When I was about six years old I tried stealing fishing weights from the sporting goods store. I had a pocket full of them until my dad stopped me dead in my tracks. Boy, was I in trouble!
I was pretty disappointed. I really wanted those fishing weights. The funny thing is no one had to teach me to steal and to take for myself. It just came naturally.
Because of our sinful nature, it’s true for all of us. Selfishness and greed can come pretty easily. You don’t even have to be a kid. Adults can struggle with this, too. It’s the “mine mentality.”
That’s why we need God’s word to teach us the opposite of taking, which is generosity.
Here are five key verses about generosity that teach us to be givers:
1. 1 Chronicles 29:14 (NIV)
“But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.”
It’s always a good start to remember that everything belongs to God. This verse teaches us that everything we have comes from his hand.
2. Psalm 37:21 (NLT)
“The wicked borrow and never repay, but the godly are generous givers.”
When you’re a giver it marks you as a godly person. It sets you apart from the takers. People who follow Jesus give.
3. Proverbs 11:25 (NIV)
“A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.”
There will be thousands of books sold and read this year on the keys to prosperity and wealth. This verse gives us the key in one sentence.
4. 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 (NIV)
“Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”
We love it when people give more than expected. What you might not know is God loves it, too. He wants us to cheerfully give. God never blesses stinginess!
5. 1 Timothy 6:17-19 (NIV)
“Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.”
Too many times we base our generosity off of our feelings instead of obedience. Instead, we should base it off of scripture. This verse reminds us that generosity is a command from God and not a suggestion.