Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. ~Acts 3:6
Marquis de Lafayette was a French officer who provided invaluable assistance to George Washington and the struggling American army. After the war was over, he returned to France and resumed his life as a farmer of many estates. In 1783, the harvest was a terrible one, and there were many who suffered as a result. Lafayette’s farms were unaffected by the devastating crop failures. One of his workers offered what seemed to be good advice to Lafayette, “The bad harvest has raised the price of wheat. This is the time to sell.” After thinking about the hungry peasants in the surrounding villages, Lafayette disagreed and said, “No, this is the time to give.”
Source: Lesson Commentary, September 2008-August 2009, Daniel Lioy
Our personal nature is to keep, and not to give. Peter was a poor Baptist preacher. After Pentecost, the Lord changed him in many ways, including in his giving. He told a poor beggar, “Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee.” Peter’s answer to this man speaks volumes to us about the importance of giving.
There is the rule in giving.
Jesus said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” The greatest example of giving was when God gave His only begotten Son as the supreme sacrifice for the sins of the world. Whenever we give, it is for the purpose of helping someone else in need. Giving is an investment in the work of the Lord. Giving seeks to enrich the life of others through our generous participation. Giving must be with “no holds barred.” We never give with the expectation of getting something back in return. We give with the expectation to be a blessing. You are always more blessed from giving than you are from receiving.
There is the reflection in giving.
We are most like God when we give. God gave us His Son to die for our sins. There was no stipulation in God’s giving. Our Christianity cannot grow until we practice giving. The mind of the Christian is to be ready to give at a moment’s notice. We should never come to church with the thought that we will not give. This includes our offerings, but also includes our time and service.
There is the risk in giving.
We must give out of faith and love, and not out of fear and reservation. We should never give with the thought, “What will I get out of this?” Our giving must take into account “such as I have give I thee.” We may not see the immediate result. We might be criticized from the doubters that our giving is in vain. We might have to give up some luxury. We might have to work extra hours in order to give. Be willing to take a risk in your giving.
There is the responsibility in giving.
We must give the sinner Jesus! We must give the hungry man the Bread of Life! We must give of our best to the Master! We must do our giving while we are living. Peter did not have money, but what he did have would change this man’s life. Our giving should always have the long-term impact in someone else’s life in mind.
Don’t look at what you don’t have: always remember what you do have! God has more than blessed us. We should be ready to respond to any need by saying, “Such as I have give I thee.”
Have a giving-inspired God morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Psalm 17-20