watch this, respected or accepted Abel's offering, but he did not respect or accept Cain's offering. Why? 'Cause he didn't put him first.
This may be very strong language, but God's first, no matter if he's first to you. Like, even if you don't honor God, you didn't change his order in the universe. The whole cosmos is still in place by one word he spoke. Okay? But when you put God first, oh, you invite him in to bless everything in your life. And this is the truth of the matter. It's not that God just won't accept seconds. He can't accept seconds. He only accepts the best and our first. Today I hope this principle is stuck in your mind forever. When I read this last scripture, I'm gonna tell you it changed me forever when it comes to returning, not giving, because we can't give it because it already belongs to God. When I get paid on the first and the fifteenth, it automatically comes out. I'm not gonna pay anybody else.
Now this is not legalistic. I need everybody, giving is all about the heart. This is not legalistic. So if I do something and it's the first, and Nat decides to go to her favorite store target and purchase some things for the house and all that other stuff, and then I look on the account and I see that target had some money, I don't come home and be like thanks Nat, we're cursed! You gave target, this is not legalistic. God knows your heart. He knows my heart, he knows your heart. And what happens is a lot of people try to make this legalistic. It's really about what God wants to do on the inside of you.
Look at Exodus chapter 13 verse 14. It says so it shall be when your sons, when your children ask you in time to come saying what is this? That you shall say to him by the strength of the hand of the Lord, he brought us out of Egypt, out of the house of bondage, and it came to pass when Pharaoh was stubborn about letting us go, when poverty had our minds trapped, when selfishness had us all wrapped up, that the Lord killed all of the first born in the land of Egypt, both the first born of man and the first born of beast, therefore I sacrificed to the Lord all the males that open up the wound but all the first borns of my son I redeem.
Can I explain that to you. He said the reason it's easy for me to give God my first is because I used to be a slave. I was in bondage. And one day your son's gonna come and ask you dad, why do you keep giving so much to the church? Dad, do you know how many meals that can make? Do you know you can buy a car with that? Do you know we could have had the house paid off sooner? Your sons and daughters are gonna ask you why do you keep doing this? And he said it's the time for you to witness about where you came from. The reason it's easy for me to do this is because I was a slave, and the crazy thing about it this happened to me as we were preparing for crazy faith offering this year. I was sitting there and I had money that I was gonna electronically deposit, and I had cash that I'd been saving up. I'm an old-school gangster, so don't even come at me. You know what I'm saying. And my daughter was like daddy, that's a lot of money. And I came, it could have been $40 dollars, that look like a lot of money but it wasn't.
But she came me and this scripture came to my mind. Said Michael, it's time. Explain to her why you give to me. And I sat there with Ava and Bella at our kitchen table, and they were looking at me, and I said daddy used to be a bad person. I was in bondage. I had all type of lies and evil intentions and manipulation in my heart, and God with a mighty hand, he came down and he rescued daddy, and he gave us things we didn't deserve, so when God asked daddy for anything, daddy will give it to you. And do you know what my daughter's response was? Daddy, can I give to God? And she ran to get her piggy bank, and she said daddy, I want to give to God too.
I pray for every person under the sound of my voice that this scripture in Exodus comes to pass in your life, that you will honor God first and because you do, God will bless you so much. I'm praying that some people's tithe checks will be a hundred thousand dollars. You missed it. If on this table is a hundred thousand, what does it have to be on this table? I'm praying that your business, oh, would increase to so much that what you do for God's house would just be a small portion of what he does. I'm not teaching prosperity. I'm teaching principles. And if you get this principle, more than having resources, you'll have legacy.
What I'm raising right now in Isbella, MJ, and Ava, and this new baby to come, it will never be hard for them to give to God. It will be a part of their DNA because they watched their mother and father stand in faith and honor God, help me, first! First aint second. Right now would you just lift your hands. I want to pray. And at the end of every service, we ask Holy Spirit, what are you trying to say to me in this message? I don't have no big punchline or anything, but what I'm praying to you is something dropped in your heart and maybe that was just a little sign of maturity.
Some of you are gonna take that step today and you're gonna put God first. You're going to remove the tithe from your bank account and from your house, and you're gonna give to it to the storehouse, the place that partners with people like convoy of hope, and inner cities, and schools, and that's all God said. He say I just want there to be food in my house so that I can bless others, he said, but the blessing that comes on you, when you honor me first, it will pale in comparison. Eyes have not seen and ears have not heard, neither has it entered into your heart or mind the things that God has prepared for those who love him, not in talk, in action.