Solomon was the richest, wisest man in the world. He has taught us about sex, words, anger, parenting, and now wealth. Proverbs 3:9-10 says, “Honor the Lord with your possessions, and with the firstfruits of all your increase; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.” As we look at what Solomon says about wealth, we must remember that money is not our provider. God is.
The Purpose of Living
The beginning of verse 9 says, “Honor the Lord.” Why did God put you here? Why do you get up every morning? The ultimate purpose in life is to honor the Lord. This should be the motive for everything we do. We honor God when we crown Him Lord and we give Him the rightful place in our lives. 1 Samuel 2:30 says, “Therefore, this is the declaration of the Lord, the God of Israel…those who honor me I will honor, but those who despise me will be disgraced.” There is more to life than wealth accumulation. God designed us to be generous, not hoarders. Life is not about being rich, but being enriched!
The Priority of Tithing
Generosity is usually a topic we’d rather avoid. Whenever someone talks about tithing and giving, our flesh cringes. David Jeremiah said, “Generosity is not about what’s in your bank account—it’s about what’s in your heart.” Jesus said, “Where your treasure is, your heart will be also.” Notice the words “possessions” and “firstfruits” in verse 9. Firstfruits represents the whole. Tithe literally means first tenth, the first 10%. Not leftovers. Cain and Abel brought offerings to God. God accepted Abel’s and rejected Cain’s. Abel brought the firstborn. Cain brought some of his crops, not the firstfruits.
Some people argue saying tithing is Old Testament, under the law, and you do not have to tithe under grace. The fact is tithing is found in the Bible hundreds of years before the law was given. Before the Law of Moses, Abraham tithed to Melchizedek. It was an act of love before it was an act of law. Abraham and Jacob gave to the Lord when they worshipped. In Matthew 23:23 Jesus gave a list of things we ought to do and tithe is one of them. The tithe is the Lord’s . You can’t give what is not yours. Tithing is just a plan to get started. “Possessions” make up your 90%. Possessions are tools God gives us to be generous. You don’t have to be rich to be generous. The widow who gave two mites gave the most.
The Practice of Saving
“So your barns will be filled with plenty….” Do you have a barn? A bank account? Savings? Retirement? Do you want to give, but can’t because you don’t have it? It’s so important to remember the 10-10-80 rule. Get your life in order by tithing 10%, saving 10%, and living off 80%. Whatever you earn, spend less! Spending more than you earn, or all that you earn, causes unbelievable stress. There is no pressure like financial pressure. Learn to save money. You need an emergency fund. Save for a rainy day. Proverbs 22:7 says, “The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.” The Bible never says it is wrong to borrow money. Most would never have a house or a car without debt. But to the extent you borrow, you become a slave. We don’t need more stuff. We need more contentment!
The Promise of Blessing
Verse 10 says, “So your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow….” God wants your life to be full and overflowing! Have you ever heard someone say, “I got back so much more than I gave”? Don’t let the devil cause you to doubt or question your giving! You are not crazy! It is worth it! Lives are being changed for eternity through your generosity. We develop a habit of generosity in the same way we develop any good habit. Generosity isn’t a one-and-done situation. It’s a lifestyle. Billy Graham said, “If a person gets his attitude toward money straight, it will help straighten out almost every other area in his life.” Decide today to honor the Lord with your finances. You will not regret it!