Generosity Always Involves Sacrifice
November 18, 2022
“I will not sacrifice to the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.” 2 Samuel 24:24 NIV
David was the king. He could “get a deal” on anything, even just taking it if he wanted to do so. A man tried to give David something he intended to give to God and David refused it with this statement recorded in 2 Samuel. He understood that an easy gift was not generous, and that God desires a gift that costs him something.
The Bible says there are three levels of giving: less than our ability, according to our ability, and beyond our ability. Research tells us that 96% of Christians in America give less than their ability. Maybe 3% or more give according to their ability, and less than 1% give beyond their ability. Wow! In a country where 65% of the citizens as of 2022 claim to be Christians?
Giving generously and sacrificially means to push our giving past the point where the figures easily add up. Giving a simple 10% according to our means would stretch most of our faith and willingness. Giving beyond our means? Out of the question.
Giving generously and sacrificially also means giving the best. Giving the least and most used and keeping the best for ourselves is not generosity. Giving away something we didn’t want in the first place isn’t giving; it’s just a dignified way of trash disposal. Often, we are “generous” because we want a newer or better version.
Let’s do a little math here. A millionaire who tithes $100,000 has “only” $900,000 left to live on. A single mom who makes $25,000 and gives 10% has only $22,500 left to live on. The percentage given is the same, but the sacrifice and generosity are worlds apart. Gifts are only sacrificial if they have a significant impact on daily life. They will grow us exponentially because they are given through faith in God’s promises. Sacrificial gifts stretch our faith, provide significant resources for the Lord’s work, and move us toward a generous lifestyle that truly imitates Jesus.
Randy Alcorn reminds us, “A disciple does not ask, ‘How much can I keep?’ but, ‘How much more can I give?’ Whenever we start to get comfortable with our level of giving, it’s time to raise it again.”
- Sit a few minutes with the Savior who gave it all for you and to you. Ask Him where your life needs some sacrifice to become truly generous.