“Both riches and honor come from You, and You reign over all. In Your hand is power and might; in Your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all. Now therefore, our God, we thank You and praise Your glorious name. But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to offer so willingly as this? For all things come from You, and of Your own we have given You” (1 Chronicles 29:12-14).
David had brought all the leaders of Israel together to unite them to follow his son Solomon who was to become the next king of Israel. David then hands over to Solomon the plans for the temple and the materials with which to build the temple (1 Chronicles 28:11-19). He tells Solomon, “Be strong and of good courage, and do it; do not fear nor be dismayed, for the Lord God--my God--will be with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you, until you have finished all the work for the service of the house of the Lord” (1 Chronicles 28:20).
In addition, David gave out of his own personal treasures to the work of building the Lord’s temple. He then encourages others to give and says, “Who then is willing to consecrate himself this day to the Lord?” In response, the people gave generously towards the work of the house of God (1 Chronicles 29:6-8). “Then the people rejoiced, for they had offered willingly, because with a loyal heart they had offered willingly to the Lord; and King David also rejoiced greatly” (1 Chronicles 29:9).
How did David view all these riches? Did these things BELONG to him or the people? No, he viewed all this wealth as belonging to God. “Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, The power and the glory, The victory and the majesty; for all that is in heaven and in earth is Yours; Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and You are exalted as head over all” (1 Chronicles 29:11). David remembered from where he and Israel had come and where God had taken them. All that they now had in their current possession was because God had so blessed them: “For we are aliens and pilgrims before You, as were all our fathers; Our days on earth are as a shadow, and without hope. O Lord our God, all this abundance that we have prepared to build You a house for Your holy name is from Your hand, and is all Your own” (1 Chronicles 29:15-16).
David had a proper view of the things which were in his possession. Although he was the wealthy and powerful king of Israel, he did not feel like the things under his control belonged to him. He viewed them as belonging to God and when he gave out of his own personal treasure to the work of the building of the house of God, he was simply giving back to God what rightfully belonged to God: “…For all things come from You, and of Your own we have given You” (1 Chronicles 29:14).
As I consider David’s words on this occasion, I ask myself, “How do I view the things which are in my possession?” Are they mine? Did I “earn” them because of my hard work? Do I deserve them or am I entitlement to them? Today, I rejoice that I am privileged to live in a land where I enjoy a high standard of living. I have good health, the ability to work at a nice job, and do my part in providing for my family. I have been blessed with a lot of material goods which I have accumulated over the years. I enjoy all of these things because God has so blessed me. It is not because I “earned it”, “deserved it” or am “entitled to it”. May God help me to keep a proper perspective of my possessions and may I never forget from where my blessings come!
“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 9:8).a