GIVING AND RECEIVING (Pt. 3)
Why and how should we give, what happens when we give?
Let your giving be born out of love; because you want to be a blessing to someone and/or also meet a need, not because you want to receive something in return. In the New Testament, people gave sacrificially; and they did so out of love too.
It’s not wrong to ask people to give, but what’s your motive for asking, and how do you go about it?
The bible teaches us to give (i) cheerfully, (ii) not by force or by coercion 2 Cor. 9:7 but based on (iii) what the individual has decided in his/her heart. Hence I believe it’s wrong to coerce people into giving, I believe it’s wrong to cajole, manipulate or threaten people to give.
Giving to others was a popular practice in the New Testament, and in fact people sold their stuff, just to meet the need of others in the church Acts 2:44-45, Acts 4:34-37.
People also gave of their own volition to meet needs. 2 Cor.8:2-3
When Paul was going to collect the ‘giving’ from the people of Achaia, he first sent them a message, so they could prepare to give. He also stated this ‘Each one of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give. You should not give if it makes you unhappy or if you feel forced to give. God loves those who are happy to give’. 2Cor. 9:7
Then as a result of giving, note these:
And God, who supplies seed for the sower and bread to eat, will also supply you with all the seed you need and will make it grow and produce a rich harvest from your generosity.
He will always make you rich enough to be generous at all times, so that many will thank God for your gifts which they receive from us.
For this service you perform not only meets the needs of God’s people, but also produces an outpouring of gratitude to God.
And because of the proof which this service of yours brings, many will give glory to God for your loyalty to the gospel of Christ, which you profess, and for your generosity in sharing with them and everyone else.
And so with deep affection they will pray for you because of the extraordinary grace God has shown you.
Let us thank God for his priceless gift! 2Cor. 9:10-15
We are encouraged to be generous as Christians, seeking to meet the need of others, so;
i) Give because you love the Lord and you want to be a blessing to others
ii) Give cheerfully, not by force but based on what you’ve decided in your heart to give
iii) Then God will make you rich enough so that you can always be generous. Your generosity will produce thanksgiving to God because of us…
Scriptures to ponder on:
– Some people are greedy and never have enough. Good people are generous and have plenty, Prov. 21:26.
– Generous people will be blessed, because they share their food with the poor, Prov. 22:9.
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