Did you Ever Cheat God?

Scripture: Malachi 3.  

OBSERVATION
(What is God saying here?)

Malachi 3:8-12 (NLT)

8 “Should people cheat God? Yet you have cheated me! “But you ask, ‘What do you mean? When did we ever cheat you?’ “You have cheated me of the tithes and offerings due to me.

9 You are under a curse, for your whole nation has been cheating me.

10 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!

11 Your crops will be abundant, for I will guard them from insects and disease. Your grapes will not fall from the vine before they are ripe,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies.

12 “Then all nations will call you blessed, for your land will be such a delight,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies.

APPLICATION
(How Can I apply what God is saying here to my circumstances today?)

“Did you ever cheat God?” – I am sure that most of us would respond ‘No, of course not’ to this question. Unfortunately we will then have two reasons to get before the altar and beg forgiveness, cheating and lying! Friends, God has blessed us with everything that we have and He continues to bless us each and every day with the good health to enjoy His bounty; a job to earn money to support our families; opportunities to share the good news of Jesus in response to all He did for us. Having blessed us so wonderfully, why would we then cheat God by holding back on what we are obligated to give? We are taught that at least 10% of our income is due to God. Many of us will reason away that this means 10% of your net check. God expects us to give Him the first of our fruits, meaning right off the top. Example: if I earn $500, and $150 is taken out for taxes and $100 for a loan payment, I would then cash my check for the remaining $250. Some may reason that I only owe $25 in tithes. 10% of my income is $50, not $25 which is 10% of the leftovers. Would you rather see God bless you abundantly as He promises in verse 10, or would you rather that He blesses you in response to your half-hearted giving? Friends, when Jesus went to Calvary for us, He gave of himself fully and completely. He didn’t find excuses, nor did He call down thousands of angels (like He could have) to rescue Him and only partially cover the sacrifice for our sin. Our obedience to God will call down the blessings promised in verse 10: I will open the windows of Heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great that you won’t have enough room to take it in! Wouldn’t that be a tremendous expression of God’s love to us for a lost world to catch a glimpse of? Wow! God told us through the prophet Malachi, enough of the doubting, “Try it! Put me to the test!”

PRAYER
(With God’s help, what am I going to do differently today because He said it?)

Lord Jesus, I am so aware that there is little I can do in giving, that could compare to all that You gave for me. However, I pray that You will help me to always give in accordance with Your Word, and I pray that You will always prompt me to give even more in response to the awesome love You displayed for me at Calvary and to all that You shower upon me each and every day. Thank You for being such a giving, caring and loving God to me. Please touch the hearts of all that may read this devotional so that they could never be accused of ‘cheating God’ in their giving. Please help us to imitate You and be a giving people.

 

**Words underlined may be a hyperlink to a song that God laid on my heart while sharing this devotional this morning. Click it and be blessed by the song, like I was when I listened to it! …… I would be overjoyed to have the opportunity to pray with you about a need in your life that may, or may not have been highlighted by this Nugget today. Why not drop me a note and tell me about it? You may email me at:
nuggetsfromgodsword@yahoo.com
**

Author: Ed Algreen

One of God's kids expressing his understanding of God's Word and sharing how it is affecting his life! May those who read it be blessed, encouraged, and drawn closer to the Lord!

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