"Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this," says the Lord Almighty, "and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it." —Malachi 3:10
This verse teaches us five things regarding our money.
One, the Israelites of Malachi's day were backslidden because they were withholding from God what was His.
Two, the entire nation was under a curse because God's people were robbing Him.
Three, God wants all that is due to Him. It is not enough for you to give Him a part, even a large part. That is not what He says. God says He wants it all, and He wants it week by week.
Four, the tithe should go to the storehouse. Now everybody knew then what that was; it was the synagogue or the temple. Today it means the church, your church. When a person begins to give to God, something is unlocked within him and he has a love for the Lord.
Five, God challenges us to discover for ourselves why this is true and that it is true. Think of this: God is angry with those who rob Him, yet He tenderly stoops to where we are to motivate us to give. That is why He tells us to test Him. God challenges us here.
While tithing is of huge importance, no one will be saved just by tithing. Tithing is not how you become a Christian. You are saved when you realize that God sent His Son into the world to die on a cross, to shed His blood, to do for you what you can't do—keep the law perfectly. You will go to heaven even though you have never tithed, and you will stay saved even if you don't become a tither, because tithing is not what guarantees salvation. The connection between spirituality and money is that when you don't give God what is His, you don't grow spiritually and you may also suffer financially. Your Christian life just won't be the same.
Excerpted from Between the Times (Christian Focus Publications Ltd., 2003).