Book Review: “The Treasure Principle: Unlocking the Secret of Joyful Giving” by Randy Alcorn (2001)

Randy Alcorn‘s modern classic , The Treasure Principle, reveals the Scriptural truths about giving: how a change in one’s attitude towards giving can ignite a reformation in living that will cross over the bounds of this life and open up the very treasure troves of Heaven. With careful yet simplistic detail, Alcorn develops the message of Christ that denial of materialism in this life and investment in the life to come is the best cure for the financial worry and strife that persistently marks our modern culture.

Alcorn’s writing style is clean, littered with historical facts and noteworthy anecdotes. As simple as his writing is, however,  his challenge is far more difficult. By developing six modest keys to unlocking the secret of joyful giving, and by concluding with a six-point giving covenant for the reader to confirm, Alcorn lays bare the truths and trials of one’s decisively altering his entire financial philosophy.

While reading this short book, I must admit that I found it challenging to picture Alcorn’s intended audience. Because his book is filled with stories of philanthropists and business owners, and the majority of his encouragements to give often imply going far beyond the classic 10% tithe, I wondered if he was writing only to the rich. While he mentions often his own story of facing an $8.2 million court judgment and having to accept minimum wage to help pay this off, Alcorn still comes across as a man who lives by far different means than I. His story surely does not resonate with my own, and as a result, this book tends towards the “nice, but not for me” shelf in my library.

[Note: I received this book free through the Waterbrook-Multnomah Blogging for Books program]

© 2011 E.T.

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