Many talk about the giving money to God as if it were a tax they had to pay the government, knowing the government will waste it or at best use it inefficiently. Some pay out of a feeling of obligation, some give out of pride to show off to others, and some just rationalize that they can not afford to give anything at all… neither money nor time. Blessed are those who give joyfully and generously of their money and/or their time to serve God.
One such example of a joyful giver is Jacob. After receiving God’s blessing from Isaac, Jacob had to leave his family because of the deception he used against his brother Esau. As he travels, God appears to him in a dream in Genesis 28:10-22.
10Then Jacob departed from Beersheba and went toward Haran. 11He came to a certain place and spent the night there, because the sun had set; and he took one of the stones of the place and put it under his head, and lay down in that place. 12He had a dream, and behold, a ladder was set on the earth with its top reaching to heaven; and behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. 13And behold, the LORD stood above it and said, “I am the LORD, the God of your father Abraham and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie, I will give it to you and to your descendants. 14“Your descendants will also be like the dust of the earth, and you will spread out to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south; and in you and in your descendants shall all the families of the earth be blessed. 15“Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” 16Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the LORD is in this place, and I did not know it.” 17He was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.”
18So Jacob rose early in the morning, and took the stone that he had put under his head and set it up as a pillar and poured oil on its top. 19He called the name of that place Bethel; however, previously the name of the city had been Luz. 20Then Jacob made a vow, saying, “If God will be with me and will keep me on this journey that I take, and will give me food to eat and garments to wear, 21and I return to my father’s house in safety, then the LORD will be my God. 22“This stone, which I have set up as a pillar, will be God’s house, and of all that You give me I will surely give a tenth to You.”
Jacob clearly understood that he could achieve nothing of what God promised on his own. He knew what it was to live without God, and it had brought him to a place where he had to leave home and family because of his selfish greed and deceitful scheming. God did not ask Jacob for ten percent… Jacob committed joyfully to giving that amount. There was no one else there that Jacob was trying to impress. It was just God and Jacob. He wanted to give money to God as part of showing his thankfulness toward God. He committed to giving money to God before he earned it or even experienced any success that would show him how he could earn it.
Also take note that he was not simply “writing God a check”. He set up a pillar, anointed it with oil and made a personal commitment or covenant with God that “… the Lord will be my God.” This commitment went far beyond money. Jacob was genuinely and wholeheartedly committing himself to God after experiencing a powerful message from God in a dream.
If you have not already done so, or perhaps even if you have, take a few moments and pray to our Creator that He would reveal Himself to you and help you to have a heart to commit to and submit to Him. Turn you life over to God and seek to follow Him and proclaim Him wholeheartedly. Do not give out of obligation, but out of thankfulness and praise to God for all He has done and continues to do in your life.
Remember that all you have belongs to God. Manage your money God’s way and use it for His glory rather than your own. Visit GrowGodsMoney.org .