“The Cheerful Giver” ( 2 Corinthians 9: 7, NEB ) by Carley Evans”

“Each person should give as he has decided for himself; there should be no reluctance, no sense of compulsion; God loves a cheerful giver.”

I’m certain you’ve sat in a church on a Sunday morning and listened to a pastor tell you to “bring the tithes into the treasury, all of them.” (Malachi 3:10) And to quickly assure you that there’s a great reward if you do so. Some people refer to this as the ‘prosperity’ gospel.

I prefer Paul’s exhortation here in his letter to the church at Corinth, in which he encourages each person to “decide for himself” without “compulsion” and without “reluctance” not only the amount to give but the time to give. Paul also tells the church “it is in God’s power to provide you richly with every good gift; thus you will have ample means in yourselves to meet each and every situation, with enough and to spare for every good cause.” (2 Corinthians 9:8-9) “You will always be rich enough to be generous.” (2 Corinthians 9:11)

Jesus warns that it is an error to honor the ‘traditions of men’ at the expense of taking care of your parents; to set aside the good you should do for your family in order to please a church. Instead, we should look to the needs of those who are our dependents. If our child is unclothed and hungry and we give our money as a tithe to God, He is not pleased. If our mother is in the least expensive nursing facility we can locate and we give our money as a tithe to God, He is not pleased. If our neighbor is losing her house to foreclosure, and we give our money [under compulsion, that is] as a tithe to God, He is not pleased. (Mark 7:9-13)

God repeatedly states that He wearies of our offerings. What He desires is a contrite heart, humble and cheerful in giving to others in need. Look first to our families, meeting the needs of those we love. Then look to our friends and neighbors, then look to the poor and disenfranchised.

Decide for yourself, without compulsion, with no reluctance. For God loves a cheerful giver.

Advertisements

4 Comments Add yours

  1. eliteinchrist says:

    Spot on! But I doubt if many would listen though. The promise of quick monetary gain when you tithe is just too much for them to miss. Sigh!

    1. lambskinny says:

      Not sure people tithe only for “quick gain.” I do wonder however how many pastors (especially of mega-churches) encourage tithing, saying it is sinful not to tithe.

      Actually it is sinful to ignore the needs of those who are dependent upon you in order to please others.

      God is so good.

  2. Tony Isaac says:

    Fear could be the other reason though but I think the onus should be on every believer to search the word out for themselves as the Berean Jews.

    If they knew the truth for themselves, the would not be caught out by the lies of these preachers.

    1. lambskinny says:

      Tony,
      I couldn’t agree more! Searching the Word of God to verify for one’s self is key. God promises to speak the Truth in love to us as we humbly seek. We must stay in the Word daily and so be ready to “hear” His voice as He speaks to us.
      Thanks, Carley

Tell Grace Partakers what you think...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s