Some TV evangelists solicit money like they’re selling Slice-O-Dice-O-Matics or Incredible Dirt-Be-Gone-Ice-Cream-Maker-Diaper-Changers.
“Send your faith seed of $19.95 today and we’ll send you The Amazing Prayer Cloth! Yes, the Amazing Prayer Cloth, embroidered with “footprints in the sand,” is a handy 6” by 6” and fits perfectly inside your Bible. The Amazing Prayer Cloth not only will heal you, but is great for cleaning filthy conscience guilt buildup, as well as charcoal grills and computer screens. Call now, and we’ll send you a second Amazing Prayer Cloth absolutely FREE (just pay shipping and handling of $499)! But wait, there’s more…”
Because of all the manipulation on Christian TV, I’m hesitant at times to encourage people to give to God. But God unashamedly tells us to be generous and to expect him to bless us lavishly. We shouldn’t let the manipulators make us stingy.
God wants us to be generous like he is, the one who gave his only Son for us. Like Christ, who emptied himself to make us rich. Jesus says, “Give to everyone who asks of you.”
Obviously, we need to use discernment, but we should reflect our heavenly Father’s generosity. Here are three reasons:
Generosity honors God.
Whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Maker,
but he who is generous to the needy honors him. (Proverbs 14:31)
Generosity brings thanks to God.
You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God. For the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God. (2 Corinthians 9:11-12)
Generosity focuses our hope on God.
As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share…(1 Tim 6.17-18).
Generosity helps us set our hope on God, not money or things, which are here today and gone tomorrow. When we give generously we say, “Lord, I give my money away, because I believe you are generous and lavish and will richly provide anything that is good for me.”
God doesn’t owe us, but promises to bless us when we give. If we sow we’ll reap. And God gives us a measure of determination in how much we reap. Sow generously, reap generously. Not that we always reap exactly what we sow. Give a dollar, you might not get ten back. But Jesus will give you joy. And that’s better than money any day. And it’s way better than The Amazing Prayer Cloth.