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Robert Morris — It's All About the Heart

Alright. We're beginning a new series called "The Blessed Life". And I want you to understand that this is my life message because it's been in my heart for years. It's been something Debbie and I have been living and I've been preaching and teaching for years. The blessed life now, the book — millions of copies. I've been told 30-something languages around the world. I've given all the royalties away to this book. And so, God uses it all over the world. Here's the reason. Because there's truth in this book that will change your life. I promise you. And it will change your marriage, and it will change your family, and it will change your health. It will change your relationships. It will change your job. It will change your life. It's a blessed life, not a blessed pocket book or a blessed wallet. It's a blessed life.

And so I want you to turn, if you can, really, to two passages this time. Matthew 7 and Luke 6. Here's the reason. Because we're going to read a passage in Matthew 7, and then we're going to flip to Luke 6 quickly so we can read the parallel passage. So look here at Matthew 7:1-2. It says judge not, that you be not judged. For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged. And with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.

Now I just want to ask you a simple question. Is the word money anywhere in those two verses? No. And the context is judging. Don't judge, or you'll be judged, OK? Now I want us to commit to short-term memory the first phrase and the last phrase. And I'd like for you to just say it after me. Judge not, and you will not be judged. And with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. Say that. Now flip over to Luke 6, OK? Now let's say them one more time. Judge not, and you will not be judged. With the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. OK. Look at the first sentence of verse 37. Luke 6:37. Judge not, and you will not be judged. No, you don't have to say it. I'm sorry. Thank you. Thank you, though. OK. And then look at the last sentence of verse 38. For with the same measure you use, it will be measured back to you.

OK, I want you to understand. This is the parallel passage. But I want to show you a verse in the middle that, in my opinion, many times the context is not understood. OK, so Luke 6:37-38. Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Now look at verse 38. Give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put in your bosom. For with the same measure you use, it will be measured back to you. Now let me just make a statement. And this might shock you. The word money does not appear in those verses. And yet most of the time when we hear Luke 6:38, we think about money. As a matter of fact, when we think about the word give, we think money.

I was being interviewed by a magazine a while back, and they said, how often do you preach on giving? And I said every week. They said, you preach on giving every week? And I said yes. I think what you meant to ask me was how often do I preach on giving money. And that's about every three years. Every three years, I do a series on stewardship and generosity. But you didn't ask me how often do I preach on giving money. You asked me how often I preach on giving. I can't preach on grace and not talk about giving because God so loved the world He — I can't preach on marriage and not preach on giving because a marriage will not work if you're not givers. If both people aren't givers. And again, not finances now. Giving.

You understand what I'm saying? This applies to every area of our life. That's what we have to understand. Giving is about the heart. Here's the title of the message. I should have given it to you earlier, but the title is "It's All About the Heart". It's all about the heart. Jesus said where your treasure is, there your heart will be. Some people say well, you know, they're after my money. Let me explain something to you. Yes, God is after your — not the church. God is after your money because He's after your heart. And your heart is connected to your wallet. Your heart follows your treasure. You put your treasure in a stock. You put some money in a stock. You'll start going on the Internet, checking to see how that stock is doing. And you never checked it before, and you never cared about it before, but you care about it now because your treasure is there. You want your heart in the kingdom? You put your treasure in the kingdom.

So it's a heart issue. Because he's talking in these verses about judgement, condemnation, and forgiveness. Don't judge, or you'll be judged. Don't condemn, or you'll be condemned. And then he says forgive, and you'll be forgiven. And then he says give. OK, what's he saying though? Give judgement, and judgement will be given back to you. And here's the part I don't hear a lot of preaching on. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will men give judgement back to you. For with the same measure you give judgement, you'll get judgement back. That's the context of these verses. Judgement, condemnation, and forgiveness.

Now you can apply it to other areas because of the laws of sowing and reaping. If you give a seed, you don't just get back one seed. You get back a tree or a plant with many seeds. And that's the way God is. So whatever you give, you're going to get more back. So it would be better to give good things than bad things because you're going to get more of it back, whatever it is.

I was counseling with a lady one time, and she was a single mother, and she didn't have anywhere to leave her kids. And so she brought her kids, and we just let them — I said, please come anyway. And she just left them with the — my assistant. We left the door open there, and I was talking to her, and here, literally, this is what she said. She said, my kids yell at me. She said, they yell at me. I don't know why. And then she did this. Y'all stop talking out there! I don't why they yell at me. I said Luke 6:38. Give yelling, and yelling will be given back to you. Good measure, pressed — OK. Alright. How are you going to develop a heart of generosity?

Well, way back Deuteronomy 15, God tells us what we need to do. Four things we need to do. Because it's all about the heart, alright? So Deuteronomy 15. Look at verses 7 and 8. If there is among you a poor man of your brethren within any of the gates in your land which the Lord your God is giving you, notice God is giving you the land, by the way. Notice the word giving. You shall not harden your heart. It's about your heart. Nor shut your hand from your poor brother, but you shall open your hand wide to him and willingly, that would be about your heart, lend him sufficient for his need, whatever he needs. OK.

So there are four things that we need to do if we're going to become generous givers. Here's number one. Deal with a selfish heart. Deal with a selfish heart. Look at verse 9. Deuteronomy 15:9. Beware lest there be a wicked thought in your heart. Notice heart again. Saying the seventh year, the year of release is at hand, and your eye be evil against your poor brother, and you give him nothing. And he cry out to the Lord against you, and it become sin among you. Notice selfishness is wickedness in God's eyes, and it becomes sin.

Now here's what he's saying. He's saying, now when your brother comes and asks to borrow from you, you open your hand and willingly lend to him. You open your heart to him. But don't let there be this wicked or selfish thought in you that says man, this is the year of jubilee. That means all debts will be canceled. In other words, if he came and said hey, I need to borrow some money, my crops were bad this year, and you thought, you know what? Six more months is the year of jubilee. If he can't pay me back in six months, then I have to cancel this debt.

See, God implemented an economic system where all debts were canceled every seven years. So if you thought, you know, I'm not going to do this because he might not be able to pay me back. You know what God said? Don't do that. Don't think that way. And here's what He called it. He calls selfishness wickedness. He's dealing. He's telling the people of Israel, this, I don't want you to do this. I want you to be generous like I'm generous. Yeah.

Let me ask you a question. Why did God create giving? You ever thought about that? Because God did. It's all through God's word. So why did God invent or create giving? Do you really think that God needs your money to support His work? I mean, is the light bill, you know, in Heaven, you know, too big for God? They're running out of gold for the streets? I mean, cattle on a thousand hills. He's running out of cow? I mean, you know what? God needs you — no, listen. God did not create giving for His sake. He created giving for your sake. Giving, more than any other activity that a believer does, works selfishness and greed out of our lives.

This is why I don't like much of the preaching I hear on giving. Because it's give to get. Give, and you'll get. And let me tell you what that does. It actually works selfishness and greed back in your life. And how do you think God feels when a preacher preaches give, and you'll get. Give, and you'll get. And people will say, well, I want to get, so I'm going to give. I wonder if God is thinking, well, this is great. All of my people are catching the revelation of getting. No. We need to catch the revelation of giving.

Now, I do want to say, ladies, that there's an area of selfishness that men never grow out of. I just want you to know, OK? We do not want to share our food. And for some reason, you want our food. And I don't understand it. And we do not want to share our food. The very first time Pastor Tom and Jan Lane, sitting on the front row — Jan said, I knew you were going to say this. Sitting right there. The very first time I went to dinner with them, we were going around the table ordering. I ordered. And Jan said, oh good. I've been wanting to try that. I never even met the woman, and she wanted to eat off my plate. And I said well, you better order some because that's the only way you're going to get any.

Think about it. Come on. What does every woman say when you're at the drive-through? What does every woman say? You say, would you like something? No, I'll just have some of yours. No, you won't. I'll buy you two orders of fries, but you're not getting any of my fries. And the fries that fall in the bottom of the bag are mine, too.

So point number one is deal with a selfish heart. I don't know if that's directed just to the men or to all of us, alright? Here's number two. Deal with a grieving heart. Grieving heart. Now he's talking about money. He's talking about giving. Verse 10. You shall surely give to him. Give to him. And your heart should not be grieved when you give to him because for this thing, watch. For this thing, giving with the right heart, the Lord your God will bless you in all your works. That's amazing. And in all to which you put your hand. If you learn to give from the heart, with the right heart, God will bless you in everything you do. That's what he just said. See, we need to understand. This is a heart issue. But selfishness attacks us before we give, and grief attacks us after we give. Have you ever given a large amount or made a commitment and then something breaks? And the enemy comes immediately to say see? You shouldn't have done that. He comes in. And then grief because we gave.

And, you know, I'm setting here. Here I am, preaching this message, and I had this thought just go through my mind. And after 30 years of preaching, I ought to know to just let the thought go on by. But here's the thought I had. I just thought to myself, I'm going out to eat after the service, and I don't have any cash. I just had that thought just go through my mind, you know? I'm just — Oh, wow. Wow. Look. A hundred dollars. OK. I'm going to start saying those thoughts more often. OK, no.

Let's talk about that for a minute, alright? Why when I said I don't have any cash, why did David get up that fast and give it to me? Let me tell you why. Because I gave it to him before the service. It's my hundred dollars. OK, now, he's not grieving that he gave because why? Because it was mine. See, the reason that we grieve after we give is because we thought it was ours. And the earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof. So when we give back to God what is already His, then we don't grieve over it.

So deal with a grieving heart. Here's number three. Develop a generous heart. Develop a generous heart. Look at verse 14. You shall supply him liberally, generously from your flock, watch. From your threshing floor and from your winepress. Now watch this. From what the Lord has blessed you with, you shall give to him. God wants us to be generous. We were born selfish. We are born again generous. We just have to renew our minds. You think about it. You really want to be generous. Even hoping not to receive anything in return. What he's doing is dealing with the heart.

It's the first thing we have to try to teach our children. I want you to think about that. What do you have to try to teach your children that is so hard to teach your children? Share. Share. No, we share. And what happens? The little neighbor boy comes over to play, and the neighbor boy picks up a toy. What does your boy do? Drops the toy he's playing with, runs over, and says I was playing with that. I was playing with that. Right? And the neighbor boy says, OK. So he goes over and picks up something else. Your boy runs over, I was playing with that, too. I was playing with that, too. Do you realize what God is saying to all of His children? When are you going to grow up? When are you going to grow up? When are you going to become like your Father that so loved that He gave?

You know, I heard a story my son, Josh, and daughter-in-law, Hannah, told me a while back. They have two children, Grady, who is seven, and Willow, who is four. And they got in the car, Hannah picked them up from church, and Willow said, Mommy, did you know that there was a woman in the Bible that only had two pennies, and she gave both of them to God? And Hannah said, yeah. That's a wonderful story. And Willow said, I want to give something to God. So Hannah said well, pray and ask the Lord what He wants you to give.

And so you could see her. She closed her eyes. Hannah was watching her in the mirror, you know? She closed her eyes. She did like this and, in a minute, she said, what? And then she said, Little Baby? No, not Little Baby. Oh, Betty Baby. Oh yeah, you can have Betty Baby. I don't like her. OK, that's cute. That's kids learning about giving. But at some point, you have to grow up. At some point you say, Lord, what do you want me to give? And say, that's great. That's what I'll do. That's what I'll do.

So we want to develop a generous heart. Here's number four. Develop a grateful heart. Develop a grateful heart. Back in Deuteronomy 15. Look at verse 15. You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God redeemed you. Then he says this. Therefore, I command you this thing today. You know what he's saying? I command you to be generous. I'm commanding you. And you know on the authority that I'm commanding you? It's that everything you have came from me. You need to remind yourself every now and then that you were slaves. You know what? Every now and then, I get a reminder.

I leaned over to John and to David right before I came up and told them, because it happened to me yesterday. And it was hard going to sleep last night. I knew the enemy was trying to attack me, too, because this series was beginning. But Debbie got an email from a friend of ours we went to high school with. And she said, you know, loved the first conference, watched on the Internet. All this. But hate to bring bad news, but we've lost two more of our class members. She named two guys. Both guys, I did drugs with. One of the guys, I started on drugs. And one of the guys died from a drug overdose, and the other guy committed suicide.

And I'm lying there last night, thinking thank you, God, for redeeming me from that type of a lifestyle. These guys now, 35 years since high school, and still — what a horrible life they must have had for 35 years. Thank you, God. You know, the Lord just reminds me. It's not hard for me to give. You understand? I didn't have anything. I was a slave. You didn't have anything either. No matter what you had, you didn't have anything if you didn't have Christ.

A while back, a pastor and his wife were — and had heard me share our testimony on giving. And in this series, I'll share our testimony on giving. And by God's grace, Debbie and I have been able to give like many cars to people. We were able to give our first home away. We've just been able to give very extravagantly, and we love to do that. And I shared that testimony in the church, and we went to dinner with this pastor and his wife. And the wife said to Debbie, I have a question for you. And both of us knew the question because we've heard it many times. She said, how did you feel when your husband said he wanted to give away your house? And Debbie said, I felt great.

She said, you have to remember that Robert and I were married before he got saved. And every time he's wanted to give something extravagantly, I think, thank you, God. Thank you, God, for my new husband. And then the pastor asked her a question she'd never been asked. He said, why do you think that Robert is so generous? And I'm not trying to set myself up as an example. I know many, many people are very generous. But he said, why do you think that, I mean, he just has given so extravagantly. Retirement. Savings. All these things over the years. Why do you think he's so generous? A tear came down her cheek, and she said, because he's never gotten over getting saved. He's never forgot where he came from. And he knows that everything we have came from the Lord.

I know you feel the same way that I do. We never get over getting saved. And because of that, you're a giver. God's given you a new heart, and we want to give. Don't let the devil mess with your mind and tell you that you're not a giver. I want to encourage you. When the Holy Spirit leads you to give to your church, or to a missionary, or to some person in need, give as God leads you. Hey, thanks so much for watching. I'll see you next time as I continue the series "The Blessed Life".
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