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Thursday, December 13 2018
24 Principles from The Epistles Regarding Money, Giving, and Receiving - Part 2 Text: 2 Corinthians 8:1-5
Contributor: Isekhua Evborokhai
INTRODUCTION: Last week we looked at the first 8 of the 24 principles from the Epistles regarding money, giving, and receiving. In today’s study we shall be looking at the next 8 of these principles
Principle # 9. Giving Is A "Grace" That Can Be Exercised even in Challenging Circumstances.
“Now I want you to know, dear brothers and sisters, what God in his kindness has done through the churches in Macedonia. 2 They are being tested by many troubles, and they are very poor. But they are also filled with abundant joy, which has overflowed in rich generosity. For I can testify that they gave not only what they could afford, but far more. And they did it of their own free will. 4 They begged us again and again for the privilege of sharing in the gift for the believers in Jerusalem. 5 They even did more than we had hoped, for their first action was to give themselves to the Lord and to us, just as God wanted them to do”. 2 Cor. 8:1-5
Verse 2 in The New English Bible reads, "The troubles they have been through have tried them hard, yet in all this they have been so exuberantly happy that from the depths of their poverty they have shown themselves lavishly open-handed."
Giving is reflective of a life given to God and is rooted in the Person and example of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Principle # 10. God Wants All of Us to Do Our Part and to “Carry Our Weight" In Giving.
“Right now, you have plenty and can help those who are in need. Later, they will have plenty and can share with you when you need it. In this way, things will be equal. As the Scriptures say, “Those who gathered a lot had nothing left over, and those who gathered only a little had enough.” 2 Cor. 8:14,15
In this passage, Paul is specifically addressing the issue of prosperous Christians helping struggling Christians, but the concept of equality has other applications also. God wants everyone in the Church to do his or her part. Unfortunately, in many churches, a faithful few carry the financial load while others (who are able to give) are freeloaders. Because of different income levels, people might give different amounts, but God wants members of the church to have equal commitment.
Principle # 11. Ministers Should Be Ethical and Above Reproach in Handling Church Finances.
“We are traveling together to guard against any criticism for the way we are handling this generous gift. We are careful to be honorable before the Lord, but we also want everyone else to see that we are honorable. —2 Corinthians 8:20,21
In the New English Bible, verse 20 says, "We want to guard against any criticism of our handling of this generous gift."
And in the NIV, verse 21 reads, "For we are taking pains to do what is right, not only in the eyes of the Lord but also in the eyes of men."
Paul was a very strong advocate of leaders being true stewards of God’s money.
Principle # 12. Paul Clearly Teaches the Law of Sowing and Reaping.
But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly [sorrowfully], or of necessity [under compulsion]: for God loveth a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work. —2 Corinthians 9:6-8
In the Twentieth Century New Testament, verse 8 says, "God has power to shower all kinds of blessings upon you, so that, having, under all circumstances and on all occasions, all that you can need, you may be able to shower all kinds of benefits upon others."
Seed time and harvest will never cease as long as the earth remains (Gen 8:22). (Galatians 6:7-9) If you sow little, you will reap little. If you sow a lot, you will reap a lot! There is no shortcut around that! See also Philippians 4:14-19
Principle # 13. Paul Sought People's Hearts, Not Their Money.
Behold, the third time I am ready to come to you; and I will not be burdensome to you: for I seek not yours, but you: for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, hut the parents for the children. And I will very gladly spend, and he spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved. But be it so, I did not burden you: nevertheless, being crafty, I caught you with guile. Did I make a gain of you by any of them whom I sent unto you? I desired Titus, and with him I sent a brother. Did Titus make a gain of you? Walked we not in the same spirit? walked we not in the same steps? —2 Corinthians 12:14-18
Principle # 14. Paul Was Eager to Give to The Poor.
And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision. Only they would that we should remember the poor; the same which I also was forward [eager] to do. —Galatians 2:9,10
When Peter and James met with him and Barnabas, the only additional thing they asked was that they remember the poor, and Paul was already eager to do that.
Principle # 15. Paul And John Encouraged Christian Charity Among the Brethren.
As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith. —Galatians 6:10
If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister[a] in need but shows no compassion—how can God’s love, be in that person? Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. —1 John 3:17,18
Sometimes we are always in a hurry to do good to “outsiders” whereas there are those within the fold that need help even more!
Principle # 16. Paul Exemplified and Taught A Strong Work Ethic.
Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. —Ephesians 4:28
Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ; Not with eyeservice, as men pleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart; With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men: Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.—Ephesians 6:5-8
Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice as men pleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God: And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.—Colossians 3:22-24
. . . study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your hands, as we commanded you; That ye may walk honestly toward them that are without, and that ye may have lack of nothing. —1 Thessalonians 4:11,12
Neither did we eat any man's bread for naught; but wrought with labour and travail night and day, that we might not be chargeable to any of you: Not because we have not power [the right], but to make ourselves an ensample unto you to follow us. For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat. For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly, working not at all, but are busy-bodies. Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus Christ, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread.
—2 Thessalonians 3:8-12
This study was culled from “The Midas Touch” By Kenneth E. Hagin