Faith Full Giving
According to Hebrews 11:1, faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. Faith is the heartbeat of our walk with God. Today we’ll find out what the story of Cain and Abel has to tell us about faith as it relates to giving.
Our confidence, or faith, that God is who he says he is, and that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life…are rooted in God’s word. We have purpose and hope because of our faith, which touches every area of life, including our finances. Today, we’re going to take a trip way back into Genesis to find out how faith in the area of giving played a part in the story of brothers Cain and Abel.
You may remember that Cain and Abel were sons of Adam and Eve, born after the couple sinned and were driven from the Garden of Eden. Their story is found in Genesis 4. It’s a tragic tale of resentment and murder. Cain killed his younger brother Abel because of an offering. Here’s what it says in Genesis 4:2-5:
Now Abel kept flocks, and Cain worked the soil. In the course of time Cain brought some of the fruits of the soil as an offering to the Lord. And Abel also brought an offering—fat portions from some of the firstborn of his flock. The Lord looked with favor on Abel and his offering, but on Cain and his offering he did not look with favor. So Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast.
WHAT CAN WE LEARN FROM CAIN AND ABEL ABOUT FAITH IN GIVING?
- Faith, as defined in Hebrews 11:1, is crucial in all aspects of life, including financial matters.
- The story of Cain and Abel in Genesis 4 shows contrasting attitudes in giving: Abel’s offering was favored by God due to his faith-filled approach, while Cain's lack of faith was evident in his lesser offering.
- Abel demonstrated faith by offering the best parts of his firstborn flock, signifying trust in God's provision. In contrast, Cain's offering lacked faith, evident in his choice to give only some fruits without prioritizing the first fruits.
WHY DID GOD FAVOR ABEL'S OFFERING OVER CAIN'S?
- Hebrews 11:6 states that without faith, it is impossible to please God, highlighting the importance of faith in our actions, including giving.
- Abel’s gift was an act of faith, reflecting his submission to God’s authority and trust in His provision.
- Cain's offering, lacking faith, showcased an attitude not aligned with Godly submission or trust, leading to God's disfavor.
HOW DOES THE STORY OF CAIN AND ABEL APPLY TO CHRISTIANS TODAY?
- The story emphasizes the importance of faith and right attitudes in our relationships and offerings.
- Jesus teaches in Matthew 5:23-24 about reconciling with others before offering gifts to God, stressing the significance of faith and relationships in our spiritual lives.
“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.”
- As Christians, we have opportunities every day to “do what is right”. By the power of the Holy Spirit in us, we can choose to walk in faith, as Abel did.
On today’s program, Rob also answers listener questions:
- I'm looking to transfer property to a family member while I'm still alive, although it's already in my will. I need advice on how to do this correctly.
- As a 59-year-old truck driver, I'm considering retiring at 62. Should I rely on my investments until I'm 65 and then claim Social Security, or should I file for Social Security at 62 and let my investments grow?
- I'm thinking about making an investment and need advice on choosing an investment company. I currently have investments with Fidelity and am considering Ameriprise.
- Recently baptized and new to faith, my wife and I agreed to give a small amount to our church. I want to give more, but she's uncomfortable with that. I need guidance on how to handle this situation.
Remember, you can call in to ask your questions most days at (800) 525-7000. Faith & Finance is also available on the Moody Radio Network as well as American Family Radio. Visit our website at FaithFi.com where you can join the FaithFi Community, and give as we expand our outreach.