Mark 12:41-44 “And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.”
Text II Samuel 24:24 “And the king said unto Araunah, Nay; but I will surely buy it of thee at a price: neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the LORD my God of that which doth cost me nothing.”
When it comes to giving, it is necessary to understand that all giving is noticed; either by men or the Master; “The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good” (Proverbs 15:3). David knew the importance of giving with the right spirit and for the right purpose! With our text, Jesus is observing the manner in which offerings are being given into the treasury; a case in which we can learn must about giving.
The first thing that we are made aware of is the scrutiny of giving, “and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury.” The word “beheld” means to be a spectator of, discern carefully or to observe for details, to look with interest. While it may not rest well within your spirit, God pays particular attention to what is being offered; especially to Him. No offering is insignificant; “And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward” (Matthew 10:42).
We are made aware of the sources of giving, “of their abundance; but she of her want.” Within the text there are two basic sources from which we can give; our leftovers, and our living. Both Mark’s and Luke’s account declare that everyone but the widow, “cast in of their abundance.” The word “abundance” means to super abound, be in excess, that which remains over and above. While it is hard for most to understand; it cost these individuals nothing to gain the recognition and applause of men! With respect to the widow, it was impossible for her to give from the leftovers because there were no leftovers; “cast in all that she had, even all her living.” The word “living” means present state of existence, means or manner of life.
The final thing that we are made aware of is the summation of giving, “this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury.” If what I have read is true, they say that the priest considered the “mite” to be so insignificant that it was not even counted in the offering. While that may be the case with men, it is not the case with the Master! In the economy of God; giving is not measured in the capacity of the hand, but the commitment of the heart.
Men took notice of riches, the Master took notice of what remains; giving that’s noticed.