Giving gifts to God has been an integral part of worshipping God from time immemorial. This implies that it has been in practice before God instituted it as an act of worship in the Temple worship of the Israelites of old. It is an act of voluntary worshipping God with our substances as gifts to Him in recognition, acknowledging and honoring Him as God and our Creator, the rightful owner and giver of our very being and all we have (Gen. 1:26-27; Acts 17:28; Job 1:21; John 3:27; 1 Cor. 4:7).
God instituted giving unto Him as part of worship both in the Old Testament and new Testament as an act of love, honor, dependence and gratitude to Him and not “as though he needed anything, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things.” (Acts 17:25). God is self-sufficient and self-sustained and does not need anything from any of His creatures! He does not spend money nor eats food. He instituted giving as part of our worship as a means of providing for the upkeep of the religious leaders, the building of the place of worship and its maintenance and for the care of the poor and the needy – widows, orphans, strangers (Exodus 25:1-2; 2 Chron. 24:8-10; Acts 11: 28-30; Acts 20:33-35; Gal 6:9-10). In the Old Testament the Israelites do these through tithes offerings, freewill offerings and sacrifices as ordained by God for them. They are referred to as offerings because they are considered as gifts – something done willing and voluntary.
In the New Covenant the doctrine of giving as a means of worship remains, however based on the fulfillment of the mosaic laws and demands of the animal sacrificial system by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the animal sacrifices has been done away with. However, giving as an act of worship and the list of those entitled (our spiritual leaders, the poor and the needy) still remain topmost (1 Cor. 9: 9-11; 1 Tim. 5:8). However the New Testament giving has assumed a wider dimension. Giving is no longer limited to substance or monetary gifts alone but also humanitarianly, that is in our words, actions and self. It is also no longer by percentage (a tithe 10%) or by measure but by the leading of the Holy Spirit and the grace bestowed upon each individual believer in demonstration of the spirit life and style of Jesus giving.
This aspect of our worship is an area many of us are finding too difficult to be faithful. Many at times, people have to be coaxed and cajoled, before they give to meet crucial needs in the Church or the welfare of those in need as expected of them. Even when they give, they do so with so much murmuring, grumbling and complain. Why all these negative attitude? One major reason responsible for this is lack of gratitude!
Giving to God generously and cheerfully in worship is a response of love and gratitude! Gratitude from a heart that acknowledges God as the source of all one possesses makes one part with generous amount of money as offerings or to give the complete tithe in this hard economic times. Gratitude of heart to God motivates us to willingly and cheerfully give tithes and offerings because it recounts God’s immeasurable goodness, mercies and past faithfulness and sees beyond the seeming insurmountable present needs calling for attention to God who is able to do exceedingly above what we can ever think or ask. Gratitude of heart makes one cheerfully give to the poor and the needy and also render help where need be as unto the Lord in appreciation to Him as our ever present help in times of need in the ages past and our hope for the years to come.
Givers such as Abraham, King David, King Solomon, and Mary the sister of Martha, all gave out of love and gratitude to God. Giving not borne out of gratitude, honor and love amounts to nothing (1Cor. 13:1; 2 Cor. 8:2-3; 2 Cor. 9:6-7; 1 Cor. 16:2; 1Tim. 6: 17-18). Few examples of New Testament believers givers can be found in Acts 2:44-45; Acts 4: 34-35; Acts 11:28-30; Phil 4:16-17; 1Tim 6:18.
Those who worship God with their substances and gifts cheerfully and generously are people of faith and gratitude who don’t give with the ulterior motive of receiving in return but for love, devotion and for giving sake. They know it is a great privilege to give to God and also that we came to this world naked, we own nothing and we shall go with nothing. True worshipers don’t wait to be told or coaxed and cajoled to give. They actually look around for areas to be involved.
Your giving to meet the need of the Church and people in need just like every other acts of kindness might not be seen or appreciated by man, but know that whatever you do unto any man is unto God and will surely not go unrewarded by Him who sees not as man sees, and judges the heart and reins to determine its intent.
Giving to God in worship is good, enjoyable and rewarding (Deut. 15:4; Mal 3: 10-12; Mat. 19:21; I Tim 6:18-19; Psa. 41:1-3). It opens doors that prayers may at times not open. Your giving is storing up treasures in heaven for yourself and the release of supernatural, unanticipated blessings of God.
Givers never lack.
GOD LOVES YOU AND SO DO I.