When we give back a portion to God of what is rightfully his, he entrusts us with even more to give back. The more we give to God, the more God gives us to give. And when we enter that cycle of generous giving, we become a conduit of God’s blessings—both material and immaterial. It is true: you cannot out-give God.
Going Deep // Focus: 1 Chronicles 29:13-14
O our God, we thank you and praise your glorious name! But who am I, and who are my people, that we could give anything to you? Everything we have has come from you, and we give you only what you first gave us!
Are you a generous giver? I am not talking about the amount that you give, or could give, I am referring to your heart, or the attitude you have toward giving financially to God’s work. Truly, when you read the whole of scripture, you cannot be anything other than generous when you understand this one eternal principle:
Everything in your possession is not really yours; it all comes from God. Giving generously from it simply is giving back to God what is rightfully his.
Now here is a corollary truth that makes giving back to God the smartest thing you could ever do: When we give back a portion to God of what is rightfully his, he entrusts us with even more to give back. The more we give to God, the more God gives us to give. And when we enter that cycle of generous giving, we become a conduit of God’s blessings—both material and immaterial. It is true: you cannot out-give God.
King David understood this. In 1 Chronicles 29, he is appealing to the congregation of Israel to do what he has done. He has joyfully made a generous contribution to the construction of the temple. David is on the bell lap of his life’s journey, and he is diligently making preparations for something he always wanted to do: build a grand house to God. But God had told David he wasn’t to be the one to build it; Solomon would be that guy. However, David could certainly make preparation for it. And boy did he! Just read the chapter to see what David had left in the bank, so to speak, for his son’s project.
Notice the king’s plea that the people follow his example of generous giving. In today’s church language, he is taking an offering like none other. But it is the verse I have selected that is the key to what David was requesting, and it is the key to whether or not you are going to give from a mindset of generosity. That mindset comes from a prayer; it is actually from something he said to God about God that unlocks the extreme generosity of giving:
O our God, we thank you and praise your glorious name, but who am I and who are my people that we should be permitted to give anything to you? Everything we have has come from you, and we only give you what is yours already! (Living Bible)
Since it all comes from God anyway, giving the portion that he prompts you to give back to him is a fundamental issue of faith and trust and obedience on your part. When you get that right, your generosity gives God a shot, through your offerings, to not only replenish what you release to him, but to open up the spigot so that heaven’s abundance literally overflows in your life.
Again, your giving activates a circular law of generosity. That law says that when you are generous with what God has provided, he will give you more so that you can give away more, and as you give away more, he will give you more to give away. And thus you have entered the cycle of generosity.
God measures giving by generosity of heart. The amount debited from your account doesn’t count—it is your attitude that makes you a candidate for this cycle. It is not rote obedience to some law of tithing that God is looking for from you, it is the overflow of the spirit of grace that reflects God loving ownership of you and all that you have. When you settle the issue of generosity, then the law of tithing and questions about how much to give become moot.
I cannot determine giving for you; no one can—it’s a matter of your heart. But if you get it wrong, you are going to miss out on the thrill of generous giving. Get it right, and you will become a pipeline for the abundance of heaven.
And who in their right mind wouldn’t want that!