Verse of the Day Devotion: Mark 12:43

“Calling His disciples to Him, He said to them, “Truly I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the contributors to the treasury;” – Mark 12:43 

This scripture is about giving to God.  Here are the contextual verses.  “And He sat down opposite the treasury and began observing how the people were putting money into the treasury; and many rich people were putting in large sums.  A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which amount to a cent.”  Mark 12:41-42.  It is important to note these were voluntary contributions by the worshippers which were used to buy wood for the alter, as well as other necessities not provided for in any other way.

Jesus sat and was observing the giving that was taking place in the treasury.  As He watched, he called the disciples to Him and gave them a lesson in giving.  He saw many rich people giving large amounts of money.   By the fact Jesus saw them from a distance, this was probably being done in a way that was intended for others to see.  They were making it clear how much they were offering and was proud of the amount they dropped in the containers.  Then He watches as a poor widow came and dropped in two small copper coins, the smallest denomination of coins back then, worth less than a cent in todays value.

Many would say the rich gave much more than this woman.  They would only see the amount that is given.  However, that is not how Jesus saw it.  “Truly I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the contributors to the treasury; for they all put in out of their surplus, but she, out of her poverty, put in all she owned, all she had to live on.”  Mark 12:43b-44.  Jesus is not as interested in how much we give, but in how much we sacrifice.  Notice the words describing the offerings.  The rich gave of their surplus, the widow gave out of her need.  The rich gave what they had left over, the widow gave all she had to live on.  Charity should not be judged by its appearance; what we see with our eyes, but by the spirit in which it is given.

God sees everything we do, both our deeds and our intentions and motives.  He sees what we do in public and what we do in private.  There is nothing hidden from Him.  He sees the circumstances and our heart, whether we act with care or negligence.  With a heart of compassion and love, or of arrogance and greed.   The poor widow gave more because she gave her all.  She gave out of her love for God, giving because she wanted to honor Him.  She also gave out of trust because I think she knew she would be taken care of.  “For the LORD God is a sun and shield; The LORD gives grace and glory; No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” Psalm 84:11

We must check our motives and ensure our giving is to honor Him and not ourselves.  Our motives and compassion decide the value of our gift.

William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries, Inc.

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