Financial Newsletter – February 2004 Issue 2
Sharing and Encouragement “Money Offering”
by Rev. Puong-Ong Lau (Translated by FuXia Wang)
Someone said: ?Being drowned and being thirsted to death is two different ways of death, however, water is the common reason which caused them to death. One died of too much water and the other died of insufficient water. The same with the situation of money? To be honest, money can do a man good and bad as well. Making good use of it can motivate you to be mature; on the contrary, it can become a roadblock to your life. What is your attitude towards the money? How do you use it? This is what the Lord is very concerned about. When Jesus was on the earth, he taught 38 parables, 16 of them are about money. What he is concerned about is the relationship between our life and money instead of the money itself.
From the teaching of the Bible, all that we need comes from God. Our ability to earn money comes form God. Therefore, we should offer the tithing with a thankful and reverent heart for God. ?Be sure to set aside a tenth of all that your fields produce each year. Eat the tithe of your grain, new wine and oil, and the firstborn of your herds, and flocks in the presence of the Lord your God at the place he will choose as a dwelling for his Mane, so that you may learn to revere the Lord you God always.? (Deuteronomy 14:22-23) Also, God has promised in the book of Malachi: ?Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,? says the Lord Almighty, ?and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.? (Malachi 3:10) Offering a tenth of all our earnings was started from Abraham. After that, God has told Moses to make tithing a law. In the New Testament, Jesus reaffirms the importance of tithing (Matthew 23:23). There is no doubt that tithing is a support to the ministry of the church; however, the true purpose of tithing helps us learn to revere the Lord our God. God has promised to give the wisdom to those who reveres God and bless them. Let us encourage one another to fulfill tithing all together.
Besides tithing, the Bible also teaches the believers to make offering in many other things, such as thanksgiving offering for birthday, a marriage, a new born baby; also to make offering for the church building, offering for the people suffering the disaster, etc. These are all our responses out of being carried by the Holy Spirit, our abilities and faith. At present, our church is in the urgent need of the offering for the church building. The church is calling everyone to try our best from today to make an offering for the church building in addition to the tithing: to offering your prayers and money for the church building. In the past, God has used our church to fulfill his mission. Today, God has given us the same mission and he asked our church to expand his kingdom to bring more people to his kingdom. Therefore, we need to build our own Chinese church to glorify his name. We thank God and Wesley Foundation and our mother church for their consistent support in providing the meeting place for us. With the development of the ministry of the church, the meeting place is not meeting our need. The coworkers have the same vision that we need to build the church building for the name of our Lord. This is a great challenge, we need the involvement and commitment of everybody. ??but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal?? (Matthew 6:20) What God has done through the church is beyond the influence over this generation till towards the eternity. Therefore, what you offer for the church building is to store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, which has eternal value. I definitely believe that with your offering to church building, your heart will be drawn closer to God, your relationship with God will get better, your concern for the church will be more. For our Lord Jesus said : ? for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.? (Matthew 6:21)