I Will...GIVE Generously

I WILL—9 Traits of an Outwardly Focused Christian  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  33:35
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“An elderly gentleman was sitting on a park bench, basking in the sun, when another elderly fellow sat down. They looked at each other for a moment but did not speak. Both men sat there, staring straight ahead. After a while, one of them heaved a big, heartfelt sigh. The other jumped up immediately and said, “If you’re going to talk politics, I’m leaving” (Sermon Central.com)
We may feel like the two on the bench, when it comes to talking about money and the church.
SERIES—What it means to be a fully functional, joy-filled church member who says,
(S2) — I will MOVE...WORSHIP...GROW...GO...I Will GIVE Generously
True generosity fort he follower of Jesus, begins with the right attitude…comes from a right heart…knowing that what we have been entrusted with is given to us by God.
Acts 4:32 “All the believers were united in heart and mind. And they felt that what they owned was not their own, so they shared everything they had.”
Funeral—Eulogy “______________ was the most generous person I have ever known, and seemed to take great joy in giving. “
Harry/Glenys Jahn
Being an I will GIVE generously, church member comes from an attitude and commitment to being an I Will move, worship, grow and go follower of Jesus. In other words, we give because we understand the mission of the church, and it brings us great joy.

Offering Hope, Serving Our Community, Connecting People to Jesus

It takes funding to be a church on a mission of reaching people for Jesus, especially a growing church!
“For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.” 2 Corinthians 9:7
Notice there is nothing about an amount, but our attitude in giving
”Earn all you can, save all you can, and GIVE all you can”
“John Wesley’s sermon entitled, “The Use of Money.” Wesley made note in 1789 that the Methodists of his day were ignoring the third part of his sermon. In fact, Wesley argued that the primary reason for the ineffectiveness of the Methodist movement was due to their failure to give all they could. Wesley came to the profound conclusion that “If Methodists would give all they can, then all would have enough.” Wesley’s admonition for Methodists to give all they can was no pious rhetoric designed to increase contributions to the church budget. It was a plea for generosity and a plea for compassion for the poor and needy.”
The poor and needy…those who don’t know Jesus. Is this a stewardship campaign? Asking for your generosity? Does the church need your giving?
Consider this…are you serious about your giving? Tithing and beyond?
A minister of a Church in Dallas tells of a man in the church who made a covenant with a former pastor, to tithe 10% of their income every year. He and his wife were young, did not had much money. But things changed, and as his abundance increase so did his giving. He tithed one $1,000 the year he earned $10.000, $10,000 the year he earned $100.000, and $100,000 the year he earned one million.
But the year he earned six million dollars he just could not bring himself to write out that check for $600,000 to the Church. He telephoned the minister, long since having moved to another church, and asked to see him. Walking into the pastor’s office the man begged to be let out of the covenant, saying, "This tithing business has to stop.” It was fine when my tithe was one thousand dollars, but I just cannot afford six hundred thousand dollars. You’ve got to do something, Reverend!"
The pastor knelt on the floor and prayed silently for a long time. Eventually the man said, "What are you doing? Are you praying that God will let me out of the covenant to tithe?" "No," said the minister. "I am praying for God to reduce your income back to the level where one thousand dollars will be your tithe!" (Joel Vicente)
“You can tell how generous someone is by looking at their Checkbook” — God doesn't want or need your money—He wants your HEART!
The Bible teaches that what we have is not ours...and that letting go or surrendering different areas of our lives to Jesus, including our finances, is part of making a commitment to being an I WILL follower of Jesus.
In today’s passage Paul is giving instruction to the church of Corinth, defending the need for the collection or offering, and the believer’s responsibility to generosity.
2 Corinthians 8:1-7
My goal is to accomplish two things: What Paul’s admonition to give reveals about generosity—What it means being an I will GIVE generously church member.
Read 9:6
A farmer knows if you don’t plant abundantly, there will only be a small harvest. Less to feed hungry mouths. The more you plant the more you sow.
Like wise, in the church, if we aren’t sowing seeds of generosity through our giving then we won’t have a place to worship, to fellowship, to learn grow in the word of God together.
(S6)—Being an I will GIVE generously church member starts with...

...knowing GOD who is a most generous GIVER

When we truly understand that God is first most generous...it can’t help but flow from us…8 god is able to make all grace abound to you.
John 1:16 For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.
In other words you can’t out give god!
1 Corinthians 3:6 “I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow.”
We look at a seed and see a tomato, an acorn and see an oak? How can we not look at a sunset and see God? A life in the mothers womb and not see the gift of the giver?
How a mother can love so much
I will generosity says, I give because God GAVE!
2 Corinthians 8:8-9
Knowing God is a most generous giver, begins with a relationship with Jesus—Philip, “you know me you know the father.”
John 3:16 “16 “For this is how God loved the world: He GAVE his one and only Son...
Being an I will GIVE generously church member starts by knowing God who is a most generous giver
2 Corinthians 9:7 “You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure.
(S7) —This verse reveals two things about being an I will GIVE generously church member...

II. …is a PERSONAL Matter

7 “You must each decide in your heart...
Your heart must lead you on how generous to be. The church can’t decide for you, even though we would like to!
Hard truth—We most often decide what to give with our wallet...ok t start out that way, but the I will church member decides what to give with their heart.
I will generosity is not based on a certain measure of one’s ability, but on the condition of one’s HEART
In other words generosity is not just for those with great ability or abundance.
Contrast the rich man (MT 19:20) who was willing to give until Jesus asked him to give up to much—Poor widow who gave all she had (Mark 12:42). Jesus...“her gift was the greater.” Because she understood that generosity was and is a matter!pf the heart.
Mission—Lady who sold steel
Yes, generosity is a personal matter, but its lead by the heart. The more in love with God the greater ones generosity no matter ones ability.
(S8) — 2nd thing verse 7 teaches us is that being an I will give generously church member...

III. …requires RESOLVE

7 Each of you should give... what you have decided
Translation: each of you must do, as GOD has purposed...This addresses both the HOW MUCH and places PRIORITY on giving. It literally means, to placing it before another…
inverted budgeting
I will generosity is to be well thought out in PRAYER
“7b And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure.
I will generosity comes from prayerful intention and a thankful heart. An I will give generously church member sets a goal…and their willing to move the goal posts...
Rick—”I have never adjusted my giving to my compensation”
How many have prayed about your giving lately? Tithe (10%) is biblical
Malachi 3:10 “10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse so there will be enough food in my Temple. If you do,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test!”
(S9) —“God can bless anything but nothing” Shane Bishop
If every church member tithed…being an I will GIVE generously church member requires RESOLVE
Read 11and they will thank God
(S10)— Being an I will give generously church member...

IV. …has GREATER implications

The heart; as an organ, it is the center of where life giving blood flows from; giving life to the rest of the body. Heart is also “the centre and seat of our spiritual life. It;’s where generosity starts, but just as the hearts blood flows out to the rest of the body, maintaining life, so does our giving bring life that has greater implications.
Generosity is a call of devotion to the whole of the Christian community and beyond. Paul is defending the collection: as a command to Godly living and its purpose, he describes in two ways
The needs of others is met
“12 two good things will result from this ministry of giving—the needs of the believers in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanks to God.
I am sure if I asked, it would not be hard to find someone here, who has experienced joy as a result of someone’s generosity. Give cheerfully....and your giving will produces joy in the lives of others.
(S11) — A grateful heart is a generous heart.
2. Others will come to know Jesus
(S12) — I will generosity has ETERNAL impact
People will come to know Jesus through your generosity!
Mission: Offering Hope, Serving Our Community, Connecting People to Jesus.
When seed of faith through our generosity (giving) have been planted, then we allow others to see God who is a most generous giver
“9 As the Scriptures say, “They share freely and give generously to the poor. Their good deeds will be remembered forever.””
God is a most generous GIVER—I give because God GAVE!
Giving is a PERSONAL matter—A refection of the condition of one’s heart
Giving requires RESOLVE—Well thought out in PRAYER
Giving has ETERNAL implications— ETERNAL impact
Does this church need your generosity? Does hearing a message about giving to the church make is feel uncomfortable? Why we struggle with this? We have yet to truly let go and trust God. We focus only on the seed and not the the one who makes it grow
What can I do? How will you move from I am to I an will follower of Jesus who gives generously?
1. What is the condition of your heart when it comes to giving?
2. Have you prayed about it?
3. Do you focus more on the seed or what God can do with it?
15 Thank God for this gift too wonderful for words!
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