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Are you stealing from God?

A THOUGHT TO CONSIDER:

Are you stealing from God?

PRACTICAL PRINCIPLE:

A while back my Mother told me a story about when she was young. She used to go to church with her parents. Her Daddy, would give his “precious” little girl money so that when the offering plate came around, she could give to God. My grandfather was trying to instill a principle in his dear daughter of being generous and putting God first.

My mom told me how she would take the money her Dad had given her for the offering. She would sneak out of church and go to the café on the other side of the road, and she would use God’s money to buy sweets.

Can you believe this?

She would come back into the church, sit at the back, eating her sweets. These were the very sweets she bought with “God’s money”, while pretending to listen to the sermon. How shocking!

I can assure you that my Mother is not like this any longer. Well, as far as I know!

On a serious note: My Mother loves God and faithfully serves Him. God is definitely the #1 in her life now!

I hope you enjoyed that story. And Mom, if you read this, I hope you don’t mind me sharing!

Ok. Let us get serious!

I don’t want to be harsh, but just like my Mom used “God’s money” to buy her sweets,  are you possibly stealing from God?

I am not trying to condemn you or make you feel guilty if you are not honoring God with your money. I do however want to encourage you to put God first, not only with your life, but also with your money. There is a tremendous blessing of living fully for God.

In Malachi 3:8-12 God gave his people a word about money. He said, “Will a person rob God? Yet you rob me. “But you ask, ‘How are we robbing you?’ “In tithes and offerings. You are under a curse—your whole nation—because you are robbing me. Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not drop their fruit before it is ripe,” says the Lord Almighty.  “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the Lord Almighty.”

ARE YOU STEALING FROM GOD?

In Malachi 3:8 God asks, “Will a man rob God?”. He then says, “Yet you are robbing me.”

How were his people robbing God?

God tells them that they are robbing him “in tithes and offerings.”

God was basically telling his people that they were stealing from him, because they were not giving him their tithes and offerings. God was telling his people that they were robbing him by taking what belongs to Him.

In Malachi 3:9, God then says, “You are under a curse, because you are robbing me.”

Thank God that we no longer have to live under the curse. We can live under God’s grace. If you have taken Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you live under a New Covenant. Because of what Jesus did, you can know God’s forgiveness and you do not have to live in bondage. I really want to encourage you to put God first, in every part of your life.  

Tithing can be controversial for some…

Some argue that the tithe is only relevant to the Old Testament. Others say that the tithe was under the law and that we are no longer under the law. Others will point out that the tithe was around before the law. Others will say that the tithe is not a New Testament principle.  Still others say that the New Testament does not command us to tithe, but rather encourages us to give cheerfully. Some will say that one must tithe on their gross income, while others will say that one only needs to tithe on their net income. 

There are many views on tithing and giving to God. All I know is that God wants you to put Him first in all areas of your life, including your money.  I am not here to start a debate. My advice is not to get legalistic. Pray about your giving and tithing. Ask God to show you how much you should give, but do not live feeling guilty and condemned.

Under the Old Covenant it tells us to Tithe. Under the New Covenant God’s word tells us to give our all to God, not just 10%,  but our all, our everything, our whole life. We are to put God first. I want to encourage you to give God your all. Make your life and your money available to the Kingdom of God for His service.

If you feel like you have failed God, turn to him and ask him to forgive you, and then move forward into a closer honorable walk with him. Put God first and live to please him.

According to Malachi 3:8-12, when we put God first and give him our Tithe, he will throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out His abundant favor on you. He will also preserve what we have and we will be called blessed!

There is a great blessing awaiting those who honor God with their lives and money. I want to encourage you to be generous. Give to God. But above all, remember that God loves a cheerful giver!

2 Corinthians 9: 6 tells us, “Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop. You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully”.

So I want to encourage you to put God first with your money, and give your first and best to God.

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INTERESTING THOUGHT TO PONDER:

There is more to life than money.

“It has been said that money can buy a house, but not a home. Money can buy a bed, but not sleep.  Money can buy a wedding ring, but not love. Money can buy a clock, but not time.  Money can buy an education, but not wisdom. Money can buy jewelry, but not beauty. Money can buy insurance, but not safety. Money can buy a crucifix, but not a Savior.” (Anonymous)

There is more to life than money and material possessions. If you are not in a relationship with God, I encourage you to put him first. Today you can start a close walk with the God. God created the world and he has all power and authority in heaven and earth. He invites you to draw near to him. When we do, he will draw near to you. He is our source and offers true peace and joy.

POWER QUOTES OF THE WEEK:

“I have made many millions, but they have brought me no happiness.” –  John D. Rockefeller, Sr.

“Some people give God a tenth—a tenth of what they ought to give.”- Anonymous

WHAT DOES GOD HAVE TO SAY:

Don’t be stingy. Be generous…

“One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty. A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.” (Proverbs 11:24-25)

Be a blessing…

“Some people are always greedy for more, but the godly love to give!” (Proverbs 21:26)

“You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” (Acts 20:35)

God gave his best for you. It was the ultimate gift…

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son (Jesus), that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”(John 3:16)

If you are not in a relationship with God, why don’t you invite Jesus Christ into your life to be your Lord and Savior? Jesus gave his life on the cross so that we can be restored to God. God loves you so much and wants to share forever with you.  

If you want to start or restart your walk with God, click here to pray a simple prayer we have set up for you.

Give God your all!

man in black and gray plaid dress shirt. Going through the motions. Tithe and give to God.

LET’S PRAY:

Father, I surrender my life to you. Forgive me of my sins and shortcomings. Thank you Jesus for giving your all for me. Today I give you my life. I ask you to be my Lord and Savior. Please help me to get my financial priorities in the right order. Help me to put you first in all I do. Lord, please help me to be a blessing in all I do. I ask you to pour out your favor on my life too. I ask these things in Jesus name. Amen.

CONCLUSION:

I challenge you to be generous. Put God first. While you cannot serve both God and money, you can serve God with your money. Be a blessing. Give God your best. May God bless you and pour out His favor on you.

God bless you.

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