More on Giving

A while back, I wrote a post about Jesus’ command to “Give to everyone who asks of you” (Luke 6:30, NASB).

A little while later, my wife wrote an excellent post on her blog about “Blessings and Thankfulness.”

And just recently, I read a great article by Brant of Air1 on being reckless with our giving.

Well, all that seems to have conspired together recently and dragged me into quite an extended debate on Facebook about the topic of giving and exactly what is required.

There seems to be a lot of misunderstandings going around, based largely on my own post. Perhaps I did not word things clearly enough. In any case, I’m going to try to clarify.

I did not mean to be misleading, and if I was, I apologize.

First, I made the following statement:

It’s perfectly straightforward, requiring no level of hermeneutical skill to interpret and understand.

By this statement, I did not mean that we should ignore good hermeneutics. I simply meant that Jesus really did mean what he seems to have meant and that good hermeneutics will back that up.

Some still disagree with me on this, and that’s okay. It’s not my intention to convince everyone; I only want to convey what I believe to be true from the Scriptures.

Second, I did not say that one has to always give money. Jesus did not say what to give. He simply said “give.” In many cases, our time and attention may be more important than money.

Third, I did not say how much to give. Obviously, if someone asks for a million dollars, we are not obligated to do so. Again, the point is simply that we do need to give whatever we can.

To sum this all up, Jesus made it very clear that his followers are to give generously and sacrificially. We need to be walking in the Spirit so that we may allow him to show us the specifics of what that giving should look like in each individual circumstance.

My point was simply that we do not have the right to turn a blind eye to anyone. We have no excuse to ignore a person who asks for help. We must offer them something. And we must do it in love.

Many times that will mean giving money. Many times it will not.