Don’t Give


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

This verse is a one of the favorite go-to verses when the subject is financial giving. In fact, I’ve never heard it used in any other context. I have two problems with that application of this verse.

First, there is no reason to limit this verse to financial giving. The context of the passage in which this is written has nothing to do with money. Yes, verse 34 discusses lending, but the verses following have nothing to say about money.

So why limit this to money? Giving can be not only money but also time, talents, and other personal resources. We’re doing this verse a serious disservice when used only as an application to financial giving

Second, many times the emphasis is on “it will be given to you”. Getting then becomes the reason to give. It’s like an investment. Getting is the result and should never be the reason. Where does it say if you give money you get only money or if you give time you get time? Is it possible to give time to a relationship and receive the satisfaction of see the other person walk closed to God? Can’t you give money to a church building project and receive joy seeing the impact a new building can have on the community?

Let’s ask ourselves what is our reason for giving whether it is money or anything else.

Giving of anything should never be treated like some kind of spiritual savings account that pays interest in this life. Giving should always be solely out of gratitude for what God has already done and continues to do for us. There are no price tags on blessings from Him. They can’t be bought.

If we give to get, we shouldn’t give at all. He freely gives. We should too. No strings attached.


3 thoughts on “Don’t Give

  1. I so agree. I’ve heard it as the “return” is financial. I don’t agree but it could be. It should never be used in the context to receive back money. God blesses in many ways. I’m out on a limb here, but pastors should never use this as a way “to have money come into the treasury”. If that’s why people give, then they may be disappointed. Money should be freely given, expecting nothing in return. Just as we give “things” to others….don’t expect anything in return. If something is returned, we will be then be blessed and happy.

  2. I started tithing because the Holy Spirit led me to do so. My only expectation was that God would make our finances work out, because we did not have 10% to give if we were still going to pay our bills. That was 13 years ago, and we have been all over the place financially, but God has always made it work out, in spite of many mistakes and foolish decisions. My husband within 3 months got a promotion and a 40% raise. This is not why we tithed. This was a blessing bestowed on us that we did not deserve. But God provided for our needs. Our kids have gone to Christian school K-8. Our income has tripled in that 13 years. However, we are not getting rich. It’s not a prosperity gospel kind of thing. Our needs have been met. We have been blessed. Tithing is a blessing. I encourage anyone to step out in faith and just do it! It’s worth it just to see what God will do.

    • Jen, thanks for your comments. You began tithing for exactly the right reason, not for a huge financial blessing, but to put God in control. What a great 13 years of trust on your part. Thanks for the reminder that tithing is a blessing.

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