Stealing From God
In Malachi 3:8 we read the quote: "Will a man rob God?" As we read the text in the book, we see that the robbing has to do with their failure to tithe and make good offerings to the LORD.
To take something without permission is robbery, theft, or stealing. The Israelites of yesterday were guilty of robbing from God. In fact, he says the whole nation was guilty of the theft (vs 9).
There are several factors we need to consider. First God owns everything. We remember the great prayer of David (1 Chron.29:10-19) as he turned his kingdom over to Solomon, and provided an offering for the temple that was to be built there in Jerusalem. David prayed that God had blessed him, and that he was honored to make an offering even though God owned everything.
While God does own everything in creation, we must realize that God has allowed use of these things, so it is our responsibility to handle them wisely, use them in a way that glorifies God, and share them with others as needs arise.
Yet as we consider our passage, let us look at other ways to rob God. This should not be hard to figure out. We rob God when we fail to do our duty to Him. We get so busy with our own agendas, that God's agenda gets left behind or gets a lower priority rating. We remember in Haggai, that God told the people they were busy building their own paneled houses, but the house of God laid destitute, barren, and unfinished.
We are taught to pray all the time. When we fail to pray, we are robbing God of our communication with Him. We owe God our praise and adoration all the time, and we also owe Him the time of day to speak to Him and ask for His blessings upon ourselves and others.
We rob God when we fail to behave as a true Christian should. God is expecting us to live up to His standards and to be a light around us as an example to show people the truth. Failure to set a good example will not help people find God whom they might be seeking. We must live with this in mind that if I do not set a good example, who will? If I cannot influence someone to God, they may remain lost forever. That deprives God of another soul that would offer praise to His name.
We rob God when we waste time. Now, I truly believe that God gives us time for recreation or relaxation, but we abuse that privilege when we take too much recreation or relaxation time. Honestly, we know that we spend too much time in front of the TV or computer. Sure these have their proper use and can be used for good, but they can also be abused.
What more can we say about missing church. Not singing in the assembly is robbing God. Not contributing according to your means is robbing God.
We need to examine ourselves and make sure that we are not depriving God of anything that we owe to Him. This may require some adjustments to our lifestyle, but if we do, we will receive greater blessings from God. God has already promised to reward the faithful and to shower us with blessings, and what God will do for us will be in greater measure than we can imagine or deserve.
By Carey Scott

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