Christian Giving

You Aren’t Made Righteous by Giving

  • Matthew 26:6-13; Mark 14:1-9: the core of the gospel is NOT giving to the poor
  • Galatians 2:10: “All they asked [after ensuring we all believed the same gospel] was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I had been eager to do all along.” This shows that giving to the poor is NOT part of the gospel message, yet was a high priority for God’s early church.

You Give Because You Are Righteous In Christ

  • Matthew 25:31-46: A mark of God’s people is ministering physical needs, especially to those within the church (25:40). We do this by instinct–a sign God’s new life is in us–and we don’t even realize it at times (25:37-40).
  • 2 Corinthians 8-9: The gospel is the foundation of our giving (8:9). Giving now becomes something we do by His grace, joy, and love in us through His Spirit (and demonstrated through the gospel).

Who Should Receive?

  • 1 Timothy 5:4, 8, 16: Provide for your family’s needs first.
  • Deut. 15:3-4; Matthew 25:31-46; Acts 2:44; John 13:34-35; Galatians 6:10; 1 Timothy 5:9-10; James 2:15-16; 1 John 3:17: Tending the needs of God’s church precedes tending the needs of the world.
    • Matthew 5:16; Luke 10:25-37; Galatians 6:10: The church should still generously help the world, too, as God enables us.
    • 1 Timothy 5:11-16; 2 Thes. 3:10-12: Providing for the needy aims at character and community development in Christ, which sometimes will deny giving handouts.
  • Deuteronomy 15:11; 26:12-15; Luke 8:1-3; 14:12-24; 2 Cor. 8:13-14; James 1:27; 1 Tim. 5:3, 17; 1 John 3:17-18; 3 John 1:5-8: Help those who have needs and can’t provide for themselves
    • Some specific groups listed in the Bible include orphans, widows, sojourners, faithful ministers, the sick, prisoners
    • 1 Tim. 6:8: needs = food and covering (clothing and shelter)
  • Luke 10:33; James 2:14-17; 1 John 3:17: you will largely give according to what you encounter, especially within your church community (as well as local community)

Who Should Give?

  • Luke 10:25-37: Individuals 
  • Genesis 18:1-8 (cf. Hebrews 13:2): Families collectively
  • Acts 4:37; 1 Corinthians 16:1-2: Church collectively

Give What?

  • Mark 8:36: Sharing the gospel is by far the most important thing to share
  • Ephesians 4:28; 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12; 2 Thessalonians 3:10-12: Train Christians to labor well to produce their own income (and surplus)
    • Provide the needy with jobs
  • Leviticus 25:35; Matt. 25:31-46; Luke 10:25-37; Acts 2:44; 6:1; James 2:14-17; 1 John 3:17: Provide things–food, clothing, housing, medical help
  • Matt. 25:31-46; Heb. 13:3: share time
  • Matthew 7:7-11; Mark 6:13; Acts 3:6; James 5:13-14: pray for/with them
  • Luke 12:33; Acts 2:45; 1 Corinthians 16:1-2: share money

How Do You Give

  • Exodus 25:1-2; 35:5; 2 Cor. 8:6-15; 9:5-15: with joyful willingness prompted by grace and the gospel (not an obligation)
  • Leviticus 19:9-10; Proverbs 3:9-10; 1 Corinthians 16:2: from what God has given you
  • 1 Kings 17:13; Luke 21:1-4; 2 Corinthians 8:3, 14: According to your means (and even beyond, as the Lord leads)
  • Genesis 47:26; 1 Corinthians 16:1-2: Save by putting aside excess for future needs
  • John 13:29; Acts 4:34-35; 1 Corinthians 16:1-2: Pool money to reach further
  • Acts 4:34-35; 6:1-6; 1 Timothy 3-5: Overseen by elders and deacons
  • Genesis 14:20; Malachi 3:8-10; Matthew 23:23: The concept of tithing (giving 1/10) can be a helpful starting point to gauge how much to give. But this should not be treated as a ceiling or a mandate the same way it was in the Old Covenant. See Tithing, Yes or No?

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