Friday, April 18, 2008

A Deluge of Blessing

“Try Me now in this,” says the LORD of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it.” (Malachi 3:10)
“Windows of heaven” presents us with interesting imagery. The Hebrew word for “window,” arubah, speaks of openings such as lattices or sluices. “Heaven” speaks of that which is high and lofty. It can refer to the sky and the reaches of space, as well as the spiritual abode of God. We find this unusual phrase only a few times in Scripture.
  • In Genesis 7:11, the fountains of the deep were broken up and the windows of heaven were opened up to inundate the earth with rain and floodwaters during the Great Deluge.
  • In 2 Kings 7, Samaria was besieged and in dire famine, Elijah, the prophet of God, said that within twenty-four hours there would be a great abundance of food. An officer of the king doubted him, saying, “Look, if the LORD would make windows in heaven, could this thing be?” (v. 2). Elijah answered, “In fact, you shall see it with your eyes, but you shall not eat of it.” And so it happened.
  • In Malachi 3:10, the word of the LORD calls for the people to “bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house.” He challenges them to test Him and see “if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it.”
“Windows of heaven” speaks of a flood, in the case of Malachi 3:10, a deluge of blessing. Notice that it is “poured out.” The Hebrew word means to make empty or empty out. This is no small thing. God promises to empty out all of heaven onto those who trust, test and obey Him in the area of tithing.

Now, tithing is no longer a requirement for Christians, who are not under the Law of Moses but under the Covenant of Grace in Jesus Christ. But God still does honor giving and pours out all the provision of heaven in a great flood on those who honor Him with their gifts. Writing to the believers at Corinth on the subject of giving of one’s resources, Paul teaches them, “He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully … And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:6, 8).

Notice the fullness of this abundance: ALL grace, ALWAYS having ALL sufficiency in ALL things, plus ABUNDANCE for EVERY good work. It is a flood of blessing, enough to bless not only us, but those around us.

God pours out all of heaven on our behalf, and we become receivers when we learn to become givers. It is a deluge of blessing.