Many of the messages coming from the pulpits regarding giving is pathetic and it’s getting worse every day.

People need to start reading their Bibles more and believe, and act on God’s word instead of what men are saying.

Here are few points l want you to consider regarding what the Bible teaches about giving.

1.Everything we have have been given to us by God, we are only stewards of His resources, therefore, we should be wise in the use of it (1 Cor. 4:7, Matt.25:14-30).

2.Tithing (ten percent) is not mandatory in the New Testament Church. When we read the books of Matthew through Revelation no where is it mentioned that Christians must give a specified amount of offering in the New Testament church. Generosity, however, is encouraged, We are reminded in 2 Cor. 9:6 that he who sows sparingly shall reap sparing, and he who sows bountifully shall reap bountifully.

3.We are to give to the church of God, to God’s work here on earth for the propagation of His gospel, this includes: missions, missionaries, ministries, ministers, evangeliistic works etc., (Acts 24:17). This is done as the Spirit directs or leds and as we have purposed in our hearts. God does not compel us, He loves a wilful giver (2 Cor. 9:7 ).

4.The Bible talks about giving to the poor and the needy. The Lord Jesus during His eartly ministry spoke more about giving to those in need and the poor even more than giving to the temple. In fact, Jesus gave money to the poor. This is revealed in John 13:29. When He talked about laying up treasures in heaven He emphasized not just following Him, but also the act of giving to the poor and those in need (Luke 12:33, Matt.19:21).

5. Giving to the poor and needy Christians were a priority in the early church (Ephesians 4:28, Romans 15:26, 2 Cor.9:12). To the gentile( non-Jewish) church, in Galatia, the apostle Paul said, “They (i.e the apostles) desired only that we should remember the poor, the very thing which I also was eager to do.” Galatians 2:10).

6. God commands us to give to the poor and those in need. “For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore I command you,‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor, in your land.’ Deut. 15:11.

7. When we give to those in need we are honoring God. “Whoever oppresses a poor man insults His Maker, but he who is generous to the needy honors him.” Prov. 14:31.

8. When we give to the needy we are giving to God, “Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.” prov. 19:17

9. Giving to those in need is an act, sacrifice and offering of faith to God, a sweet smelling aroma that gladdens His heart and pleases Him. It is also an act of obedience to God (James 2:15- 17, Phil. 4: 15-19, Isaiah 58).

10. Jesus rebuked the religious Jews of His days for giving the money they should have given to their parents as “Corban” – a sacrifice or offering to God (Mark 7:11). The Bible says if Christians do not take care of the needy in their families or provide for loved ones they are worst than infidels(1 Timothy 5:8). We are to help the ones in need among our relatives. If you do not provide for your wife and children and you go to the church and give an offering/tithe God does not recognize it.

11. We are to give without sounding an alarm. We are to give discreetly (Matt. 6:3-4).

12. We should help those in need according to our ability, that is, according to what one has and not according to what one does not have, because God does not want one person burdened while relieving another (2 Cor.8:12).

13. Whenever we give either to God’s work or to the poor and needy we are to give cheerfully and not grudgingly for God loves a cheerful giver (2 Cor.9:7). We are also not to give out of compulsion from preachers. God does not compel us to give, any preacher who compels, demands and uses gimmicks to make people give their money is definitely not under the influence of the Holy Spirit.

14.God does not accept all offerings and sacrifices. As a matter of fact, the Bible says that some offerings are abominable to God. God calls such offerings and sacrifices the offerings of fools, the disobedients, and the wicked.

When indebted to someone pay your debt first. Do not give large sums of money or make a pledge to the church while in debt. Do not deprive or owe someone what is rightly due to them when you are able to pay (Prov.3:27-28 ). Romans 13:8 tells us to owe no one anything. Psalm 37:13 calls a person who refuses to pay his debt a wicked person. God is against withholding from people what is their rightful due, therefore, always settle your debt first. Pay your employees and anyone you owe (James 5:4). Don’t go and give a tithe/offering of 5,000k in church while you are owing your neighbor 5,000k. Don’t give to God as offering what belongs to another.

Don’t give the offerings of a fool and the sacrifice of the wicked to God, it is detestable to Him. (Eccl.5:1., Proverbs 15:8, Proverbs 21:27, Proverbs 21:3; Isaiah 1:11-12; 1Sam.15:22. James 5:4).

15. God will not accept any offering given from unholy means. Our offerings must meet God’s standard of holiness (Deut 23:18).

In conclusion

God blesses us when we give to the church, because by so doing we are giving to His work here on earth. He also blesses us when we give to the poor and needy – they could be our relatives, neighbors, friends, colleagues, church members, non -believers or strangers.

People are more important to God than church structures, building projects and the things of this world many churches and ministers throw lots of money into.

Most churches and pastors probably would not tell you what Scriptures really teach about giving because they want you to bring all your money to their churches so that they can fulfill their personal ambition in life and ministry.

If you go to church on Sunday and you have nothing to give because you were led to give your tithe or what you have to someone in need you have done not only a right thing but also a good deed acceptable to God; giving to the poor and needy is also giving to God.

“Whoever has a bountiful eye will be blessed, for he shares his bread with the poor. Prov. 22:9.

“Whoever gives to the poor will not want, but he who hides his eyes will get many a curse. ” Prov.28:27

“Whoever despises his neighbor is a sinner, but blessed is he who is generous to the poor.” Prov.14:21.

“ln all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” Acts 20:35.

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