Biblical giving is built on the gospel and not on the tithe.
It’s common to think that biblical giving is, ultimately, about the amount we give. This couldn’t be further from the truth. The amount is absolutely not the issue. Rather, biblical giving revolves around absorbing the gospel in a joyful manner.
It is true, however, that if we understand the gospel the way we should, our giving – at least for most – will increase. Why? Because we’ll see Jesus and the salvation he brings, as the singularly most important, infinitely valuable, everyone-must-hear, blessing that exists. Biblical giving is primarily a question of heart alignment. The alignment of my heart with God’s heart. Speaking to the religious leaders of his day, Jesus said, “This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.” Right giving comes from a heart that is close to God.
Here are four foundational beliefs that combine to shape the heart for giving:
#1 – Biblical giving means the gospel is our treasure
“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.” – Matthew 13:44
In this short parable, Jesus created a contrast between the value of God’s kingdom and the value of everything else. Not only does this man sell everything to possess the field and its treasure, he also does it with a joyful heart because he longs to have what is most valuable. Being captured by the grace of God through the cross-work of Jesus opens our eyes to the infinite value of the gospel and the lesser value of other things that would compete for our priorities.
It’s impossible to embrace real Bible-based giving as we should if our money – or the things that money can buy – are as valuable to us as the gospel. All that Jesus is for us should dominate our focus and serve as the controlling influence in our lives. We will know that the gospel is our treasure as it defeats the idols in our life, idols like money. We can’t give as we should if our financial interests are as valuable to us as the gospel.
#2 – Biblical giving links to our mission
…whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. – 1 Corinthians 10:31
It’s tempting to think that the Christian life is a better and “cleaner” version of what the world offers. But that’s not true. Believers don’t simply live in an improved paradigm. We live in a new reality where Jesus is King, sin has been defeated, life takes on an eternal scope, and the Bible is our guide.
And just like Jesus, we are here to live fully for the glory of God. The way we raise our children, do our work, spend our leisure time, relate to co-workers and spouse and other believers and our enemies, should be done with the mission in mind. The mission to bring God glory.
We are new people with a new reality that does not conform to this world. We’re here as disciples who follow Jesus in his mission:
Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” – Matthew 16:24
If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there will my servant be also. If anyone serves me, the Father will honor him. – John 12:26
So, we not only possess a treasure of infinite value, our lives are now meant to show the world our joyful embrace of our treasure. Biblical giving becomes natural when we embrace Jesus as we should and live for the mission.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Waldean Wall