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1 Chr 29:1-16
IT WAS PENTECOST SUNDAY. As the congregation filed into church, the ushers handed each person a bright red carnation to symbolize the festive spirit of the day. The people listened attentively to the reading of the Pentecost story from the Book of Acts about how the disciples had heard “what sounded like a powerful wind from heaven”; about how the Holy Spirit had appeared “like tongues of fire.” Then came the sermon: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon us,” the preacher began. “Like the powerful wind from heaven!” shouted a woman sitting in the first pew. Then she threw one of the red carnations toward the altar. The preacher began again: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon us.” The same woman’s voce rang out again, “Like the tongues of fire, the tongues of fire!” Again, she threw a red carnation toward the altar. The preacher looked straight at her and said, “Now throw your pocketbook.” To which the woman replied, “Preacher, you have just calmed the wind and put out the fire.”
We laugh at stories like these, but the truth is, the whole issue of stewardship is no laughing matter, is it? This is serious business. Today, I want to approach the subject of giving from a positive perspective.
A pattern of extraordinary giving is recorded in I Chron.29 when King David led the Israelites to give to the construction of the Temple.
1. David Launched the Campaign (vs.1-5)
❏ With the Right Perspective (vs.1c) “...the palatial structure (temple) is not for man, but for the Lord God.”
Just think how this perspective would revolutionize our churches if we looked at all of our giving in this manner–our time, our talent, our service, as well as our treasure. It would begin to eliminate jealousy, envy, and hurt feelings of not being appreciated because we would be giving it to the Lord and not men.
Col.3:23: And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not to men.
❏ With a Right Effort (vs.2) “With all my resources I have provided for the temple of God.”
Eccl.9:10: “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.”
❏ With a Right Heart (vs.3a) “I have set my affection on the house of my God.”
Where do your affections lie? Jesus said, “Where you treasure is, there will your heart be also.” One look at your credit card bills and one could see where your heart is.
❏ With a Right Example of Commitment (vs.3b) “I have given over and above all that I have prepared for the holy house, my own special treasure.”
Here, David is a type of Christ, who gave His all. I Jn 3:1
How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!
❏ With a Right Challenge (vs.5) “Who then is willing to consecrate his service this day unto the Lord?” Sounds a little like Joshua, doesn’t it? (Josh.24:15)
2. The Response of the Leaders
❏ They gave willingly (vs.6)
Someone has said there are 3 types of givers: One type is like a piece of flint. It has to be struck by some object to give, and then only produces sparks and chips. Another type is like a sponge. The more it is squeezed, the more it gives. Then there is the type like the honeycomb. It continually gives, always overflowing with sweetness. Which type are you?
❏ They gave sacrificially (vs.7,8)
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