April 20
‘Because anyone who comes to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.’ Hebrews 11:6b
Bible reading: Malachi 1:6-14 (Go to the Bible passage)
Many of us would get angry, if we were told that we show contempt for God.
Yet, with these words, Malachi frankly confronted the priests. And before they could reproach indignantly: ‘How could you imagine such a thing!’ Malachi told them in what way they were contemptuous of God. For the priests found the offering of sacrifice not that important anymore. Not the best, but the remains were offered.
O, we are familiar with it: we keep the best for ourselves and the remainder we give to the church, to the kingdom of God. We take good care of ourselves and God may have some of the surplus.
An exaggeration? Just check how much money you have spent the last week, not for your daily bread, but for your own pleasure, and compare that amount to the amount you reserved for God. Then perhaps it will dawn on you that Malachi’s’ words also apply to you: ‘With such offerings from your hands, will He accept you?’ (:9). ‘A son honours his father, and a slave his master. If I am a father, where is the honour due Me?’ (:6).
Indeed, many contemporary clergymen - with all due respect to the good ones - are contemptuous of the rewards of serving the Lord. ‘’And you say, ‘What a burden!’ and you sniff at it contemptuously,” says the Lord Almighty’ (:13). They have no time to dedicate themselves wholly to the congregation, on account of their many side jobs, which should make their daily bread somewhat less meager.
If our service of God does not determine our entire lives, but is only one of the additional parts, we should not be surprised that, if God is still to be praised, it will happen outside the walls of the church.
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