Giving is one of those topics in the church that tends to make everyone a bit uncomfortable. This may be because giving has been over-emphasised to the point that people are giving to get something from God or out of pressure from greedy church leaders. It may also be under-emphasised because it is seen as unspiritual or because church leaders don’t want to cause offense.
Both extremes are not correct. Giving should be talking about as much as the Bible talks about it. And interestingly, giving is talked about quite a bit in the Bible.
A further reason why giving might make us uncomfortable is because giving costs us and exposes our own selfishness and covetousness.
So Why Should We Give?
1. Because everything we have has been given to us by God (1 Timothy 6:6-10,17-19).
1 Timothy 6:6–10 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. 8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. 9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
1 Timothy 6:17–19 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; 18 That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; 19 Laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.
2. Because everything we have still belongs to God (Psalm 24:1, 1 Corinthians 10:26, Daniel 4:19-26).
Psalm 24:1The earth is the Lord’s, and the fulness thereof; The world, and they that dwell therein.
1 Corinthians 10:26For the earth is the Lord’s, and the fulness thereof.
Read Daniel 4:19-26 for an illustration of how God reminded the great King Nebuchadnezzar of this truth.
3. Because we love the Lord and love the Lord’s work (Matthew 6:19-34, 2 Corinthians 8:1-9).
It is interesting how much Jesus talks about money and giving.16 of His 38 parables dealt with money and possessions. In the gospels, it has been estimated that 1 out of 10 verses deals with money.
The reasons, so much is mentioned about money and possessions, is because how we spend our money and what we spend our money on reveals where our heart it (Read Matthew 6:19-34).
If we having a giving problem, it is because we have a love problem. If we love the Lord, His work, His church, and His mission of getting the gospel around the world, then we will give ourselves, our time, our money to further the kingdom and the work of the Lord.
Read 2 Corinthians 8:1-9 to learn more about the love and example of the Macedonia churches and ultimately of the Lord Jesus. Love resulted in giving.
4. Because we want to care for those who teach us God’s Word (Galatians 6:6, 1 Timothy 5:17-18, 1 Corinthians 9:7-11).
When God set up the nation of Israel, he chose 1 tribe out of 12 to be the spiritual leaders of the nation, to teach them God’s Word and to lead them in the worship of the Lord – the Levites. We are not Israel, but in a similar fashion, God calls men to lead His church and pastor His flock by teaching the Word.
Those who are fed spiritual things are responsible to make sure their teachers have physical things.
Galatians 6:6Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things.
1 Timothy 5:17–18Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine. For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward.
1 Corinthians 9:7–11 7 Who goeth a warfare any time at his own charges? who planteth a vineyard, and eateth not of the fruit thereof? or who feedeth a flock, and eateth not of the milk of the flock? 8 Say I these things as a man? or saith not the law the same also? 9 For it is written in the law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. Doth God take care for oxen? 10 Or saith he it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written: that he that ploweth should plow in hope; and that he that thresheth in hope should be partaker of his hope. 11 If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things?
5. Because we want to invest in something that will produce eternal fruit (Philippians 4:15-17, Matthew 6:19-21, 2 Corinthians 9:1-5).
Philippians 4:15–17 Now ye Philippians know also, that in the beginning of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving, but ye only. For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my necessity. Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that may abound to your account.
Matthew 6:19–21 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
2 Corinthians 9:1–5 For as touching the ministering to the saints, it is superfluous for me to write to you: For I know the forwardness of your mind, for which I boast of you to them of Macedonia, that Achaia was ready a year ago; and your zeal hath provoked very many. Yet have I sent the brethren, lest our boasting of you should be in vain in this behalf; that, as I said, ye may be ready: Lest haply if they of Macedonia come with me, and find you unprepared, we (that we say not, ye) should be ashamed in this same confident boasting. Therefore I thought it necessary to exhort the brethren, that they would go before unto you, and make up beforehand your bounty, whereof ye had notice before, that the same might be ready, as a matter of bounty, and not as of covetousness.