The Ten Commandments of Giving

dr-roy-w-lawson

Dr. Roy W. Lawson (1932-2014) is fondly remembered by the constituency of The Fellowship of Evangelical Baptist Churches in Canada (FEBCC), the family of Christians through which he faithfully served God throughout his life.

Some years ago, Dr. Lawson presented a brief paper on giving for the leaders of a church responsible for preparing a church budget. He entitled it “The Ten Commandments of Giving.”

I first saw this paper in a weekly email  to pastors and leaders of the FEBCC from Steven Jones, President of the FEBCC . These are excellent principles concerning how Christians should approach the spiritual discipline of financial giving. Dr. Lawson’s Ten Commandments are reprinted here by the kind permission of Steven Jones.

The Ten Commandments of Giving

Commandment #1: Percentage Giving

“‘I am the Lord, and I do not change. That is why you descendants of Jacob are not already completely destroyed. Ever since the days of your ancestors, you have scorned my laws and failed to obey them. Now return to me, and I will return to you, says the Lord Almighty.’ But you ask, ‘What do you mean? When did we ever cheat you?’ ‘You have cheated me of the tithes and offering due to me.’” (Malachi 3:6-8)

Two great mistakes we make regarding percentage giving:

1. We have given people the idea that if you give a tenth everything else will be taken care of. God is not obligated to bless poor management.

2. We have led people in a direction as to the purpose of their giving that is incorrect. “If everyone tithed we would never have a need.” The reason God asked man to give is the very same reason He put the tree in the garden: man needs a constant reminder that God is in authority over him.

Commandment #2: Generosity Giving

“If you give, you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full measure, pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, and running over. Whatever measure you use in giving – large or small – it will be used to measure what is given back to you.” (Luke 6:38)

A lot of people have taken this principle and abused it. It is not just giving or the size of your giving, it is the condition of your heart. We tend to be cheap with God.

Commandment #3: Faith Giving

“Tell those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which will soon be gone. But their trust should be in the living God, who richly gives us all we need for enjoyment.” (1 Timothy 6:17)

It takes much more faith to give what you have than to give what you do not have.

Commandment #4: Grace Giving

“Remember this – a farmer who plants only a few seed will get a small crop, but the one who plants generously will get a generous crop.” (2 Corinthians 9:6)

When you give to God, by His grace, He returns it. So you have sufficient for yourself and enough to give again.

Commandment #5: Giving in Appreciation

“So two good things will happen – the needs of the Christians in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanksgiving to God. You will be glorifying God through your generous gifts. For your generosity to them will prove that you are obedient to the Good News of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 9:12-13)

Commandment #6: Systematic Giving

On every Lord’s Day, each of you should put aside some amount of money in relation to what you have earned and save it for this offering. Don’t wait until I get there and then try to collect it all at once.” (1 Corinthians 16:2)

We tend to look for the big gift, but the need is met by a multiplicity of people being systematic.

Commandment #7: All-inclusive Giving

“On every Lord’s Day, each of you should put aside some amount of money in relation to what you have earned and save it for this offering. Don’t wait until I get there and then try to collect it all at once.” (1 Corinthians 16:2)

Every member is important and we should do whatever we can to get everyone on our membership list to be a systematic giver.

Commandment #8: Blessed Giving

“On every Lord’s Day, each of you should put aside some amount of money in relation to what you have earned and save it for this offering. Don’t wait until I get there and then try to collect it all at once.” (1 Corinthians 16:2)

We give as God has blessed us. One of the reasons we are not blessed is because we might not be giving.

Commandment #9: Faithful Giving

“On every Lord’s Day, each of you should put aside some amount of money in relation to what you have earned and save it for this offering. Don’t wait until I get there and then try to collect it all at once.” (1 Corinthians 16:2)

Do not procrastinate your giving. Everybody needs to be systematic, giving as God has blessed them and not waiting to give someday.

Commandment #10: Responsible Giving

“When I come I will write letters of recommendation for the messengers you choose to deliver your gift to Jerusalem. And if it seems appropriate for me also to go along, then we can travel together.” (1 Corinthians 16:3-4)

“We want to avoid any criticism of the way we administer this gift. We are taking pains to do what is right not only in the eyes of the Lord but also in the eyes of men.” (2 Corinthians 8:20-21)

About David Daniels

Evangelical Baptist Pastor. Reformed Soteriology. Enjoy freelance writing & reviewing.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.