Summary: The widow and her two mites give us an example of selfless giving.
iMite Series: Sermon 1 of 4
A The Butterball Turkey company set up a hotline to answer consumer questions about preparing holiday turkeys. One woman called to inquire about cooking a turkey that had been in her freezer for 23 years.
The operator told her it might be safe if the freezer had been kept below 0 degrees the entire time. But the operator warned the woman that, even if it were safe, the flavor had probably deteriorated, and she wouldn’t recommend eating it.
The caller replied, “That’s what we thought. We’ll just give it to the church.”
1 Why does that strike us as funny? She was consecrating that Turkey to God, wasn’t she? What she was offering was still good – wasn’t it??? BUT tho’ it may have been “consecrated”… though it still was “good,” it wasn’t going to taste good or smell good.
a Jesus is not watching to see if rich people give what their supposed to, poor what they supposed to . . . heart.
1 He had just undressed the scribes for fleecing the people and then He sees the widow woman give her two mites.
a Jesus knew about her pain, struggle, need, emotional burden, financial crisis, worry . . . looking “how” she gave.
b He knows every penny I have and how I lay it out!
2 Everything we have, are belongs to God and we’re simply stewards over it.
a Trials become teachable moments; problems become possibilities.
b Sorrows find comfort; our needs become His supply.
c Ps. 37.25
I Jesus watches “how” people give, not “how much.”
A In the Temple there were 13 different chests that lined three sides of the “Court of Women” to drop offerings.
1 The first 9 chests were for offerings that were legally due by worshipers.
a The first two were for yearly tribute paid to the Temple.
aa (3) for turtle dove, (4) for pigeons
bb (5) for wood, (6) incense, (7) golden vessels.
cc (8 & 9) for left over money from burnt-offerings.
b 10-13 were for contributions (voluntarily) beyond the tithe (what was legally due) from worshipers. These are thought where Jesus was watching the woman give her contributions of two mites.
2 People (wealthy & poor) had been coming in all day giving their tithes & offerings.
a Wealthy folks would come and dump their offerings in the metal chests (w/ narrow top and wide bottom, shaped like a trumpet; called “trumpets” in Talmud) and the heavier coins made a lot of noise.
aa Matt. 6.2, describes the sound of wealthy giving.
bb Loud, attention grabbing, every eye in the house noticed!
b In all that noise, Jesus notices a frail widow woman, all by herself, who drops in two mites.
aa Smallest coin Jews used. 1/64 of a Dinarius (Days wages)
bb Fraction of Penny in reality: We can imagine a penny!
cc She drops them in the trumpet and hardly makes a sound. . .probably went unnoticed by everyone else . . . Jesus noticed.
3 Jesus noticed how she gave what she gave.
a He noticed how her life was.
aa Widow: No one to take care of her, sustain her.
bb Alone: “a widow” by herself.
cc Poor: Robe is in tatters, sandals worn thin, head covering is faded, She’s got two pennies. (Her last meal)
b Her condition is known and noticed by Jesus.
4 Jesus points out to His disciples that the widow had absolutely nothing left after she gave those two mites.
a It was what she left after she gave that determined the value of her offering.
b If I would have been there, I probably would have tried to talk her out of giving everything she had!
aa “Sweetie, God understand you have much.”
bb “Honey, why don’t you just give one.”
c Giving everything doesn’t make sense, reasonable, logical.
B The poor widow was operating out of faith (Not logic, rational, reason.)
1 Faith was the only way she could give! (Faith that God would supply all her needs.)
a She believed the same God who let her husband die; let her become destitute was still merciful.
aa He was still worthy of honor, praise, worship, obedience, offering.
bb He still loved her, had a purpose for her life.
b She gave out of faith!
2 She became 100%, totally dependant on God when she dropped those two mites in the chest.
a If she was going to eat, He’d have to provide.
b If she was going to have lights, He’d have to provide.
c If she was going to have clothes, He’d...
1 It is our faith that sustains us when we’re alone, poor, tried, tempted, forsaken, beat up, fed up, laid up, down and out.