This article may upset some people. Money can be a touchy subject, even when talking about giving to poor people. When you combine the subject of money with religious feelings, there can be conflict.
I saw a commercial on television that really bothered me and I wondered why it was so disturbing to me. Perhaps you’ve seen it, or similar commercials, or even heard a message like that from a pulpit. I finally figured out what was upsetting me.
The message was intended to make me feel guilty if I didn’t give money to help poor people. Now I am in highly in favor of helping people, but let’s stop for just a minute to consider those living in poverty.
First of all, God never intended for human beings to live in poverty. The very first recorded words in the Bible from God to man were, “Be fruitful. ” It was not, and still is not the will of God for people to be poor and have lack. Secondly, Jesus Christ said that the poor will always be here. So, any talk of eliminating poverty from the face of the earth is to say that Jesus lied.
Now there are people all over the world in need of help. No one can deny that. But why do some religious people try to make you feel guilty if you don’t give to help the needy? That is a violation of the principle of giving. The Bible says that we ought to give, not grudgingly or of necessity, because God loves a cheerful giver. You cannot give cheerfully if you are made to feel guilty about it.
In my opinion, making someone feel guilty so that they will give you their money is stealing. Your feelings are being manipulated; you are being forced to give your money. Thievery!
And have you ever wondered why is there so little preached about the benefits of giving? God has promised that as you give, He will fill your barns or storehouses with plenty. He has promised that you would have abundance. He has even promised that He would open to you the windows of heaven and that He would pour you out a blessing that you would not even be able to receive! The principle that God set up is that of giving, and receiving.
When was the last time you heard someone ask for money and also remind you of the blessings that you should expect to receive back? Rare isn’t it? Instead, they want to take your money and not even tell you that you are supposed to expect to receive back. If people do not know that they are supposed to receive back, they will not be looking for it or expecting it. If you think that there is no fruit on a tree to pick and eat, you wouldn’t even consider going over to the tree to look. So, good, sincere, God loving people are robbed again, this time from the blessings they should be receiving back for their giving.
Instead of making people feel guilty about what they have, and guilty about the lack others have, why not teach people about the abundance God has promised? Why not teach people how to prosper? The Bible says that God wishes above all things that you prosper and be in health. Why not teach people the principles of prosperity that are clearly defined in the Bible?
Someone may shame you into giving up fifty or a hundred dollars. But think of what could happen if instead, they taught you how to prosper. What would happen if your income increased by 20, 30, or even 50 thousand dollars a year? Wouldn’t you have a lot more to give to help people in need? And you could give to help them, not grudgingly, but cheerfully. It is not a sin to be wealthy. Money is not evil. It is the love of money that is the root of all evil.
Christians need to believe God’s promises of abundance and operate the principles of prosperity. Then their lives will be blessed and abundant and they will have plenty to give to those in need.
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