Jesus challenges me to be faithful. Loyalty and commitment within human relationships is important in the life of God’s people.
It is seen particularly in fidelity within marriage, fulfilling family obligations, honoring vows, dutiful service and trustworthy speech and conduct.
Justice, mercy, and faithfulness are the important qualities God is seeking. Obeying the rules is no substitute.
While it is good to pay attention to details, we must never lose our sense of priorities in spiritual matters. Jesus did not condemn the practice of tithing. But He did condemn those who allowed their legalistic scruples to keep them from developing true Christian character.
I think there is also a level of persistence in faithfulness. Consider this from Paul: “Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; be persistent in prayer.” Romans 12:12
Or this again from Paul: “He will repay each one according to his works: eternal life to those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor, and immortality; but wrath and anger to those who are self-seeking and disobey the truth while obeying unrighteousness. Romans 2:6-9
- Matthew 23:23 — 23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others.
- Proverbs 20:6 — 6 Many a man proclaims his own loyalty, but who can find a trustworthy man?
- Psalm 12:1–2 — 1 Help, Master, for the godly man ceases to be, For the faithful disappear from among the sons of men. 2 They speak falsehood to one another; With flattering lips and with a double heart they speak.
- Isaiah 57:1 — 1 The righteous man perishes, and no man takes it to heart; And devout men are taken away, while no one understands. For the righteous man is taken away from evil,
- Jeremiah 17:9 — 9 “The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; Who can understand it?”