The Lord God is a demanding God. If we don’t do things His way He would rather we’d not do them at all. He has a very specific standard and what we do must adhere to it. It’s true.
It is not something we like to talk about. Nevertheless, God does demand something of us. Often times we have the attitude that God will accept whatever we may offer. No. He demands a specific thing. And that specific thing is our heart! It all comes down to that.
In the book of Exodus, we find the Lord asking His people to bring certain gifts. In chapter 35 beginning with verse 20, we find a list of the things the children of Israel were to give. They were supposed to give purple cloth. They were supposed to give gold. They were supposed to bring acacia wood. Notably, however, every mention of their offerings follows a distinct pattern as recorded in the Bible. Repeatedly the Bible mentions, everyone came whose heart was stirred.
Without fail each offering was preceded by a stirring of the heart. The same account continues into chapter 36.
Then Moses called Bezalel and Aholiab, and every gifted artisan in whose heart the LORD had put wisdom, everyone whose heart was stirred, to come and do the work. And they received from Moses all the offering which the children of Israel had brought for the work of the service of making the sanctuary. So they continued bringing to him freewill offerings every morning. Exodus 36:2-3
The people’s hearts were moved to give. Indeed their hearts’ desire was to give more and yet more to the Lord. Such was their generosity that Moses actually had to ask the people to stop giving. There was no more need for materials for the tabernacle. There was now an abundance of gold, acacia wood, purple cloth, and spun wool.
Remember, however, that children of Israel had been slaves. They had only recently escaped from Egypt. They had nothing to their names. But then the Egyptians approached them and said, “Take this, take this, take this…. Please don’t come back and please take God’s wrath with you because we don’t want it. So here, take all this gold.” The Egyptians gave to the children of Israel because of what God had done.
Thus there are two important principles. Firstly, we need to remember that all that we have has come from the Lord. What we give to Him He has first given to us. Secondly, God demands that our offerings to Him come from our hearts. A gift given to God must not be under compulsion. It is to be given to Him as if spreading it out and laying it before Him.
That is God’s demand. That is what he is looking for. God doesn’t demand of us that which we can’t do. Nor does God does say you must do this. He is asking, will you do this? And will you do it from your heart?
By James Pearson, New Mexico
James Pearson is a man saved by the mercy of God. Now, he seeks to know the heart and person of God. To know Him, even as he himself is known.