Just like us, the ancient Israelites fell to THE TEMPTATION TO TEST GOD. How often, especially in the face of struggles, trials, and trouble in our lives do we test God? How often do we treat God as a cosmic vending machine? “God….if you are there then fix this!”
1 Corinthians 10:9 (TNIV)
We should not test Christ, as some of them did–and were killed by snakes.
The answers are there, God’s wisdom is available to us, and all we have to do is apply it.
SECOND– be industrious and follow God’s direction in solving our own trouble
THIRD– be honest and righteous in applying these things.
God can only bless that which is right, not that which is done dishonestly or immorally.
Notice that “Testing” God is all about the TAKING. The only place in the Bible where God says TO test him is in the Old Testament book of Malachi (Malachi 3:6-10). And here, it is all about the GIVING. I find it interesting that this Scripture comes in the form of a conversation between HIM and US…..and it is all a discourse on TRUST.
TAKE SPECIAL NOTE: “I the LORD do not change.”, “Return to me, and I will return to you,” says the LORD Almighty. “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.”
This is about trusting God in all things. Trusting God may look a little abstract in some ways, because it takes time to build trust. We should never TEST God. But here, in our gifts and offerings, we are told to TEST Him. Let me explain.
TAKE SPECIAL NOTE HERE: When we give of ourselves, whether in our money, our time, our gifts and skills, our heart, whatever it is……a portion of what God has so graciously given us….HE SAYS HE WILL THROW OPEN THE FLOODGATES OF HEAVEN AND POUR OUT SO MUCH BLESSING THAT THERE WILL NOT BE ENOUGH ROOM TO STORE IT. This is the cool thing about blessing….I do not believe that blessing is a “gift”, but rather….is the natural outcome of trusting and obeying God. We never do it for the “blessing”, we do it because it is right….and we are blessed (this is the truth upside down, in all its glory).
My prayer is that that we will not TEST God and treat Him like a “cosmic be vending machine, “God….if you are there then fix this!”, but rather that we will trust God and only test Him where He tells us too! My prayer is that we will see a direct correlation between the giving back of a portion of what we have so graciously received….in these things…. we find true fulfillment in life!