Everything we have belongs to God
It is vital that we understand the money and resources we have are not our own. It all belongs to God. The world belongs to Him by right of creation. The Bible declares, “All things were created through Him, and apart from Him not one thing was created” (John 1:3)
We are God’s Stewards
A steward is one who manages resources. We are responsible for managing the resources for the Lord. We have an obligation to safeguard and tend what belongs to God, which is everything which is entrusted to us. “It is expected of managers that each one be found faithful.” (1 Cor. 4:2)
What is a Tithe?
The word tithe means tenth, and refers to the first ten percent of all our income. The Bible tells us that the tithe belongs to God, is to be immediately set aside for Him (Lev 27:30), and is to be brought to the storehouse (Mal 3:10). Today, that storehouse is the local church, and God wants our tithes to go to the local church for the same reason He wanted them to go to the temple’s storehouse, “that there may be food in my house.”
Start on your path to Biblical tithing by giving what you can and increasing that percentage each year until you are tithing.
It’s All About Worshipping God
Worship is anything we do whose purpose is to praise and glorify God. We worship God with our mouths through prayer, telling others of His love, or singing to Him; with our bodies by eating right, helping others, bowing in prayer, or even dancing; with our money when we tithe.
By giving God the first ten percent of our income, we put Him before the cable company, the mortgage company…even the IRS. We are saying that we believe and trust Him when He promises to provide for us (Gen 22:14) and that He will bless our lives through our giving (Mal 3:10, Prov 3:9-10).
The Treasure Test… The Ultimate Investment
God knew that we would find ourselves in impossible financial situations. The truth is that God not only promises to provide for us, but He takes it a step further by promising that He will flood our lives with all kinds of blessings, including financial blessings. We just need to trust Him enough to take action. In Matthew 6:21, Jesus reminds us where our “treasure” is, wherever we invest our money and resources, there our heart will be also. No matter what we say we believe, it is the ultimately what we do that indicates what we really value.
Know Giving, Know Life
Generosity is the only way to experience life as God intended. In our self-centered world, giving helps to free us from materialism, greed, and hording – all of which bind us like slaves to possessions!
God is not interested in the simple action of giving; He is intensely interested in the faith that prompts the action of giving. God doesn’t want us to give because we think He’s going to strike us with lightening if we don’t; He wants us to give because we truly want to give (2 Cor 9:6-7). Greedy or prideful people sometimes give more money than anyone else, but they experience less life because they do it out of guilt or arrogance. Generous people give because they love God, they love those in need, and they want be just like Jesus.
While it would be wonderful if we could reach out personally to everyone who needs our help, we know that is impossible. So we gather regularly with our congregation and put money into the offering plate, and through a carefully crafted system of United Methodist mission and ministry our gifts stretch around the world.
Your contributions to your local church not only benefit your local congregation, but also have regional, national and international impact through our connectional giving system.