Do I Have To?

2 Kings 12:9But Jehoiada the priest took a chest, and bored a hole in the lid of it, and set it beside the altar, on the right side as one cometh into the house of the LORD: and the priests that kept the door put therein all the money that was brought into the house of the LORD.”

Daily Manna is not a platform for an agenda or preaching per se, though I am a preacher. It is for the purpose of sharing what God gives me daily as I read the Word of God to be a blessing as I share with others.

So, the preacher in me would say something like this:

If you were to ask most pastors of churches today what is one of their main problems they face, it is lack of funds. Yet, if we all would just obey God, we would have what we needed to do all that God commanded and see growth.

But this devotional is more personal; more practical.

One area most people have issues, is with where our money goes. My own personal journey in this area began when I was faced with tithing. Giving as I knew I was commanded by God, meant that ten percent of all my increase was to go to Him – to the church. Tithing first appears in Genesis:

Genesis 14:19-20And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth: And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all.”

I fought inwardly, with my desire to control my money. I mean, I earned it – right? It felt like I was fighting with God over this issue of money. Just like a small child holding tight to a toy they do not wish to share, I wasn’t letting go so easily. Then, the Spirit of God spoke softly to my heart as I read more.

Deuteronomy 12:5-6But unto the place which the LORD your God shall choose out of all your tribes to put his name there, even unto his habitation shall ye seek, and thither thou shalt come: And thither ye shall bring your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, and your tithes, and heave offerings of your hand, and your vows, and your freewill offerings, and the firstlings of your herds and of your flocks:”

Proverbs 3:9-10Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.

I wanted God’s blessing. I did not want to act against what He commanded I should do. So, I began to tithe. I looked at the gross earnings before the government took out their share and took ten percent of that amount. What I found was that the money didn’t run out. Then, a deeper, more personal issue arose. I read:

1 Corinthians 6:19-20What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

If I was bought with such a precious price as what Jesus paid for my soul, every possession, every action, every word, yea, everything belonged to God. He bought me lock, stock and barrel. So, who I am; what I am, and what I have all belong to God. My time, my talent and my treasure – all His.

I will tell you this – it has not always been easy. There were times when bils arose, things broke, situations and circumstances and needs for the family all pressed upon the pocketbook. Sometimes, I made impulsive choices and paid the price. Other times, I got alone with God and He guided and directed and blessed so we could make ends meet.

Through it all, we ahve never been wthout. Without food, clothing or a place to lay our head.

Philippians 4:19But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”

Need versus want. This is the battle line for most saved people. We want and tell God we need.

I have learned over the years that we each have a line we draw when it comes to giving. For some, they will throw a few dollars in the offering, buth tithing is out of the question. others will tithe, but to give above an beyond that is a bit extreme – don’t you think?

Accepting fully, the truth that all I am, and all that I have belongs to God has allowed me to be a blessing and receive blessings in abundance. We have opened our home to missionaries who then influenced our children and became dear close friends in the ministry.

When a special offering comes, I ask God how much of His money He wants me to give. When I obey, I may not see the blessing right away, but eternity will bear witness to what God did with that simple act of obedience.

Hebrews 6:10For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.”

We, as children of God, have been bought with that same price. How you choose to give will be based on your love for the One who paid it. If I withhold money for me rather than God, I am saying I love myself more than I love God. I am saying I do not have faith enough to obey.

Very simply today: take God at His Word.

Malachi 3:10-11Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.”

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