God loves cheerful giving from the heart. "Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver" (II Corinthians 9:7). God does not need our offerings. He is the Owner of all things (Psalm 50:7-14). Thankful giving to the Lord is for our benefit, not God's; it is to exercise us in the graces of humility (our stewardship before God), gratitude (our thankfulness to God), and faith (our trusting in God for the future). Giving provides a means for us to be involved in, and contribute to, the promotion of God's work and kingdom.
Concerning tithing and amounts to be offered in return to the Lord, refer back to Chapter 22.
The church collection is not an intermission in the worship service, but an important part of it. Do you strive to worship God through your offerings?
8. Congregational singing - Congregational singing is also an integral part of church worship, of the liturgy. It is not to be viewed as a break in the service, or something to do during the taking of collections.
Song was included as part of the Old Testament tabernacle and temple worship. The psalms were designated for singing in the temple. Angels sang to the glory of God at Christ's birth. Jesus sang with His apostles prior to His betrayal. The New Testament church is instructed to praise God and mutually edify each other in song (I Corinthians 14:26, Ephesians 5:19, and Colossians 3:16). Even the Church in heaven is pictured as singing to the glory of God (Revelation 14:3 and 15:3).
Congregational singing is an important aspect of church worship for the following reasons:
It touches our emotions - Music is a gift of God which expresses and stirs our emotions. Therefore it is a fitting means to involve worshipful emotions toward praise to God,
Hear, 0 My people, and I will speak; 0 Israel, and I will testify against thee: I am God, even thy God.
I will not reprove thee for thy sacrifices or thy burnt offerings, to have been continually before Me.
I will take no bullock out of thy house, nor he goats out of thy folds.
For every beast of the forest is Mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills.
I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are Mine.
If I were hungry, I would not tell thee: for the world is Mine, and the fulness thereof.
Will I eat the flesh of bulls, or drink the blood of goats?
Offer unto God thanksgiving: and pay thy vows unto the most High.
- Psalm 50:7-14
Integral - Forming a necessary part of the whole
How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.
- I Corinthians 14:26
Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord.
- Ephesians 5:19
Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.