Do you follow my teaching to support your church financially? Does it bother you to do this if the pastor has a higher standard of living than you do? I also teach you to help the poor. Do you think these should be the same thing? Both are worthy activities, but do not confuse the support of my servants with aid to the poor. In Old Testament times these were separate offerings. To link these concepts implies that the pastor should be the poorest person in church. I want you to be a cheerful giver, and to understand that you are really giving to me. You should definitely link these concepts together, and give generously.
I have posted these messages for years without much reference to myself. Reading a blog posting from a friend made me realize that I should issue a disclaimer. I hope that you don’t get the impression that my life is a living expression of these words I hear from Jesus. I wish it were but in reality I too am in tension between the righteousness I affirm and the reality of my life which includes weakness, selfishness, thoughtlessness, lust, and greed. I can identify with Paul when he says the good that I would I do not and the evil I would not I do. Through this I trust in Jesus who is in the process of delivering me and completing the good work he has begun in me.
Thanks for being real great blessing in that
I'm a preacher's kids so I've been around for a long time. It seems like at the beginning of every year pastors preach or teach on giving. We were attending a church where the pastor gave a 4 week series on giving - how to have a 100 fold blessing by giving. I, like everyone else, have times when I don't want to hear this message, but I need it. But, I don't often hear both sides of this message. God says we're to be a cheerful giver. In years past I became very regimented with my giving. I became fearful that if I didn't give exactly 10% that God would pull back and not take care of me. We went through some life changes where we didn't have much in the way of finances and I found it hard to give the 10% so sometimes I didn't give. I learned a very important lesson. When I didn't give God didn't allow us to fall or go hungry, but we often had to juggle the finances. When I did giving the tithe we didn't have to juggle. It was an interesting lesson for me. I didn't have to live in fear. I am God's child whom He loves. Yet, I can't take the giving for granted. God asks us to give for us so that He can bless us. Yet, He wants us to give with a cheerful heart.
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