Exodus 25: Give With the Right Attitude
Exodus 25 begins the conversation between God and Moses that was mentioned in the previous chapter. While they mostly talk about how to build the Ark as a resting place for the Ten Commandments and the importance of the mercy seat, I was drawn in by a verse before this entire conversation.
Exo 25:2 Speak unto the children of Israel, that they bring me an offering: of every man that giveth it willingly with his heart ye shall take my offering.
God wanted the people to bring offerings, but He mandated that they do it with the right attitude. That message is still incredibly relevant today and was reinforced numerous times throughout scripture.
2Co 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
Luk 21:1 And he looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury.
Luk 21:2 And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites.
Luk 21:3 And he said, Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all:
Luk 21:4 For all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had.
These are just two examples that emphasize the fact that it doesn’t really matter if we give when our motives are not appropriate. In the first passage, we’re told not to give out of a feeling of necessity. God wants us to give because we want to rather than we feel like we ought to.
Going along with that idea, we shouldn’t give just as a gesture. The rich men were throwing a lot of money into the offering plate, but Jesus said that the poor woman who only gave a very little bit of money gave more than the rest of them. From a financial perspective, that doesn’t make sense, but Jesus recognized that this was all she could give. The rich men had a lot more at home, but this lady had made a large sacrifice for the betterment of others. Her giving was more than just a gesture; it was truly a sacrifice that she wanted to make.
I think that this lesson can be extended to any the situation where we have the opportunity to give to other people. Giving in and of itself is a fabulous activity, but the motivation needs to be right.