There is one who scatters, and yet increases all the more, and there is one who withholds what is justly due, and yet it results only in want. Proverbs 11:24
What does God think about those who are stingy with their time, their talents, and their finances? Here we see two people. The first is constantly scattering what he has. He does not hold it tightly to his chest and consider it his own. He scatters his time to those who need to be encouraged, loved, counselled, built up, and at times rebuked and corrected. He scatters his talents to the church - to the business he owns or works at - to the community when they need him. He scatters his finances as he invests in the kingdom of God and into the needs of others around him. This man is constantly scattering - not just money - but godly influence and the love of God. He is like a man walking through a barren-looking field - tilled - but without anything on it. As he walks he does not see the barrenness, but rather what that field can be if someone sows it properly. His scattering is not just giving away what God has given him. It is planting. It may not look like much as he scatters seed everywhere. But as that seed dies and comes to life first as a seedling, then as a plant, then as a full grown crop, then as a field that is white unto harvest - the man is seen for the wisdom that he had. He has scattered - yet he increases all the more. He will increase in influence - in favor with those whom he selflessly loves - in financial strength as God blesses him for his giving - in favor with God as he gives himself to obey the Lord and follow Him fully. This man will not be poor for scattering what was given to him. On the contrary - according as he has sown - he will reap thrity, sixty, and a hundred fold. He will take his talent and not bury it in the ground. He will invest it - return it to his master - and be put in charge of many things.
The stingy man's end is much different. We read that he withholds what is justly due. There is a pregnant statement if ever there was one. What is justly due? For those of us who know the Word of God - we are to give God a tithe of all that we have and produce. That does not come from the Old Testament Law - although it does teach tithing. It comes from Abraham's example before the Law was given. He gave a tenth of all he gained to Melchizedek. He did so as our example of giving - as well as he is the example of our faith as well. What is due though is everything! We are not just to surrender to God 10% and think we are done. We are to give all that we are and all that we have for God's glory. But the unwise man withholds what is due. He is not just a stingy man, he is a selfish man. Like the unwise farmer he thinks everything is his - to be used as he sees fit - for his own glory and his own selfish ends. When blessed with a bumper crop he does not consider giving some away. He chooses to tear down his old barns and build new ones that can keep all his stuff for himself. He is selfish to his own harm. The wisdom of God tell us that this man only winds up in want. The rich fool planned to keep everything for himself and died that very night. What he gained was nothingness for all eternity. The rich man who disdained to feed Lazarus with the scraps of his table did not die rich. He died selfish and self-centered. He died poorer than Lazarus - for he died and went to eternal punishment in hell. He had everything he could think of in life - but in death he wound up destitute for eternity.
Dear saints of God - learn to be one who scatters rather than one who only gathers and holds tighly. The tight-fisted man will have his hand broken - and his grip crushed in the end. Everything he thinks he holds tightly to will be gone in an instant. He will ultimately lose everything. The generous man who scatters will not lose anything. In fact his sowing guarantees that a crop will come and a harvest 50 times greater than he had before will come. Truly the wise man is the generous man - the giving man - the scattering man. Be that man.
Proverb a Day
Each day, we'll take a look at a verse from the chapter of Proverbs for the day. Our hope is to gain wisdom each day - and from that wisdom - to have understanding to make godly decisions in the throes of everyday life.
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