Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. Matthew 23:23, NIV
Sometimes people give gifts out of obligation at Christmas, for anniversaries and birthdays, or on other special occasions. At the same time, many people enjoy giving gifts because it demonstrates their love. This is the preferred way to give gifts—out of love.
In the Old Testament, Israelites were required to stand before the Lord and confess that they had faithfully given their tithe to the Levites and the poor, and that they had not kept any of it back for themselves (Deuteronomy 26:13-15). They were obligatedto give. Even during Jesus’ ministry, the obligation to give was still practiced by the scribes and Pharisees who tithed their herbs and spices, but failed to show mercy and justice (Matthew 23:23). But Jesus demonstrated that we are to give out of love and sacrifice—not obligation. As we learn more about the unconditional love of God, the more our motivation for giving will become like His.
How can we give grudgingly to a God who gave it all?
The question is not how much of my money I give to God, but rather how much of God’s money I keep for myself. R. G. LeTourneau
David Jeremiah | Jan 9, 2018. The Hidden Motives of Christian Giving, Part 1 – Turning Point Radio
Think about why you give to God. Do you give out of habit? Out of guilt? Out of pressure or compulsion? Dr. David Jeremiah begins a series on giving with a look at some of the best reasons we have for giving to God, straight from His inspired Word.