What Does God Want from Me?
For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, so that you through His poverty might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8: 9)
There are a few questions about tithing that seem to continually seek an answer. The most common question is: “How much does God expect me to give?” This question then branches off into several side issues: “Is ten percent a goal or a starting point?” or “Do I tithe on gross income or net income?” The New Testament never gives a direct answer to any of these questions but a careful study will open our hearts to principles that should settle these questions in our minds.
In 2 Corinthians 8: 9 Paul tells us that Jesus was rich, but for [our sake] He became poor, that through His poverty we might become rich. Not only did we become rich through Jesus, but we gained equality with Him in God’s eyes. Since Jesus was willing to give all He had for us, we need to follow His example and give all we have for Him to use as He wills. This is not limited to finances but includes our time, talents and possessions as well.
How much we give is not as important to God as the attitude with which we give. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver (2 Corinthians 9: 7 ESV). The churches of Macedonia were poor but they found great joy in giving. Paul says: For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints (2 Corinthians 8: 3-4 ESV).
Giving is more than meeting needs; it is an indication of where our heart is. God blesses those who give with a willing and cheerful heart. You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God. For the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God (2 Corinthians 9: 11-12 ESV). The joy of our salvation and the gratefulness we have toward Jesus in recognition of all He has done for us is demonstrated in the way we reach out to help others in their need. Allen E. Beltle is CFO at America’s Keswick and is a great encourager. You can write to Allen at firstname.lastname@example.org
Keswick, America’s (2012-12-13). Real Victory for Real Life Volume 2 (Kindle Locations 10775-10799). . Kindle Edition.
Think About This: Few things are more infectious than a godly lifestyle. The people you rub shoulders with everyday need that kind of challenge. Not prudish. Not preachy. Just cracker jack clean living. Just honest to goodness, bone – deep, non-hypocritical integrity. Charles Swindoll
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:57