MONEY AND THE JEALOUS GOD
No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money. Matt.6:24
I have come to the conclusion that our “Jealous God” is after our heart. He goes at it in very diverse, sometimes seemingly random ways, but it is our affection that He is after. When we understand this, we understand why idolatry is such a serious offense to God. God is passionate about His Glory and wants a people who value Him and the Glory of His presence. In my first interview to be enrolled in Bible School (I had been a Christian about two weeks) I was told about the tithe for the first time. Parris and I had gotten married with seven hundred dollars to our name. After traveling to California, paying our rent on a trailer, payment on first semester of school, and buying some groceries, I had seventy dollars in my wallet. As the director told me about the tithe I knew that seventy dollars in my wallet belonged to The Lord. He was after my heart, my trust, not my seventy dollars. As I gladly put my seventy dollars in the tithe box that afternoon I had passed my first test. I loved The Lord more than my money. The Lord was winning my heart. Martin Luther spoke about this truth five hundred years ago, check this out.
“Remember what people say about kind and generous individuals: “They are masters of their money.” Money doesn’t control them, unlike a greedy miser who ignores God’s Word and everything else God wants. A miser would rather withhold a helping hand than let go of money. This kind of greed is the mark of tightfisted, childish, and insensitive individuals. That type of person doesn’t put resources to good use or even enjoy them. They ignore eternal treasures for the sake of money. They pursue their own selfish goals and neglect God’s Word, thinking they can get around to it at a more convenient time. Meanwhile, they scramble to get everything they can, without a penny to spare for the work of God. If left unchecked, they will sink deeper and deeper into greed and jealousy, moving further and further away from God’s Word. Eventually their hearts will be filled with cynicism, and they will become enemies of God. Augustine came right to the point when he said: “Whatever I love is my god.”
The Lord has used offerings to deal with man for thousands of years. One of the greatest examples was when God asked Abraham to offer his son Isaac as an offering to The Lord. Obviously The Lord wasn’t after the life of Abraham’s son, He was after Abraham, He was after Abraham’s heart. At the end of the day that is all He is after, He is after your heart. So if you have been struggling with the tithe and the offerings remember this, He is after your love. Once He has it, provision from The Lord is guaranteed.