Today, it is my privilege to share with you on a most precious topic, which is giving financially to support the work of the Kingdom of Heaven and the furtherance of the Holy Gospel. I pray that the Holy Spirit will use the word of God in this message in your life to bring you to a place of truth and liberty in the area of giving.
A Sure Foundation
I thought it necessary to first establish an apostolic foundation because I have beheld many misconceptions in the area of giving that keep God’s people in bondage and from giving freely.
First, Jesus declares in His precious word in Mathew 22:38 – 40 “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”
We therefore understand that all teaching or service to God must be built or hung on the foundation of love. Let’s now lay this foundation in the area of giving.
Truly, all that we have that is good, God has given us (James 1:17). Why has God given us so much, it is simply because He loves us, in fact Jesus declares that God so love the world that He gave! Why does God give, it is because He loves!
How and why does God expect His people to give financially, it is because we love and believe in Him as our Source. Any service to God that is not rooted in faith that works by love is not acceptable to God or is simply dead religion and is surely a waste of time, energy and money in God’s eyes. The only response to love can be love. As you believe in the love of God, or as your faith works as the love of God is revealed to you, you will naturally respond in love and obedience to God. Faith always is made manifest by works of love. Let’s make it simple. We love Him because He first loved us. A Christian life is a life of love responding to love.
Many people serve God not because they love Him but because they want to go to Heaven and are afraid of Hell, in their heart they still love sin, but the threats of Hell and the rewards of Heaven are enough to inspire them to live good. So fear and reward governs their Christian experience. Is this true Christianity? Is this love? Is this loving God with all your heart? Certainly not!
Their dedication and commitment has nothing to do with love, in fact it is all about selfishness, and it is all about what is in it for me. They have yet to see their sin and rebellion and truly repent from their hearts. Their service to God certainly has nothing to do with relationship with God, for if a rock could carry them to Heaven and meet their selfish needs they would gladly serve the rock. This is false Christianity!
The same way many people give not because they love God but because they want to be blessed and are afraid of being cursed. They are not free to love but are trapped by fear and reward in fulfilling what they believe is their religious duty. Is this true Christian giving? Is this what we can expect from the Gospel? Is this teaching applicable to all areas of Christian life? Then what a miserable and selfish people we would be. How do Christians get such foolish perceptions of Christianity? They have taught! By us preachers and truly God is calling us to repent so that the house of God would be thoroughly furnished and His people would be free to give. Thanks be to God that we have not so learnt Christ!
God in His wisdom has given us freely what we don’t deserve. Our precious salvation is a gift, we cannot work for it. It does not come by living good. Truly the first sin ever committed by Eve was unbelief in the love of God; Eve doubt God’s love and believed that God was holding back from her. Now if unbelief in God’s love caused all these problems that we experience today; what will correct it? The answer is simple – belief or faith in God’s love. That is why the Bible beautifully declares, that God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. Do you see how belief in God's love makes us right again with God? So what does all this have to do with money – we are getting there, we are still laying a sure foundation.