Sunday, May 15, 2011

Sunday May 15, 2011

2 Corinthians 8 & 9

The Art of Giving

Today’s reading is on Paul encouraging the Corinthians to give financially to support believers in Jerusalem. He emphasized how the other churches, especially Macedonia who was poor, gave so abundantly and beyond his expectation (v.8:3-5). His desire was for the Church in Corinth to live up to the boasting he had spread about them (9:2). Paul noted that since they excelled at so many things, they needed to excel at giving. It is at this point, Paul gave basic principles to giving that we should be mindful of today.
1) (v.8:5) First give yourself to the Lord.
2) (v.8:8) Be mindful whether you are taking steps to mature in your walk with Christ.
3) (v.8:9) Imitate Christ, by making a sacrificial gift to help others.
4) (v.8:10-11, 9:5)) Fulfill your obligations to others.
5) (v.8:12-13, 9:6-8) Give eagerly but responsibly, as a willing gift.
6) (v.8:14, 9:10-11) Obedience to God never comes back void.

Throughout these chapters, Paul wanted to make clear that giving was something people are led to do by the Holy Spirit acting upon them, not because of obligation. We have an opportunity today to give financial to support missions and church growth. We also have an opportunity to give of our time and talents in church ministry. Just as well as tithing, giving your time in a ministry allows you to achieve the overall results Paul mentioned in (v. 9:13-14). You will display an eager heart to help those in need and you will show your obedience to God.

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