05/27/15 Generosity from God and for God

READING:  1 Chronicles 26-29, Psalm 127 

TEXTS AND APPLICATION:  Most of these chapters summarize the end of David’s reign and his transfer of the kingdom to Solomon. David’s prayer when the people gave sacrificially to build the Temple is a reminder that even our generosity is a gift of God. Indeed, the prayer gives us a simple theology of stewardship.  Let the Word simply speak . . . 

1. Everything belongs to God.  He owns it all, including what we claim to “own.” 

1 Chron. 29:11b  Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the splendor and the majesty, for everything in the heavens and on earth belongs to You.

2. Anything we have comes from God.

1 Chron. 29:12a, 14  Riches and honor come from You. . . For everything comes from You.

3. We can give to God only because He has blessed us. In fact, we really are simply giving back to Him what already belongs to Him. 

1 Chron. 29:14, 16  But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? For everything comes from You, and we have given You only what comes from Your own hand. . . . Yahweh our God, all this wealth that we’ve provided for building You a house for Your holy name comes from Your hand; everything belongs to You. 

4. Whatever we have here is only temporary; thus, giving to the work of the eternal God makes sense. 

1 Chron. 29:15a  For we live before You as foreigners and temporary residents in Your presence as were all our ancestors.  

5. Rightness of the heart is more important to God than the number of dollars we give; but, a right heart will give joyfully and willingly.   

1 Chron. 29:17   I know, my God, that You test the heart and that You are pleased with what is right. I have willingly given all these things with an upright heart, and now I have seen Your people who are present here giving joyfully and willingly to You.

6. Even ongoing obedience and generosity are the work of God. We daily need His work in our lives to follow Him sacrificially.  

1 Chron. 29:18  Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, our ancestors, keep this desire forever in the thoughts of the hearts of Your people, and confirm their hearts toward You

PRAYER: I am personally challenged today to evaluate whether my wife and I truly give sacrificially to the Lord’s work. Pray for us — and perhaps for yourself — that all of us will give to God whatever He asks.  After all, it’s all His anyway.  

TOMORROW’S READING:  ​Psalms 111-118