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Many Bible scholars teach that Christians should give 10% of their income to support God’s work. They base that mostly upon practices in the Old Testament days. Both before and after the giving of the law, people tithed. Others insist that ten percent should simply be the starting point for our giving. They cite examples of people who give up to 90% of their income. Some of these generous people are quite wealthy despite or because of their generosity. They also find support for this principle in an incident Jesus cited on one occasion. He was sitting near the collection box in the temple, watching as the crowds dropped in their money. Many rich people put in large amounts. Then a poor widow came and dropped in two small coins. Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I tell you truth, this poor widow has given more than all the others who are making contributions. For they gave a tiny part of their surplus, but she, poor as she is, has given everything she had to live on.” The obvious point that Jesus made was this: it is not how much we give but how much we have left after we give. Along with that critical principle is our attitude as we give. Do we give in order to receive accolades and applause? Or, do we give because of our love for God and our concern for people? Let us be generous in our giving, and let us give to glorify God and help others.

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