Giving by Sacrifice, Grace & from Abundance
26 May 2019 AM – 2 Corinthians 8:2-3 – Shaun Whitmarsh
[2Co 8:2-3 KJV] 2 How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality. 3 For to [their] power, I bear record, yea, and beyond [their] power [they were] willing of themselves;
This morning we going to be talking about grace giving and again we are coming back to 2 Corinthians 8 as our key text. To jog your memory, in this passage Paul is writing a letter to Corinth encouraging them to give and using the Macedonian Churches (Philipi and Thessalonians) as an example of how they should give
He says in verse 1 ‘Moreoever, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churchs of Macedonia’ and this is where we get this idea of ‘grace giving’ from or it is sometimes referred to as ‘faith promise’ but grace giving is a more biblical term gecause Paul says it was by God’s grace that the churches in Macedonia were able to give to missions.
Before we dive into grace giving let’s quickly recap on last week’s principles about tithing. Hopefully you will recall
The principle of tithing precedes and outlasts the old testament law
Abraham and the churches of Macedonia first gave of themselves – and we need to do the same
More than anything, god wants our hearts.
I was very deliberate about preaching that message about tithing first, even though it may have seemed like an odd message for Missions Month but it is my firm conviction that you can’t give an offering to God until you’ve given your tithe.
The bible talks about both tithes and offerings – in the OT the tithe was commanded under the law but the offering could be a sacrifice for a certain sin or ceremony or even just a gift to show ones love to God.
For example, In Exo 36:5-6 Moses said the people gave too much when they made tapestry and gave gold as an offering for the tabernacle.
David and Solomon had a similar problem when they took up an offering for the temple – [1Ch 29:9 KJV] 9 Then the people rejoiced, for that they offered willingly, because with perfect heart they offered willingly to the LORD: and David the king also rejoiced with great joy.
The people offered willingly, with a perfect heart
The reason I preached that message first is I firmly believe you have to tithe first before you can engage in grace giving or any other type of offering
So this morning we will look at 3 ways of grace giving outlined in 2 Cor 8:2-3
Giving beyond your power and
Giving by your power
But first of all what is this grace giving?
Offerings for missions
Given for ministering to the saints – verse 4
Practical, benevolence (giving to meet a need)
A way of showing your love to God and your heart for missions – see verse 2Cor 8:7-8 .
Giving out of love (sometimes how much do they need is the wrong question to ask, its how much do you love them)
Phil 4:10 – care for me. Paul a missionary
[Phl 4:10 KJV] 10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again; wherein ye were also careful, but ye lacked opportunity.
What type of offering? A missions offering
Grace giving is not a commandment either – 2 Co 8:8
Praise God he sent his son to die for everyone
This message I must tell, If not I do not well
Since billions do not know, then surely I must go
Share the gospel EVERYWHERE
Missions – Reach all nations of the earth
[Mat 28:19 KJV] 19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Acts 1:8 – [Act 1:8 KJV] 8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
All nations – The great commandment, not the great suggestion
If your not going to go then how are you going to fulfill these commandments? Missions
Talk about salvation –
Can’t tell someone about a God you don’t know
[2Co 4:6 KJV] 6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to [give] the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
[Mat 5:14 KJV] 14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
But you might tell me you can’t do these things? How else are you going to reach all the world?
We’re going to look at three different biblical scenarios for grace giving that show us that anyone in any financial situation can give
Giving sacrificially (2 Cor 8:2)
[2Co 8:2 KJV] 2 How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.
Churches at Macedonia had great problems
great trials of affliction – not little trials but GREAT trials of AFFLICTION.
AFFLICATION – Oppression. Under great duress.
Trials – Their character was tested and what did they do… they gave willing.
They gave liberaly (v2) – not self seeking, but generously
‘deep poverty’ –
Deep – the depths of the sea
Poverty – the bible describes them as beggars. Not being able to feed for themselves, but having to rely on others… and yet they gave liberally.
They kept their commitment to give in suffering – would you be willing to do the same?
Giving out of faith (2 Cor 8:13)
[2Co 8:3 KJV] 3 For to [their] power, I bear record, yea, and beyond [their] power [they were] willing of themselves;
To their power – sacrificially
Beyond their power – God’s power. God bestows the grace
Sacrifice first, then by faith
Some things can be done without faith (to their power)
If you don’t sacrifice you can’t give by faith – how can you?
Goo won’t trust you with his if you won’t give with yours
Not recommending people be financially irresponsible and give your whole paycheck, but whatever God lays on your heart that’s what you need to do
[2Co 9:7 KJV] 7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, [so let him give]; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
Giving out of abundance (2 Cor 8:14)
[2Co 8:14 KJV] 14 But by an equality, [that] now at this time your abundance [may be a supply] for their want, that their abundance also may be [a supply] for your want: that there may be equality:
You can’t give by faith if you are rich… but you CAN give out of abundance
Remember – giving is an issue of the heart, not a money issue. Look at verse 12
12 For if there be first a willing mind, [it is] accepted according to that a man hath, [and] not according to that he hath not.
Widow with two mites (Mark 12 or Luke 21)
Jesus observed the offering – he always observes the offering
The widow gave more – that’s not criticizing the rich, it comes back to the heart
God expects good stewardship – much given much required
[1Co 4:2 KJV] 2 Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.
Stewards – managers, responsible for the affairs
[Luk 12:48 KJV] 48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few [stripes]. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.
Conclusion and Practical Considerations
How do we do it (confidentially) – keep it to yourself.
Between you and God (according to the purpose of your heart, not a commandment)
Commitment – then allocation to Missionaries. Monitor progress.
Talk about experience at previous church, tithes and missions went up.
Increase tithes – doesn’t make sense
A heart for missions. Led to increased missionary support
Blessing of youth raising funds for missions trips
Go home, pray about it, talk to your mum and dad or talk to your partner – ask God what he would have you to give to missions. And make a commitment.
He started giving with 25c
Until God got hold of him
Forgive me and teach me the Bible
Something he had never done before – pulled out his wallet in the building and gave a tithe
From that point on sold out for god – a preacher for 50 years
Think about it – if no one ever supported the Childs, they wouldn’t have been able to come to Australia as missionaries. Sandy’s mum would never have heard the gospel. Her brother wouldn’t be saved. Sandy wouldn’t be saved. I wouldn’t have gotten saved. Seth wouldn’t have been saved. How many others here wouldn’t be saved??
And as we heard last week… all of that is fruit that will abound to the account of those people who gave to support the Childs in the mission field. They are laying up treasures in heaven by giving to missions.
You can’t give offerings unless you’ve given a tithe
We MUST fulfil the great commandment to preach the gospel until all nations – so how else will we do it if not for missions
If God has shined in your heart you should understand the importance of sharing the gospel with others
3 ways to give:
Sacrificially – deep poverty and great trials of affliction
By faith – to your power and beyond your power
Out of abundance
No matter your situation you can give
If God has spoken to your heart, go home, pray and give what he lays on your heart