In Genesis I’m seeing God as the great lover. The one who gives vision and provision. The one who blesses His kids for their fulfillment. The one who desires a love reciprocation.
I’m seeing, through Abel and Abraham, that Father wants us to love him deeply and sincerely. But how do we love Him? How can we affirm our love for the Lord? It seems clear, even through natural illustration, we love through giving. We love by reciprocating in some manner with things that are precious to us. If we give to God (or another person as well) something valuable, something precious, it affirms that He is more valuable (supreme of worth) than the thing given up.
What’s amazing is that we receive from Him the very blessings we choose to give up. If he didn’t give us things that were precious to us we’d have nothing to reciprocate. So, when dreams come to pass, when provision comes, when blessing comes we have something in our hand – something dear to us.
Our love for Him is affirmed and confirmed through the expense, through the sacrifice, through the giving up of something that could be spent on me and instead spending it on Him. “…And this is love, that we lay down our lives for our friend.” (1 John 3:16)
Though it’s changed a bit from the early days of Abel and Abraham, the foundation of tithing remains the same: we bring Him a costly sacrifice – from our increase – and we place it on an altar, given to Him, as a sweet aroma. Today we don’t bring the same types of sacrifices as they did in the early days of covenant. Instead, we bring a tenth part of the reward of our crops, our labor, our investments to the place where He has placed His name – the place where He’s called us to grow and flourish. This is a picture of us choosing to “Love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.”
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