The first focus of giving is God! The second focus is the need of the giver to
give for spiritual growth. Growth in giving is not related to a church budget
but rather discipleship growth in our hearts. Giving is a response to
TRUSTING GOD’S GOODNESS. Our motive in giving should not be meeting
a budget but rather to give to God which we do through the church!
As we prepare our 2020 commitments, how do we know if we are being
faithful to the Lord? The best place to determine how much to give is to
follow the guidance of the Bible. Below is a variety of bible teachings about
giving, generosity, the state of our hearts, and obedience to God.
- We cannot out give God. Everything we have already belongs to Him. The
Psalmist says “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof” (Psalm 24:1).
Think how absurd it would be to offer God what already belongs to Him.
Yet God chooses to make us stewards of all in the world.
- A tithe (10 percent of our income) is the most measurable standard of
giving in the Bible. The tithe honors God above all with the first ten
percent of what we have. Most tithers speak of tithing as a blessing that
impacts every area of life positively as well as a needed spiritual discipline.
“Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my
house. Test me in this, says the Lord Almighty, and see if I will not throw open
the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not
have room for it” (Malachi 3:10; NIV). If you have never tithed, I invite you
to test it out for the first 90 days of 2020.
- The willingness to make sacrifices helps us grow. When we sacrifice, we
are able to worship more fully. King David said “I will not sacrifice that to
the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing” (2 Samuel 24:24).
The amount is not as important as the heart. If we have very little, we can
still be commended by God. The widow who gave the mite was
commended by Jesus for she gave all she had as condescending onlookers
gave out of their abundance. Jesus also said “where your treasure is there is
your heart also” (Matthew 6:21). Our heart is the focus when we give
treasures in Heaven.
- A spirit of generosity is also commended in the Scripture as “whoever sows
sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap
generously” (2 Corinthians 9:6).
- God loves a cheerful giver and joy is the right spirit in which to give. “Each
of you should give what you have decided to give, not reluctantly or under
compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7).
These Biblical principles are solid and offer a great foundation for our
growth in giving to the Lord. I would invite us all to take the next step in
growth by giving to God through the church. If you are going through
financial hardship, please do not let that prevent you from participating in
the church. There are other ways to give until you can get to a financially
better place. Please call on us to help.
Thank you again for giving to the Lord!