As a preacher the moment you tell a church congregation to turn to Malachi 3:7 they know you are going to talk about tithing. I mean, after all, that is the go-to when it comes to tithing and giving to the church. The truth is that the verses and chapter go much deeper than money. What Malachi is saying goes much deeper than just tithing and giving, but it goes to the heart of those that have backslid on God. You see Malachi is dealing with a nation that has turned its back on God. Now unlike those before them they were still doing a lot of the right things, and they had a hard understanding why Malachi was getting on their case. I mean they were going through the motion of serving God, which was better than many of their forefathers. Malachi said you have to return to God because there is something missing.
In verse six Malachi lets them know that the only reason that God has not wiped them off the planet is the promise that He made to their father, Jacob. Malachi says, but if you return to God, then God will return to you. What a powerful moment to know that even when we mess up God is still calling us back and letting us know if we will come back to Him, He will return to us. I mean I do not know about you, but I have needed the mercy of God over and over in my life. There have been times that I messed up, and if God had done what I deserved, then He would have thrown me away, but because of His mercy, He called me back to Him. Malachi says God will do this for you, but the people were a lot like people today in that they could not see where they had messed up. I mean they thought they were living a pretty good life and they did not see where they needed to return to God. So Malachi gives them an example of how they had fallen away from God.
You see the tithes and offering of the chapter was nothing more than an example of a broader issue that the people had, and that was that they were not given God what He commanded. So many times we think that if we give God anything that it is ok, and therefore we are right with God, but the truth is God requires certain things and without us given it all to Him than He accepts nothing less. Malachi says you have robbed God because you have not brought in the “whole tithe.” In other words, they were bringing something in, but they did not bring in what God required. They were giving God a token, but they were not given Him their best. So Malachi said to them if you bring in the “whole tithe” God would reward you. Think about that for a minute. God is saying if you do what I require of you, what you are supposed to do, if you give me what you owe me then I will bless you. Where else can you find that in life? If you pay what you owe, then you get a reward that is better than what you gave in the first place. I mean that is crazy, and yet that is what God says. Let me share what the formula here is.
In your life, many good things are going on. I mean your family, your job, your hobbies, your money, etc. all are good things. All of these things bring with them a certain amount of satisfaction, but the truth is that in and of themselves they can never truly fulfill you. I mean they can bring you happiness but they never really make you feel that you complete just having them. The reason is that humankind was created to serve God and only in serving Him can we truly find our purpose in life. With that in mind what God is saying is this, if you will take the best of the good parts of your life and give them to Me, I will give you better. God is saying bring your first fruit, the best of your life and give it to Me and I will bless it, and it will be better than it was. You see this goes deeper than money. God is saying give me your marriage, your family, your job and I will bless it. Bring your tithe, time, and talent to me, and give generously and obediently to me and I will bless you in such a way that you cannot contain what I give to you. God is saying that I can do so much more with your life when you give me the best of your good life. You see Malachi is talking about more than just money, but he is talking about giving your best to God. Money is just a measure of what we are offering to God. You see what we spend our money on many times determines what we genuinely care about and God is saying if you give to Me, I will bless you. Today are you giving God your best. If you are not giving your best, then let me share what Malachi shares and that gives it a try and see for yourself what God will do for you.