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Honor Jehovah with Your Wealth
Proverbs 3:9-10 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
9 Honor Jehovah with your wealth
and with the firstfruits of all your produce;
10 then your barns will be filled with plenty,
and your vats will be bursting with wine.
Honor Jehovah with your wealth: The principal Hebrew term denoting “honor” is (כָּבֵד kabed), which literally means “to be heavy, weighty.” Thus, an honored person is seen as being weighty; they amount to something. To Honor someone means that we hold them in high esteem, to recognize them as being great and worthy of our respect. Because of his being our Creator and Sovereign, God is deserving of our honor, our reverential regard or respect, wherein we speak highly of him at all times. (1 Tim. 1:17; Heb. 3:3, 4; Rev. 4:9-11) God deserves our honor not just for what he has done or what position he holds in creation but also for who he is, as God is love. – 1 John 4;8.
Jehovah deserves our honor because of his good name, strong moral character or strength, and adherence to ethical principles. Our honoring him means that we have great respect and appreciation for him. Moreover, we do so by proclaiming his name. Our wealth (valuable things) need not necessarily refer to monetary. We can honor him with our time, our God-given talents, our body strength, by being grateful for all that he has done (Deut. 6:9-11), by being more reflective of him as we were made in his image (3:27-28), and yes, as well as our financial possessions. – Proverbs 11:25.
The reference to firstfruits takes us back to the time of Moses (Deut. 26:2, 10; Lev 23:15–21), where the Israelites were expected to give Jehovah God the firstfruits of their farming labors, which was an act of worship. This was heartfelt evidence that they appreciated all that Jehovah had given them. In all that we can honor God with, it should always be our first and our best of what we do in life.
Again, here we are with another; if you do (A), you get (B). Essentially, if the Israelites honored Jehovah with their prosperity from hard labor (A), they would have full barns and wine to drink (B). The barns and vats in the days of the Israelite nation are not representative of wealth, and they are illustrative of the basics of life at that time, bread and wine. In other words, generally speaking, if the Israelites honored Jehovah God with the firstfruits of their labor, he would make sure that they did not fall below the basics of life.
More in-depth Insights
We need to make good use of our possessions, which is how we will increase them. We serve God with our possessions, and it shows our appreciation for being created and our redemption to honor God. Think of those who risk the life God gave them for momentary cheap thrills (skydiving, parachuting out of planes, taking selfies hanging over the edge of a cliff). Indeed, our life is the primary possession we have. We bring praise to God for what we do. We honor God with our bodies and our minds. But it goes beyond that to all that we possess. We devote our possession to God not by giving them to him but by appreciating and respecting them, growing them through taking care of them. When our wealth increases, we tend to honor ourselves with that increase. (Deut. 8:17) We then buy unnecessary things from the world for our self-indulgent pleasure. (Psa. 62:10) We must understand that all we gain came through the things God already gave us, such as the mind that we use, the Godly wisdom from his word. So, God has prospered us, and we must honor him by using our prosperity in such a way that will honor him.