CHRISTIAN RESPONSIBILITY

PART 2: DISCIPLINE AND GIVING

In the name of God, Master of the universe, Ruler of the earth.

The church today is often lax in the discipline of Christians who deliberately sin, those who fail in their Christian responsibilities and fail to keep the Temple clean. Improper Dress is related to Christian responsibility and the Temple of God. Here we are talking about the physical church building and the human body.

In II Corinthians 8 & 9 Paul says "Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give, not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver."

Our attitude when we give is more important than the amount we give. In Mark 12:41-44 we see additional information on giving. In this scripture we see that the value of a gift is not determined by its amount, but by the spirit in which it is given. Also, see 2 Corinthians 8:12.

In I Corinthians 16:2: Paul states "As God hath prospered" them. Paul says to give what you have, not what you don't have.

This is when other factors of Giving come into the realm of Christian responsibility. Some members do not have as much money as other members. However, they may have more time. One should seek a balance of giving time and money to the church. All are important to building the kingdom of God.

Related Scripture

Mark 12: 41-44

The value of a gift is not determined by its amount, but by the spirit in which it is given. A gift given grudgingly or for recognition loses its value. When you give take heart, gifts of any size are pleasing to God when they are given out of gratitude and generosity. Also, see Luke 21: 1-4 for the same scripture.

II Corinthians 8: 12

Your gift is based on what you have. As I Corinthians 16: 2 states according "as God hath prospered" them. Paul gives us several points on how to decide what to give. These points are based on our different financial resources:

1. Each person should follow thorough on previous promises. (8: 10, 9: 3).

2. Each person should give as much as he is able (8: 12, 9: 6).

3. Each person must make up his own mind on how much to give (9: 7).

4. Each person should give in proportion to what God has given them (9: 10) God gives to us so we can give to others.

Paul says to give what you have, not what you don't have. Sacrificial giving must be responsible. Paul warns us not to give to the extent that those that depend on the giver must go without basic needs. Don't yield to pressure or emotions.

9: 1-2

Paul who is constantly criticized and attacked by his enemies and the enemies of God sent Titus and two other brothers to collect money for the Jerusalem Christians.

During this time and even in today's churches some people have not handled money honestly. Read 2 Corinthians 8: 21 Provoke here means to stir in a positive sense

Hebrews 10: 24

"Let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to do good works."

9: 5

Paul wanted the gifts ready before he arrived (He sent Titus and others ahead) so that they would not seem like he pressured them. The Greek word bounty is the same as the word eulogy. Which means speak well of. In those days false prophets and teachers that traveled extorted money from their students. Paul did not wish to further antagonize his critics.

9: 6

We should not understand Paul to mean that one should give much in order to get much in return. Most important is motive. You should not be pressured into giving. Paul would be upset with the fund-raising tactics of many churches and Christian organizations of today.

9: 8

Some argue that if we give generously we will be rewarded generously. When we are faithful givers, we are likely to be better off financially. Because we no longer want many material things that are status symbols in our culture.

However what Paul means in this scripture ---- "God provides all sufficiency in order that we may abound to every good work. Therefore he blesses us that we may use those blessings to help others, not to better our selves.

A further note on this passage:

In the days of miracles we did see special favors bestowed on faithful disciples. However we can believe that the proper grace will be given to those who devote their time and possessions to the Lord.

9: 9

Righteousness will last for ever lasting down through the generations. Matthew 6: 33

Psalm 112: 9 this entire Psalms is a statement on the advantages of having faith in God.

9: 10

A generous man does not create the wealth he shares with others. Both the seed and the bread comes from God, Paul reminds us that we have to freely share with others what God has blessed us with. God will then multiply and increase our giving beyond anything we can imagine.

9: 12

Paul makes two points concerning the blessings that resulted from the Gentile churches generosity. This should all reflect on us today.

1. They were supplying the wants of the saints. What they needed or lacked.

2. Their giving was the source of many thanksgivings unto God.

Ask yourself "What are my aims in giving."

9: 13

To give God the glory is the object of the righteous giver.

The Christians benevolence should not be limited to fellow Christians Read Galatians 6: 10.

FINAL NOTES

The Old Testament set some specific standards, by example and law for giving. According to the Law of Moses each Israelite was required to give a tenth of his crops.

However, under the New Covenant no such specific requirements are set. Our motives for giving are to be guided not by law, but by grace. The New Testament concept of stewardship involves more than a tithe of one's crops and livestock that was required under the Old Law.

Matthew 25: 40 Read KJ. Jesus set the standards for what God expects of us.

The Joy of giving to the needy is seen in Matthew 25: 34-40 Read KJ

Cont. Part 3: The Responsibility of Study and Teachers

Peace and Love,

Carl Patton, FreedomJournal

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carl@freedomjournalpress.comcastbiz.net

 

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