EXCEL IN THE GRACE OF GIVING
28 JUNE 2020 | Traditional Service
Rev Edmund De Souza, Pastor
Scripture Passage: 2 Corinthians 8:7 (NIV)
WATCH | SERMON (Video)
(Click on video below)
READ | SERMON NOTES
Summary | In current pandemic situation when livelihood is a struggle, why give to the work of the church?
1. We give because there is a need.
Paul wrote to the Corinthian church during a time when there was famine and much suffering in Judea. He was very concerned and spent much time to urge the Corinthian church to help. He cited the example of the Macedonian church who, though extremely poor, gave generously when they heard about their need. When there is a need, the appropriate response is to help. Our church is planted here to help minister to people around us. Many are in need especially the poor and lonely, those who do not know the Lord or have never heard of Jesus. The various ministries in church are still ongoing despite the pandemic and the church needs your support to serve and be a blessing to our nation.
2. We give because we want to excel in our Christian faith.
The Corinthian church excelled in everything – in faith, speech, knowledge, complete earnestness and love for the apostles ¬– they were encouraged to also excel in the grace of giving. Likewise, we too are encouraged to grow holistically and be all that God wants us to be, and this includes excelling in giving towards the work of God in our church.
3. We give because we are grateful for what God has done.
Paul describes giving as an act of grace. The grace of God touches us and moves us to give back to the work of God. Touched by God’s love, the Macedonian church wanted the privilege of giving to the work of God and gave out of severe trial and overflowing joy. They gave as much as they were able and even beyond their ability.
4. We give because the generous life reaps generously.
God is our provider. When God blesses us, the Lord would have us also give back to God. He blesses those who are good stewards of His resources. Those who sow generously into His work will reap generously (9:6). Be channels of blessings to our nation, share the good news and partner the church and God to fulfil His plan and purpose for us.
God gave His Son, who though He was rich, yet for our sakes, became poor, so that we through His poverty might become rich. May the Lord give us grace to trust Him and count it joy to participate in the work to be a blessing.
(Sermon Notes by Woo Choi Yin)
PONDER | REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
The Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Cor 8:7 (NIV)
… just as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us—see that you also excel in this grace of giving.
1. Rank the following qualities in order of your strength (1 strongest, 6 weakest) and share them with your group.
- ____in faith,
- ____in speech,
- ____in knowledge,
- ____in complete earnestness
- ____and in your love for us
- ____in this grace of giving.
2. The Apostle Paul exhorts us to excel in giving. What do you think this means? How do you feel about this?
3. The preacher shared 4 reasons why Christians should give. Which reason resonates with you?
4. We will be celebrating Pledge Sunday, what are your thoughts on pledging?
5. What is the one promise or takeaway that I will act on?