We continue Christ’s Sermon on the Mount moving into the intertwined topics of giving, prayer, fasting, contentment and worry.
David’s charge to Israel and his son Solomon reveal some important aspects of what it truly means to serve God.
1 Chronicles 28-29.mp3 (Barry Atwell)
It’s not easy to be content when things are going badly. What’s worse is that our society is structured in such a way as to promote all that is the exact opposite of contentment. If we listen to all the advertising or read all the columns we should never be satisfied with the way we look, the way we feel, the job we have, the house we live in or how much money we make. But this isn’t how the Bible thinks.
Giving is a much abused and, therefore, often misunderstood aspect of the Christian life. The Bible clearly tells us we should give, but so do a lot of con artists who pretend to be servants of Christ. We need to avoid being taken in by charlatans, but we don’t do this by ignoring what God really wants us to know about giving as part of the practice of our faith. Along with chapter 8, which we did a couple of weeks back, this chapter is one of the more important chapters that teach us how and why to give.
Financial giving has been a part of what the church has done since the very beginning, part of a tradition that goes back to Judaism. What does the Bible really say about generosity, giving or charity? This chapter and the next give us some of the basic principles that make up a right attitude toward this essential, yet much abused, part of the Christian faith.