Scripture Reading: 2 Corinthians 9:1-5
Key Verse: 2 Corinthians 9:6
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.
I’ve heard several people quote our scripture for today as what they believe to be the New Testament standard of giving. These same people dismiss the tithing issue as Old Testament and irrelevant. I believe in generous giving as they do. I have no argument with New Testament believers giving generously rather than using a strict formula.
My question is: how do we determine what is generous? What is generous giving? A few years ago, a gentleman described a time in his early Christian life when putting a $10 bill in the Sunday offering seemed generous. He testified to being proud of that gift and hoped others saw him drop it in the plate. Now this same man laughs at such a small gift because he has learned new benchmarks.
There is no way to determine “generous giving” without benchmarks. God understood that guidelines had to be given or no one would truly know what an appropriate gift to Him was. Tithe, or 10% of one’s income, is the benchmark that God set forth. No, God doesn’t want us to live by rules without love. No, God doesn’t want the 10% to be a ruler to beat ourselves or others up with. But we should use the 10% as it was meant to be: a benchmark to guide our giving. With that, I know when I’m giving over 10% of my income, I am being generous with God.
Father, thanks for the freedom you provide to me as I walk with you. I cheerfully give generously to your kingdom and its purposes! In Jesus’ Name, amen.