“Honor the LORD with your wealth and with the first and best part of all your income. Then your barns will be full, and your vats will overflow with fresh wine.” Proverbs 3:9-10 (NIV)
Abraham’s example teaches us how to align our hearts to experience God’s provision and blessing in our lives. The first step is to acknowledge that God is the Possessor of heaven and earth. This frees us from anxiety and fear. We can stop worrying about finances and start praying for God’s provision. Jesus told His followers,
“So My counsel is: Don’t worry about things – food, drink, and clothes. For you already have life and a body – and they are far more important than what to eat and wear. Look at the birds! They don’t worry about what to eat – they don’t need to sow or reap or store up food – for your heavenly Father feeds them. And you are far more valuable to Him than they are. Will all your worries add a single moment to your life?” Matthew 6:25-27 (TLB)
Abraham had been offered all the possessions of Sodom when he rescued the people who had been taken from the city. It would have been tempting to accept. When Abraham declined all the King of Sodom offered him, he had passed a huge test. Instead of putting his trust in man’s reward, God promised him,
“… (I will be) your abundant compensation, and your reward shall be exceedingly great.” Genesis 15:1 (Ampl)
Abraham passed the test of possessions because he acknowledged that God was the Possessor of heaven and earth and could supply all his needs according to His limitless supply! He didn’t want anyone to think it was the King of Sodom that had made him rich. That leads us to the second step Abraham took that will align our hearts, as well, for receiving God’s provision and blessing. Honor the Possessor of heaven and earth with your finances.
“Melchizedek king of Salem [later called Jerusalem] brought out bread and wine [for their nourishment]; he was the priest of God Most High, And he blessed him and said, Blessed (favored with blessings, made blissful, joyful) be Abram by God Most High, Possessor and Maker of heaven and earth, And blessed, praised, and glorified be God Most High, Who has given your foes into your hand! And [Abram] gave him a tenth of all [he had taken].” Gen. 14:18-20 (Ampl)
Instead of keeping all the possessions he won in the battle, Abraham gave a tenth of all he had taken to Melchizedek, the priest of God Most High. It was Abraham’s way of honoring God as the one who really won the victory, as the real Possessor of heaven and earth. Proverbs tells us,
“Honor the LORD with your wealth and with the first and best part of all your income. Then your barns will be full, and your vats will overflow with fresh wine.” Prov. 3:9-10 (GWT)
We honor God when we give back the first and the best part of what He has given to us, not the last and the worst part. When we do, God promises to supply all we need with increasing blessing! It’s a promise with a premise. Malachi 3:10 puts it like this:
“‘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 (NLT)
Just like Abraham, we have the opportunity of honoring God with a tenth of all that He has given us. If we acknowledge that God is the Possessor of heaven and earth, we can honor the Possessor with our finances, trusting that He will provide all we need! Abraham would have God as his abundant compensation! God says,
“Your reward shall be exceedingly great.”
Imagine the Possessor and Maker of heaven and earth saying that to you! Tomorrow, we will discover the third – and most important step – to aligning our lives in order to experience the blessing and provision God promises.