He should have fed them also with the finest of wheat; and with Honey From The Rock should I have satisfied thee.
Dear Friends and Family,
Last month we began a study on the attitude of giving. At this time of year giving is so much in the forefront of our minds and hearts. As we gather with loved ones to celebrate the birth of Christ our hearts are touched by the ultimate sacrifice he made in giving his life for you and me. His love in us causes us to desire to reach out in love to others and what could be a more opportune time than the Christmas season. We want to give not only our gifts, but ourselves. Right in line with the holiday season, this month’s lesson will be called, The Giver’s Heart.
2 Peter 1:3-4
3 His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness NIV
His divine power has given us all we need for life and godliness! How? Through the knowledge of Him!
Godliness here is holiness and life is Zoe – the God kind of life. The God kind of life is eternal, healthy, prosperous, free, wise, and full of the fruit and character of God. So, by His power, through the knowledge of Him, the Lord, Adonai, we are given all we need to live eternally with him and to be holy, healthy, prosperous, free, wise, and full of the fruit and character of God. When we know Him as Lord, Adonai, we’ll have a giver’s heart and an open channel of blessing in our lives.
9 Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: 10 So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine. KJV
Spiritual and material prosperity is promised to the giving heart that knows him as LORD.
25 The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself. KJV
A true giver is truly free because he sees God as his source in all things and is committed to him as Lord of All.
Luke 6:38 (NASB)
38 “Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, they will pour into your lap. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.”
I once heard someone say that God is not an adder or a subtractor – He’s a multiplier! Good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over – that’s a lot of return blessings for the giver’s heart. Remember our giving is more than our finances – as the bondslave of Adonai (November’s lesson) we have given him ALL of us and everything that pertains to us. So the giving heart gives time, talents, prayer, AND money and material possessions. No wonder God loves a cheerful giver. Not only does that kind of heart bless God and bring spiritual and natural prosperity into His Kingdom, but it opens the channel for God to pour his blessings back on YOU.
32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has chosen gladly to give you the kingdom. 33 “Sell your possessions and give to charity; make yourselves purses which do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near, nor moth destroys. 34 “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Good here is benefit; pleasure is to think well of; Kingdom is foundation of power and authority to rule and reign in life, and fear is to be alarmed or terrified- it’s also used to be in awe or revere so you might say that we are being told not to revere our circumstances or be in awe of them. Jesus is saying in these verses then that we are not to allow our circumstances to cause fear or alarm, we’re not to revere or lift them up over his truth. Why? Because it’s to our Father’s benefit to think well of giving us the foundation of power and authority we need to rule and regn in life. He’s chosen GLADLY to give it to you.
2 Corinthians 9:7-8
7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:
Cheerful here is the Greek word Hil-ar-os. It’s where we get our English word hilarious! Webster’s Dictionary defines hilarious as exhilaration of spirit that may be carried to the point of boistrous merriment! God wants us to be hilarious in our giving! Why? Because we know Him as Lord, the all sufficient one who provides all we need for life and godliness. He is both willing and able to make all grace (his power to give what you can’t and don’t even deserve) abound toward you so that you will have everything you need. Why? So that you can abound in every good work! See, it’s not for you, it’s for HIM and His Kingdom. In our giving we are willingly serving and blessing ADONAI, the Master we know and love. Is that your attitude of heart in giving today? Giving involves your whole self, not just your money, but it certainly includes your money. Does giving love, your time, your money, your self, and your possessions bring joy? Exhilaration of spirit? Even boistrous merriment? Or do you give out of obligation, fear, grudgingly, annoyed that you have to part with your money or time, etc. We’re giving because he gave all to us. We’re giving because we’re thankful, grateful, and full of love for him. When you’re in a financial bind, a time crunch, a needy time, don’t hold back but give. Those are the times we need to give even more than other times. Those are the times when our giving is a sacrifice to him, that’s when our giving becomes a worship to him. In Genesis the 14th chapter we see the first recorded tithe. In this chapter we see King Chedolaomer and the Kings allied with him attack Sodom and Gommorah and take all the goods and food. They left taking with them Lot, Abram’s nephew, and all his possessions. When Abram heard about it he took 318 men and pursued the kings. Verses 15-16 tell us he defeated them and took back all the goods that all the armies possessed! That’s a lot of goods. In verse 17 we see that when he came back with all the goods two people came out to meet him. The King of Sodom who is a type of the world or Satan; and Melchizedek who is a type of Christ. Verse 18 tells us that Melchizedek was a King and a Priest. He is the only King/Priest recorded before Jesus Christ. All priests under the old covenant had to come from the line of Levi. All priests under the old covenant had recorded geneologies. You could not be a priest in the Levitical order unless you could prove your geneology to the line of Levi. No priest under the old covenant was responsible for a specific geographical area to govern as his own. Melchizedek was King/Priest over Jerulsalem. His name means King of Righteousness and King of Peace. All these are types of the Lord Jesus Christ. In verses 18-20 we see that Melchizedek blessed Abram and brought forth the bread and the wine. Verse 20 says, “And blessed be the Most High God who has delivered your enemies into your hand.” The bread and wine are a symbol of the covenant. In the new covenant we are told to “do this in remembrance of me.” the blessing and the bread and wine were done in remembrance of the covenant God made with Abram to be his El Shaddai – the God that is more than enough to meet your every need. It was the Lord that caused Abram to prosper both in defeating his enemies and in their delivering the material possessions into his hand. God is a covenant keeping God!
22 A good man leaveth an inheritance to his children’s children: and the wealth of the sinner is laid up for the just.
Amplified Bible puts it this way:
22 A good man leaves an inheritance [of moral stability and goodness] to his children’s children, and the wealth of the sinner [finds its way eventually] into the hands of the righteous, for whom it was laid up
Because Abram believed that, he immediately gave Melchizedek a tenth of everything. Melchizedek asked for nothing – he just gave blessings to Abram. Just as Jesus asked for nothing but gave the ultimate blessing – his life. Abram in gratitude with a thankful and grateful heart, a heart of love for his LORD, GAVE! That’s the attitude of a giver’s heart, a heart that knows Jesus IS LORD. Abram gave because he was blessed by God. In verse 21 we see the King of Sodom who was a type of the world and Satan remember, he said give ME and I will give you riches! How very subtle he is – he says the same to us each day – give extra time, money, possessions, etc. to yourself and your endeavors and I will give you the result you desire! Don’t trust God, do it yourself. In verse 22-23 we see Abram refuse to compromise with the world. He had a givers heart and knew the Lord as his source. Abram said, “I won’t take anything from you. God is my source, I am in covenant with HIM. I won’t take anything lest I rob him of the glory for his work in my life.” We need to be wise stewards of our finances, time, physical health, etc., but we cannot let anything cause us to compromise the Lord’s place as LORD in everything. He is our source, not our jobs, not our bank accounts, not our insurance policies, not our wise financial planning, but HIM. We will speak in January of “The two mediums of exchange.”
Have a wonderful Christmas with your families and a blessed and prosperous new year.
Solid Rock Ministries