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The Blessed Life (Week 4) – Why do we give God the first fruits?

November 12, 2023

Blessed Life – Week 4

The Principal of the First

What is up family? We are in week four of our series the blessed life based on a book with the same title written by pastor Robert Morris and this book radically changed my life! At the beginning of this series Pastor Mike made a challenge for you to not miss a week of this series because I truly believe these principles will radically transform your life, but if you miss any weeks so far you can go online and catch up because I really layout some foundational truth about our heart and the purpose behind why we do what we do in regards to these principles.

Today is probably one of the most difficult messages to speak and teach on as we are going to be tackling some meaty teachings today, but I believe it is probably the most important message out of the series as we are going to be talking about

The Principal of the Firsts

If God is 1st in your life, then everything comes into order. Now I’m not saying that you won’t go through trials or tough times because even Jesus said we’re going to go through trials; what I’m saying is despite the trials we go through, we have the proper alignment in life. If we routinely seek Him first and make God 1st, He will reveal solutions to our problems and struggles through the light of His presence and the power of His voice. His peace guards our hearts against chaotic thoughts and emotions. Wouldn’t you rather go through life with your life in order instead of out of order?

This principle of the 1st is a theme throughout the entire Bible because it is laying out the placement of God in our lives. Watch what it says in Exodus:

Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Consecrate to Me all the firstborn, whatever opens the womb among the children of Israel, both of man and beast; it is Mine.” Exodus 13:1-2 NKJV

Consecrate means to set apart! Notice he says it is mine. These are very strong words God using in the original text very powerful statement where he’s making a claim and leaving a very clear description to the people of Israel of what is of importance to him. The first.

“Every firstborn that comes from an animal which you have; the males shall be the Lord’s. But every firstborn of a donkey you shall redeem with a lamb; and if you will not redeem it, then you shall break its neck. And all the firstborn of man among your sons you shall redeem. Exodus 13:12-13 NKJV

Notice it says that every donkey you must break its neck if you don’t redeem it which means you will lose it anyway. Think about that with your tithe and finances: if you don’t redeem them they would become lost

Now to understand this principle of 1st there are several things we need to grasp about this principle.


Now the question comes up how do you know which to do. How do you know if you’re supposed to sacrifice it or redeem it? If it’s clean it is to be sacrificed and if it’s unclean he needs to be redeemed and what exodus says here is that it is redeemed with a clean animal. So to redeem the unclean donkey you needed a clean lamb to redeem it.

Now how does that apply today because that seems like some ancient stuff that we can’t always comprehend in 2023? Think about it this way: how are you born do you think you were born clean or unclean?

For I was born a sinner—yes, from the moment my mother conceived me. Psalms 51:5

Romans says because of the sin of Adam that sin has spread to everyone. So we are born into sin with a sinful nature. However, Jesus was born into this world clean. The Bible says he was pure and never sinned and he was sacrificed so that we could be redeemed and clean. Now, why am I saying this?


God gave his 1st born son 1st watch what Roman says,

But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. Romans 5:8

Did you see that? God sent his son as a sacrifice before we got our act together. While we were still in sin he sent his tithe. He sent Jesus while we were still mocking him, beating him, spitting on him, and nailing him to a cross. While we were still consumed with the sin he hoped and desired that we would receive the free gift of Jesus’ sacrifice and receive the forgiveness that would redeem our unclean sin. I’m glad he didn’t wait for me to get my act together to redeem me.

So he gave his son in faith!

We tithe 10% in faith… We put God 1st in trust! The first fruit means that the tithe comes 1st and for that to happen we need faith! God says give me the first lamb, the firstborn I want the 1st. Don’t wait till you have 10 lambs and then hand over the scrawny one that you don’t really want. No, give me the first before you even have 9 more that follows because that takes faith.

Many people think that the tithe the 10% is what causes the blessing but that’s not the truth it’s

Your faith and obedience cause the blessing

Now I really want you to see this principle in the eyes of faith. Think back all the way to the book of Joshua the people of Israel 40 years before were delivered from the powerful Egyptian army out of slavery and the people still did not have faith to trust God to be their provider and sustainer. When he brought them to the promised land their response was we cannot defeat the nations that live in this land and they were filled with doubt, not faith. So for 40 years, the people of Israel wandered in the desert until all the doubters became old and died away.

Now Joshua is in command and the people of Israel are ready to inherit the promised land that was theirs from the beginning. And they’re stepping into their first battle to take down the mighty city of Jericho and watch what God instructs the people of Israel to do.

Jericho and everything in it must be completely destroyed as an offering to the Lord. Only Rahab the prostitute and the others in her house will be spared, for she protected our spies. “Do not take any of the things set apart for destruction, or you yourselves will be completely destroyed, and you will bring trouble on the camp of Israel. Everything made from silver, gold, bronze, or iron is sacred to the Lord and must be brought into his treasury.” Joshua 6:17-19

Now the logical thinking would be that after you win your first battle you would take the spoils of war to fund the mission of conquering the rest of the land. But God said everything from the first battle would be given to him as an offering. Why? Because it was the first city conquered in the promised land and that would make it the first fruit. He didn’t say conquered 10 cities and give me the spoils from the 10th one he says give me the 1st and you can have the rest and that’s going to take faith and of course, tithing takes faith to give the 1st.


Honor the Lord with your possessions, And with the firstfruits of all your increase Proverbs 3:9 NKJV

All your increase which means bonuses and all the God brings into your home. Honor God with it. Now I want you to notice something this isn’t the law in proverbs where God is kind of writing out the guidebook for the people of Israel. This is actually hundreds of years after the law was written we’re Solomon is reinforcing that this is a principle, not just a rule.

The first of the firstfruits of your land you shall bring into the house of the Lord your God. Exodus 23:19 NKJV

Notice God says to bring the firstfruits not give first fruit Why is that? Because:

You can’t give what’s not yours

And we’ve already associated that the tithe is set apart for God so it is already his that’s why we just bring it to the House of the Lord. So, you can either bring it or you steal it as we talked about 2 weeks ago in Malachi chapter 3.

Now, remember when we talked about how in the book of Joshua God commanded the people of Israel to take all the spoils they received from the battle of Jericho and offer 1it to God as an offering because it was the first fruits and that was their tithe? Well not everybody has faith and there was a dude Achan just didn’t want to trust God and took matters into his own hands.

But Israel violated the instructions about the things set apart for the Lord. A man named Achan had stolen some of these dedicated things, so the Lord was very angry with the Israelites. Joshua 7:1-2

So Achan takes some the first fruit offering and keeps it for himself. Took what was set apart for himself and God becomes angry and now their mission which was redeemed is now cursed and the people of Israel go to battle and when they just came out and a victory that was amazing and miraculous they get beat handily by the men of Ai.   

And Joshua goes and he’s weeping on his face before God and God goes dude get up why you laying on your face like that because there’s only one logical explanation as to why you were defeated you didn’t obey the covenant and my commands by giving me the 1st. People stole from me and my blessings could not be there because there was sin in its place. And God says until you deal with this you’ll never defeat your enemies until you get those things that were set apart and give him to me you won’t have victory and so Joshua dealt with it and God blessed their mission.

Listen to me: when we don’t tithe we are not setting apart what God called to be holy and we’re not seeing our finances be redeemed but now we are cursing them.

Why would you want curses in your bank account because the Lord knows you already got enough problems in that bank account already. Wouldn’t you want it blessed? Heres what I know:


Listen to what it says in Genesis 4:

And in the process of time it came to pass that Cain brought an offering of the fruit of the ground to the Lord. Genesis 4:3 NKJV

I want you to notice this it says in the process of time Cain brought an offering. It didn’t say he brought the first fruit it just says an offering over the course of time.

Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat. And the Lord respected Abel and his offering, but He did not respect Cain and his offering. Genesis 4:4-5 NKJV

The Lord respected and accepted Abel’s offering but did not accept Cain’s offering and it’s not that God wouldn’t accept it that he couldn’t accept it because God has to be 1st and can never be 2nd. God is above all and he is 1st and just because you don’t make him 1st Doesn’t change who he is and that means he could never be second. He is God!

Tithing represents who is 1st in your life. You can tell me all day long who’s 1st in your life but your lifestyle and your choices are the real answer. The first belongs to God we can give God the first of our time. We can give him the first of our finances. What the tithe is really is giving our first to God. It is saying, God, I’m gonna give you the 1st and trust you redeem the rest.

So when we understand the principle of tithing we can look at our bank accounts and say God you come first And I trust now when I tithe 1st you’re going to redeem the rest and provide for me. You can also say God I understand the principle a first because you come first in my schedule I give you the first portion of my week by attending church and believe you will redeem the rest of my week because I will honor you and model to my family God comes 1st.

Sadly some people view Monday as the beginning of the week other people think Friday is when their week begins because they think I’m going to party and have a good time but very few people view attending church as the tithe of their time by giving God the first of their week as they worship God and they serve in the body to see people that are far from Jesus have a welcoming loving experience in our church community. Even in business, this is why chick fila, hobby lobby and others, are BLESSED and still at the top of the lists for revenues minus 1 day of the week against their competition…bc they give the first part of their week. Number 3:


One-tenth of the produce of the land, whether grain from the fields or fruit from the trees, belongs to the Lord and must be set apart to him as holy. Leviticus 27:30

OK now let me use a little illustration here say I hire a contractor to remodel my kitchen and the contractor gives me a bid and says this is how much it’s going to cost for materials, this is how much is going to cost to pay my workers, and this is the profit I’m going to make which will just say is $1000. Now the contractor doesn’t tithe on the material cost or on what he pays his workers he tithes on his profit which is his increase.  So let’s say I give him 10 $100 bills for his $1000 profit. What’s his tithe? $100.

Now, which of the $100 bills is his tithe? Now what we do is we set some aside for a mortgage, set some aside for our car payment, set some aside for our utilities, set some aside for our food, and then we set some aside for our tithe.  However, when we do that our tithe is not our first fruit which means Gods not first because our mortgage is getting our first fruit.

For if the firstfruit is holy, the lump is also holy; and if the root is holy, so are the branches. Romans 11:16 NKJV

I want you to see this is we made the first fruit holy it redeems the rest and makes the rest holy. In the root is only all the branches and its fruit becomes holy. If the tithe is 1st and God is 1st then the rest is holy. So your tithe is the first that leaves your hand.

Because if we’re honest and we don’t make the first fruit the first fruit which causes the rest to be holy what happens is we send some aside for a mortgage, we set some aside for our car payment, we set some aside for our utilities, we set some aside for our food, and oops we don’t have quite enough to set aside for our tithe and God cannot accept and redeem that because he was not first. Remember in Malachai when God said you are robbing me.  He also says you are not bringing me your first or your best offering when you do bring offerings and it is so dishonoring I wish you wouldn’t bring me any offering at all! God has to be 1st in our life and we have to trust that he has our best interests at heart. That’s faith!

Now how does this work for me? I get paid every other Friday and my check is direct deposited so it just magically appears in my bank account and So what I’ve done is I set up recurring giving that the very first thing that comes out of my bank account on payday is my tithes and offerings. Now some people write checks and when they get paid the very first thing they do is write a tithe check or some people physically go online on their payday and give their tithe. But what they’re doing and what I’m trying to do is to always make the first fruit the first fruit because I always want God to be 1st.

Now what if you get paid and go to pay your tithe and maybe you write a check or pay online on your payday but you get so busy one day that you get home that night and you’re like I forgot to write my tithe check where I forgot to pay my tithe online and you jump online to pay your tithe and you realize your wife bought groceries already and you’re like great my check already cursed for this pay period. No! That’s not the way it works because God is not legalistic.

Tithing isn’t about following rules it’s about your heart and your intentions

2nd corinthians 9 says:

Let giving flow from your heart, not from a sense of religious duty…” 2 Corinthians 9:7 TPT

We do it just because we want God to be 1st in our lives and he knows your heart.


That’s why I tell you only you can keep yourself accountable to this and as one of your pastors I will teach you the truth but I’ll not be looking at your paycheck and your donation and see if you’re giving 10% that’s between you and God. it’s also why I say if you don’t feel called to Bloom go to a church that you feel called to be a part of an apply these principles too because I care more about you being blessed and I don’t want you to walk in the curse any longer. God has great things in store for you but he has to be 1st in your life.

And in the future, your children will ask you, ‘What does all this mean?’ Then you will tell them, ‘With the power of his mighty hand, the Lord brought us out of Egypt, the place of our slavery. Pharaoh stubbornly refused to let us go, so the Lord killed all the firstborn males throughout the land of Egypt, both people and animals. That is why I now sacrifice all the firstborn males to the Lord… Exodus 13:14-15

One day your children will come and ask you why do you sacrifice the first fruits to the Lord and you’ll tell him we weren’t always blessed like we are now. We didn’t use to be farmers or ranchers we used to be slaves, but God redeemed us and out of a grateful heart we remember that and we understand that we never want to walk in this life without God being 1st. Because I don’t want to take one step without God’s direction. because only a surrendered disciple can walk in the thriving will of God. That is still true for us today thousands of years later parents we model to our children what redemption and surrender looks like and if God is not first in your life and he is 2nd and 3rd in your life he will be 4th 5th and 6th in your children’s lives. We explain to them the redemption we explain to them the goodness of God and we show them what freedom looks like and we explain why God is 1st in our lives.

So the question I want to end with

is God really first in your life?