Tigers got my back, one of my all time favorite blogs, just did an article on giving. I was going to leave a comment but decided to write a post. So I named it "Giving part II".
Since the beginning of "The Church", it seems that it has been misunderstood. There was a time when this bothered me dearly, but as I walk, struggle, climb, claw, and sometimes stroll along this path called life, things become more and more clear. Well of course the Church is misunderstood.
I think key to Jon's post on giving is his heart. Strange enough, three people could give the same amount, make the same sacrifice to do so, and have three different motivations. One could give for the purpose of receiving some blessing from God; another to assuage some personal guilt; while yet another could give out of a simple willingness to be obedient.
So who is the focus of the first person that gave?... or the second? I would say it is the giver himself. Ultimately it is not giving at all put a purchase, or an investment if you will. There's no obedience; just a plan or strategy. But Jon spoke of giving and expecting nothing in return. How can a man buy his salvation from a Holy and Just God anyway? No, he gave out of obedience, and that obedience not to a slave driver, or bully, but rather to an also Merciful and Holy God.
To a world who's God is money, this makes no sense. It begs the question: "what's in it for me?". While the Robert Tiltans of the world live large preying on this idolatry, others hold the "Gospel for Prophets" up as a hollow and shallow excuse to comfort themselves in their own rejection of God, and his son Jesus who is their only hope.
Man looks on the outside, but God looks at the heart, so ultimately the heart and its motivations is key to everything the believer does; a fact that has and always will cause the world to misunderstand His Body.
Right vs Real - A longtime friend of mine has always drawn a distinction between "right" and "real". Ask a Christian a plainly-known question like "Are we saved by faith o...