Friday: Further Thought – Honesty With God

Further Thought: God initiated all the covenants stated in the Bible and has taken the lead in drawing His people into these covenants (Heb. 8:10). The covenant promises reflect His grace, love, and desire to save us.

Spectacles on Bible

Image © Stan Myers from GoodSalt.com

A covenant with God includes many things: God, a recipient, conditions of the covenant, commitment to the conditions by both parties, stated penalty for failure to keep the covenant, and intended results or outcome desired. The concept of tithing reflects these components in Malachi 3:9-10. This text reiterates the special covenant of tithing between God and His stewards. When we enter into such a covenant, it is a visible sign that we object to the materialistic principles of consumerism, and we prove that something good can come out of a converted, sinful heart.

“A close, selfish spirit seems to prevent men from giving to God His own. The Lord made a special covenant with men, that if they would regularly set apart the portion designated for the advancement of Christ’s kingdom, the Lord would bless them abundantly, so that there would not be room to receive His gifts. But if men withhold that which belongs to God, the Lord plainly declares, ‘Ye are cursed with a curse.” – Ellen G. White, Counsels on Stewardship, p. 77.

Living in a covenant relationship with God has responsibilities. We enjoy the promises of the covenant, but oftentimes dislike the commands and responsibilities. Yet a covenant is, in this context, a two-sided arrangement, and tithing is one part of our living within the covenant.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Why is returning tithe such an important act of faith on our part?
  2. What words would you have for someone who says, “I just can’t afford to tithe”? How do you help a person who sees himself or herself in this situation? And, besides words, what else might be done to help?
  3. Wednesday’s final question asked about what you could do to help keep before you the realization that the tithe is holy. What were some of your answers? How does the fact that it is holy affect how you relate to paying it?
Amen!(0)

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Source: Daily Sabbath School Lessons