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Generosity from the riches of Christ

November 12, 2017

 

Generosity from the riches of Christ

2 Corinthians 8:5-9

5and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us. 6Accordingly, we urged Titus that as he had started, so he should complete among you this act of grace. 7But as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in our love for you—see that you excel in this act of grace also.8I say this not as a command, but to prove by the earnestness of others that your love also is genuine. 9For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.

 

1 Corinthians

​ ​

16:1–3

 

Now concerning the contribution for the saints: as I directed the churches of Galatia, so you also are to do. On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up as he may prosper, so that contributions need not be made when I come. And when I arrive, I will send those whom you accredit by letter to carry your gift to Jerusalem.

 

 

​2 Corinthians 8 1-5​

 

 

1We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, 2for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. 3For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, 4begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints—

 

THE NEED TO GIVE WHOLE-HEARTEDLY vv 5-6

5and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us.

 

 

Money, which ought to be an expression of personal commitment, can actually be a substitute for personal commitment. John Piper​

 

 

​ ​

“The last thing to get converted is a person’s check book”

​ anon​

 

 

 

​2 Cor. 8:6

 

6Accordingly, we urged Titus that as he had started, so he should complete among you this act of grace.

 

THE NEED TO REMEMBER YOUR BLESSINGS vv7-8

7But as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in our love for you—see that you excel in this act of grace also.

 

 

​2 Cor. 8:8

 

8I say this not as a command, but to prove by the earnestness of others that your love also is genuine.

 

 

​1 Cor. 13:3

 

3If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

 

THE NEED TO GIVE AS CHRIST GAVE v9

9For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.

 

 

Philippians 2:6

6who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

 

SO WHAT?!?

 

​2 Cor. 8:9

 

9For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.

Week 2 - Generosity from Riches of Christ

 

Sunday, we spoke of Overflow, specifically how true biblical generosity is manifested out of overflow--not overflow from our physical wealth, but wealth from the riches of a deep and robust faith in Christ! Today we will study a little further the topic of Overflow. Let’s start by examining

two pictures together as a group.

 

1. Before we look to scripture, discuss the two images below as a group. What seems to be the source of the overflow? As a group, which of these examples best describes biblical overflow?

 

Now let’ look at the following pictures to gain an understanding of biblical overflow, 

1 Thes. 3:11-12

   2. Where do we see overflow in this passage?

 

 

 

Rom 15:13-14

   3. This passage in the same sense tells us what 1 Thes. 3:11-12 does--that increase comes from the inside. What do we see is the condition of these people’s hearts already in this passage?

 

 

2 Cor 4:13-15

   4. What does this passage tell us about the heart condition of these people?

 

 

5. So, with redeemed and full hearts, where do we see biblical overflow represented in this passage?

 

 

2 Cor. 7:4

6. What is the condition of Paul’s heart in this verse?

 

 

 

Impact statement

Todays passages show us that a heart full of love for God overflowed with love for other people. A heart that was full of goodness overflowed to joy, peace and hope! A heart redeemed and full of grace overflowed with thanksgiving and God’s glory. Here is the purpose of the two pictures from today’s study. Example one demonstrates an overflow that takes place because something is being added from the outside and the vessel is being filled beyond its capacity. This is how many christians mistakenly view overflow--that we seek and obtain to give away. People think that the more Christian stuff they consume the better off they will be. I call this sanctification by osmosis--but this is not truth. It is this perspective that supports and drives the ‘works-based’ salvation camp. It is this view that perpetuates the ‘I am a Christian because I go to church mentality’. When in actuality, it is impossible for a person to demonstrate a biblical overflow unless their heart is already full with Christ! Nothing that we do, read, study, participate or volunteer for, host, teach, or support financially will ever be a biblical manifestation of overflow unless our hearts are already full of joy and contentment in Christ! This is where the second picture comes in. Nothing is added-- the coke is simply agitated or shaken if you will and it’s nature at that point is to overflow! This is the life of a true believer--that our hearts are full in Christ and being so, we can then overflow when our hearts are shaken, stirred, or jostled by the Holy Spirit. So, as you ponder and think through the Topic from Sunday’s sermon, ‘Generosity Through the Riches of Christ’--ask yourself the question, ‘Am I being generous because my heart is so full of Christ that I am eager to give, share, and support my Church, or is this one more thing that I am trying to fill up my cup with from the outside, in order that I will look the part”? Remember Sunday’s passage, 2 Cor. 8:5-9, ‘I say this not as a command, but to prove by the earnestness of others that your love also is genuine’. Overflow is not synthetic, it cannot be manufactured, summoned, or commanded! In order to be genuine, it must come from a loving and earnest heart that is full of Christ!

 

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