I. We talk about giving of our best to the Master
A. I tried to show that such an idea was not about physical appearance, but spiritual service.
1. We need to give the best of our time, the best of our effort, to God.
2. We need to also support the church in doing God’s work in this area.
B. We get bombarded daily with requests for help
1. Mail, TV ads, telephone solicitations to support the orphans in remote areas, the police, the fire department, the schools.
2. Many good works are done and supported by voluntary contribution.
C. Too often we are distracted by the world’s causes and begin to think of the church as just one more good doing organization that needs money.
II. Giving is a part of our worship
A. The aid given to the saints in Jerusalem glorified God - II Cor. 9:10-15
B. Phil 4:15-18 - A sweet-smelling sacrifice to God.
C. Attitudes in giving
1. Prepared to give
a. A readiness or willingness to give - II Cor. 8:11-12
b. I Cor. 16:1-2 - A setting aside money. This implies preparation and a plan. Not haphazard giving.
c. As a person has purposed - II Cor. 9:7
2. A cheerful willingness to give - II Cor. 9:7
3. A generous gift
a. The Macedonians gave generously even though in poverty - II Cor. 8:1-4
b. A liberal distribution - II Cor. 9:13
4. A proportional amount
a. II Cor. 8:12 - Give what you have. Don’t go into debt.
b. I Cor. 16:1-2 - As you have been prospered.
c. Acts 11:29 - The relief was sent according to ability
d. The responsibility to give is not based on income, though the amount should reflect your income.
(1) Luke 16:10-12 - A poor person who is not generous will not be generous if he becomes rich.
(2) The rich should give generously - I Tim. 6:18
5. Your gift should cost you something
a. David refused to give God something that costed him nothing - II Sam. 24:24
b. Generosity cannot be measured by the size of the gift.
c. The question is how much do you keep of what God has given you? 99%, 95%, 90%, . . . ?
D. When to give
1. On the first day of the week - I Cor. 16:2
2. When someone asks - Matt 5:42
3. When we have an opportunity - Gal. 6:10
III. Giving is a cycle
A. God first gave to us
1. It is He who created us, made a world for us, gave us opportunities to work. For all this we should be thankful
a. Eph. 4:28 - Work so we have something to give to others
2. God gave us His own son. He purchased our salvation with the blood of Christ.
a. How trivial and insignificant is our gifts back to him
B. God rewards the giver
1. Generosity is returned at a later time - Eccl. 11:1
2. The generous will prosper - Pr. 11:25
3. As we give, it will be returned - Luke 6:38
4. As we sow, we will harvest - II Cor. 9:6-10
C. The cycle continues. The gifts we give, bring glory to God - II Cor. 9:10
IV. The giving we spoke of is in generality.
A. There is the giving to God, through the church
B. There is the giving to God, through our aid to our fellow men
C. Do not neglect our giving - Heb 13:16