|Volume 21 Number 11 November 2019||
The schools in my part of the world were still segregated during my first two years of high school. There was a choral class that many of us, especially those of us who had singing voices, were required to attend. One of the songs we were taught was, “You Can’t Beat God’s Giving.” The lyrics were such that they still resonate with me some 50+ years later.
You can’t beat God’s giving, no matter how you try.
Just as sure as you are living, and the LORD is in heaven on high;
The more you give, the more He gives to you,
Just keep on giving because it’s really true.
That you can’t beat God’s giving, no matter how you try.
This is the time of year once again that thoughts turn to the Thanksgiving holiday. This is always a good thing because we experience in many instances people who are kinder, gentler and more sensitive to others. We see sections of numerous retail stores stocked with cards for mailing and giving over the holiday. These cards express messages of thanks for family and friends.
Those who recognize and bow in submission to Almighty God the Creator, Sustainer and Master of the universe give thanks to Him every day, virtually all day. Why? Psalm 90:2 tells us. “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever You had formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.”
God’s giving is a 24/7—365/366-day action. We would literally cease to exist if that were not a biblical fact. God holds our breath in His hands and owns all our ways. Job 34:13-15 makes this so clear that we would need help to misunderstand it. “Who gave Him charge over the earth? Or who appointed Him over the whole world? If He should set His heart on it, if He should gather to Himself His Spirit and His breath, all flesh would perish together, and man would return to dust.”
God’s giving is unsurpassed from the beginning of creation. Genesis 1:1-2 proclaims, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.” In six literal days, God gave the earth what was imperative for all forms of life to exist. He then gave life to the corpse of Adam. Genesis 2:7 declares, “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul.” To His praise and glory, He has been giving to the whole of creation ever since.
He gave us the best Heaven had in the person of Christ Jesus. Virtually untold millions can quote John 3:16. Jesus was, He is, and He will forever be God’s superlative, matchless gift to a sin cursed, fallen world. Romans 8:32 states forthrightly the depth of God’s capacity to give. “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all how shall He not with Him freely give us all things?” God foreordained Christ to be the indescribable gift to the world!
God told the nation of Judah that it had robbed Him in tithes and offerings. In Malachi 3:9-10, He declared, “You are cursed with a curse, for you have robbed Me, even this whole nation. Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and try Me now in this. Says the LORD of hosts, ‘If I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it.’”
How many times has that eternal truth been realized in our own lives and in the lives of people we know? God blesses us in countless ways, many of which we have no idea. We must then choose from several blessings He has poured out for us. Sometimes these blessings occur at the same time, on the same dates or they overlap. We must choose one from a multiplicity of choices. We simply cannot out give God when we put and keep Him first.
Before we were formed in our mother’s womb, God had given us our lifespan. Psalm 139:16 says, “Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, when as yet there were none of them.” God gave each of us life before we ever took an independent breath outside the womb, and only He knows when we will take our last breath.
When we see God’s face in glory, through Christ Jesus, He will still be giving to us. Paul stated it so beautifully through inspiration before his death in 2 Timothy 4:8. “Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.”
“Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you” (Luke 6:38). God wrote the Book on giving, and we can hold that Book in our hands. He will teach, if we will learn, the blessedness of giving and daily expressing our thanksgiving for what He continually does for us.
When They Knew God
God’s Green Earth
Joyce Ann Geyer
Trees, earthy scent, fresh water
River flows downstream
Gentle river flows
Slips over rocks, still swirling
Rhythmic to your eye
Clear foaming water
Streaming, gushing over hill
Slate, shale jagged rocks
Gentle falls flowing
Serenity and peace found
Mirrored water images
Sky, trees, colored blue
Peaceful silent place
Clear skies, bright sun, cooler nights
God created earth.
Haiku Poetry, May 2005
Even though the Haiku may not have been written by a Christian, there is little doubt the author knows God created the earth and all its fullness. According to Romans 1:19, that knowledge is the first truth that must be known before a person can acknowledge that he personally belongs to the One who created him.
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. (Romans 1:18-25 KJV)
What should be our response to this knowledge? The next step (vs. 21) is to glorify Him as God and be thankful for having been created. If we are truly thankful, how will we respond? We will not worship the things He has created, but we will worship the Creator Himself. He owns us. We are His creation for His purpose.