Monday, July 20, 2009

Bag Full of Holes

Malachi 3:8-11 "Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me, the whole nation of you! "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test 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 a blessing until it overflows. Then I will rebuke the devourer for you, so that it may not destroy the fruit of the ground; nor will your vine in the field cast its grapes."

Verse 16-18 "Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the Lord and who esteem His name. And they will be Mine, says the Lord of hosts: on the day that I prepare My own possession, and I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him, so you will again distinguish between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him.
We hear the complaints of people continuously about how their pastors are constantly asking for money. They say that we need new bigger buildings, improvements, trips for the youth, missions, love offerings, raises for the employees and the pastor and the list goes on. By this time we have heard enough about money and "besides we have our own bills to pay."

Yet we see in the verses above that there is a blessing in the paying of our tithes and a curse when we do not. We have heard that we have only to look at a man' s checkbook to tell you who his god is. One-tenth of what we make belongs to God. Anything we give above that is a love offering.
2 Corinthians 9:7 "Let each one do just as he has purposed in his heart; not grudgingly or under compulsion; for God loves a cheerful giver." Proverbs 3:9-10 "Honor the Lord from your wealth, and from the first of all your produce; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine."
We forget that it is God who blesses us with the knowledge of how we make our living. Our job itself is a blessing from God. Everything we have comes from Him. Deuteronomy 8:18 "But you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth, that He may confirm His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.

I attended a church where the need arose of a larger building, as we grew in numbers. We were asked to make pledges of how much money we would contribute. We were told that we could borrow on our life insurance policies, our homes, even give up possessions.

We do need a place to meet and we need someone to teach. Corinthians 9:13-14 "Do you not know that those who perform sacred services eat the food of the temple, and those who serve altar have their share with the altar?" So also the Lord directed those who proclaim the gospel to get their living from the gospel.
Personally, I no longer give to church buildings. I have chosen to give to those ministries whom I believe have given their lives to go-ing, be-ing and do-ing all that Jesus asks. These do not ask for money. If it is of God then God will supply it without your asking, whether it be from someone’s tithe or a love offering. My bills on the most part out-weigh my income, yet not one bill has ever gone unpaid. God has not only supplied my needs, but also He has given me an abundance to give to others. When we give to God, He takes care of us. We can trust Him completely.

Matthew 6:31 "Do not be anxious then, saying, What shall we eat, what shall we drink or with what shall we clothe ourselves, but seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow, for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."

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