Pleasing God, Making Disciples of Jesus Christ

The Giving Christians

2 CORINTHIANS9:6-8 – Remember this: The person who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the person who sows generously will also reap generously. Each person should do as he has decided in his heart—not reluctantly or out of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.”

There are many ways to determine a healthy spiritual life. For instance, love for other Christians manifested by quality time together is a big one. Time in the Word to know the Lord still yet another. The daily fight for holiness against the always present temptations to sin ranks high on the list of what would be present in a healthy Christian. And there are many more to include what is found in today’s scripture–being a cheerful giver. Now before we dive deeper in this mark of healthy Christianity, this is not primarily about money, but it includes money. It goes a lot further and comes out of today’s scripture.

In the Apostle Paul’s instruction to the Corinthians, we want to look at two things. First, he gives a wise principle of investment–sow sparingly, reap sparingly; sow generously, reap generously. Apply that to our spiritual lives in our families. Invest minimally and we will reap the same. Make the Word, prayer, church, and spiritual things hit and miss, inconsistent, minimal commitments, and easily compromised for worldly activities and events, even scheduling family activities on the Lord’s Day too often, then don’t complain when our kids deny the faith, walk away from the faith or show no interest in the faith. They are responding to what they observed–a home life of sparse spiritual sowing.

Next, the Apostle emphasizes God’s attitude toward Christians who are “happy givers”–for God loves a cheerful giver. And it just makes sense that He would! The greatest Giver ever–God the Father; gave the greatest Gift ever–God the Son, and it was a delight for Him to do so. In thinking of this astounding truth, our Lord is not only our example in service but in giving. That begs the question–are we giving Christians? Or better yet, are we cheerfully giving Christians? As I mentioned above not just about money but of our lives; money, time, talents, material things, possessions, and most importantly ourselves. And that will be tested for we may give and give sacrificially but not cheerfully and that doesn’t please the Lord.

Evaluate our lives. Are we a people known for our generosity? Do we have a reputation of sacrificial and cheerful giving to meet the physical, spiritual, and emotional needs of others? A healthy Christian will have both qualities. It is impossible to be the recipient of the greatest Gift ever given–the Lord Jesus from the greatest Giver ever–God the Father, and not be a giving Christian, a giving Christian who is cheerful and sacrificial. And really, think about it. All we have comes from God. All we have is received, and He gives all things, not to be hoarded but shared. And if we really, really think about it, the words of Jesus will prove to be true in our lives if we are giving Christians–it is more blessed to give than receive (Acts 20:35).

PRAYER: “Father, help me to be a generous believer; a cheerful giver of my resources and person.”
QUOTE: “Healthy Christians are generous Christians. They love to be blessings to others by giving.”

Because of Him,

Pastor Jim