Q. I am a fairly new Christian. I was told my salvation was free gift from God as no one can measure up to God’s standard and Jesus paid all the penalties for our sins so we can have eternity with God. I would like to know why my new pastor insists the more money we give the more blessings from God. This is contradictory to the Bible I think. In the Old Testament the people had to tithe but in the new Testament the mandatory tithe was deleted, right? So, is my salvation free, or not?
A. Yes, although your salvation cost the Lord His life, it’s a free gift from Him to you and how much (or little) money you give has no bearing on it.
Your pastor may have referring to Luke 6:38 where the Lord said,
“Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
Or he could have been reading from 2 Cor. 9:6, which says,
“Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.”
These promises have nothing to do with salvation, but with the blessings God has promised to bestow on believers in proportion to their giving. In the Church we don’t give because God requires it. We give because we’re grateful for the free gift of salvation we’ve already received. God is pleased with our expression of gratitude and blesses us accordingly. As long as our giving is solely out of gratitude and not for selfish reasons, the more generous we are toward Him, the more generous He will be toward us.
Paul said, “You will be made rich in every way so you can be generous on every occasion and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God” (2 Cor. 9:11)