The Masked Heart!
“As long as the earth endures, seed time and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, and day and night will not cease” (Genesis 8:22). This timeless word of God has been used to teach and encourage giving, which is a great thing, but it has been stretched to dangerous and erroneous proportions. Severally we have heard teachings that encourage us to sow concerning every and any situation we desire a change in. This, according to the teachings will evoke blessings, protection, deliverances and the likes. These teachings have crossed the borders of faith in God to encouraging people to put faith in the act of giving and the gift. The teachers and the adherents seem to have forgotten that our God is a Jealous God and He will not condone us putting anything ahead of Him. This outward show has succeeded in masking the true condition of the giver’s heart. A masked heart believes that God will pardon and overlook the state of his/her heart as long as one gives and gives well. When what is giving for does not materialize we blame everybody but the real culprit. God had clearly warned that if one harbors iniquity in their heart, He would not hear nor listen to such (Isaiah 59:1-3). What makes us think we can arrogantly subvert this word by our giving? It is quite sad to hear people that are comfortable in ways that negate the righteous standards of God talk about how faithful they are in their tithing and offerings for which reason God is obligated to answer them. Some go as far as boasting that they will make Heaven based on this without a genuine repentant heart. One might even argue that it is an Old Testament requirement, thus, it is not tenable anymore since we are no longer living under law but grace. However remember, Grace is not a license to sin but to live a life that is worthy of our calling in Christ Jesus. Hebrews 12:14b tells us categorically – “…and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord”. Holiness connotes a state of integrity and being right with God. Friend, Jesus Christ did not come to earth to die for mankind so that mankind in return will give Him fat offerings and tithes. It is right to do so don’t get me wrong, but do not neglect the most important thing, which is your heart (Matthew 23: 23). Jesus Christ came to turn the hearts of people from wickedness and living wickedly (Acts 3: 26). It was impossible to do this through gifts and sacrifices as people used this as a convenient excuse to perpetuate evil, after all they can sacrifice to atone for their sin. That is the reason God sent His Son to come to earth and die a shameful death on the cross so that any person that believes is free to live a life that is worthy. In preparation for this, God said in Hosea 6:6 – “For I desire mercy and not sacrifice, and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings”. Therefore, it is now left for us to actively and consciously set out to know God more by living by His standards. Then and only then can we bring acceptable sacrifices and offerings with unmasked hearts that He requires and accepts. Any other way is a terrible delusion with heart rending consequences (Matthew 7:21-23 and Luke 13: 26-27). God bless.