Any time I give, I expect a blessing to return. It is a law that we find in Scripture. It is a promise of Jesus.
But you know what? That is not my main motivation for giving. And that should not be our heart for giving. Jesus says in Luke 6:32-38:
But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back. But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful. Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you.
What is the heart of this whole thing? Jesus said, “Don’t love just to get love back; don’t do good just so that good might be done back to you; don’t lend just hoping to get something back.”
He makes it clear that if you do those things for the right motivation, it will come back to you. Your reward will be great.
Do not give with the motivation of just getting something back. Non-Christians have that motivation! How does that set you apart from them? Give out of a higher motivation.

The Right Motivation
What is the right motivation?
All we need to do is look at what motivated God to give. It is found in John 3:16,
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
God so loved that He gave. And, yes, God certainly did reap a harvest when He gave His Son. He reaped a harvest of sons and daughters.
You should give out of love and devotion for God. Give because you do not want people to go into an eternity without God, because you love humanity, because you have mercy and compassion for broken, dying people.
That is the right motivation for giving. When you give with that motivation, your reward will be great. God will see that it comes back to you multiplied.
That is a far cry from what many emphasize when it comes to giving today. It appears to me that a lot of people, when they teach on giving, are just pushing people’s greed buttons. It seems that the main motivation that some leaders are teaching for people to give is, “Hey, give because God will bless you.” And there is no doubt that God blesses those who give. The scriptural promises are clear.
But what about the weightier matters?  Remember how Jesus rebuked the Jewish leadership in Matthew 23:23 because they, “Neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith”?
God looks at the heart. Our hearts ought to be like that of our heavenly Father, who is merciful, kind, loving, and generous, even to the most thankless and evil among us. That is the right motivation.

Answers with Bayless Conley
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