The scale never lies
"But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a few cents. Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, 'Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on.'” Mark 12:42-44 (NIV)
The story of the poor widow giving all she had was a common Bible story I heard growing up, as it probably was for many who grew up in the church. Furthermore, it is story like this, that can be misinterpreted and skewed at times. Pastor Eli talked about the perspective we can have when it comes to giving and fighting against comparison.
3 Types of Giving
- Below than your ability – 96% of Christians
- According to your ability – 3% of Christians
- Beyond your ability (sacrificial giving) – less than 1% of Christians
We are blessed to be a blessing.
Pastor Eli says it is great if we tithe our 10%, as it does follow the minimum requirement of what God asks of us, but God knows our hearts when we give. Not only should we be giving our 10%, but there is a beauty in giving beyond our ability – giving when the bottom line says "no," giving past our giving figured, giving away not just from luxury, but also some necessities. The Bible teaches us how to apply Kingdom principles when it comes to giving and living a generous life:
- Giving can become an idol – “Look how much I am giving to God.”
- It is not about going into debt for the glory of God – that is not biblical either. What happens is that people do not cut back on lifestyle and instead go into debt to maintain the lifestyle they want. The point is to give up comfortable living to fund the Kingdom of God.
- We aren't giving to man, we're giving to God.
- It's more about who you're giving to, not what you're giving to.
- It is not wrong to save up and prepare for the future – for example, saving up for your children’s children, saving up a college/future fund etc.
"Give out of your livelihood, not just out of your abundance." ~ Pastor Eli Nelson
Jesus does not compare the amount you give to others. He sees your sacrifice in relation to what you have.
When Pastor Eli says, “It weighs different”, that really does hold true, considering that spiritual weight has value over physical weight. Jesus told his disciples that the pennies weighed more because of the power of compound eternal interest. There is a difference between trusting the kingdom and trusting the dollar. It is important for us to look at our perspective and see where our trust lies and how that shapes our views and habits with money.
"Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. As it is written: 'They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor; their righteousness endures forever.' Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God." 2 Corinthians 9:7-11 (NIV)
Does your giving cost you something?
Check out the podcast below!
Are you searching for a Christian church in Omaha Nebraska? Our hope is that we could be the home you have been looking for! To learn more about our Omaha church services click here.