Christian Giving (Part 2) - Why Should We Obey?

(Mal. 3:8-10, Pas. Baines, Jr. 9/2017)

Introduction: Do you really believe that God is a promise keeper? If you do, you should want to line up with the promises He makes for those who give and try to avoid the promises that He makes for those who don’t give. We should obey because of thankfulness, for blessings, and to prevent punishment.

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Key Points:

1. We tip servers to say “thank you.”  Notice the emphasis on expressing thanks in Psalm 100:4 and Mark 8:6. What a smack in the face of God to give servers whose names we don’t remember 10-20% of what we owe on overpriced food and then refuse to give God what we owe.

Think about how much we owe God for our health, loved ones, and material blessings. Think about what we owe God for His Son, Spirit, and sovereign plan. What is 10% of that? Let’s give to God, as if we are thankful to Him. The number one reason for a saved person to give is thankfulness and love, not obligation or law.

2. We give gifts to loved ones. Matthew 6:21 teaches that where our treasures are is where our hearts are. Think about how we give heart felt gifts to loved ones on special days because of the love we have for them.

Now, think about how God gives us legs, knees, and feet, and in too many cases people don’t give enough money to buy a pair of shoes. God gives us jobs, vehicles, and traveling grace, and too many don’t even give enough for a tank of gas.

God gives us food to eat, an appetite, and digestive health, and too many don’t give enough for a lunch. Psalm 96:4-8 urges us to add an offering to our expressions of loving the Lord. Let’s work on expressing our love for God with our giving.

3. We trust the promises of others. Malachi 3:8-10 talks about God’s promise to bless those who give to Him. The following are a list of other passages with promises that God makes about giving: II Corinthians 9:6; Proverbs 3:9-10; 11:24-25; Matthew 6:33; Philippians 4:19.

Think about how we trust the promises of the postal system, utilities services, Internet banking, mechanics, insurance companies, and young people at McDonalds. But too many come up short when it is time to trust the promises of God. Let’s give like we trust God’s promised blessings for giving.  

4. It is dangerous to play with God’s money. Malachi 3:8-10; Joshua 7:20-26; and Haggai 1:5-11 all support the danger of failing to give God His money. These passages talk about God sending a curse, people dying, and blessings being blown away by God.

Our lives are challenging enough without adding God’s punishment to our list of “things to deal with.” Let’s give like we believe that God will punish our disobedience.

5. Repentance is better than continuing in sin. Passages like I John 1:8-9 support the idea that we can repent of our sins. God would rather that we repent than to “sing lies.”

God is not impressed with our singing “Oh how I love Jesus” but don’t love Him enough to stop robbing Him. God is not impressed with our singing “I surrender all” but refuse to surrender a dime out of a dollar. God is not impressed with our singing “I have decided to follow Jesus” but refuse to follow Him to the giving table.

This is not a time to pout or cry. It is a time to repent. Let’s repent, if we are wrong, and encourage others to do the same. 

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