An Attitude of Gratitude
At Life Fellowship, we give because of the grace that God has given to us. His word is clear -while we were yet sinners, He loved us and sent Jesus to live among us and eventually give His own life so that we might live.
Did you catch that? The whole of the Bible -the greatest love story of all time -is centered around the greatest act of generous giving in history.
"For God so loved the world that He gave His only son..." -John 3:16a
"For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." -Mark 10:45
"He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?" -Romans 8:32
The Lord loves to give us good things. He gave us the best thing! His son Jesus. We were dead in our trespasses and sins but now -because God gave -we are alive in Christ!
So How Should We Give
As the old saying goes: We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.
Three big principles of any solid financial plan are to save, spend and give. Most people forget about the giving part, though, because they think mostly about saving and spending. But giving—specifically tithing—is just as important. It softens the heart of the giver and frees their soul from dependence on money. You’ll never walk away from giving feeling bad! Giving comes in many forms, with your tithe being the most important, because it’s a biblical mandate.
What is a tithe?
Let’s start with the basics. Simply put, the tithe is the first 10% of your income that should be given to your local church. It’s strictly measured in money, so you can’t replace it with giving your time or your talents.
What does the Bible say about tithing?
According to Leviticus 27:30 (TLB), "A tenth of the produce of the land, whether grain or fruit, is the Lord’s, and is holy." And 2 Corinthians 9:7 (NIV) says, "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."
What’s the difference between tithing and offerings?
A tithe is an amount (a percentage of your income) and an offering is anything given beyond that, but not in place of the tithe.
After you’ve tithed, you can give in other ways: Giving a cash offering to your church above and beyond the tithe, giving money to a charity you support, giving to a friend or neighbor in need, or giving of your time or talents. Not only does giving of your money or other resources generate good in the lives of others, it also generates contentment in your heart.
Why should I tithe?
The tithe was not put into place for God’s benefit—He already has everything He needs. He doesn’t need our money! (And "our" money is already His anyway.) Tithing is not a ploy by the church to dip into your pocket book. Tithing is an act of obedience and should be given freely with pure motives. In other words, we give without expecting anything back in return. And it teaches us to be good stewards of what God has given us.
Tithing was created for our benefit. It teaches us how to keep God first in our lives and how to live unselfishly. Unselfish people make better spouses, friends, relatives, employees and employers. And they usually have better finances. God is trying to teach us how to prosper over time.
Remember, no one has ever become poor by giving.
So What Now?
Because of all the above...
- We give cheerfully back to the lord a small portion of the things he has blessed us with.
- We give generously because the Lord has treated us generously.
- We give frequently as a constant reminder of the lord's constant grace.
- We give obediently through the tithe as defined in God's Word.