DEVOTION:TAKE THIS CHALLENGE!
The command to give God our tithes and offerings is interesting because it is required of us to obey, but God puts a wonderful twist to it. Here is the first part, which has all the characteristics of a normal commandment from God.
Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Malachi 3:10a
But then God adds this very interesting and sweet twist:
Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.Malachi 3:10b
Interesting! Instead of saying obey my command, the Lord says, “Test Me In This.” In other words the Lord is saying, obey this command and you will see what I can do for you. In fact, He states exactly what He will do for us if we obey this command:
“And see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not drop their fruit before it is ripe,” says the Lord Almighty. Malachi 3:10b-11
In addition to this, He says the world will have the following response.
Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the Lord Almighty. Malachi 3:12
The point in today’s lesson is this: God has given us a challenge to try Him by bringing our tithes to His House and we will see what He will do for us.
- The question for you and I is this: Are we willing to take this challenge? In a sense God is saying, challenge me with your obedience. To state it differently, God is saying, give me my tithes and you will notice that you can never out-give me for I will give you more than you are giving to me. Therefore if you are willing, get on a giving challenge with God.
- There is another aspect of this challenge that we must address. If God is saying challenge me, why is it that there are only a small group of believers who take this challenge seriously? I see a seed of unbelief in this reluctance. If God has promised what He will do if we take our tithes and offering to His house, then it should not be difficult to expect nothing less than a positive outcome. God is faithful and we can count on every word that He has said. If you are reluctant and not willing to obey this command, then may be you do not believe in what God says.
- In contrast to the preaching on planting a seed and expecting a harvest, you can be certain that the terms in this verse will hold true – that if you bring your tithes and offerings to God’s House, God will give you more than you have given. This expectation would be true to the passage and you would not be contradicting or stretching the scripture beyond what it says.
- Here is a question for you: Have you not been giving tithes because of unbelief or outright disobedience to this command? May this passage speak to you today.
- If you have never given tithes to God before, I hope that our exploration of this passage in the last three days convinces you of the importance and benefits of tithing. If so, begin this week to give your tithes to God.
Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse,
That there may be food in my house.
Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty,
“And see if I will not throw open the floodgates
Of heaven and pour out so much blessing that
There will not be room enough to store it.
TAKE THIS CHALLENGE!
By Pastor Shadrack Ruto