September 8, 2012

Biblical giving reflects the generosity of God

For the past forty years, God has shown us that we cannot out-give Him. The more resources we donate toward the advancement of His kingdom, the more resources He pours into our lives. No matter my request, God gives a greater blessing than I asked for and I can rejoice in Him as did David in this psalm…

O Lord, in your strength the king rejoices, and in your salvation how greatly he exults! You have given him his heart’s desire and have not withheld the request of his lips. Selah For you meet him with rich blessings; you set a crown of fine gold upon his head. He asked life of you; you gave it to him, length of days forever and ever. (Psalm 21:1–4)

As David said, he asked for his heart’s desire and God gave it along with rich blessings and a golden crown. He asked for life — God gave him eternal life.

David also knew that giving is sacrificial. At one point, he refused to give to God anything that cost him nothing. This puts the boot to “name it and claim it” theology that makes its appeal for giving by what we will get back. Instead of giving being a spontaneous action prompted by a burden given by the Holy Spirit, such appeals are more about “what’s in this for me?” 

David knew that biblical giving comes with a sense of sacrifice. Money may be scarce but God asks for a donation anyway, or time is already full yet God asks for a time commitment. Biblical giving is more like, “I cannot see how I can do this, but because I trust You, I will give anyway.”

As for the results, God’s reward for giving is based on the faith that goes with the donation, rather than the size of the donation. The widow was praised for giving all that she had, only two small coins. She trusted God to supply any personal loss resulting from her donation. Those who give in faith do the same. No matter the size of their donation, they trust God to take care of their needs. 

My gifts may have value, but God can get whatever is needed without using my resources. He encourages generosity because this is a God-like thing to do. Besides, I can trust Him to supply all my needs because He said He would. He even said He would give “exceedingly abundantly above all we can ask or imagine.” 

As today’s devotional reading says, God’s answers to our prayers is like a multiplying glass — His answer is always more abundant our requests!

1 comment:

Cheryl Petersen said...

Thanks for the reminder of God's generosity. We read in 21st Century Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures, "Love is impartial and universal in its spiritualization and generosity. The sick can recover when they pray, or are prayed for. The infinite Source calls out, “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters.”