Standing In The Gap To Give
Text: 2Co 8:1-5
A. Attitude in giving.
The Macedonians gave joyfully in their great trials of affliction (2Co 8:2). a. The Thessalonians endured persecutions and tribulations (2Th 1:4). b. The Philippians suffered for Christ’s sake (Php 1:29).
The Macedonians gave liberally in their deep poverty (2Co 8:2). a. The house of Jason was attacked by the Jews (Act 17:5). b. Jason and the Thessalonians had to give a security bond before they were let off (Act 17:9).
The Macedonians gave willingly beyond their ability (2Co 8:3). a. They were under no obligation to give (Act 5:4). b.Even if they give, they were not expected to give beyond their means (2Co 8:12).
The Macedonians gave persistently and selflessly (2Co 8:4-5). a. The Thessalonians abounded in love (2Th 1:3). b. Epaphroditus was so selfless in ministering to Paul’s needs even though he was sick almost unto death (Php 2:25-27).
B. Basis of giving.
The Macedonians gave because of God’s grace upon them (2Co 8:1,6-7). a. The richest gave that the poorest might give (2Co 8:9). b. The giver is more blessed than the receiver (Act 20:35).
The Corinthians gave because it proves the sincerity of their love (2Co 8:8). a. They gave because actions speak louder than words (2Co 8:24). b. They knew that one can give without loving, but one cannot love without giving (1Co 13:3).
The Corinthians gave because it glorifies God (2Co 9:11-13). a. They gave because it softens the hearts of the worst cynic (1Pe 2:12). b. They understood that a good example is the best sermon (Php 1:27).
The Corinthians gave because it deepens brotherly love (2Co 9:13-14). a. They gave because a family shares what they have with each other (Rom 15:27). b. They have affection and longing for each other (Php 1:8).
C. Condition for giving.
The Corinthians gave what they have, not what they do not have (2Co 8:12). a. Giving is not meant to burden us, but to relieve those who are burdened (2Co 8:13-14). b. Giving ought to be according to what God has prospered us (1Co 16:2).
The Corinthians gave bountifully, not grudgingly (2Co 9:6). a. God will provide us sufficiency in all things, so that we have abundance for every good work (2Co 9:8-9). b. God is the source of all blessings, just as He is the source of all increase (2Co 9:10-11).
The Corinthians gave purposefully, not of necessity (2Co 9:5,7). a. God loves a cheerful giver (2Co 9:7). b. Purposeful giving increases the fruits of our righteousness (2Co 9:10).