May 16

The Grace of Giving

2 Corinthians 8:1-7

Today we live under a new covenant established by God through the shed blood of His Son Jesus (Heb. 9:15).  Based on what Christ did, Romans 12:1 tells us to present ourselves “as a living and holy sacrifice, [which is] acceptable” to the Lord. If you are a child of God, all of your abilities, time, and money belong to Him.

The principle of sacrificial living can be seen in the early church. Those new believers eagerly sold their possessions and property to meet the needs around them (Acts 2:45). In response to their generosity, God blessed them with glad hearts, favor from the people, and increasing numbers.

Macedonian churches also understood the priority of giving. Even though the believers there were extremely poor, they begged for the opportunity to help financially. Scripture says they excelled at the “grace of giving” (v. 7 niv).

Under Old Testament law, God required a tithe (a tenth of one’s animals and crops) to support the temple (Lev. 27:30-32). When the nation drifted away from this practice, the Lord sent Malachi to warn them of the consequences for disobeying. By not giving their tithe, they were robbing God of what was rightfully His (Mal. 3:8). We certainly don’t want to be guilty of withholding the Lord’s money from Him.

Having appointed us to be His stewards and entrusted us with resources, God expects us to give generously. Jesus praised the impoverished widow in the temple for her sacrificial giving (Mark 12:41-44). When we trust the Lord with our finances as thewidow did, we’ll excel at the grace of giving. 

For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.

Used with permission from In Touch Ministries, Inc. © 2009 All Rights Reserved.