Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Before You Give...

Monday, September 8, 2014
He stood on the platform, and then he knelt in front of the entire community of Israel and lifted his hands toward heaven.  He prayed, “O Lord, God of Israel, there is no God like you in all of heaven and earth.  You keep your covenant and show unfailing love to all who walk before you in wholehearted devotion.           
2 Chronicles 6:13-17 (NLT)
On the day of dedication of "Solomon's Temple," the king erected a brazen platform in the outer court.  All the people gathered, as the king ascended the platform, in full view of the altar.  The altar would be the site of many offerings, many sacrifices. 
However, before the first sacrifice, the first exchange of money for doves or lambs, the king offered himself on the brazen platform.  This is much like the Macedonian Christians whom, Paul said; their first action was to give themselves to the Lord….[1] 
When Solomon placed himself at God’s disposal here’s what happened:
When Solomon finished praying, fire flashed down from heaven and burned up the burnt offerings and sacrifices, and the glorious presence of the Lord filled the Temple.  The priests could not enter the Temple of the Lord because the glorious presence of the Lord filled it.  When all the people of Israel saw the fire coming down and the glorious presence of the Lord filling the Temple, they fell face down on the ground and worshiped and praised the Lord, saying,
“He is good!  His faithful love endures forever!”   Then the king and all the people offered sacrifices to the Lord.            2 Chronicles 7:1-4
Solomon’s actions – giving himself first – was acceptable to God.  This should be a pattern for our lives as well.
When we give, pray, lead, share our faith, conduct business, change a diaper, do homework, drive to the mall – whatever we do we should do it as unto God.[2] 
·        When it comes to giving, put yourself in the offering plate first! 
·        When it comes to business, determine He will be the Senior Partner. 
·        When it comes to anything remember Solomon's Temple; it was immersed in consecrating prayer and surrendered to the Lord's will before a single sacrifice was placed upon the altar!
For You, Today
What have you got on your schedule today?
What should you do first?

[1] 2 Corinthians 8:5
[2] Colossians 3:23

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