Tuesday, August 14, 2012

How Much Money Should We Give? Part 2

In our last blog we started to look at how much money should we give.  The main aspect we want to discuss is the motivation behind our giving and then the amount will take of itself.  We looked at giving during the Old Testament and how the motivation then was fear.  Fear of judgment through chastisement.  Now we would like to look at the motivation during the earthly ministry of Christ.

During the earthly ministry of Christ we can see that the motivation of giving was not being blessed.  They were to give or they would not receive blessings.  In Matthew 19:21-22 Christ tells the rich young ruler to sell all of his possessions.  Not to see where his heart lies, but rather because the tribulation period was  supposed to take place at any time.  The Kingdom of Heaven was at hand, and the only thing that was to take place before the Kingdom of Heaven could be revealed was the 7-year tribulation period.  We also see this in Luke 12:32-33, the nation of Israel was told to "sell that ye have" and in Matthew 19:27-29 they are told that those who forsake all shall receive 100-fold back.  In Acts 2:44-45 we see that this message of selling everything you have was still the norm and it is corroborated by the way they were living in Acts 4:34-35.  They were living just as they were told to live.  They were to sell everything they had and give to the poor, so they all would have all things common.  Therefore, the giving during the earthly ministry of Christ and the early Acts period was 100% of everything.  Why do preachers not preach that today?  They like the blessings, they like the 100-fold, but they would be ran out of the church if they preached it the way Christ, and the twelve preached it.  They were to give to receive.  That was their motivation.

Contrariwise, our motivation today is the love and grace which was shown to us in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  II Corinthians 5:14 we see that the love of Christ is to be our motivator for EVERYTHING we do.  We do not have to give to receive, because according to Ephesians 1:3, we have already been blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places.  There is nothing else for us to get.  We are complete in Christ.  We do not have to give a certain percent now, but we should give as we have been blessed.  Once we get the full understanding of what Christ did for us on the cross, then our giving should resemble that sacrifice.  II Corinthians 9:6-7, we see that we should carefully and prayerfully consider the amount we should give.  We should not be so focused on what we are doing on this earth.  Colossians 3:1-2 is something we should keep in our thought process, because there are too many in the church today that have their roots so deep here on earth that they can not be bothered with our heavenly blessings, and heavenly hope.  It is by grace that we should consider our giving.  We read in II Corinthians 8:1-5 that Paul wants the church at Corinth to see the manner in which the church of Macedonia was giving and the grace that was bestowed upon them. 

The true liberality we have today is a key feature which is missing in the pulpits today.

Grace and Peace
Greg Resor
Complete in Him

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