01 Apr A Dedication To Continued Giving
April 1, 2021
You will be enriched in everything for all liberality, which through us is producing thanksgiving to God.
–2 Corinthians 9:11
After the wall around Jerusalem had been completed, and the city had been repopulated, the Israelites did three things. First, they purified themselves before God. Then there was a celebration of the greatness of God. Finally, there was a dedication to continued giving. Look at Nehemiah 12:44: “On that day men were also appointed over the chambers for the stores, the contributions, the first fruits and the tithes, to gather into them from the fields of the cities the portions required by the law for the priests and Levites; for Judah rejoiced over the priests and Levites who served.”
Between the lines you can read what was going on here. During the time that the wall was in ruins, people’s houses were in rubble, and the people were living far apart from God, guess what happened? The offerings dried up. There was no giving to God’s work. That stands to reason. When people are living disobediently to God, they do not want to give. When people are out of fellowship with God, they hold on to their money tightly, and there is nobody who can pry it loose from their hands.
But now there was a great revival in the land. The people were celebrating the faithfulness of God. And guess what happened? The people gave freely. They gave a great offering out of excitement over what God had done. Here is a principle I hope you will never forget: giving Christians are happy Christians, and happy Christians are giving Christians. The people said, “We have not been giving like we ought to. The work of God is underfunded. Let’s just give a great celebration offering to God.”
I read about a pastor who was proposing an offering in his church, and a deacon came up to him and said, “Pastor, if you do not quit talking about money, you are going to kill this church.” The pastor said, “I have been in the ministry fifty years, and I have never seen a church die because the people gave too much. It dies because they give too little, not because they give too much.” Happy Christians are giving Christians, and giving Christians are happy Christians.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Joy In The Rubble” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2010.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995, 2020 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org