With this being the first Sunday in Lent we see how God wanted the people to give their first fruits of their labors. Even today He wants us to give because if we do that then everything will fall into place. I’m a member of a very small church (maybe around 60 people on the roster and anywhere between 20 to 30 week to week). The first thing we do is send our money to the benevolence fund. When we do that, we can pay all our bills. If we don’t then we’ve had problems in the past. God wants us to trust Him with our tithes and offerings. If we do that, then all will be all right in the end.
This is part of what evangelists call the “Roman Road”. That last sentence is very true though: Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. It’s not shall, or might, but will. Because God did raise Jesus from the dead. Two thousand years ago, all they had to do was produce a body and what would become Christianity would have been destroyed. But they didn’t. The religious leaders of the day could not produce a body because there was no body to show. All we have to do is confess with our hearts and mouths and God does the rest of the work. It’s an extravagant gift given to us that cost Jesus his very life.
When Jesus was in the desert, who was the one spouting scripture? It was the devil. Satan knows more scripture than anyone alive, though at the same time he twisted it for his own uses. As a lay leader I know how easily twisting things around to what I want to say is so easy, but we are called to not do that. It’s so easy to lead someone astray by a single word. The thing is, if that happens it’s worse off for that leader.
It’s better that a millstone be tied around their neck and thrown into the sea than lead a believer astray.
Millstones at that time were huge boulders. Jesus was trying to make people realize just how much responsibility a leader has. It’s a heavy responsibility, and not to be taken lightly.