Mt 6:1-4 Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth: That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.
People give and do good deeds publicly for many reasons, sometimes good ones, and much is done from people with good hearts. But some do it to be seen, to be approved of, to be exalted. These verses speak to these issues, and shows us that giving that truly honors God, is not meant to be broadcast to the world. Doing so may get you a couple of days, or even weeks of recognition; and people may think well of you, but it’s end result is pride.
He spoke of those who gave from wrong motives:
Jesus gives a scathing rebuke in verse 6:2: They have their reward — All they wanted was human applause, and they have it - and with it, all they will ever get.
Luk 11:41 But rather give alms of such things as ye have; and, behold, all things are clean unto you.
The Pharisees were careful for the outside; careless for what was within; but the Lord says: "Give for alms the within;" or, let your hearts and lives be full of compassion, and it will make you clean.
As the greed of these hypocrites was one of the most prominent features of their character (Luk 16:14; Mat 23:14), the Lord bids them exemplify the opposite character, and then their outside, ruled by this, would be beautiful in the eye of God, and their meals would be eaten with clean hands. (See Ecc (9:7).
In Jesus’ eyes, even the humblest expression of giving is seen and noticed by God; when given with a right heart.
Mr 9:41 For whosoever shall give you a cup of water to drink in my name, because ye belong to Christ, verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward.
Lu 21:1-4 And he looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury. And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites. And he said, Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all: For all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had.
No matter how much one may give; there’s always someone else who will come along, and be able to out-do you. When giving is done to be seen by the public; the results are inevitably competition, bragging, and feeding the ego. The book of James talks a great deal about those who want the pre-eminence, and looking down on those who are poor. There is no respecter of persons in God’s eyes, only mans.
If the gift is given solely for the love of God, it doesn’t matter if anyone ever sees it; because you know you’ve placed that gift in God’s hands, to do with it as He wishes, and knowing that is enough.