FaithNaija: What is your attitude to giving?

by Pastor Tom Moore

A. Psalm 96:8-9:

8 Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name;  bring an offering and come into his courts.

 9 Worship the LORD in the splendor of his[a] holiness;
tremble before him, all the earth.

B. It should be the desire of every child of God to want to know the whole truth on any subject.

1. What is important to realise in this regard is that; “the reception of any truth depends upon the attitude that one has towards it.”

2. We often tell our friends and neighbours that they do not understand God’s truth on baptism or grace because they do not manifest the right attitude toward God’s word of these subjects.

3. Sadly, there are thousands upon thousands of Christians who have closed their ears to what God has said on the subject of giving.

4. There are some who even have an ugly attitude on this subject.

C. Here are statements that I have heard brethren make concerning giving: “I get so tired of hearing sermons on giving.”

“Can’t the preacher talk about anything but money?”

“O, he just gives to be seen of men.”

1. Statements like these are an index into a man’s character .

2. If many told the truth, it might sound like this:

a. “I am too selfish to give generously.”

b. I am too extravagant with my money to be able to give generously.”

c. “I spend too much money foolishly to give generously.”

D. It is essential that we manifest the proper attitude on this vital subject.

1. 1 Corinthians 16:1-2

2. Giving as we have been prospered is a command of God, and we will be lost if we disregard those commands.

3. Someone once said attitude is just as important as truth, for truth is never understood with the wrong attitude.

4. Free-will offerings are commanded on the first day of the week – NOT bake sales, etc.

5. Let us now consider a variety of attitudes that many have toward giving.

DISCUSSION:

A. SOME HAVE THE ATTITUDE OF THE RICH YOUNG RULER

1. Mark 10:18-22

2. This ruler wanted to go to heaven and he lived an upright and moral life – he had a desire to follow Christ, and no doubt he thought he was ready from any standpoint

a. It never entered his mind that his money, or how he viewed it, was a hindrance to him

b. His wealth had blinded him.

c. This rich young ruler thought was doing well in keeping the commands of God – BUT, there was something he was overlooking

3. Jesus said go sell what you have! WHY? Jesus knew this man had the wrong attitude toward money.

a. The young man turned and walked away. HOW SAD!

b. He loved his money more than he loved the Lord.

c. Beloved, if we have this kind of attitude we will lose our soul!

B. SOME HAVE THE ATTITUDE OF JUDAS

1. John 12:3-6

2. It has been said that “temptation commonly comes through that for which we are naturally fitted.”

a. If a man is fitted to handle money, the temptation comes to regard money as the most important thing in the world.

b. Judas was evidently gifted at handling money – that is why he was chosen to take care of the money.

c. Judas, though, became so fond of money that he became a thief.

d. Judas saw this woman anointing Jesus’ feet – an act of surpassing love, but Judas saw it as a waste.

3. You see, a man’s sight depends on what is on the inside of him. What he sees depends on the condition of his heart.

a. For example, if we like a person we seldom see his faults, but if we do not like an individual – his faults increase.

b. When I hear one is opposed to a good work because it costs too much – I wonder about their attitude … Judas?

C. SOME HAVE THE ATTITUDE OF ANANIAS AND SAPPHIRA

1. Acts 5:1-2

2. The very fact that these two people lied about their giving shows beyond all doubt that they had the wrong attitude toward money.

a. Every time a person leaves the impression that he is giving as God has prospered him and then refuses to give liberally, he is just as guilty as Ananias and Sapphira.

b. Why should we think it is worse for them to lie about their giving than for us to lie about our giving?

c. One may say, “I don’t lie about my giving, I just do not give liberally.”

d. Let me ask you this question, “Which is worse, to lie to God or to rob God?” … Malachi 3:8

D. SOME HAVE THE ATTITUDE OF BARNABAS

1. Acts 4:36-37

2. It is not difficult to understand why Barnabas was called a good man (Acts 11:24). This is the kind of man we should strive to imitate.

a. Think of all the good that would be done if all people in the church were free-hearted, liberal givers and good like Barnabas.

b. The contrast is striking between Barnabas and the rich young ruler, Judas, and Ananias and Sapphira.

3. Why did Barnabas do this good deed? He had a wonderful attitude toward giving.

a. Do you suppose Barnabas ever got mad when a sermon was preached on giving?

b. I am glad that the Bible tells us of men like Barnabas – reading about Barnabas should give us a much stronger desire to give generously.

c. If you do not enjoy hearing lessons on giving, then your heart is out of tune with Christ

E. SOME HAVE THE ATTITUDE OF THE POOR WIDOW.

1. Mark 12:41-44

2. Suppose that on each Lord’s day you were to walk up before the congregation and put your offering on the table where all could see it.

a. Some would say, “I would be embarrassed.”

b. You would not be if you gave liberally just as the poor widow

3. If we would all give liberally as God has prospered us, our contribution would increase and we would be adding good works instead of deleting them.

a. One preacher said, “When I look at the well-dressed congregation, I ask, where are the poor? When I look at the collection plate, I ask where are the rich?”

F. SOME HAVE THE ATTITUDE OF DAVID

1. 2 Samuel 24:24

2. I wish we could have this type of attitude.

a. Notice Malachi’s rebuke … Malachi 1:12-14

b. We ought not be giving God our “left-overs”

c. Notice the words of Paul … 2 Corinthians 2:8

3. Every single one of us need to reevaluate our giving.

CONCLUSION:

A. What is your attitude toward giving?

1. Rich Young Ruler? … Judas … Ananias and Sapphira?

2. Barnabas? … The Poor Widow? … David?

B. Are you giving as God has prospered you?

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