Sunday, March 23, 2008

Master Mentor #14

Chapter 13 (Book 3, Chapter 3)
In this chapter, CS begins to talk about “social morality.” And he begins to talk about it in the sense of giving to the needy… or charity. He talks about how if we were to see a community that was totally doing what we were supposed to be doing as a Christian community, we would all like some of it and not other parts.
Towards the end of the chapter, he turns directly to giving. And he sets down an interesting rule. CS’s rule is that we should give more than we can spare. When was the last time that we gave that way? Maybe… never.
Most of the time, when a request comes from someone that we know, we ask the question… “What can we afford to give?” And then we give that amount. CS is saying that we should ask that question and then maybe double it. That’s a scary thought because he is saying that we should do without something in order to meet the need. And then he goes on to hit exactly why we don’t give that way… “For many of us the great obstacle to charity lies not in our luxurious living or desire for more money, but in our fear – fear of insecurity” (page 82). And he’s right. We’re afraid that we won’t be able to pay our bills. We’re afraid that we won’t be able to have all the things that we want that we think will make us feel successful and better in life.
That’s why most of us like the idea of a tithe. We like the idea that once we have given our “10%”… then we’re done and nothing else is required of you. And that was fine for the legalism of the Old Testament. But doesn’t seem to be carried over to the New Testament lifestyle. Jesus never commanded a 10%. Paul never commanded a 10%. But we like the 10% because it’s clean, easy and achievable and when I get done I can feel good about myself. But CS’s idea of giving more than I can spare scares me a bit. And maybe that’s good.


No comments:

Post a Comment