There is one subject I always like to avoid talking about, money. This is not because money is not important in Christendom, but because of how it has become the main focus of many in Christendom. And I know what the Word of God says, “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs” – 1 Timothy 6:10. I do not want to be pierced with evil at all. However, the same Word of God enjoins us to give generously. While money is not my main focus, it is still one of the lessons we must learn, especially the part about giving. It is Christmas season, it is a season of love, hope, and peace. It is also a season of giving. This is the season we all reach out to friends, foes, and family alike in the spirit of giving. May we receive as much as we give, and even more, in this season. The Word of God teaches that there is a direct relationship between what we give and how much we are blessed. In any case, money is a necessity in the Christian ministry. A lot of the things that the Bible instructs us to do require money for the actions to be meaningful.
In Luke 6:38 Jesus said “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” Whenever we give God pours out blessings in return. Giving is not limited to offering at Church. There are many ways we can give. Giving to a friend in need, giving to a brother in need, giving to the helpless, and to those who are out on their luck are all part of giving. Any time we give in this way God will always bless us in return, but it is never a one-to-one correspondence. God will normally bless us back in multiples. This is a principle that even non-Christians understand. Moslems may even understand this God’s law of giving better than we Christians do. When I was growing up, many times we saw the Moslems in our neighborhood gather children in the neighborhood and cook a lot of food for them. In my language, it is called “saara”, a process whereby you give in the expectation that God will bless you in return. Then there are also Islamic acts like “Zakat” and “Sadaqah”, whereby one gives alms voluntarily to those in need in order to please God. If these folks understand the importance of giving, how much more those of us who know that we have received the greatest gift of all. “Give and it will be given to you” is a law of God that works, but we must remember that every law of God functions only from the standpoint of righteousness. We must give because we trust God and because we obey him, not as a sacrifice for a get-rich-quick scheme, only then, will God bless us in return.
“Give and it will be given to you…” Looking over this statement one sees that giving encompasses the two keys to Christian living: faith and obedience. “Give” is an imperative word. This means it is a command. Then it is followed by a promise of God, that if we obey the command, God is faithful, and He will bless us. So, this is about trust and obedience. Believe God’s promises and obey His commands. In either of these cases, not to give is a sin. It is a sin against God when we do not give. It means we do not trust Him to do what He says He would do. It is also a sin against God because we are not obeying His commands.
This same principle is in 2 Corinthians 9:6 – “He who sows sparingly shall reap sparingly. He who sows bountifully shall reap bountifully.” God will measure out to us according to what we measured out in our giving. If we give a lot, we receive a lot. We also read in Acts 20:35 that “it is more blessed to give than to receive”. In other words, what we give away brings us a greater blessing than what we receive. That should be enough. Do you want to be most blessed? Then give without reservation. Give with all your heart. Not to me or to any Pastor out there, but to the work of God and to those who are in need.
There are folks out there who have a good understanding of God’s law of giving better than some others. They give unreservedly and are blessed unreservedly. It is very straightforward. Generosity in giving results in a greater reward from God. So, if you want to be blessed beyond your wildest imagination, then give. But I want you to remember, “each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver”. Don’t go and borrow money to give to God; God’s kind of giving is not a money-doubling or gambling kind of giving. Give according to how you have been blessed, if you tell a lie, God sees every lie. Give the way you have been blessed and God gives back more. Then you give more again, and He gives even more. It is simple. It is straight forward. You give, He gives back more, good measure, until it overflows.
December 12, 2021 – Pastor Simbo Odunaiya