Church Giving

The Church  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  50:15
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Intro: Giving in the life of the Church is so important. It is one of the best ways to put what we know about God into practice. Some talk to much about giving and we have to question their hearts desires. Others, and I fall into this camp, talk to little about giving and leave the congregation underfeed on this important topic!
Theme: Our giving is a private expression of our trust in the reality that God’s ways are best.

1. Old Testament Principles

a. Where does the 10% come from?

Abraham gave tithes of all he possessed.
Genesis 14:20 ESV
and blessed be God Most High, who has delivered your enemies into your hand!” And Abram gave him a tenth of everything.
Jacob: “Of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth to thee” (Gen. 28:22
Genesis 28:22 NKJV
And this stone which I have set as a pillar shall be God’s house, and of all that You give me I will surely give a tenth to You.”
This percentage should come off the top: the firstfruits.

b. Why bring the tithes to church?

We can never Enrich God with our giving. We give to the church because it can’t, God can’t be bribed.
1 Chronicles 29:9–14 ESV
Then the people rejoiced because they had given willingly, for with a whole heart they had offered freely to the Lord. David the king also rejoiced greatly. Therefore David blessed the Lord in the presence of all the assembly. And David said: “Blessed are you, O Lord, the God of Israel our father, forever and ever. Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. Both riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might, and in your hand it is to make great and to give strength to all. And now we thank you, our God, and praise your glorious name. “But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you.
1. David, near death, prepares the people to build the temple
2. The tremendous offering (vv. 5–9)
3. But even all this cannot enrich God
a. He owns the cattle on a thousand hills, so don’t think you can satisfy God by giving just things to Him. He owns all the things - He wants your heart and life!
b. All that is in heaven and earth belongs to Him.
* No wonder we cannot buy our way into heaven!
Malachi 3:10 (ESV)
Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.
D. It was the God given way of supplying for His spiritual leaders and the care of the building used in worship.
E. Giving was never to stop with the tithe. Some 55 times in the OT we see the phrase “tithes and offerings.”

2. What the New Testament Teaches

Ryrie’s Basic Theology
“The New Testament says more about giving than about any other single aspect of church life.”

1. Giving should stem from a life that has first been given to God.

2 Corinthians 8:5 NKJV
And not only as we had hoped, but they first gave themselves to the Lord, and then to us by the will of God.
The OT ended in Malachi with God saying that He was uninterested in what they were giving because their hearts were not in it. Their giving was “contemptible” to them and therefore to God! Now, God does not want to have the same problem with His church.

2. Giving serves as clear proof of one’s love for God

James 2:15–17 NKJV
If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
1 John 3:17–18 NKJV
But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.
Don’t lie to yourself, to me or to God and say you care when your giving history doesn’t prove it.

3. Giving should be done with these guidelines:

2 Corinthians 8:11–12 NKJV
but now you also must complete the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to desire it, so there also may be a completion out of what you have. For if there is first a willing mind, it is accepted according to what one has, and not according to what he does not have.
2 Corinthians 9:7 NKJV
So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.
“Upon the first day of the week” (1 Cor. 16:1–2
1 Corinthians 16:1–2 NKJV
Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given orders to the churches of Galatia, so you must do also: On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come.
liberally even in poverty
2 Corinthians 8:3 NKJV
For I bear witness that according to their ability, yes, and beyond their ability, they were freely willing,
2 Corinthians 8:12 NKJV
For if there is first a willing mind, it is accepted according to what one has, and not according to what he does not have.
2 Corinthians 9:6–7 ESV
The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
and according to the measure of prosperity God gives to the individual
1 Corinthians 16:2 NKJV
On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come.
Don’t try to give god our the church a token based on a percentage of what is in your purse or wallet.

3. Giving was the principal area in which there was a cooperative effort among a number of churches.

Acts 11:29–30 ESV
So the disciples determined, every one according to his ability, to send relief to the brothers living in Judea. And they did so, sending it to the elders by the hand of Barnabas and Saul.
Philippians 4:18–19 NKJV
Indeed I have all and abound. I am full, having received from Epaphroditus the things sent from you, a sweet-smelling aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well pleasing to God. And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
Conclusion: Our giving is a private expression of our trust in the belief that God’s ways are best.
While giving is personal and private, it should be provable and abundant.
I did not preach on this because the church has a need. I preached on this because it is extremely important for the church to understand this topic, and because someone mentioned I should preach on it. Once again I could have done several messages on the topic, but one should lay the groundwork for more discussions after church.
LHBC constitution states
a. The funds of the Association shall be derived from tithes and free will offerings or cost recovery in accordance with Biblical direction. The policy of the Association and all societies thereof shall be to refrain from all means of raising money for the church, both for local benevolent work and for missionary enterprises both at home and abroad, by any other means.
Does our life display that our attitude towards giving is more important to God than a dollar amount?
Do you tithe time and talents as well as financially? Can you say that 1 day in 10 you will talk to people about your church or help within the church - workday?
Do we have goals for our giving, or are we stagnant?
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