Biblical Giving: What, Why, When, and How

What is biblical giving? Biblical giving is when we give in alignment with God’s heart described in His Word. Giving and generosity are part of who God is, and we can reflect Him to others through biblical giving. 

John 3:16 reflects God’s generosity: “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(emphasis added). Not only did God give us the breath of life, but an everlasting gift of life! 

God’s Generosity Never Runs Out

Have you ever received something that never goes away or runs out? God’s generosity doesn’t. So, when it comes to biblical giving, we must think about how our gifts and generosity can be multiplied and impact more people for His Kingdom, never going away or running out.

Biblical giving is part of how we become imitators of God (see Ephesians 5:1). Adopting His generous heart and understanding His gift of eternal life stirs us to sow. He will do more than we could ever imagine with our seed!

  • “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us…”—Ephesians 3:20

Biblical Giving Requires Discernment

However, we must use the discernment given to us by the Holy Spirit about why, when, and how to give. 

  • “Therefore be wise as serpents and harmless as doves.’”—Matthew 10:16
  • “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.”—Proverbs 1:7
  • “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”—Proverbs 3:5-6

We answered the question, “What is biblical giving” above. Now let’s explore the why, when, and how of biblical giving and where many Believers fall into the enemy’s schemes and go down an unintended path, leading away from destiny, blessing, and prosperity. 

Biblical Giving | Why

The reasons people give vary as much as the amount given. Sadly, some give out of guilt or selfish desires. They give to get rather than give to bless others and honor the Lord. 

The Lord knows that giving and finances can be a great source of strife for individuals, families, and even those in the Body of Christ. He knows giving from a place that is in agreement with our Adamic nature can lead us astray and rob us of the blessings God wants to pour out. 

Graciously, God provides biblical principles in His Word for giving that position us to receive prosperity and walk in purpose. These principles of biblical giving align with our identity in Yeshua and God’s timing, glorifying Him and silencing the enemy in the Courts of Heaven.

Be Aware of the Lies about Giving

Satan has been studying human nature for generations. He knows what situations will distract us from God and stop us from walking in the fruits of the Spirit. God graciously gave us emotional fruit such as joy and peace but also a spirit of self-control. Self-control, wisdom, and discernment must be practiced regarding biblical giving. 

Satan tells us:

  • Give only to get.
  • Give in haste and high emotion.
  • Give and tell others about it (pride).
  • Give to manipulate and control others.
  • Give out of guilt. 

Giving with the Wrong Motives

James 4:1-3 says…

  • “Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.” (emphasis added)

This verse reveals the warfare surrounding our desires, asking, and receiving. Lust in this passage refers to passion or strong impulses. When we lust after something with human passion, it is not God-honoring. 

The passage also mentions murder and coveting. Jesus said in Matthew 5:21-22 that anyone who commits murder is liable in court, but He cut to the heart of the matter with His next statement. 

In verse 22, Jesus says anyone who…

  • Is angry with a brother 
  • Calls his brother “good for nothing” 
  • Says his brother is a fool

…will stand guilty in the Courts of Heaven as if they committed murder. 

Coveting means to desire something earnestly but not legitimately. Again, we see how giving with the wrong motives is an opportunity for the accuser of the brethren to bring a case against us in the Courts of Heaven.  

Battle the Lies in the Courts of Heaven

Because the adversary brings charges and accusations against us day and night, it is critical to do spiritual warfare in the Courts of Heaven to battle the lies related to biblical giving. Go into the courts, repent, and ask the blood of Jesus to cleanse you and align your desires with God’s heart for you.  

Maybe you’ve sown a seed, and nothing is happening. It’s time to take the matter to the Just Judge and realign your heart. 

  • Repent. Ask Him to search your heart, wash you from any iniquity, cleanse you, and create a renewed and steadfast spirit from within. 
  • Come out of agreement with the lies and into agreement with the Word. Sit down with Him, enter into His presence, and decree Psalm 51 in the Courts of Heaven. 

As a born-again Believer, you can stand on the truth that there is no condemnation in Christ (Romans 8:1), and when you confess, He is faithful to forgive (1 John 1:9-10). If God’s Word is revealing motives amiss in your heart, He does not want you to feel shame or guilt. Rather, He wants you to come to Him so He can give you His desires and realign your heart with His. 

Going into the Courts of Heaven positions you to receive what God has for you through the seed sown. It isn’t biblical giving when you have unforgiveness in your heart or have a fleshly desire to give so that you get and spend on your own pleasures (see James 4:1-3 above, Matthew 5:21-26.) 

Ensure God is in Your Giving

Ask, “Where is God in my giving?” Before giving, ask the Lord if there is any offensive way in your heart, repent, forgive, and think of biblical giving as a way to worship Him. The Lord wants to be front and center of all you do. 

Because biblical giving is tied to worshiping God, you can identify if your giving is out of alignment if the focus is on self rather than the covenant-keeping God.  

Deuteronomy 8:18 says…

  • “‘And you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.”

Giving out of anything other than God’s instruction directly blocks blessings. Remember, He gave you the ability to prosper so that His covenant will be established. Therefore, biblical giving is a way to worship Him and bless others so that you may be a light to the nations. 

Click here to learn Biblical Principles For Finances.

Biblical Giving | When

Biblical giving is done when prompted by the Holy Spirit and as God’s Word instructs. 

There is a biblical principle of sowing and reaping in scripture. This principle can be applied to giving. There are times described in God’s Word that giving is commanded, but remember, any commandment of God is given to us for a good purpose. 

We can choose to serve the Lord with our giving, which leads to life and blessing, or not, which leads to death and cursing (see Deuteronomy 30:15-20). When we do anything according to God’s ways, the outcomes will advance us forward and prosper us in our calling, purpose, and identity. 

The purpose of biblical giving is to enter into a deeper relationship with God, partner with Him to be good stewards, and be witnesses of His goodness to others by blessing them. The goal is to glorify Him when we give so that others may enter into a relationship with Him. 

Give During the Appointed Times

There are appointed times on God’s calendar called moeds. Moed means God’s set appointments translated as feasts. The Feasts of the Lord are these appointed times on God’s calendar…

  • Passover (Feast of Unleavened Bread)
  • Shavuot/Pentecost (Feast of Weeks)
  • Rosh Hashanah
  • Yom Kippur
  • Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles)

These are fixed times or seasons when the Lord invites us to commune with Him in a special way. This is when He releases divine instruction, revelation, empowerment, restoration, and rest. This doesn’t mean these things aren’t released throughout other times of the year. Still, there is something about coming together as sons and daughters of the King, be it physically or spiritually, remembering and anticipating what the Lord has and will do to fulfill these appointed times. This is an opportunity to give as a way to remember and worship. 

God set apart three pilgrim feasts within these appointed times: Passover, Shavuot/Pentecost, and Sukkot. 

  • “‘Three times a year all your males shall appear before the Lord your God in the place which He chooses: at the Feast of Unleavened Bread, at the Feast of Weeks, and at the Feast of Tabernacles; and they shall not appear before the Lord empty-handed. Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord your God which He has given you.’”—Deuteronomy 16:16-17

If we want to receive what God pours out during His appointed times, there are two things that must happen:

  1. Appear before the Lord, honoring His moeds.
  2. Do not appear empty-handed. The Hebrew word used means “in vain or without a purpose.”

Therefore, purposefully receive from the Lord and purposely give to the Lord.

Give When There is an Increase

Giving when there is an increase is called a firstfruit offering. It is about sowing into the new beginnings the Lord has given you. A practical way of applying this would be to give an offering (no set amount) when you receive a raise or bonus to thank the Lord for the blessing with the anticipation of a new beginning on the horizon. 

  • “Honor the Lord with your possessions, and with the firstfruits of all your increase; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.”—Proverbs 3:9-10

Give When There is a Need

Giving when there is a need is called an alms offering. The purpose is to meet the needs of those less fortunate. Though this is often tied to material things, it is also about giving mercy, compassion, emotional or spiritual support, and a listening ear. 

  • “‘If there is among you a poor man of your brethren, within any of the gates in your land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart nor shut your hand from your poor brother… Beware lest there be a wicked thought in your heart, saying, “The seventh year, the year of release, is at hand,” and your eye be evil against your poor brother and you give him nothing, and he cry out to the Lord against you, and it become sin among you. You shall surely give to him, and your heart should not be grieved when you give to him, because for this thing the Lord your God will bless you in all your works and in all to which you put your hand.’”—Deuteronomy 15:7, 9-10

Give Regularly

Giving regularly could be considered a tithe (giving 10%) or a seed offering. There isn’t an exact time to do this, but go to the Lord and ask Him how He wants you to “schedule” this giving. The heart motive behind giving regularly is to continually reflect on the Lord’s blessings and remind your soul of your dependence on Him. As you give regularly, you will begin to reap a bountiful harvest!

  • “But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully…Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness…”—2 Corinthians 9:6, 10

Biblical Giving | How

Give Privately

The Bible describes biblical giving as an act done in secret. In other words, announcing your giving with a heart to get recognition or accolades from man blocks your blessings.

  • “‘Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.’”—Matthew 6:2-4

Give Cheerfully

God wants you to come to Him and let His Spirit speak into your heart about how much to give. Then He wants you to follow through with the conviction. Give out of what you have, not out of what you don’t have. In other words, proportional. 

  • “So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.”—2 Corinthians 9:7

Give Generously

Paul addresses why one should cheerfully and willingly give. In 2 Corinthians, he establishes that God provides both the bread and the seed and that all we have is from Him. Our generosity reflects this character of God and allows us to partner with Him in His Kingdom advancement. 

  • “…while you are enriched in everything for all liberality, which causes thanksgiving through us to God.”—2 Corinthians 9:11

Give Honorably

God instructed His people to give the firstfruits and wealth to Him. This was to be done with a grateful heart that would honor the Lord. In Hebrew, the word for honor is kavod, which means respect, reverence, importance, or glory. When we give honorably, we glorify God. Honor is the currency of Heaven, which means it moves things in the spiritual realm.  

  • “Honor the Lord with your possessions, and with the firstfruits of all your increase; so your barns will be filled with plenty and your vats will overflow with new wine.”—Proverbs 3:9-10

Give Willingly 

Jesus told His followers that they would live contrary to the patterns of the world. When everyone or every situation says, “This person owes you,” Jesus challenges that thought with giving. It is easy to give when you know what or how you will receive something back. But Jesus teaches us to give without an expectation of return. This isn’t to say you won’t get anything back, as the Lord sees everything and rewards those who seek Him and His ways. Rather the point is to have a humble heart and willingness to follow the Spirit even when you can’t see if or what will be the result. It’s a call to trust. 

  • “‘Give to everyone who asks of you. And from him who takes away your goods do not ask them back.’”—Luke 6:30

In Conclusion

Wealth requires the fear of the Lord, yirah, which means respect, reverence, and worship, and a heart to bless others. Biblical giving unlocks wealth, but it is important to understand what wealth means according to God’s Word. 

In Deuteronomy 8:18, it says, “Remember the Lord… He who gives you power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant…”

The word for wealth here is chayil, which means to be firm, strong, prosper, and strong, having substance and might. Biblical giving is tied to empowering you to be prosperous in your call so you can be a part of advancing God’s Kingdom.

A biblical giving mindset thinks about… 

  • WHO gives us the ability to give: the Lord 
  • WHAT to give: proportionate to what God has given us  
  • WHY we give: to honor God and bless others
  • WHEN we are to give: according to the Spirit’s leading and God’s Word
  • HOW we are to give: with a cheerful and generosity 

Do you want to know more about biblical giving as a way of worship? Get our free resource Biblical Principles for Finances, Understanding the Blessings of Tithes and Offerings.