Help, I’m Afraid to Give (Part 2)
18 Feb 2018
When we examine the issue of financial giving, a number of places in the Bible specifically encourage us to give. We can either gloss over those Scriptures and ignore them, or heed them and begin practicing what the Word of God says. Fear is the reason behind people’s reluctance to give to support the church. Giving is a way we demonstrate our faith in the promises of God. The devil tries to convince us that what God promised won’t come to pass for us; he does this by making us afraid to give. Fear causes us to doubt what is written in the Bible concerning giving. The danger is that if we are walking in fear in the area of giving, we are most likely doing so in other areas, as well. We must overcome this spirit of fear and refuse to tolerate it.
- We give to help others and show our trust in God as our provider.
- Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye. Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come(1 Corinthians 16:1, 2).
- God does not expect us to give any more than what we have been blessed with. We do not have to compare ourselves to others in the area of giving.
- Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth (Ephesians 4:28).
- This is the primary purpose for having a job.
- I have coveted no man's silver, or gold, or apparel. Yea, ye yourselves know, that these hands have ministered unto my necessities, and to them that were with me. I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive (Acts 20:33-35).
- The apostle Paul had a job; he used the money to minister to others.
- For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind (2 Timothy1:7).
- If fear is tolerated, it will contaminate our faith.
- God is not responsible for giving us the spirit of fear; this comes from the enemy.
- Placing complete trust in God means trusting Him even with our finances.
- And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me(John 16:8, 9).
- The sin the Holy Spirit was sent to deal with is the sin of unbelief. Ultimately, this is the root cause of any reluctance to give financially.
- The Spirit’s job is not to make us feel guilty about what we did wrong, but to convict us of not believing on Jesus. Everything we do wrong is a reaction of unbelief.
- The Holy Spirit does not convict us for not giving; He convicts us for not trusting and believing God where our finances are concerned. For example, when someone steals, it is because they do not believe that God can provide for them.
- But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus(Philippians 4:19).
- We must trust God in all areas of our life, including finances. The spirit of mammon directly opposes trusting in God. We must choose whether to serve God or mammon.
- No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (Luke 16:13).
- For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins (Hebrews 10:26).
- Most Christians interpret this to mean, “When you know better and you sin anyway, you sin willfully.” This is wrong. We must read this Scripture in context.
- What this says is that there is no more need to atone for sin like the Old Testament priests did because Jesus’ blood took care of all our sins. Not believing this is the willful sin to which this verse refers.
- And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God. Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother. And he answered and said unto him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth. Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me. And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions (Mark 10:17-22).
- The man who ran to Jesus was pretending to truly trust Him. Jesus’ question back to the man indicated that He knew that the man did not believe that He was God, but only a good master.
- It is revealing that the man asked Jesus what he should do, instead of in whom he should have faith. Likewise for us, we should stop trying to figure out what to do and start having faith in what is already done.
- Jesus answered the man in the same way that the question was asked: He told the man what to do.
- And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. And they were astonished out of measure, saying among themselves, Who then can be saved? And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible. Then Peter began to say unto him, Lo, we have left all, and have followed thee. And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel's, But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life (Mark 17:23-30).
- The man told Jesus he had kept all of the commandments since his youth, but no one was able to keep all of the law; Jesus was the only one who could do so.
- Jesus had ministered to other wealthy people before, but He did not tell them specifically to sell anything. He told this to this particular individual because He knew the man trusted in his material possessions more than in anything else.
- There are several reasons why people may be afraid to give.
- The first reason has to do with their mindset about giving.
- Grief and sadness are associated with loss, not gain. It seems as if the rich young ruler did not own his possessions as much as his possessions owned him. He was influenced by the spirit of mammon.
- It is a mistake to assume that Jesus’ disciples were poor. They all had money and jobs; therefore, they were amazed when Jesus initially told them it is difficult for rich people to enter into heaven. He had to clarify and explain His statement.
- Peter spoke for all the apostles when he declared they trusted Jesus. Jesus answered that their trust in Him would be rewarded, but the rewards would come with persecutions.
- Likewise, we must be ready for persecution because of our faith, and not allow our fear of it to limit God. There is a danger that we might stop trusting God when we encounter persecution.
- And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living (Mark 12:41-44).
- A second reason people are afraid to give is because they say they need money to take care of life’s necessities, when they do not trust God for their necessities. The widow woman completely trusted God.
- Jesus was looking to see how people gave. This contradicts the belief that God has nothing to do with money.
- The woman was credited for giving more than everyone else because she trusted in God more than in her money. In comparison to what the rich people gave, even in comparison to the required tithe, she gave one hundred percent.
- Our greatest opportunity to give is when we are in need. Giving and trusting go hand-in-hand.
- For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows (1 Timothy 6:10).
- A third reason people are afraid to give is because they fear being accused of being a lover of money. This is because they are in bondage to other people.
- Many people erroneously think money itself is the root of all evil, but there is nothing wrong with having money.
- Greed has nothing to do with how much money we have. Greed is a selfish desire to have something solely for ourselves; someone motivated by greed never has enough.
- The love of money is when we love what money can do for us more than what God can do for us. This indicates a wrong relationship with it.
- Tell those rich in this world’s wealth to quit being so full of themselves and so obsessed with money, which is here today and gone tomorrow. Tell them to go after God, who piles on all the riches we could ever manage—to do good, to be rich in helping others, to be extravagantly generous. If they do that, they’ll build a treasury that will last, gaining life that is truly life (1 Timothy 6:17-19, MSG).
- God does not have a problem with rich people, only with rich people who trust their wealth more than Him.
- When we have so many possessions that we are stressed out and no longer at peace, we need to re-evaluate what we really need.
- We can back up to the point where we are living off eighty percent of our income, so we will have some to give and some to save.
- If we do not want to do this, it indicates that we are too proud and too full of ourselves. At that point, we are headed for a fall.
- Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall (Proverbs 16:18).
1 Corinthians 16:1, 2
2 Timothy 1:7
John 16:8, 9
1 Timothy 6:10
1 Timothy 6:17-19, MSG