Most people think that God wants our money.
Let’s clear that up right now.
God does not want our money.
He does not need us to tithe to Him, make offerings to Him, or give Him gold and silver (or Dollars and Euros). Why not?
Because according to Haggai 2:8, it all belongs to Him anyway. From the pennies in our pockets to all the gold in Fort Knox, God owns it all.
But if this Scripture on finances tells us what God owns all the gold and silver anyway, why do we hear so much in sermons and newsletters about “giving of our tithes and offerings to God”? I will deal answer this in more detail when we look at other Scriptures on Finances but let me briefly summarize the Biblical theology of money.
- As we have just seen, all money belongs to God.
- God gives some of His wealth to each one of us for our use.
- Out of gratitude and thanksgiving for what He has given to us, we return some of it to Him.
But how do we give to God?
Has anyone ever actually given money to God? I mean literally. When you “give to God” do you actually take a $20 bill out of your wallet, and place it directly into the hand of God?
Of course not! When we “Give to God” nobody actually “gives to God.”
So instead, when we talk about “giving to God” what we actually mean is giving money to other people so that the work of God on earth can be accomplished either in or through that person’s life.
This is why it is so important to know who we are giving our money to. We must ask if the money we give will be best used for kingdom purposes by giving it to them, or if there might be a better person or ministry to give that money to instead.
Giving Money to the Temple
So what were they collecting money for in Haggai 2?
In this Scripture, God tells the prophet that a new Temple will be built which will be more glorious than the previous temple that had been destroyed. Haggai is skeptical because there is no way they can raise the funds necessary for that kind of building. It is too expensive. But God tells Haggai, “Don’t worry about the cost. All the gold and silver are mine.”
Does this mean that we have justification to build luxurious and expensive church buildings today? Not necessarily. Today, believers in Jesus Christ are the Temple of God (Eph 2:21). There is no physical structure which God needs or requires for us to worship and serve Him. So if money is to be collected and spent on the “Temple” it should be collected and spent on meeting the needs of believers and others the community. Is a building sometimes needed for this? Yes, but only if the construction and owning of the building will better help us serve and love others.
So how are you spending your money today? How might you “give your money to God” today by loving and serving others?
Scriptural Books on Finances
Here are some helpful books for learning more about what Scripture teaches on the topic of finances and money. Click on a book below to see pricing and reviews.