For most people the subject of giving is really a grind. A lot people when they think in terms of giving have a little natural reluctance to even talk about the subject. I suppose the reasons for this is that there is a streak of stinginess in all of us and we really don't want to talk too much about giving and depriving ourselves of something. In the average church, when you take up the offering, the song that could be appropriately sung is, ''When we asunder part, it gives us inward pain.'' There are a lot of people who take that attitude when you talk about the matter of giving. But I have a feeling that one of the reasons why the subject of giving is not an unpleasant subject in our congregation here is that those who are truly saved, who truly know the Lord will respond when Jesus Christ is made preeminent in the church and winning people to the Lord Jesus becomes the priority on the agenda. So, I'm never uncomfortable and never ill at ease when I talk about the matter of giving in our fellowship here. I am aware of the fact that we are living in a time when there are many unusual appeals that are made on the subject of giving. There is a great deal of off the wall teaching that is going on today about the entire subject of giving. I think it's important for us to go to the Scriptures and see what the Bible says about the matter of giving. When you understand what God says in the verses we are going to study today, you will find out that giving is not a grind, giving is a grace. In fact, ten times in these two chapters the Scriptures use the word, grace, in the matter of giving.
Verse 1: . the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia. He is talking about their giving.
Verse 7: Therefore as you abound in every thing, in faith, and utterance, and in knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us, see that you abound in this grace also.
He is talking about the matter of giving. True giving is something that stems from the work of the grace of God in the heart of the child of God. The work of God in the life of a believer is always an expression of God's grace in that life. Grace is the inflow, giving is the outflow. Giving is always an expression of an understanding of what God has done in our hearts and lives.
Anything we have today is a gift to us from the grace of God. Nought have we gotten but wh at we received. Grace has bestowed it since first we believed. When I understand that everything I have is an expression of God's love and grace to me, then it's not difficult for me in turn to give of what I have as an expression of my love and my gratitude to the Lord Jesus Christ.
Paul is sharing with us the principles of grace giving.
Circle three words in the verses we are going to study. In verse 2, circle the word, liberality. I'm going to give you the three principles of grace giving we find in these verses of Scripture. In verse 8 circle the word, sinc ...
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