Week 36, Days 1 & 2
September 5 & 6
Scripture: 2 Corinthians 9 & 10
“You will be made rich in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, people will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has given you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:11–15)
“Neither do we go beyond our limits by boasting of work done by others. Our hope is that, as your faith continues to grow, our sphere of activity among you will greatly expand, so that we can preach the gospel in the regions beyond you. For we do not want to boast about work already done in someone else’s territory. But, “Let those who boast boast in the Lord.”” (2 Corinthians 10:15–17)
God loves a cheerful giver, so give it all you got!
That’s a fun song that my wife sang to our kids when they were young. So, when I read this passage, that song pops into my head, of course.
It is true though, the Lord loves a cheerful giver. And we ought to give it all we got! In this case, it seems that Paul is advocating for the generosity of the believers so that the Gospel may continue to spread and God would be glorified.
In an age where we have seen the abuse of power and money, it is a touchy subject for us to address. We see “ministers” who petition their congregations for personal jets, so they can travel the globe as the “spirit” moves.
I use quotations around “minister” and “spirit,” because I am judging that there is a great deal of ego that goes into asking hard-working and devoted Christians to give you a personal jet. It’s neither becoming of a minister or something that the Spirit of God would do.
I have digressed, but we ought not to neglect the joy of giving because of the abuse of others. That’s my point, and I think Paul’s, to a degree. Paul is hoping that the gospel truly would advance, and their gift will go a long way in accomplishing the goal. Let’s get our own selfishness out of the way, and gear our generosity towards the glory of God.
Another side bar, aside from the ridiculous nature of some “ministers” abusing their roles. There is also a dynamic at work in the current state of giving. People want to give to a cause, and make a difference. I have a dear missionary friend who struggles with funding because what he does isn’t as appealing to the senses of Christians in America as other missions. We want a cause to conquer. But his ministry is to train up preachers, plant churches and oversee a Christian camp. Do they feed the hungry? I’m sure. Do they provide fresh water and education? I am sure they do that as well. But their focal point is advancing the good news about Jesus.
Paul’s missionary focus is the advancement of the Gospel. We ought to remember that as we give to churches and missions around the world. Is it good to care for the poor, help the hurting and suffering? Absolutely! It is also the best help to give them access to Living bread and water, the only one who will lift them out of the poverty of their life, Jesus Christ.
God loves a cheerful giver! Give it all you got!
By the way, if you would like to send me money for my ministry, follow the link below.
Kidding. Have a great day!
Jordan Ickes, Minister of Etna Green Church of Christ.