Thankful generosity is the natural response of the one who has been blessed by the goodness of God.
Most people excuse their lack of generosity by saying that when they have more time or more money they will be generous. But we know from many studies that the inverse is actually true – the more you have, the less generous you become.
How fitting as God prepares to bring His people into the Promised Land – a land of great wealth – He teaches them to be generous. There are several principles of giving taught in Chapter 26:
- Giving to God of your first-fruits (26:2). The first-fruits were not only the first of the harvest, but the best. It is an act of faith that God would provide the latter fruits, and an act of priority that you value God even before your basic physical needs.
- It is a statement of faith in God’s future grace as you remind yourself of His past grace to you. (26:5-11)
- It acknowledges my obligation to minister to those in need. (26:12-13)
- I don’t make excuses for a lack of generosity but acknowledge that it is a necessary response to God’s blessing. (26:14-15)
- I am to give generously, not out of guilt or mere habit or discipline, but as an act of worship from a glad heart. (26:16-18)
Chapters 27-28 instruct a striking scene, to be carried out later in the Book of Joshua, reminding the people that God will bless them richly in their obedience, but curse them in their disobedience.
As those who have received the greater salvation that the Promised Land only represented, Christians should be gladly and sacrificially generous in their giving to the work of the church and the meeting of the needs of the poor and needy. How do you need to change your mindset about the blessings God has given you to better align your generosity with the 5 principles we saw above?