“‘And it shall come to pass in the harvest that you shall give one-fifth to Pharaoh. Four-fifths shall be your own, as seed for the field and for your food, for those of your households and as food for your little ones.’ So they said, ‘You have saved our lives…'”
Although Joseph had bought all of Egypt (their bodies, their livestock, their lands), he was humane enough to still leave some things for them and their little ones. He was not a tyrant leader who made them work for Pharaoh but did not care about the welfare of their families and their posterity. So Joseph requested that only one-fifth of the harvest should be returned to Pharaoh although, in reality, one hundred percent belonged to Pharaoh.
If the Egyptians would gratefully return 20% back to Pharaoh who had purchased them, how much more should we return more than that to the King of Heaven who bought us with His very life? Is the 10% tithe a worthy example of our gratitude to His magnanimity and benevolence to us? Is that the best the Church can do?
Don’t concern yourself with what Christ does with the produce brought to Him. Let your singular devotion be that I must consciously return to Him, a portion above what the Egyptians brought to Pharaoh. And although 100% of me and all mine belongs to Him, I must deliberately and conscientiously bring back above 20% to Him who owns my entire being. I must live by a higher code than Egypt.
“Hmm! What a lesson You are showing me today. All belongs to You Lord; everything is Yours. I will seek to obey the leadership of Your Spirit to give You whatever You request. But more deliberately Lord, may I never return less than 20% to the service of Your Kingdom and the assistance of the needy; for, after all, everything belongs to You. Amen.”