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Saturday, December 2, 2017

Giving and Faith Go Together BY RICK WARREN — DECEMBER 2 Saturday

“By faith Abel brought God a better offering than Cain did. By faith he was commended as righteous, when God spoke well of his offerings” (Hebrews 11:4 NIV).
Giving and faith go together. In fact, God uses finances to test your faith all the time.
Have you ever had to decide between paying a bill and tithing? This is a test of your priorities. It’s a test of your love. But most importantly, it’s a test of your faith. Do you really trust God to provide for you if you put him first in your life?
It’s interesting that in Hebrews 11 — the “Hall of Fame” of biblical heroes — the first person who gets mentioned is Abel, one of Adam and Eve’s sons.
What did Abel do that caused him to get in the Hall of Fame along with Moses and Abraham and all these other big shots? He never did anything great. Never accomplished much. Never took any major risks. You know what made Abel great? He gave an offering in faith.
The Bible says, “By faith Abel brought God a better offering than Cain did. By faith he was commended as righteous, when God spoke well of his offerings” (Hebrews 11:4 NIV). Abel is not listed in the Hall of Fame because of what he gave but because of how he gave it.
God couldn’t care less about the amount you give. What he cares about is the attitude with which you give it. If you’re not giving in faith, don’t give, because you don’t get any credit for it. The Bible also says, “Without faith it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews 11:6 NIV). God doesn’t need your money. What he wants is your heart.
There are two ways to give: You can give by reason, or you can give by revelation. To give by reason is to figure out reasonably what you think you can give, and that doesn’t require any faith at all. Even an atheist can do it.
When you give by revelation, you let God reveal to you what he wants you to give in faith. It means you pray and ask, “God, how much do you want me to trust you for this time?” Then you do whatever he tells you to do.
This is giving by faith, and it helps you grow, mature, and become more like Christ!
Talk It Over
  • What has motivated your giving in the past: reason or what God has revealed for you to give?
  • Why do you think many people are afraid to give based on faith?
  • How might you approach your giving differently? How might you change the way you view your money?
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