Power to Act

Proverbs 3:27-28 

27Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act. 28Do not say to your neighbor, “Come back tomorrow and I’ll give it to you”—when you already have it with you.


When others say, “You are selfish!” How do respond? Surely, we don’t like others to describe us as selfish. To be called “selfish” is not very pleasant to the ear. We desire to be called generous, benevolent, thoughtful, caring and hospitable. We like that!

Truly, the Lord wants us also to be generous. Well, did you know that there is biblical open-secret of how we may be enriched abundantly in every way so that we can be generous on every occasion? Be prayerful; this secret is godly. Therefore, it requires godly effort to accept it and implement this open-secret to be enriched in every way.

Many believers are serious in practicing what it states in 2 Corinthians 9:6-11? 6Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. 7Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. 9As it is written: “They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor; their righteousness endures forever.”

10Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. 11You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.

This passage is most often used to encourage believers to give to the church. Originally, Apostle Paul wrote this encouragement of giving for the Corinthian believers to share their abundance to the poor believers in Judea. Giving is an open-secret to blessings in this temporal world that would translate to eternal treasures in heaven.

The Lord does not condone hoarding of wealth. If the Lord blesses us abundantly, he expects us to be generous, why? Generosity serves as practical exhibit of gratitude to the Lord. When recipients to our generosity are grateful, we can take advantages of that situation as opportunity to tell them that the Lord blessed us so that we can be generous. And, we can encourage them to trust the Lord also for their needs.

Generosity to the needy is practical instrument to bring people to believe in the Lord so that the Lord would love to release more blessings to us to be more generous.

1.  Release

27Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act.

Whenever the Lord commands us not to do something, it is the very opposite that we normally do. He said, “Don’t withhold!” What do we instinctively do? Withhold.

To be generous is godly; to withhold goodness is human nature of selfishness. We want what is good for us. When it is good, we want it for ourselves, not for others; so that, we just withhold goodness. Why? Our mindset and understanding on how to open the secret to much blessing is very limited. Instinctively, we think that the more we get for ourselves, the more we can have abundance. Giving is an open-secret to abundance.

Most often, when we hear the term giving, money easily comes to mind. No one should be forced to give money if they don’t have money. So, what can we give if we don’t have money? We give what we have in our possession. What do you possess? What is it that belongs to you that you have the authority to dispose or release?


The story of Joseph son of Jacob is a story of successful and abundant life that believers should be more serious to consider and imitate. Joseph was sold into slavery, but he rose into prominence because the Lord was with him. It stated in Genesis 39:2, 5,2The Lord was with Joseph so that he prospered…  5the Lord blessed the household of the Egyptian because of Joseph. The blessing of the Lord was on everything Potiphar had, both in the house and in the field.

What did Joseph give so that he prospered? He had faith in God, so even as slave, he gave his best; he worked as he was working for God. His master Potiphar observed how Joseph behaved so that he promoted him as manager of his household. Potiphar was blessed even more when he gave Joseph the authority to manage his household.

Sadly, Joseph was falsely accused and imprisoned. It says in Genesis 39:20-23, 20But while Joseph was there in the prison, 21the Lord was with him; he showed him kindness and granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warden. 22So the warden put Joseph in charge of all those held in the prison, and he was made responsible for all that was done there. 23The warden paid no attention to anything under Joseph’s care, because the Lord was with Joseph and gave him success in whatever he did.

Prison should be terrible situation. How did Joseph behave in prison that the warden put him as administrator in jail? Was Joseph respectful to the warden, diligent in his task, caring to other prisoners? It said that the warden did not pay attention to anything that he authorized Joseph to do. That was a blessing for the warden, right?

Joseph became Prime Minister of Egypt. It stated in Exodus 41:38-40, 38Pharaoh asked them, “Can we find anyone like this man, one in whom is the spirit of God?” 39Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has made all this known to you, there is no one so discerning and wise as you. 40You shall be in charge of my palace, and all my people are to submit to your orders. Only with respect to the throne will I be greater than you.”

Can you believe that the Lord inspired Pharaoh such that he promoted Joseph?

Imprisonment and slavery could be the worst situations we cannot appreciate. The Lord may situate us in the worst predicament to test our behavior and if we still trust him. Behavior during unexpected situation helps us realize if we truly trust the Lord.

2.  Realize

28Do not say to your neighbor, “Come back tomorrow and I’ll give it to you”—when you already have it with you.

Have you heard of the term “Control Freak?” It is a term that describes a person who is obsessive in controlling others. This “control freak” behavior is human nature. Children are control freaks. Have you observed it? When they want something, they cry.

It is not surprising when older people would try to control others to. People may say, “Wait, hold on!” Why? If you wait, you are under control. Anyone may fall at the mercy of others.

Did you know if believers are aware that they try to be control freak? What do believers try to control? Believers control their time, giving and helping – that is  we attend worship services at our convenience, control what we give, and choose who we wish to help. We don’t realize, we also control how much blessing God may give us.

Good Samaritan

Priests and Levites should have exemplified how to love neighbors. They chose the neighbor they want to love. Originally, the parable of Good Samaritan was a rebuke to priests and Levites. Jesus told a story of a man, who was attacked by robbers and left him almost dead. It says in Luke 10:25-35, 31A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’

Why did the priest and the Levite withhold their help? They may assume that the man was dead. If they touch him, it makes them unclean. Uncleanness disqualifies them to participate in the temple service and other privileges of priests and Levites.

The Good Samaritan helped the needy. Both insensitive and good behavior was recorded in the Scripture. What does it imply in relation to our attitude toward others?

The Lord Jesus warned in Revelation 22:12, 12Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to each person according to what they have done.

Friend: Will you receive reward for your behavior toward others? Make sure of it!

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