Now we come to another vital section of this third chapter.
3:9-10 "Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase. 10 So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine." The word translated as substance has the sense of wealth or riches. The idea is to honor the Lord financially. The firstfruits of our increase refers to the first percentage of our income. Comparing Scripture with Scripture, we understand that the first percentage of our increase is the tithe. Moreover, we are commanded to honor the Lord with the first portion of our income. That means that our giving to Him should take precedence and priority over all other financial obligations. Truly, tithing is seeking first the kingdom of God. The practical outworking of it all is that the first check we write against our paycheck ought to be our tithe. It is honoring the Lord with the firstfruits. This money is given to the local church, in order to pay for the ministry of the church. Giving has always been a significant part of the believer's worship.
When we choose to obey the Lord in the giving of our substance, Proverbs 3:10 promises, "So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine." The analogy is of a farmer whose crops and produce are abundant. The thought is of prosperity. The greater truth is that God will bless those who honor Him financially first. As we honor the Lord first with our tithes and offerings, He has promised to honor us. I Samuel 2:30 says, "...them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed."
I do not give to get, I give to obey and to worship. However, I get, because I give! Luke 6:38, "Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom...." Some people say, "I can't afford to tithe," while I believe, I can't afford to not tithe.
May God bless you this weekend as you worship the Lord in a good Bible preaching church! And, don't forget to give!
Your Friend and His,