Sermon for 4/29/2001
Receiving Through Giving
Mother Teresa visited Australia. A new recruit to the Franciscan order in Australia was assigned to be her guide and “gofer” during her stay. “Thrilled and excited at the prospect of being so close to this woman, he dreamed of how much he would learn from her and what they would talk about. But during her visit, he became frustrated. Although he was constantly near her, the friar never had the opportunity to say one word to Mother Teresa. There were always other people for her to meet. Finally, her tour was over, and she was due to fly to New Guinea. In desperation, the friar spoke to Mother Teresa. “If I pay my own fare to New Guinea, can I sit next to you on the plane so I can talk to you and learn from you?” Mother Teresa looked at him. “You have enough money to pay airfare to New Guinea?” she asked. “Oh, yes,” he replied eagerly. “Then give that money to the poor,” she said. “You’ll learn more from that than anything I can tell you.”
** (Mal 3:10 NIV) Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this," says the LORD Almighty, "and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.
B. We need to go by the New Testament.
1. (1 Cor 16:2 NIV) On the first day of every week, each one of you should set aside a sum of money in keeping with his income, saving it up, so that when I come no collections will have to be made.
2. (Acts 4:34 NIV) There were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales (Acts 4:35 NIV) and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone as he had need.
C. I once heard a Bible teacher say that the tithe was no longer binding on New Testament Christians. In a restaurant…
D. God honors those who honor Him. Exalts those who are faithful.
E. Give of more than money. Tithe of our time.
3. Bible Study
F. Read Luke 6:38. Give background heading into vs. 38 by commenting briefly on vs. 37.
G. I like what Wuest’s Expanded Translation of the Greek New Testament said, “Be constantly giving, and it shall be given you, a generous measure that has been pressed down hard and which has been shaken thoroughly and which is running over shall they give, for with the measure by which you are accustomed to measuring by, it shall be measured to you again.
H. Most people try to have by hoarding, but God says the way to have more is through giving. Blessed is that person who has learned the lesson that God honors those who give.
I. Howard Hughes- For many years he was considered the world’s richest person. During the 1930’s and 1940’s, he gained fame as a motion-picture producer and aviator. Then, in the mid-1950’s, Hughes deliberately dropped out of sight. He became a mysterious figure who never appeared in public and even refused to have his photograph taken. When Howard Hughes died, he was living in a small apartment and was malnourished and had few possessions. He seemed to be a poverty sticken depressed man, when he really was one of the richest people on the earth. At the time of Hughes death in 1984, estimates of the value of his estate went as high as 2 billion dollars. Why did he live in such poverty? We don’t know but I am sure that a dose of generosity may have helped him overcome his demons.
Thesis: Let’s examine Luke 6:38 and the principles of giving that are outlined here. Thanks to Tom Walker on Sermon Central for his outline for this sermon.
J. A Command is involved.
1. It speaks of a command. Imperative mode. In English class we learned that every imperative statement can begin with “You.”
2. Speaking mostly to his disciples.
3. Continuance. Generosity is to be a way of life for the believer. Ongoing.
4. The world whispers to us, “You can give away only what you have. Wait until your own needs are met. Then you will be able to reach out to others and really give.” Jesus knew that nobody ever reaches the point where all needs and wants are met.
5. Remember when a parent said to you, Do this. Oh, I’m not going to do that.
II. Compensation is involved.
A. It shall be given unto you.
B. God is able to give back more than we are able to give out. We cannot out give God.
C. Everybody wants to know what we will get if we give. What is in it for me?
D. Like a child who says that I will do this but what do I get if I do it! Should not be our motivation, but if we give we will be compensated.
E. Give and I will see to it that others will give unto you.
1. Compensation in the material.
a. (Psa 37:25 NIV) I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread. (Psa 37:26 NIV) They are always generous and lend freely; their children will be blessed.
b. (Mat 6:33 NIV) But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
2. Compensation in the spiritual.
a. (Acts 2:44 NIV) All the believers were together and had everything in common. (Acts 2:45 NIV) Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone, as he had need. (Acts 2:46 NIV) Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, (Acts 2:47 NIV) praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people.
b. Peace of mind through giving. The Lord gives it. World hurts when they give.
c. God loves a cheerful giver. It will be measured back to you in that way. Cheerfulness.
d. If having marital problems, give. It will change you.
III. A company is involved.
A. Who is going to give back to us? God, but how?
B. From a variety of sources, through mankind.
C. The Lord can move the hearts of many other people to help us meet the needs that we face in daily life.
D. God can influence in many lives through the Holy Spirit and many times supplies our everyday needs through others.
E. George Mueller.
F. God expects his children who are blessed to give to others who are in need.
G. You reap what you sow.
H. (2 Cor 9:6 NIV) Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. (2 Cor 9:7 NIV) Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Cor 9:8 NIV) And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
IV. A concentration is involved.
A. Pressed down, shaken…
B. This language is borrowed from the market where the salesman, grateful for past kindnesses, endeavors, by pressing, shaking, and piling up, to put more grain into the measure for us than it will contain.
C. A heaping spoonful.
D. God uses the same container or measure for his gifts to us as we use to give to others. However, God uses that measure and concentrates it.
E. Concentrated liquids.
F. God is God of the extras.
G. Generous people receive back very generously.
V. A Claim is involved.
A. How we measure out will determine what kind of measurement of giving will come back.
B. Giving is not loss but great gain!
C. A person may say, “I can’t afford to give.” If we have an understanding of the grace of God, we can’t afford NOT to give.
D. Someone said, “If you don’t give according to your means, God will see that your means are according to you giving.”
E. Those who are generous will be abundantly repaid.
F. (Psa 18:25 NIV) To the faithful you show yourself faithful, to the blameless you show yourself blameless, (Psa 18:26 NIV) to the pure you show yourself pure, but to the crooked you show yourself shrewd.
G. Can I also say that to the stingy, God shows himself to be stingy; to the hoarding, God shows himself to be a hoarder.
H. If you want to be rich- Give! If you want to be poor- Grasp! If you want abundance- Scatter! If you want to be needy- Hoard!
A. Theologian F.B. Meyer has said, “He is the richest man in the esteem of the world who has gotten most. He is the richest man in the esteem of heaven who has given most.”
B. Remember in “It’s a Wonderful Life,” George Bailey’s brother comes in at the end and says that George is the richest man in Bedford Falls. Is he or is Potter?
C. Where do you want to be the richest?
D. I want to be rich full of love, peace and happiness.
(2 Cor 8:9 NIV) For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.