God’s Word About Your Money
“Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me. “But you ask, ‘How do we rob you?’ “In tithes and offerings. You are under a curse‚ the whole nation of you‚ because you are robbing me. 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 enough for it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit,” says the LORD Almighty. “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the LORD Almighty.
Tithing can prove to be a very touchy subject. Let’s turn the spotlight of God’s Word directly on your money and the way you handle it. This is an issue about which many are sensitive and close mouthed. However, it is an issue about which the Bible has much to say. And, it is an issue that affects each and every person. First, let’s take a moment to consider several statements, which are important in discussing this matter.
1. Money Is Essential – We depend upon money to provide homes, food, clothing, cars and other things we say are the necessities of life. If you do not have money in this society, then you are in serious trouble. Therefore, money is very important.
2. Money Is Over Rated – This world is all about telling us how we can go about getting more of the stuff called money. However, too often we get caught up in trying to get more of the stuff and we end up hurting ourselves because we get to the place where we stop depending on the Lord. Our provision is His business.
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?”
(See also Matthew 6:26-33)
3. Money Can Be Used For Great Good – It has built hospitals, fed the hungry, clothed the naked, provided for the needs of the Kingdom of God and helped countless millions.
4, Money Can Be Used For Great Evil – Money has financed the drug culture, pornography, prostitution, wars and every other vile practice known to man. It is the grease that lubricates the axles of sin.
1 Timothy 6:10
“For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”
5. Money Must Be Used Properly – Every Christian has the responsibility to use the resources which have been given to him by God to further God’s kingdom upon the earth. When we invest our money in the kingdom of God, we also place our heart there. When we place our finances in the hands of the world, then we likewise tie our affections to things below and not things above. Matthew 6:19-21 & 24
6. Money Can Lead to Terrible Bondage. When we allow ourselves to fall into the slavery of debt, we are hindering our ability to follow the Lord properly. Often, our indebtedness prevents us from serving the Lord as He would have us to.
“The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.”
7. Money Must Be Used To Bring Glory To God. When money is properly used to glorify the Lord, then the Lord is given the wonderful opportunity of proving His power to provide for His people.
1 Corinthians 10:31
“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
The Matter Of Our Giving
1. Jesus Cares About Our Giving – This is evident from the fact that Jesus was observing the people casting their money into the treasury. He was watching them as they gave. Notice how this verse is worded, “and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury…”
2. God’s Challenge In Our Giving – The yardstick has always been what is called the “tithe.” This is a word that simply means “the tenth.” God desires that every person be actively involved in giving their tithe to the Lord.
3. God’s Claim To Our Resources – Too often, we get hung up on the tithe and forget that every penny we have to our names is the Lord’s. All of our money, not just the tithe, is to be used as He leads and directs us. It isn’t 10% that belongs to God, it’s 100%!
The Measure Of Our Giving
1. We Are To Give Proportionally – That is, everyone is expected to give the same amount. Not the same dollar figure, but the same percentage. God’s ideal starting point for giving is 10% for everyone. This principle of giving is called the tithe and it is the Lord’s.
2. We Are To Give Properly – There is a proper place that has been appointed by the Lord for us to give our tithes. Notice, as we have read Malachi 3:10, that we are to bring our tithes into the storehouse, also called the “Lord’s house.” In our day, we call this place the church. God’s plan is that ALL the tithe is to be brought into the church and from there, it is to be distributed as the Lord leads.
3. We Are To Give Perpetually – We are to make our giving a regular part of our lives. (See 1 Corinthians 16:2)
Many give only when they have excess. Others do it when they are moved by conviction and guilt. When the bad feeling stops, so do they. The proper method of giving is when you have received increase; you are to give at least 10% of that increase to the Lord. We are to give of our firstfruits. According to the Bible, when we make the first part holy, then the rest becomes holy as well.
If the part of the dough offered as first fruits is holy, then the whole batch is holy; if the root is holy, so are the branches.
This means when we give our tithe, we are making the statement that everything else belongs to the Lord as well. When we refuse to give as the Lord has given to us, then we are telling God that He has no right to anything that belongs to us.
The Motive Of Our Giving
It isn’t the dollar amount that makes the offering a blessing, it is the heart behind the gift. It all comes down to motive.
1. We Should Give Thankfully – That is, we ought to do our giving in light of what the Lord has done for us. When we consider the fact that the Lord loved us so much that He gave His life for us, then saved us by His grace when we simply asked, then the tithe seems awfully small. A thankful heart is a giving heart!
2. We Should Give Cheerfully – According to the Bible, God loves a cheerful giver. (See 2 Corinthians 9:7)
3. We Should Give Liberally – This means that we are not to be stingy when it comes to giving to the Lord’s work or His people. In truth, we can expect God to bless us in direct proportion to the level of our giving.
“Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
4. We Should Give Sacrificially – Jesus was impressed, not by the amount of the widow’s gift, (Mark 12:41-44) but by the fact that she gave out of her need. The rich gave out of their surplus, she gave all she had. That got the Lord’s attention! It still does! If you wait to start giving until you have plenty, you will face 2 problems.
I. You’ll never get to where you think you have plenty.
II. When you do have extra, it will seem like too much to give. The best thing to do is to give everything you have to the Lord. When He already owns it all, then that little 10% won’t matter too much.
Some people simply are not going to honour the Lord with their giving until they get right with God. Anyone who refuses to give the Lord what belongs to Him loves his money more that he loves God and is, in fact, robbing God. What is God’s word about your money? That your money belongs to Him and that you will give an account as to how you use His money.