The Four Horsemen Of Financial Ruin- The Devourer

Who is the devourer and how does he ruin us financially?

Four_Horsemen_400

Who are the 4 horseman of financial ruin? If you can remember the 1st horsemen is the hustler, 2nd is called the enslaver, the 3rd is the desolator, and the 4th horseman is called the devourer.

4th Horseman

This horseman name is actually in the bible. It’s not me who titled him. It’s in the bible. Let’s review the 1st horseman again and say this. We talked about the hustler, makes you believe that you will never really get anywhere you just have to hustle from day to day. And the other name for the other horseman can have is planlessness. You have no plan and so we talked about the ten plans of good financial stewardship. The 2nd horsemen, the enslaver ruins you through debt. The 3rd horseman, the desolator ruins you through emergencies and ensures you can’t save for your future and invest your incomes. Today we take a look at the 4th horseman: The Devourer.

Mal 3:8 “Will a man rob God? Yet you have robbed Me! But you say, ‘In what way have we robbed you?’ In tithes and offerings. 9 You are cursed with a curse, For you have robbed Me, Even this whole nation. 10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,” Says the LORD of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it. 11 “And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, So that he will not destroy the fruit of your ground, Nor shall the vine fail to bear fruit for you in the field,” Says the LORD of hosts; 12 “And all nations will call you blessed, For you will be a delightful land,” Says the LORD of hosts. 

 If this passage had been written in modern English, because many of us are not farmers, when he talks about vines dropping, their fruit. If it was in modern English it would say something like this: Test me and see, if I will not open the floodgates of heaven for you. And pour down upon you an overflowing blessing, and I will rebuke the devourer for you so that he cannot destroy the annual profits of your company. I will protect your investments, so that they will not fail to bear says the Lord. Then all the peoples around you will be amazed and call you blessed, for your wealth will be a wonder to behold say the Lord.

Who is the devourer?                                                                                                                                                                                   How does he wreak havoc on your wealth? The devourer is like a rat, he nibbles away at your wealth. He nibbles at your flour and you have to throw it away because the rats have been at it. And you don’t know whether it contains disease, he nibbles at your fruit. Then he nibbles at the cables in your fridge and he short circuits them, and your biscuits. He brings disease on things, nibbles, nibbles, nibbles until there is nothing left. Now, I think there are actually 3 times in the bible where the devourer is mentioned. One is Malachi, but there are to other instances in Haggai 1:1-11.

In the second year of King Darius, in the sixth month, on the first day of the month, the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, saying,  2 “Thus speaks the LORD of hosts, saying: ‘This people says, “The time has not come, the time that the LORD’S house should be built.3 Then the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet, saying, 4 “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, and this temple to lie in ruins?” 5 Now therefore, thus says the LORD of hosts: “Consider your ways!  6 “You have sown much, and bring in little; You eat, but do not have enough; You drink, but you are not filled with drink; You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm; And he who earns wages, Earns wages to put into a bag with holes.”  7 Thus says the LORD of hosts: “Consider your ways! 8 “Go up to the mountains and bring wood and build the temple, that I may take pleasure in it and be glorified,” says the LORD. 9 “You looked for much, but indeed it came to little; and when you brought it home, I blew it away. Why?” says the LORD of hosts. “Because of My house that is in ruins, while every one of you runs to his own house. 10 “Therefore the heavens above you withhold the dew, and the earth withholds its fruit. 11 “For I called for a drought on the land and the mountains, on the grain and the new wine and the oil, on whatever the ground brings forth, on men and livestock, and on all the labor of your hands.”

I have called a drought on your Chamas, on your investment, and your shares, on your business, I have called a drought. None of them is growing and producing wealth. Doesn’t that sound like the same devourer we found in Malachi 3? And both of these texts are talking about the same thing. They are talking about the devourer being unleashed on you, because as it says in Malachi 3. You are stealing my tithe. You look after yourselves, but you don’t attend to my things. You are taking what should have been given to the Lord, a tenth of all your income. You are using it on yourself and your shopping, on your investments, and on upgrading your homes. On your Chamas and land properties instead of giving it to my house and to my work says the Lord.

Why does the devourer Strike?

You see God was saying if you steal my tithe. I will unleash the devourer upon you. So instead of upgrading your financial position, you will lose it and in the end you will have less than you thought you’d have. How does the devourer do that? He’s like a rat. He nibbles away at your car, and you are forever taking it to the garage. He nibbles away at your business and your workers are robbing you. He nibbles at your farm and your potato crops get potato blight and your harvest is lost. He nibbles away at your home and robbers steal everything.

Your car is written off, your computer is stolen, your creditors are hiding, the banks are calling, your kids keep going to the doctor, your electricity has been cut off. Left, right and centre you keep bleeding money and yet everyone else around you is doing quite fine. The devourer has been unleashed on you. Now it’s actually quite easy to know the modus operandi of the devourer.

How he works is, whenever these things start happening to me, I am always in the hospital, the kids are getting sick, one after the other, and the car keeps breaking down. You fix the wheels, then the engine knocks, then it’s something else, and you are constantly there. I ask myself the question. Have I stolen the Lords tithe or did I make a promise a vow that I did not keep and the devourer has been unleashed on me.

Let me show you the 3rd text, who I believe to be the same devourer. He is in Deutronomy 28:1-44. What the blessings are and what the curses are. The text is talking about obedience in general, not just about obedience in the tithe but it includes that.

Blessings of Obedience                                                                                                                                                                        The Lord will open up the heavens where he store his riches. He would bless everything. Who wouldn’t want that? But listen to what happens when the devourer is unleashed upon you.

De 28:15 ¶ “But it shall come to pass, if you do not obey the voice of the LORD your God, to observe carefully all His commandments and His statutes which I command you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you: 16 “Cursed shall you be in the city, and cursed shall you be in the country. 17 “Cursed shall be your basket and your kneading bowl. 18 “Cursed shall be the fruit of your body and the produce of your land, the increase of your cattle and the offspring of your flocks. 19 “Cursed shall you be when you come in, and cursed shall you be when you go out. 20 “The LORD will send on you cursing, confusion, and rebuke in all that you set your hand to do, until you are destroyed and until you perish quickly, because of the wickedness of your doings in which you have forsaken Me. 21 “The LORD will make the plague cling to you until He has consumed you from the land which you are going to possess.22 “The LORD will strike you with consumption, with fever, with inflammation, with severe burning fever, with the sword, with scorching, and with mildew; they shall pursue you until you perish. 23 “And your heavens which are over your head shall be bronze, and the earth which is under you shall be iron. 24 “The LORD will change the rain of your land to powder and dust; from the heaven it shall come down on you until you are destroyed. 25 “The LORD will cause you to be defeated before your enemies; you shall go out one way against them and flee seven ways before them; and you shall become troublesome to all the kingdoms of the earth. 26 “Your carcasses shall be food for all the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth, and no one shall frighten them away. 27 “The LORD will strike you with the boils of Egypt, with tumors, with the scab, and with the itch, from which you cannot be healed. 28 “The LORD will strike you with madness and blindness and confusion of heart. 29 “And you shall grope at noonday, as a blind man gropes in darkness; you shall not prosper in your ways; you shall be only oppressed and plundered continually, and no one shall save you. 30 “You shall betroth a wife, but another man shall lie with her; you shall build a house, but you shall not dwell in it; you shall plant a vineyard, but shall not gather its grapes……41.

Doesn’t that sound like the devourer? If you don’t obey the Lord. It’s important to say this, not every trial that comes your way is the devourer. 1) God sometimes sends trials our way because he’s trying to teach us something and trials refine us. They grow us and so God will send trials your way and it’s not the devourer 2) some of the trials that come our way are the attacks of the evil ones Satan, you have an enemy and he will attack you. It may not be the devourer, it maybe God trying to teach you or it could be Satan attacking you.

The bible says when Satan attacks you, resist the evil and he will flee from you. You never run away from the devil you resists him. You engage in spiritual warfare you command over him, in the name of Christ and you resist him and he will flee from you. So you know how to deal with demonic influence, demons and satanic attacks. But when God sends a trial. God maybe trying to humble you and to get you to listen, so that he can grow you. So that you can become humble under the hand of God. You listen and you grow.

Not every trial is the devourer but it could well be that the trials you see coming your way are in fact the devourer. When I see what I think could be the devourer. The 1st question I ask is, have I been faithful to the Lord, and in my vows and commitments? The 2nd question, if it’s not that and I have been faithful. Is this the attack of the evil one and I need to bind the spirit of the evil one and command the name of Jesus over him and engage in spiritual warfare?

And then I may say but the Lord, if is it you trying to get my attention, I just want to open up my heart so that you can speak to me. But look at your circumstances. Do you think the devourer is on your case? It’s actually not difficult to answer that question. If you’ve been stealing Gods tithe right now the Holy Spirit is convicting you and you know and you don’t need me to tell you. You feeling very uncomfortable about just now and convicted about these things I have shared with you.

Maybe you have been fighting the devourer and you now know what has been going on or maybe he is on his way to your house. But here is the irony as we talk about the devourer and talk about tithing. God calls you to be faithful in tithing but he doesn’t actually need your money. Isn’t that amazing? He calls us to be faithful but he doesn’t need our money. Why is this? It’s because God is not poor. He doesn’t call us to tithe because he’s desperate for money. He calls us to tithe for our own good. I want to give you ten reasons why we tithe, not because God is desperate.

1)Tithing is an Act of Worship. It’s a way of showing God how grateful we are for his forgiveness, his love and his mercy. It’s a way of saying thank you Lord for what you’ve done for me. This tithe is my show of gratitude, because you have been so good to me. You’ve given me eternal life, you have saved me, and you have forgiven me off my sin. This tithe is my way of saying thank you Lord The bible tells us a story in 1 Samuel 24:23 a story of David who had seen the mercy of God and He decided to offer a sacrifice to God. He goes out into the country and sees a field that would be the perfect place to sacrifice to God. So the principle is the, ouch principle of tithing, give until it hurts and you say, oouch!! Because tithing is not about giving the left overs, it is about giving the 1st And if you are faithful to tithe, you will feel the pain because you know what you could have done with that money, but it is your way of showing your gratitude.

2)It is a sign of How Much We Love God. You give according to the measure of your love for God. You give according to the measure of your love. He who is forgiven much, the bible says love much. So you give according to the measure of your love for God. Do you love God enough, to forsake that handbag, that dress, that smart phone, that car, which you were going to buy so that you can give to the Lord? Denying yourself so that you can express your love. In this sense then, you remember when Jesus went to the temple and saw the woman with two mites, then a rich guy comes and gives a lot of money. Behold, today that woman that widow gave more to the kingdom because she have out of her need. He gave out of his abundance and this woman has given more. Let your giving be a sign of how much you love him and it is not just about the 10% it is about abundant generosity because God has done so much for you

3)It is a sign that we trust God more than we trust money. Truth be told many of us think all I need to accomplish my dreams and goals and everything I want in this life is just money. I can do it with money. I don’t really need God. Between being given 100m and being given God, give me the 100M. The world says money makes the world go round. Money is key, money brings you happiness. Money is worth dying for. But when you give you declare to the world, God makes the world go round. God is king, God brings you happiness and only God is worth dying for and so tithing is a sign that we trust God more than we trust money.

4)Tithing show who our real master is: You don’t tithe because you have enough and you’ve accomplished all you need to do and this is left over money. You tithe in spite of your needs being met. You tithe in spite of the fact that you have, something very urgent you could do with this money. You tithe in spite of the fact that you haven’t accomplished all that you needed to and in doing so you say to God. I have only one, master in Matthew 6:24. You can’t serve God and money and so tithing my way of showing who my master is. That it’s God even in spite of my need.

5)It’s an antidote to our greed. Or against our greed and our love for money. Tithing checks our greed because left to ourselves we quickly becomes greedy until God says give. And give in generous measure and give to the poor around you and give to my work. Greed makes us want to hold onto but tithing breaks that. Ezekiel-5 Eze 14:3 God spoke through Ezekiel and accused the leaders of Israel and said this to them. The love and worship of money is idolatry. God is accusing the leaders of Israel for setting up idols not even in your homes but in your hearts and so you come to the temple to worship me and you sing. But when you go home from your lifestyle, from your business, from your desires, from your pursuits, from your passions I can see that you have set up an idol in your heart and that you worship money and not me. God was saying to his children, you have erected an idol that you kneel before. Everything about your life says that, it is that idol you really worship and not me. Tithing is an antidote against our greed.

6)It is how God invites us to participate in his eternal work. You see God is in the business of redeeming the world with acts of mercy, kindness, gospel, and mission and preaching, church planting, missionary work. God doesn’t need your money and my money to get his mission done but he invites us to join him in the work of mission. What a privilege it is. This church gives very generously and for this I bless each of you who have been faithful in giving your tithe and for you I pray the blessings of Deutronomy 28:1-14. But I don’t think that even with the generous giving of this church that we have fulfilled the full capacity of giving that God has given us as a people here.

7)It shows a real character. If you want to see the real character of a man watch him when he has no money or when he has lots of money. When he doesn’t have the money the demon in him comes out. When he has a lot of money the pride and arrogance come out. So if you want to know the character of man give him a lot of money or take all his money away then you will see what he is like on the inside. Tithing shows our real character because it shows the true state of our heart. We will hate it when we elect public officials, put people in positions of power and they steal our taxes and our public money from the national coffers. They are thieves and we really dislike it. The scandals that we see in the paper from month to month of huge amounts of money disappearing and we know that it is our taxes. But may I suggest to you, that if you are stealing Gods tithe, then may God help us as Kenyans. That you should never go into public office because, it is easier to steal the money of man than to steal the money for God. If already you are stealing Gods tithe. God knows what would happen if you became a public officer. Tithing shows the real character

8)Because it says God, I am trustworthy. I have been faithful with little so you can trust me with much Luke 16:10-12. So if you are being dishonest with the little 10%, even when you are young and poor. How will God entrust you with wealth, if you are stealing the 10%. And if you are faithful when you have little then God sees. This child is faithful with little I know I can trust them with much. That’s what tithing says when you are faithful to God. We would God bless you with wealth of your own when you are already stealing from him.

9)Because God has commanded us to give. You know tithing is not only an act of worship, it is also an acts of obedience. To withhold your tithe is disobedience. You know sometimes we get clever with God. We say I will take all for this month, but next month I will give you more than double. I will give you for this month and next month and will add bakshsishi (bonus) on top but let me tell you something. God doesn’t want your deal with him, God is very happy. God doesn’t need your deal. God wants your obedience, to negotiate a deal with God and to try and throw in extra so that you can mesmerize him. Sometimes we say I don’t agree with my church and what’s its doing. I’d rather they fed the poor rather than planting churches in Siberia. God has called for your obedience. You can come and sit down and we talk about church planting in Siberia as opposed to giving to the poor but he has called you to obedience. God I don’t like my church leaders so I do a protest vote with my tithe. You are not tithing to your pastor you are tithing to God. Here is one that we would occasionally hear. You know God, I don’t trust pastors and churches especially here in Kenya, because they milk people and use the money on themselves. In this church we have our accounts audited and we invite you to interrogate those accounts. And every 3 yrs. we have forensic audits of our accounting systems. We also have a tax exemption for five years from K.R.A.

10)Because he knows we are afraid. Malachi 3 bring the full tithe. Put me to the test, God dares us. If the reason is that I am afraid. I will go into financial ruin. He has given me a promise and said, test me and see if I will not take care of you. In fact it is withholding the tithe that will ruin you. But giving to the lord, He will stand by his name. He will stand by His word and He will protect you. Why? God calls us to tithe and when we don’t, then the devourer is set upon us. Will we faithfully tithe as an expression of love and trust and obedience and stand on the promise and see what he will do….

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7 Responses to “The Four Horsemen Of Financial Ruin- The Devourer”

  1. video please….

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  2. I have been a mavunite for a long time and have enjoyed coming to mavuno and I appreciate and think people should be taught about giving and tithing.I listened to yesterdays message and I respect the man of God but I also thought it went to dangerous grounds especially when it came to prayer time and the words were that we are taking a vow.The bible warns as against taking a vow hastily for that a precipice of calling a curse on yourself for as human beings we sometimes may break it whether knowingly or unknowingly God says you cant go back to Him and recant I thought as a man of God one should not force his congregants to that direction for what happens to them if they do not fulfill there vows which was sealed with anointing oil.Spiritual things have very strong connotations and as men of God we need to be very careful where we push our congregants we need them healthy and strong and prospered for years to come.Actually I have heard many tithing messages but its never been this dangerous.

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    • Hello concerned christian,

      On the concerns that you raise.

      1)The bible warns about not following through on our vows before God but it does not warn us against taking vows.

      2)Pst. Oscar asked willingly those who who would want to take the vows to come forward. It was an open invitation and those who did, I believe stood up on their own conviction of the need to step up and commit to growing and supporting the vision of the church. There was no coercion or intimidation and I would encourage you to listen again on the clip on the Mavuno website.

      3)If you listen in again you will realize that Pst.Oscar asked those were in dire financial situations to come forward and be prayed for and be anointed with oil.

      4)The anointing oil wasn’t a seal of a vow. It was part of the prayer for those who were in tough financial situations as he clearly stipulated.

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  3. I have seen the faithfulness of God since i began to tithe consistently

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  4. Good Morning,

    How do you deal with issues of where one spouse does not tithe and one does it faithfully?

    Does this take away from the family as a unit?

    How do you deal with such cases?

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    • Hello Beloved,

      The best model for giving in such circumstances is to agree with your spouse on what amount is acceptable within the family income and then purposing to give that.

      God sees the desire to give and understands the complexity of family situations. God honors the giving from such an agreement.

      For God also says let every man or woman give according to that which he/she purposes in his heart.

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