“Then Jacob made a vow, saying, ‘If God will be with me and will watch over me on this journey I am taking and will give me food to eat and clothes to wear so that I return safely to my father’s house, then the Lord will be my God and this stone that I have set up as a pillar will be God’s house, and of all that you given me I will give you a tenth.” (Genesis 28:18-22)
Jacob made a vow or an oath of faithfulness expressed in specific ways. A covenant originates in God; a vow is a human response of faithfulness to God’s faithfulness to us. Later, the Law made the taking of a vow entirely voluntary, but if a vow was made, it was binding.
Jacob’s vow to tithe, and it was a holy promise that is also binding. This the second biblical reference to the tithe, occurring before the commandment to tithe. The reference to the Father’s house, was originally to wherever God was have known to have appeared, but eventually it was moved to Jerusalem, where David had the ark moved to and then Solomon built the Temple in Jerusalem.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Precious Abba, to make a vow to You, was and still is, a very serious and binding move on our part. For whatever we vow to do, will be expected to be done. Guide our hearts and minds, to making vow’s of commitment to give our tithe’s to our churches, Abba, for the necessary work of the church is to be servants of the communities that we serve in. This not for our glory; rather, it is a commitment by us to glorify You through our compassionate service to all of Your children, and to meet the needs of our church and the world around us that we serve. All this we pray in Jesus’ precious name. Amen.
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“God allows our enemies to exist so we can learn to love them!”
“Now swear to me by the Lord that you will not cut off my descendants or wipe out my name from my father’s family. So David gave his oath to Saul. Then Saul returned home, but David and his men went up to the stronghold.” (1st Samuel 24:21-22)
Saul was seeking David, to kill him, he was combing the countryside with his army to locate and to kill David before David killed him. David and his men were hiding in a cave and Saul entered it to take a short rest, before moving onward in their pursuit of David. David and his men were in the cave and his men urged him to kill Saul. David was right behind Saul, but instead of killing him, he cut off a small piece of cloth from his cloak. Saul was leaving, but David called out to him and told him he had been close enough to him to take his life, but chose instead to only cut off a patch of cloth and showed it to him. Saul knew at that moment David’s tale of allowing him to live was true. David told him he did not kill him, because he was the Lord’s anointed king. Saul’s response was to ask him not to harm or kill his family. David gave his oath to Saul, Saul returned home, and David let with his men. David had made a vow tot he Lord regarding Saul and he kept it. Human agreements become instruments of prayer when made in God’s name.
“Prayer, The king summoned Shimei and said to him, ‘Did I not make you swear by the lord and warn you,’ ‘On the day you leave to go anywhere else, you can be sure you will die’? At that time you said to me, ‘What you say is good. I will obey.’ Why then did you not keep your oath to the Lord and obey the command I gave you?’”: (1st Kings 2:42-43)
As previously noted, vows were binding since they were made in God’s name. In Numbers 30:2 it says, “When a man makes a vow to the Lord or takes an oath to obligate himself by a pledge, he must not break his word but must do everything he said.” How much different this world would be, beloved, if everyone lived this way, don’t you think?
Second Thought of the Day:
“When the Lord was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal. Elijah said to Elisha, ‘Stay here; the Lord has sent me to Bethel.’ But Elisha aid, ‘As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I will not leave you. So they continued on to Bethel, then Jericho and then to the Jordan, each time Elisha saying he would not leave Elijah.’ Elisha took his cloak, rolled it up and struck the water, separating it to the right and the left. Then they continued across to the other side on dry land. After crossing Elijah asked Elisha, “Tell me what can I do for you before I am taken from you?’ ‘Let me inherit a double potion of your spirit,’ Elisha replied. Elijah said, ‘yet if you see me when I am taken from you, it will be yours—otherwise not.’ Suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them and Elijah went up to heaven. Elijah saw this and cried out, ‘My father! My father!’ Elisha tore his clothes and walked over picked up Elijah cloak and walked up to the water and struck it and the water separated to the left and the right and he crossed back over.” (2nd Kings 2:1-12)
Elisha had left home and family to follow Elijah. He now pledged his faithfulness with a vow. Vows in God’s name commit one to action.
Elijah was as committed to faithfulness to Elisha and he was to God Himself. Elisha had also committed himself in faithfulness to God and to Elijah. So many times, we hear people say they are committed to one another, but in reality, words are empty. If we simply stopped long enough to think of what we were about to say was commitment to one in God’s name, the seriousness of the commitment would then be realized. Too often, empty words without real commitment just fall away. Think about this, the next time you are asked to commit to something!