Greetings in the name of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
“No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. (Matthew 6:24)
People flocked around Jesus Christ, because people were amazed at His teaching, for He taught with real authority—quite unlike the teachers of religious law at the time. The people around Him tasted blessings, mercy and love from God, because Jesus truly loved them. They were poor in spirits, and hungered for God’s mercy. While they hearing the message of Jesus, their hearts were filled with God’s mercy and love, and their poor spirits were enriched by God’s blessings. Jesus personally taught about prayer, and He showed how to pray to God as He did to God, which was the Lord’s prayer – how to tell God, our Heavenly Father.
“Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be. (Matthew 6:19-21)
Yes, Jesus was right. we all stored up treasures on earth: getting up early and going to bed late in night to make money. Then, we set aside some of our money for our future, such as retirement accounts. We regularly put our money to the account for future retirement. This is really wise, and everybody should do. As a result, the retirement accounts grow. They are getting bigger every year or even every month. As the accounts grow big, our hearts are comforted by the growing accounts (i.e., our future money — growing bigger and bigger).
Jesus gave a parable: “A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops. The rich man said to himself, ‘What should I do? I don’t have room for all my crops.’ Then he said, ‘I know! I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll have room enough to store all my wheat and other goods. And I’ll sit back and say to myself, “My friend, you have enough stored away for years to come. Now take it easy! Eat, drink, and be merry!”’
“But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get everything you worked for?’
“Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.” (Luke 12:13-21)
It is true that our treasure on earth will not stay with us forever. Sadly, when we need most, the treasures that makes our hearts delight disappear or become no longer with us. When the stock market crashed in 2008, our treasures on earth were literally halved. In 2008, those who thought they were rich painfully eye-witnessed that the account values suddenly halved one day, and felt they were vulnerable because they were no longer rich. Their wealth was literally reduced down to ½ of what they had. It was just a moment that the reality of the wealth was manifested before our eyes.
In fact, what we have is not ours whether it is money in our pocket or our retirement account. When our lives come to end on earth, all of these things are irrelevant. We will leave everything including even a single penny before we go back to Our God, the Eternal Father. Even though this truth is so obvious, we tend to forget it. We live on earth as if we were here on earth forever and truly own things that we have. We get up early and toil for those. Do we really have a heavenly perspective on every moment of our lives while we are on earth as Jesus told to the people around Him in two thousand years ago? We need to lay up our treasures in heaven, and constantly remind us about the heavenly perspective and the reality of our existence on earth.
Then how to lay up our treasure in heaven? The easiest one is to give (precisely speaking return) the whole tithe to God. It might sound a new commandment, but it is not. God told the Israelites, “Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test!” (Malachi 3:10) God really wants to lavishly give out His blessings to us, but some of us misses His blessings. God says the first step is to return to God what is God’s. We think we own things on earth. It is not true. In reality, God allows for us to have things on earth, which actually belong to God. God is the creator, and he owns all things in His creation. This is the truth. Does God own ll things? Yes, all things: everything that we own and even our own lives on earth also. God’s promise of His blessing on our whole tithe is not a contract, but his generous act on us. God does not have to receive anything from us, because He owns everything. The whole tithe is a kind of a teaching moment to our kids as earthly parents constantly do in love to their children. God really wants to know the truth, and for us live out our lives in His Godly principle, and enjoy His lavishly pouring blessings on us.
Yes, our whole tithe is our recognition to God about God’s ownership on our lives as well as all things that we own. If we give our whole tithe, then do we do all things to God. In other words, dose our whole tithe completely relieve us from our duties to God on earth od? No, not really. Why? We owe to God also. What? We owe to God. Yes, we do. We believers unfairly received our salvation through Jesus Christ, and we got God’s assurance on our salvation too. Here is why. In short, we are sinful, and we sinned a lot. Really sinned a lot. Unfortunately, the wage of our sins is death. Bible tells the wage of sins is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:23). This verse means this. We have to die due to our sins, but Jesus Christ died for us on the cross. As a result, the wage of our sins has been paid by Jesus Christ, we are released from the eternal bondage of our sins. The cross is the proof from God, and it is our assurance on our eternal life without being eternally condemned by our own sins. Then what we should say to God? We should say we are debtors. We are in debt to God for forgiving our sins. Then how big is the debt? The above rich fool’s parable explains although we own the whole world, it is nothing if God calls us tonight. The whole world vs our own life. Which is more valuable to us? Of course, our life is. Our life is much more valuable than anything on earth. Therefore, the answer is simple. The size of our debt to God is bigger than the whole world that we see and touch. We are infinitely in-debt to God. Therefore, God gave His only begotten son to save us, and everyone who believes this beautiful salvation message in Jesus will not perish but have eternal life.
How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog–it’s here a little while, then it’s gone. (James 4:14)