Monday, July 27, 2015

Giving a Better Sacrifice - Martin Wiles

It was by faith that Abel brought a more acceptable offering to God than Cain did. Abel’s offering gave evidence that he was a righteous man. Hebrews 11:4 NLT

His outfit of choice for Sundays was typical for his generation. Dark pants, white shirt, black shoes. He sat in the same pew each Sunday. As I looked at him from my vantage point, I noticed the same thing every Sunday: a single dollar bill tucked neatly in his shirt pocket. As the offering plate was passed, he delivered his offering. 

Had he been like the widow Jesus told of who gave everything she had, I would have marveled at his generosity. But he wasn’t. His dollar didn’t represent a tithe, an offering, or even a sacrifice. I happened to know a little about his financial situation. His gift wasn’t really a sacrifice at all.

Cain’s wasn’t either. Since he was a farmer, it was natural that he would bring produce to God as an offering. Yet that was the trouble—he only brought some. Abel, on the other hand, brought several of his choice lambs to God. Blood wasn’t the issue; sacrifice was. Cain just gave some while Abel gave his best. God saw the motive and accepted Abel’s. Cain’s, he rejected. 

My sacrifices for God should be measured by his sacrifice for me. I have a son, but I wouldn’t sacrifice him for anyone, regardless of how much I might love them. God did, however, by placing his Son on a cross and then humanity’s sins on him. This was the only way he could restore the relationship. With proper motives, he made the ultimate sacrifice.

Why I give what I do is important. I give it out of appreciation. I can never repay God for what he’s done, but giving is one way I can demonstrate my love. How much I give is also crucial. Single dollars—unless they represent all I have, won’t result in God’s Kingdom work advancing at a very rapid pace. 

Proportionate giving is what God desires…a sacrifice joyfully given. God wants actions from me as well. Money won’t substitute for actions that involve love and sacrifice. 

Is there a better sacrifice you could give God? 

Prayer: Father, we give our best to You because You’ve given Your best to us. 


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