Changed Giving

Many people, before they are born again, wonder why Christians have to give a tithe  (actually, they don’t have to; they want to). And the idea of giving an offering, over and above the tithe, seems “over the top.” Their thinking is, I can’t afford that kind of giving and there is no way that I intend to give like that. Once a person truly comes to Jesus, they are willing to give; they want to give, and it becomes a joy to give. They know that their giving is a token of gratitude for all He gives them and they realize that their giving can enable churches and missionaries to give out the gospel. They are thrilled to have a part in this world-wide endeavor. Paul, in II Corinthians 9:7, admonishes hesitating believers to give willingly: “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.” When we give willingly, we learn that God blesses us. (We don’t give to get Him to bless us; we give because we love Him and others). As we mature Spiritually, even sacrificial giving brings pleasure. To top it all off, using our money God’s way, opens our minds, making them receptive to God’s principles of finance and when we go by these principles, God blesses financially. Sometimes, God’s blessings are withheld for a time to test our faith and our commitment to give. Palmer Hartsough, in his hymn, “Give as the Lord hath prospered thee,” offers these wonderful thoughts: “Give as the Lord hath prospered thee, give, give to the Lord; give with a willing mind and free, give, give to the Lord; He hath supplied thee o’er and o’er, blessed thee in basket and in store, promised to fill thee more and more, Thy gracious Lord.  Give to the poor along the way, give, give to the Lord; give to the heathen far away, give, give to the Lord; give to His needy as they cry, give to His people ere they die, give to His Gospel that it fly, O give, give, give. Give, tho’ so poor thy gift may seem, give, give to the Lord; give but the cup in Jesus’ name, give, give to the Lord; cheerful then give the good thou hast, fearless thy bread on waters cast. Give, give with a willing hand, give, give with a liberal hand, give at His blest command, Who prospered thee, give at His blest command, Who prospered thee.” Selah! Jesus told us that where a man’s treasure is, there will his heart be, also.   Ron

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