God Doesn't Want Something From You; He Wants Something For You!
WHY DO WE GIVE?
The bible teaches that people have a tendency to serve and love money more than they love God (Matthew 6:24). Giving allows us to demonstrate that He is more important to us than material things.
When we live in faith, trusting God with our money and other resources, we know that He will bless our finances. (Proverbs 3:9-10 and Malachi 10:3-12).
Christians should be the most generous people (2 Corinthians 9:6) on earth, supporting worthy causes and expanding the Kingdom of God. There is no group of people with more potential to change the world than the local church (Ephesians 3:10)!
WHAT IS TITHING?
A tithe - which just means "tenth" - is defined as the first 10% of a person's income that is to be given back to the local church. Tithing is a principle that is taught throughout the entire Bible. When we tithe, we are expressing worship in a tangible way by putting God first in our lives.
Bringing our tithes is an opportunity for us to give God our thanks, show God we trust Him, and fight against greed in our hearts, while becoming a part of the most important work in life that is spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ!
If you would like to read more about what the Bible has to say about tithing, check out these passages:
Leviticus 27:30, Proverbs 3:9-10, Malachi 3:6-10, Matthew 6:19-24 and 1 Corinthians 16:1-2
WHAT IS PARTNERSHIP?
Partnership is the understanding and agreement between Christians to fulfill our God-given mission on the earth (Matthew 28:16-20).
All Christians share a bond in the blood of Jesus, as well as a calling and commitment to fulfill the great commission. Though everyone is charged with the responsibility to share Jesus with those in their local community, not everyone can go to other nations and spread the gospel there. That's where partnership comes in.
In Philipians 4:10-19, we see the Apostle Paul writing about partnership to the church at Philipi, explaining how important it is, and praising the church for their faithfulness to see the gospel message spread through partnership.
Partnership, through prayer, encouragement and financial giving, enables those that are called to go to those nations to fulfill that call. It also gives us the privilege of sharing in the harvest of souls that they reap.
Like Paul, Debbie Rich Ministries is called both locally and to the nations, and it is through faithful partners that we all fulfill our commission to go out, spreading the good news of the Kingdom of God, making disciples of all nations.
WHAT IS EXTRAVAGANT GIVING?
Extravagant giving is a form of giving that pulls out all of the stops and moves us to a place of sacrificial giving, a gift that goes beyond natural means and wisdom and is supernaturally graced by The Holy Spirit.
There are several examples of these types of gifts given in the Bible, and several conditions that define them:
Extravagant Giving Exceeds What Is Expected
One example of extravagant giving in the New Testament is in 2 Corinthians 8:1-5, when the poverty-stricken Macedonian believers supported the poor in Jerusalem. Paul describes their giving:
“…in a great ordeal of affliction their abundance of joy and their deep poverty overflowed in the wealth of their liberality. For I testify that … they begged us with much urging for the favor of participation in the support of the saints, and this, not as we had expected…”
Extravagant Giving Exceeds What Is Affordable
In 2 Samuel 24:24 David says in “I will not offer burnt offerings to the Lord my God that cost me nothing.”
The Macedonians did this with their gifts:
“For I testify that according to their ability, and beyond their ability they gave…” (2 Cor. 8:3)
Extravagant Giving Exceeds What Is Needed
In regard to the gift given to him through the church at Philippi, Paul says “I now have plenty and it is more than enough. I am full to overflowing because I received the gifts that you sent from Epaphroditus…” (Philippians 4:18)
In Acts 2:44-45, we see Jerusalem believers begin to give away and sell what possessions they had in order to give to those who had need, having moved from an attitude of selfish gathering to selfless giving.
Extravagant Giving Exceeds What Is Reasonable
here are many cases where extravagant giving isn't based on the needs of the moment or mission, but are based on the gratitude and freedom, the joy and love that one feels from simply being near Jesus.
In Luke 19:1-10, we see Zacchaeus, a tax gatherer who had become rich by taking extra from those from whom he collected, get so touched at meeting Jesus that he gives back what he has stolen and more, having his his heart so changed that he relinquishes his love of money and takes hold of a love for Jesus.
In Mark 14:3-11 we see a woman worship Jesus, filled with gratitude and love, by breaking open a jar of very costly perfume and pouring it all over His feet. this happens several times by different women (John 12:1-8, Luke 7:36-50)
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO?
All of the teaching above reflects one thing: the changed heart of person who entrusts their life to God's care and provision. When we truly trust in Him, giving in any of the ways above is seen as a privilege and honor.
So what should you do? Learn to trust God with everything you are, spend time with His Holy Spirit and give accordingly. Please note, though, that none of the above is emotional giving. We don't give based on our emotions, opinions or manipulations. We always give according to His Spirit and His Word. When we do that, we show ourselves as good stewards who are trustworthy and faithful, and that heart of faith always pleases God!