GROWING IN THE GRACE OF THE LORD

(A study for new converts)

"GIVING"

LESSON 8

INTRODUCTION:
  A. The area of giving is one of the most neglected areas in our worship.
    1. Many rob God for their own pleasures (Malachi 3:8).
    2. Others have not learned the true meaning of giving.
  B. We must understand the act of giving God's way.
    1. To give for any reason other than God's reason is disobedience (sin).
    2. We will not steal, murder, commit adultery, but will sin in not obeying God in our giving.
  C. Giving is to be done by faith.
    1. James 2:18-26 shows that Abraham's faith was revealed by his offering.
    2. Our giving reveals our faith or lack of it.
 
DISCUSSION:
 
I. GOD'S OWNERSHIP OF EVERYTHING IS COMPLETE AND INDISPUTABLE
  A. Heaven and earth are His (Genesis 14:19-20, Deuteronomy 10:14, Psalms 24:1, 89:11). All things belong to Him by virtue of His having created them (Genesis 1:1).
  B. The land is His. The Israelites were stewards of what God had provided (Leviticus 25:23).
  C. Every beast is His (Psalms 50:10-12). The silver and gold are His (Haggai 2:8).
  D. All souls belong to Him (Ezekiel 18:4). By right of purchase, all Christians belong to Him (I Corinthians 6:19-20).
 
II. ALL OF LIFE IS A STEWARDSHIP
  A. Christians are stewards (Luke 16:1-14).
  B. Requirements for stewards:
    1. Must be faithful (I Corinthians 4:1-2), must be good (I Peter 4:10), must not waste the goods (Luke 16:1), must give an account (Romans 14:12).
    2. God demands a "first fruit offering" (Leviticus 23:9-14, Matthew 6:33).
 
III. GIVING IS AN ACT OF WORSHIP...MUTUAL PARTICIPATION
  A. In love (I Peter 1:22, Colossians 2:2).
  B. In suffering (Galatians 6:1-2).
  C. In service (Galatians 2:10, 6:10).
  D. In finance.
    1. "Let each of you" (I Corinthians 16:1-2).
    2. "According to his ability" (II Corinthians 8:12).
    3. "By equality" (II Corinthians 8:13-15). This equality does not mean all the same amount, but each giving to the best of his ability (Matthew 25:14-30).
 
IV. LOVE IS THE BASIS FOR GIVING
  A. II Corinthians 8:1-5, 8:8-24
  B. One cannot serve God and mammon (Luke 16:13-15, Matthew 6:24).
  C. Giving is the proof of "the sincerity" of our love (II Corinthians 8:8, 24).
  D. Giving is "free will" (II Corinthians 8:12, 9:7).
 
V. CHARACTERISTICS OF NEW TESTAMENT GIVING
  A. Regularly (I Corinthians 16:1-2).
  B. Personally (Individually) (I Corinthians 16:1-2).
  C. Proportionally ("As God hath prospered") (I Corinthians 16:2).
  D. Purposefully ("No gatherings when I come") (I Corinthians 16:2).
  E. Cheerfully (II Corinthians 9:7).
  F. Readily (II Corinthians 8:12).
  G. Bountifully (II Corinthians 9:6).
  H. Planned (II Corinthians 9:1-2).
  I. Purposed (II Corinthians 9:7).
 
VI. CONCLUSION
  A. The church is engaged in the greatest mission under heaven.
    1. Ephesians 3:10 — teaching and saving souls.
    2. Money is absolutely essential in carrying on the work of saving souls (John 13:28-30).
  B. The proper use of money assumes an important place in the Christian's life.
  C. Christians must remember their stewardship.
    1. Christians making money must take "thought for things honorable in the sight of all men; and using the money we make must have the glory of God in mind."
    2. Let us know for sure that giving is stewardship and that stewardship is exacting.
      1) We will be called to give an account (Romans 14:12).
      2) We must be found faithful (I Corinthians 4:1-2).
 
 
QUESTIONS FROM LESSON EIGHT
 
    1. Giving is to be done by                                .
    2. Why do all things belong to God?
    3. What is a steward?
    4. Why does this stewardship apply to giving?
    5. What does "first fruit offering" mean (Leviticus 23:9-14)?
    6. Who is to give? How are we to give? How much are we to give?
    7. Why are we to give?
    8. When are we to give?