Ask Me Why... Give?

This Sunday at Living Shepherd we’ll wrap up our “Ask Me Why…?” series with the question that probably makes us the most uncomfortable. “Why do we give to our church?” Portions of God’s Word like 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 [1] help us better understand how we are to give, but it takes a little more digging to understand why we give.

Before we do that digging on Sunday, I’d like you to spend a little time considering the following scenario. I think it will help us begin to answer the question “Why do we give?” by first nailing down one of the most common reasons we don’t give.

Imagine someone gave you between $4,000 and $7,000 to spend as you saw fit. The giver of this money even figures out a way to pay the taxes on this gift—so the amount you receive is what you actually get to keep/spend. How long would it take you to figure out a way to put that money to use?

Curious why I chose the range I did? As of the 2010 United States Census, the median income in Albany County was around $40,000 for individuals and $70,000 for families (a “family” income is typically defined as a home where husband and wife are both working). See where I’m going with this?

The Old Testament often displays examples of people giving 10% of their possessions or income as an offering to the Lord (See the example of Abraham in Genesis 14). After a time, 10 % giving or “tithing” was actually commanded for God’s Old Testament people. As we’ll review this Sunday when we take a look at portions of 2 Corinthians, Christians aren’t commanded to give to God based on percentages. That being said, might I suggest one of the reasons we struggle to give generously has something to do with how easy it is for us to figure out a way to spend 10% of our income?

Hope to see you this Sunday for Lord’s Supper and the conclusion of our “Ask Me Why…?” series!

Blessings on the rest of your week,

Pastor Z.


[1] Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.