Don’t Withhold

Don’t Withhold

by Jeffrey Bush


There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty. The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that watereth shall be watered also himself. He that withholdeth corn, the people shall curse him: but blessing shall be upon the head of him that selleth it. (Proverbs 11:24)


These verses are packed with both practical and gospel advice. We can withhold what we have, attempting to save up more, or we can give it away and watch God replenish. As the bottomless oil pot when the widow continued pouring into other pots, so is the person that continues giving… God just keeps the vessel full. You can’t out-give God! 

As a young child, I remember a missionary visiting our small church. As soon as church finished, my dad loaded us in the family van and we headed towards the house. We walked in the house and my dad began to open our cabinets and place groceries in a box and brown paper bags. My mom had recently been grocery shopping, so the majority of our groceries were brand new. Dad pulled out my favorite sour-cream-and-onion chips, snacks and bread. He then loaded us back into the family van and we drove to a spot where we met the missionary. I was very young and do not remember what was said or many details, but looking over the van seat I saw my dad open the trunk,  pick up the groceries and hand them over to the missionary. There were a few nods, handshakes, smiles and then my family was off again to the house. Years have passed by and I don’t know who that missionary was or what my dad said, but that moment greatly impacted me. We didn’t have much money, but I can tell you that we never ran out of food. God gave back what my dad generously gave away. You can never out-give God! 

According to this verse, the liberal soul (generous giver) will be blessed and prospered. He won’t go hungry or run out. He has watered and now will be watered. He has been a blessing and now will receive a blessing. But the person that withholds the goods (specifically corn in this verse) will be cursed, while the one who makes it available will be blessed. The conclusion seems to be that when you stop thinking of yourself and start thinking of others, blessings begin to pour out on you. So, learn to generously scatter instead of stingily withholding. 


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