But just as you excel in everything–in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us–see that you also excel in this grace of giving.~ 2 Corinthians 8:7
How is that the subject of giving can draw such a negative response? Especially when you mention the word…brace yourself…tithe.
Why is tithing such a touchy subject? This must grieve Father’s heart. He who has held nothing back from us…NO GOOD THING (Psalm 84:11).
Yet we withhold. If it’s not money, it’s something else.
But there is a grace of giving. And Paul says, excel in this. He was describing a people who were going through something. Sound familiar?
Yet the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded in the riches of their liberty.
It was in their ability and beyond their ability, that they were freely willing to give. With such urgency even (Selah) that they implored…begged…of Paul to receive from them. (Vs. 2-4)
Isn’t that what grace is? What’s beyond our ability. God’s ability.
I love what I read next.
Vs. 5…They first gave themselves to the Lord and then to us by the will of God.
We see here both tithe and offering.
We can argue all we want that this is not about money. Of course we can. But when it says they gave of themselves, what would that entail?
It cannot exclude money because personally, I give time each and every day to work that at the end of the week, puts a paycheck in my hand. I lay down my life (and every working person can attest to this) which is time at home my husband and my children, time doing my own agenda and carrying out my own motives, to complete a task that will benefit another and yet increase me.
This is how it is with God! This is how I can give of myself to Him.
Giving the tithe from that increase, again points to my Provider.
Take into consideration, that without God, there would be no job and certainly not a paycheck.
It’s astounding to me. Amazing! God is the greatest giver! In being our Source, Our Provider, and Our Exceeding Great Reward…He gives. Every time increase comes to me, God has given it. He is still operating on His principles. Give and it shall be given unto you… Luke 6:38
And we can argue about who should get the tithe but let that argument die with this.
Matthew 25:34-40, Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
What is the churches position on these things? It should be that the hungry are fed. (Meat in His house. Malachi 3:10) The thirsty given a drink. The stranger brought in. The naked clothed. Going to the sick and to the imprisoned.
How does this happen?
Apostles. Prophets. Pastors. Teachers. Evangelists. Ministers. Leaders. Sheep begetting sheep. (That is, only sheep birth sheep.)
What’s more is the assignment is not simply to a man. It’s to Jesus. He is the hungry, the thirsty, the naked, the sick, the imprisoned.
Man, when he gives is never simply giving to a man…no matter. Our giving is always to God.