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Short Term Giving

In my opinion, giving is the first priority short-term bucket. Why? Because I believe that giving has the most potential to free us financially, spiritually, and emotionally. As you and I practice the spiritual discipline of giving on a regular basis, we are living out one of the most foundational principles for financial wisdom: God owns it all, and I am most a peace with my money when I can hold it with an open hand. If you are skeptical, take some time to browse the topics in this bucket and consider what a change in your giving might do for your finances.

What is tithing and why is it important?

In the Bible, tithing is typically 10%.

You should tithe because the Bible commands you to do so.

  • Prov. 3:9 “Honor the Lord from your wealth, and from the first of all your produce.” (NAS)

  • Mal. 3:10 “’Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test me now in this,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘if I will not open for you the windows of heaven, and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows.’” (NAS)

  • I Cor. 16:1-2 “Now about the collection for God’s people: do what I told the Galatian churches to do. On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made.” (NIV)

Your giving should be proportionate, as the Lord has prospered you, and as a minimum, 10%.
You need to tithe as a recognition that everything you have comes from God. God does not need your money. He needs you to know that where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. (Matt. 6:21) As you give, you recognize God’s ownership, and you will receive the joy and the blessing of being submissive, obedient and grateful to your God.

Have an attitude of gratitude. It is best to tithe every week out of the amount that God has blessed you with, so you can benefit by understanding what God has done for you.

Do I give based on my gross or net income?

Gross income is the total amount of your paycheck.

Net income is the amount of your paycheck that actually gets deposited in your bank account, after taxes, insurance, 401(k), and other expenses taken out by your employer.

What you need to realize is that you actually receive the gross amount of your paycheck. There is just money taken out by your employer to pay bills that you owe.

The bottom line: tithe on the gross because that is actually your income.

How much should I give?

Should give. The Bible says to give in proportion to your income. I Cor. 16:2 “On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income, saving it up, so that when I come, no collections will have to be made.” (NIV) The tithe should be just the beginning. The more you make, the more you should be giving.

Could give. This is giving above and beyond your should give commitments. This type of giving is as close as most Americans can come to sacrificial giving. You need to be obedient to God. Go to His word (II Cor. 8 and 9 are good Bible passages on giving), listen to what He has to say, and then do it.
II Cor 8:3-5 “For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing this service to the saints. And they did not do as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God’s will.” (NIV)
II Cor. 8:12 “For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have.” (NIV)
II Cor 9: 6-7 “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.” (NIV)

You may have to take this money out of a savings account or out of funds saved for another purpose.

Would give. This is faith promise giving. Go before God and tell Him that out of whatever unexpected increase you receive, you will give to Him. It is between you and God how much this amount will be.

Eph 3:20. “Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us.” If you follow these three principles, you will be blessed. Try it and see!

My household income is inconsistent. How do I know how much to give?

One alternative: Give whenever you get paid as a proportionate amount of your paycheck.

Another alternative: Make an estimate of what you plan to earn during the year, and give weekly based on that estimated amount.

Giving on a regular basis is best because it will remind you every week where your resources come from. This way of giving is a weekly recognition of God’s ownership and provision.

What do you do when you and your spouse disagree in the area of giving?

This is a common area of disagreement.

Communication is the key.

God is far more interested in your relationship with your spouse than He is in your money.

If giving is going to be a barrier to your unsaved spouse to even hearing the gospel, then do not force the issue.
Eph. 5:21 “Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” (NIV) The Bible says to submit to one another. It is far more important that the husband and wife agree than how much money they are giving.

When you and your spouse disagree, you should give only at the level that you both agree upon, even if it is very little or nothing.

What do you do if you are too far in debt to give?

Many people are in a crisis situation, where they have more expenses than they have income, because of a job loss, a medical emergency, or an accident: things beyond their control.

If your expenses are greater than your income, what should you do? I Cor. 16:2 “On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income, saving it up, so that when I come, no collections will have to be made.” (NIV) This verse says to give as God has prospered you. If you are in financial trouble, it can be okay to give less. If you do reduce your tithe, make sure:

  • You have someone, such as your pastor, hold you accountable.

  • You have a plan.

  • You have someone to give you encouragement.

You should always try to give some amount, even if it is only $1, every week, as recognition that God owns it all and that you are dependent on Him and not your money to meet your needs.

Where should I give?

The Bible tells us to give to the poor, widows, orphans, missionaries, pastors, and those who minister to us.

Some questions to ask:

  1. Are all of the above areas covered?

  2. Am I giving locally, nationally, and internationally?

  3. Is the money being used wisely?

    1. Is there humility of leadership?

    2. Is there wise use of money?

    3. How do they treat their staff?

How do I develop a heart for ministry? Matt. 6:21 “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (NIV) So send your treasure first, and your heart will soon follow.

What can you tell me about storehouse giving?

Mal. 3:10a “Bring your whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house.” Storehouse giving is a principle that states that you should give your entire tithe to your local church, and let them disburse it as they see fit.

If your local church body is doing their job, they should be involved in missions, helping the poor, etc., and therefore disbursing you tithe appropriately. But, if you have a desire to give outside your local church, to a para-church organization or a missionary, for example, you cannot usually do this through your local church.

You are under the authority of your local church, and if they preach storehouse giving, you should live in obedience to your church. If you cannot live under their authority, then you should think about finding another church.

I do not believe that storehouse giving is a New Testament principle.

How do we best teach our children about money?

As an example: Give your children or grandchildren money to give away that will be their Christmas gift to you. Tell them to give the money away to someone in need, and then write a letter to you about where they gave the money away. This letter is their Christmas gift to you. This will focus their attention on someone who is in need. They look at how can I give instead of what am I going to get.

What part does gratitude play in my financial decisions?
  • God demonstrates generosity.

  • We should respond with gratitude.

  • There is not one thing that you have received here on earth that is not a gift from God.

  • Be thankful – acknowledge that everything you have is from God, and let His generosity have an impact on

  • every financial decision that you make.

Philippians 4:6
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” (NKJV)

Nancy Williams at CBN, “Giving Thanks: Your Key to Well Being”

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What are ways that you encourage a spirit of giving for your grandchildren at Christmas?

My wife and I have a suggestion for teaching generosity to your grandchildren. We do this with our own grandchildren each year at Christmas.

  • We give a set amount of money to each child about a month before Christmas.

  • They are each allowed to give this money away to someone or something that they perceive has a need.

  • We then ask them to write down for us what they did with the money, and what that meant to them.

We have been amazed at how many different opportunities God has provided for each grandchild to see a need, and to help meet that need. Making the decision themselves gives them a sense of ownership in giving. And, as an additional benefit, watching them gives Judy and I a great sense of joy as they develop a spirit of giving.

Matthew 6:19-21
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (NIV)

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What is the best gift you ever gave your children at Christmastime?

We had a tradition as our five children were growing up. I gave each of my children a list of things we could do together, such as going on a business trip with me, going shopping, shooting free throws, or playing golf. Each list was customized for the children, to meet their special interests. But the underlying point was to be able to spend time with each child individually.

Many of you may have limited resources, but even if you do not, your children will treasure the gift of your time. Time and money are both scarce resources, but you can almost always reprioritize your time to have a little bit more to spend with your children. Memories you share will mean a lot to them now and in the future, and your time will have a great impact on their lives.

Psalms 33:15
“He fashions their hearts individually; He considers all their works.” (NKJV)

Chuck Bentley at Crown Financial Ministries, “Extraordinary Gifts for Christmas”

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What are some ways to teach generosity to your children?

The Bible encourages and challenges us to be generous people.

As parents, we are always on the lookout for teaching times with children. A good teaching time is at family meals. Sit with your children, listen to them, talk to them, and model the behavior that you desire for them to develop.

Here are a few suggestions for how to teach your children to be generous:

  1. If you support any missionaries or ministries, pray for them together as a family.

  2. Include your children in your end of the year giving. Let your children see what the requests are that come in, and let them have input into what you give.

  3. Model generosity to your children. Let your children see you tithing at church and being generous to others.

I believe that there is no greater gift you can give your children than to teach them to have a generous spirit.

Isaiah 32:8 (NLT)
“But generous people plan to do what is generous, and they stand firm in their generosity.”

John 4:10 (MSG)
“Jesus answered, "If you knew the generosity of God and who I am, you would be asking me for a drink, and I would give you fresh, living water."

2 Corinthians 8:2 (NLT)
“They are being tested by many troubles, and they are very poor. But they are also filled with abundant joy, which has overflowed in rich generosity.”

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Short Term Giving

In my opinion, giving is the first priority short-term bucket. Why? Because I believe that giving has the most potential to free us financially, spiritually, and emotionally. As you and I practice the spiritual discipline of giving on a regular basis, we are living out one of the most foundational principles for financial wisdom: God owns it all, and I am most a peace with my money when I can hold it with an open hand. If you are skeptical, take some time to browse the topics in this bucket and consider what a change in your giving might do for your finances.

 

Money Purpose Joy has various articles about giving.

Crosswalk speaks to living generously in tough financial times.

Generous News offers encouragement for giving.

ChristianPF.com shares Bible verses about giving.

Mint.com has good statistics about giving in the US with an interesting graphic.

Rich Christian Poor Christian discusses continuing to give while getting out of debt.

Short Term Giving

In my opinion, giving is the first priority short-term bucket. Why? Because I believe that giving has the most potential to free us financially, spiritually, and emotionally. As you and I practice the spiritual discipline of giving on a regular basis, we are living out one of the most foundational principles for financial wisdom: God owns it all, and I am most a peace with my money when I can hold it with an open hand. If you are skeptical, take some time to browse the topics in this bucket and consider what a change in your giving might do for your finances.

Genesis 28:20-22
Then Jacob made a vow, saying, “If God will be with me and will keep me on this journey that I take, and will give me food to eat and garments to wear, and I return to my father’s house in safety, then the Lord will be my God. And this stone, which I have set up as a pillar, will be God’s house; and of all that Thou dost give me I will surely give a tenth to Thee. (NASB)

Exodus 34:26a
You shall bring the very first of the first fruits of your soil into the house of the Lord your God. (NASB)

Deuteronomy 14:22-23
You shall surely tithe all the produce from what you sow, which comes out of the field every year. And you shall eat in the presence of the Lord your God, at the place where He chooses to establish His name, the tithe of your grain, your new wine, your oil, and the firstborn of your herd and your flock, in order that your may learn to fear the Lord your God always. (NASB)

Deuteronomy 14:28-29
At the end of every third year you shall bring out the tithe of your produce in that year, and shall deposit it in your town. And the Levite, because he has no portion or inheritance among you, and the alien, the orphan and the widow who are in your town, shall come and eat and be satisfied, in order that the Lord your God may bless you in all the work of your hand which you do. (NASB)

Deuteronomy 15:10
You shall generously give to him, and your heart shall not be grieved when you give to him, because for this thing the Lord your God will bless you in all your work and in all your undertakings. (NASB)

Deuteronomy 24:19
When you reap your harvest in your field and have forgotten a sheaf in the field, you shall not go back and get it; it shall be for the alien, for the orphan, and for the widow, in order that the Lord your God may bless you in all the work of your hands. (NASB)

I Chronicles 29:9
The people rejoiced because they had offered so willingly, for they made their offering to the Lord with a whole heart, and King David also rejoiced greatly. (NASB)

Proverbs 3:9-10
Honor the Lord from your wealth, and from the first of all your produce; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine. (NASB)

Proverbs 11:24-25
There is one who scatters, yet increases all the more, and there is one who withholds what is justly due, but it results only in want. The generous man will be prosperous, and he who waters will himself be watered. (NASB)

Proverbs 22:9
He who is generous will be blessed, for he gives some of his food to the poor. (NASB)

Proverbs 28:22
A stingy man is eager to get rich and is unaware that poverty awaits him. (NIV)

Proverbs 28:27
He who gives to the poor will never want, but he who shuts his eyes will have many curses. (NASB)

Ezekiel 44:30
And the first of all the first fruits of every kind and every contribution of every kind, from all your contributions, shall be for the priests; you shall also give to the priest the first of your dough to cause a blessing to rest on your house. (NASB)

Malachi 3:8-10
“Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me! But you say, ‘How have we robbed Thee?’ In tithes and offerings. You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing Me, the whole nation of you! Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now on this,” says the Lord of hosts, “if I will not open for you the windows of heaven, and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows.” (NASB)

Matthew 5:42
Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you. (NASB)

Matthew 6:3-4
But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing that your alms may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will repay you. (NASB)

Matthew 23:23
Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law; justice and mercy and faithfulness; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others. (NASB)

Mark 12:41-44
And He sat down opposite the treasury, and began observing how the multitude were putting money into the treasury; and many rich people were putting in large sums. And a poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which amount to a cent. And calling His disciples to Him, He said to them, “Truly I say to you, this poor widow has put in more than all the contributors to the treasury; for they all put in out of their surplus, but she, out of her poverty, put in all she owned, all she had to live on.” (NASB)

Luke 3:11
And he would answer and say to them, “Let the man who has two tunics share with him who has none; and let him who has food do likewise.” (NASB)

Luke 6:30
“Give to everyone who asks of you, and whoever takes away what is yours, do not demand it back.” (NASB)

Luke 6:35
“But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men.” (NASB)

Luke 6:38
“Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, they will pour into your lap. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.” (NASB)

Luke 11:42
“But woe to you Pharisees! For you pay tithe of mint and rue and every kind of garden herb, and yet disregard justice and the love of God; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others.” (NASB)

Acts 20:35
In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (NASB)

Romans 12:8
. . . he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness. (NASB)

I Corinthians 16:2
On the first day of every week let each one of you put aside and save, as he may prosper, that no collections be made when I come. (NASB)

II Corinthians 8:3-5
For I testify that according to their ability, and beyond their ability they gave of their own accord, begging us with much entreaty for the favor of participation in the support of the saints, and this, not as we had expected, but they first gave themselves to the Lord and to us by the will of God. (NASB)

II Corinthians 9:10-15
Now He who supplies seed to sower and bread for food, will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness; you will be enriched in everything for all liberality, which through us is producing thanksgiving to God. For the ministry of this service is not only fully supplying the needs of the saints, but is also overflowing through many thanksgivings to God. Because of the proof given by this ministry they will glorify God for your obedience to your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for the liberality of your contribution to them and to all, while they also, by prayer on your behalf, yearn for you because of the surpassing grace of God in you. Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift. (NASB)

II Corinthians 9:6
Now this I say, he who sows sparingly shall also reap sparingly; and he who sows bountifully shall also reap bountifully. (NASB)

II Corinthians 9:7
Let each one do just as he has purposed in his heart; not grudgingly or under compulsion; for God loves a cheerful giver. (NASB)

Galatians 6:2
Bear one another’s burdens, and thus fulfill the law of Christ. (NASB)

Galatians 6:7
Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. (NASB)

I Timothy 6:18
Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share. (NASB)

   


 

 
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