February 23, 2006

But I Can't Afford To Tithe!

There’s a commercial currently playing which opens with a teen aged- girl asking her dad for $80 for a pair of jeans. The Dad asks, “Are these designer Jeans?” To which she answers yes. Then he asks if many of her friends are wearing these jeans to which she says, “Yeah, everyone.”

He walks over to his laptop and buys up 100 shares of stock in the company. It’s an ad for internet trading. As the commercial ends, the girl says, “Uh, Dad, did you forget something?” And he forks over the $80 for a pair of stinking BLUE JEANS.

Now let me be clear; there is nothing inherently wrong with spending $80 on a pair of jeans provided you can afford them; and provided that all your other financial priorities are in place. For the person of faith, that means—in the words of Solomon-- honoring the Lord with the first fruits of all your produce…

In our context, it means giving to the Lord’s work on earth and not some token $10 in the offering plate. The clear pattern of Scripture is that 10% of one’s income is the starting point and yet only about 2 1/2 % of those who describe themselves as “Born Again” actually follow this teaching. (That explains tons about why the church is always barely limping along in their work on earth and why missionaries have to spend 2-3 years on average raising support from many churches to get to the field.)

And I’m here to tell you from God’s Word first, and from personal experience that the excuse, “I can’t afford it” doesn’t really hold up under scrutiny.

One of the biggest reason Christians “can’t afford” to give God the minimum of what He asks is because of good old greed.

Whoa! Greed? I am barely staying a float, my car is 6 years old and my meager $30 a year doesn’t go far enough with my family of five.

I hear ya; but I hear the Word of the Lord and it drowns out such protests. The fact is our spending habits are consumed much more by wants than legitimate needs.

You can spit and fume and get all worked up but listen for my next commentary; I think it will put your protests to rest.


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