Robbing The Lord (Malachi 3:8-9)
This is one of the aspects of the dross in the Church that has caused so much hindrance to the people themselves and the progress of God’s work without many realizing it. It is the issue of people who see God daily in action in their midst deliberately withholding from Him what belongs to Him, that is, a tenth of their income or profit (as the case may be), as well as their offerings.
For the avoidance of misconstruction, the dictionary meaning of robbing is, “stealing money or property from a person, bank, etc”. From this definition, it follows that all those who have been withholding the payment of a tenth of their income/profit month-by-month or week-by-week (as the case may be) are thieves.
If such people chance to die in this condition, surely they will be lost, since no whoremonger, adulterer, thief, etc. will enter into the kingdom of God (1 Cor. 6:10). Someone has said that “some of the people who were buried with rejoicing that they had gone to heaven actually went to hell,” and some did go to hell because of stealing from the Lord.
The issue of tithes dates back to the time of Abraham, before the Law of Moses (Gen. 14:20; 28:22). It was sanctioned by the law (Lev. 27:30; Num. 18:21; Deut. 12:6; 14:28; 26:12; 2 Chron. 31:5; Neh. 10:38; 12:44; 13:12; Mal. 3:10) , and approved by the Lord Jesus (Matt. 23:23; Luke. 18:12).
This dross has colossally hindered the people (and many chose not to know), as well as the advancement of God’s programme with the Church. Many of our ministers with great potentials cannot develop because they must engage in one secular thing or the other to provide for themselves food, transportation facilities, education for their children, etc.
This is because many have refused to diligently calculate their tithes every month-end or week-end, let alone paying them into the treasury of the Lord. Besides, the Church cannot engage in building befitting fellowship centres here and there to retain the multitudes that are coming because the people will not give. As they refuse to give, the Lord refuses to give and the vicious cycle continues (cons Malachi 3:8-9). What an unfortunate situation!
But the Lord is calling for a permanent break of this vicious cycle. Hear Him, “bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the Lord of host. And all nations shall call you blessed: for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the Lord of hosts” (Mal. 3:10-12).