Summary: Sermon on Giving
GIVING WITH A STANDARD OF EXCELLENCE
2 Cor 8:1-5
I. WHO WERE THE CHURCHES OF MACEDONIA?
A. THE CHURCH AT PHILIPPI
From there we reached Philippi, a major city of the district of Macedonia and a Roman colony; we stayed there several days.
Acts 16:12 (NLT)
1. We see the hospitality of Lydia
And when she and her household were baptized, she begged us, saying, “If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay.” So she persuaded us. Acts 16:15 (NKJV)
2. We see the hospitality of the Philippian Jailer
Now when he had brought them into his house, he set food before them; and he rejoiced, having believed in God with all his household. Acts 16:34 (NKJV)
B. THE CHURCH AT THESSALONICA...
1. Many people were converted
Some who listened were persuaded and became converts, including a large number of godly Greek men and also many important women of the city. Acts 17:4 (NLT)
2. They continued to have trouble
And then, dear brothers and sisters, you suffered persecution from your own countrymen. In this way, you imitated the believers in God’s churches in Judea who, because of their belief in Christ Jesus, suffered from their own people, the Jews. 1 Thess. 2:14 (NLT)
II. WHAT CHARACTERIZED THEIR GIVING?
A. THEY GAVE "SACRIFICIALLY"
Though they have been going through much trouble and hard times, their wonderful joy and deep poverty have overflowed in rich generosity. 3For I can testify that they gave not only what they could afford but far more. 2 Cor. 8:2-3a (NLT)
B. THEY GAVE "JOYFULLY"
Though they have been going through much trouble and hard times, their wonderful joy and deep poverty have overflowed in rich generosity. 2 Cor. 8:2(NLT)
C. THEY GAVE "VOLUNTARILY"
For I can testify that they gave not only what they could afford but far more. And they did it of their own free will. 2 Cor. 8:3 (NLT)
D. THEY GAVE "PERSISTENTLY"
They begged us again and again for the gracious privilege of sharing in the gift for the Christians in Jerusalem. 2 Cor. 8:4 (NLT)
E. THEY GAVE "THEMSELVES"
Best of all, they went beyond our highest hopes, for their first action was to dedicate themselves to the Lord and to us for whatever directions God might give them. 2 Cor. 8:5 (NLT)
1. Here are churches that were not expected to give
because of their own poverty.
2. What kind of givers are we?