Live to Give
"Now it came to pass, afterward, that He went through every city and village, preaching and bringing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God. And the twelve were with Him, and certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities – Mary called Magdalene, out of whom had come seven demons, and Joanna the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others who provided for Him from their substance." Luke 8:1-3, NKJV
Jesus was on the road preaching, teaching and healing. He was moving from city to city, village to village, bringing the good news of the kingdom of God to everyone who would hear. But did you notice who else was with Him? There were the twelve Apostles and the women who had been set free from evil spirits, but there were also those who were with Him for the purpose of financially supporting His ministry. It says there were, “many others who provided for Him from their substance.” That word “provided” is an interesting word. It means, “to act as a go-between.” In other words, they served as a financial conduit for Jesus and His disciples so that they could move from place to place and minister to the people. They were not preachers, they didn’t lead worship, they were not up front, but they were equally important because they were called to help carry the financial load. They were financial conduits who took the things God had given to them, and invested it back into the work that Jesus was doing.
Did you know that the same thing is true today? We all have a responsibility to help carry the financial load of ministry, just like they did in the days of Jesus. It begins with the tithe – what the Bible calls the first fruits. As you know “tithe” simply means 10 percent. God asks us to give Him our first fruits, or the first ten percent of everything we make. Then He challenges us to give even more. My guess is that the “many others” who were following Jesus gave their ten percent to their local temple or synagogue, and on top of that gave even more to help bring the good news of Jesus to their fellow Jews.
I just want to encourage you today to make a decision to "Live to Give" in terms of serving Jesus Christ and His kingdom. Start with the tithe, but don’t stop there. Find other ways to invest into the kingdom of God and see if God won’t just bless your socks off.
In Malachi 3:10 (NKJV) God both challenges us to give, and then promises us a reward for doing so. He says,
“‘Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and try Me now in this,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘If I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it.’”
Now that’s a promise if I ever heard one. Wow, God just said that if you and I would be willing to Live to Give, that He would open the windows of heaven and blow us away with so many blessings that we wouldn’t even have room to receive it! So, what’s stopping you? Maybe it’s time to take the faith plunge and jump on it, and see if God is really true to His word. Maybe it’s time for you to learn to Live to Give.
Say It: “Father, I’m tired of always living in fear when it comes to money. I really do want to be free to give. I choose to be a giver – a person who tithes and gives offerings to help support the ministry of Jesus Christ through my local church and through other ministries. I make a decision today to Live to Give. In Jesus’ Name, amen!”
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