There are a number of things crippling the life and witness of the church at present: a failure to preach God’s Word, a disinterest in the real care of people, a preoccupation with self indulgence, but the one I want to speak to is ‘giving’. Specifically the giving of money. It’s a sensitive subject when in reality it shouldn’t be. That’s because too many of us are mistakenly invested in pursuing our happiness in ‘things’, when the real source of our joy is found in our being increasingly conformed to the image of Christ.
Paul writes to the church at Corinth to gently stir them to fulfill what they had started a year earlier but not finished – the weekly collection for the relief of their fellow believers in Jerusalem. (2 Corinthians ch 8)
By way of encouragement he points them in the direction of the church at Macedonia. What he writes is simple and yet astonishing in its radicalness. He says of the believers in Macedonia, who are struggling with the hardships of extreme poverty, that they had begged him not to prevent them from the privilege of giving to the needy in Jerusalem. Generous giving which was funded, not out […]