The Blessings of Heaven
6 “I the Lord do not change. So you, the descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed. 7 Ever since the time of your ancestors you have turned away from my decrees and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you,” says the Lord Almighty.
“But you ask, ‘How are we to return?’
8 “Will a mere mortal rob God? Yet you rob me.
“But you ask, ‘How are we robbing you?’
“In tithes and offerings. 9 You are under a curse—your whole nation—because you are robbing me. 10 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 there will not be room enough to store it. 11 I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not drop their fruit before it is ripe,” says the Lord Almighty. 12 “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the Lord Almighty.
There is something interesting about how we all read this passage.
As we think about giving and sacrificing things in order to give more as the Lord has commanded we know that the Lord promises blessings right? Well, yes.
But, how often do we think these blessings are for our own personal gain?
Umm. Guilty here! [raises hand, asking where all the money is]
The thing we forget about this passage is that first this is a promise to a people. Not a person. God's intention was for the people of Israel to be blessed so that the poor would be fed, the homeless housed, the widow taken care of, the orphan placed into a family.
When the Israelites robbed God of their tithe, they were robbing the poor of their food and the widow of their provision. This was the system, and this is what it looks like for the floodgates of heaven to be opened.
It is not poverty for all but provision for all. It is blessing on the people of God to get to see unity, justice, and righteousness.
The blessing was not for one person, but the blessing was for heaven to begin to break into the everyday reality. Heavenly blessings most likely do not come in the form of candy apple red and 450 horsepower. Though there may be nothing wrong with that. The blessing of heaven is healing and restoration, it is new life and the freedom, blessings of Heaven are Shalom, peace on earth.