David was the most powerful king in the history of Israel. And among the strongest in the world of his day. Everywhere he went, he defeated the enemies of his people, greatly extending the borders of the nation.
But he was more than just a powerful warrior king. He was a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22) and the author of many of the psalms in Israel’s hymnal.
Near the end of his life, David expressed a desire to build a great temple for God. But God told him that it would be his son who would be given that honor. So instead, David donated materials Solomon would later be able to use in the construction. And this included 300 tons of gold and 600 tons of silver.
A gift to take pride in. But rather than be proud of the generous provision he was able to make, David was humbled.
“But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.1 Chronicles 29:14 NIV
Who am I? Few were as great as David, at least humanly speaking. Yet, in many ways, he remained that humble shepherd boy God had raised up to greatness. He was nothing. And God was everything.
And who are my people? His people were a part of a significant kingdom that stretched the length of the eastern Mediterranean. But it was God who had delivered them from Egyptian slavery and raised them to power. They were God’s people. And all they had came from him.
Giving Back to God
It would have had to be tempting to claim some credit for the gift that David was able to give. But David saw what he had as having been given to him by God. And so, his offering was simply giving back a part of what God had given him. It was, after all, God’s in the first place. So David was giving, not of his own riches, but of the riches that God had provided.
And what a wonderful example for me today. What do I have that God did not first give to me? I am simply a steward of God’s possessions. So I should be able to return them to him without any thought of sacrifice or reluctance. I can give joyfully out of the abundance God has blessed me with, knowing that he will continue to bless me richly if I am faithful to him.