Giving With Gladness

 

†††† ††††† God has given so much to us. In like manner He expects us to give with gladness. God has given us direct and certain instruction concerning acceptable giving. He taught concerning both the manner and the amount to be given. God is a giver and He expects His children to give. "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." (John 3:16) The cheerful giver opens his life to many blessings from God. "Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you." (Luke 6:38)Let us learn to give with gladness!

 

††††† ††††† The Christian that gives with gladness sows bountifully. Paul wrote, "But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully." (2 Corinthians 9:6) Our giving must be a matter of generosity and not grudging obligation. (2 Corinthians 9:5)The result of bountiful giving is the windows of heaven being opened and an abundance of blessings being poured out; even so many the cheerful givers could not receive them all. (Malachi 3:8-10)

 

††††† ††††† The Christian that gives with gladness plans or purposes his giving. Scriptural giving does not happen by accident. It is accomplished by thought and design. "So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver." (2 Corinthians 9:7) Those that make no plans in their giving offer God only the scraps. Please remember that God expects more than our scraps in our giving and He deserves more than our scraps! Let us prayerfully consider our blessings and give accordingly to how God has blessed us.

 

††††††††††† The Christian that gives with gladness truly has a part in good works. Christians give generously and many good works are accomplished. "And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work." (2 Corinthians 9:8) Many doors are now open for benevolence and evangelism.Liberal, cheerful giving makes it possible to do an abundance of good works for the glory of God.

 

††††† ††††† The Christian that gives with gladness will increase in righteousness. There is no greater need than the need for righteousness in the lives of God's people. God increases the fruits of righteousness in the life of the cheerful giver."As it is written: He has dispersed abroad, He has given to the poor; His righteousness endures forever. Now may He who supplies seed to the sower, and bread for food, supply and multiply the seed you have sown and increase the fruits of your righteousness." (2 Corinthians 9:9-10) In cheerful giving Christians come to understand Godís righteousness and to see righteousness developed in their lives and the lives of others.

 

††††† ††††† The Christian that gives with gladness is a blessing to many others. Christians should stand ready to bless saints and all men. "For the administration of this service not only supplies the needs of the saints, but also is abounding through many thanksgivings to God, while, through the proof of this ministry, they glorify God for the obedience of your confession to the gospel of Christ, and for your liberal sharing with them and all men." (2 Corinthians 9:12-13) Cheerful giving will lead to God receiving glory. God is glorified when the poor are helped. This glory comes from all that are assisted or that know of the things that are being done. God blesses us with that which will supply the needs of our own family and also bless others through benevolence and evangel≠ism. God will multiply the seed sown. You give cheerfully and God will help you do even more.

 

††††† ††††† The Christian that gives with gladness is motivated by God's indescribable gift. The precious gift of Jesus for our salvation motivates our giving. "Knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot." (1 Peter 1:18-19) God's wonderful gift stirs our heart to sincerity and cheerfulness in our giving and our service to others. God has blessed us by giving His Son. Let us give with gladness likewise.

 

††††††††††† Nothing blesses the life of a Christian more than giving with gladness."Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." (Matthew 6:19-21)The grace of God and His great gift to us demands our cheerful and liberal giving. Does your giving please God? It is a sobering truth to realize that one day, on that great Judgment Day, our money or possessions, how we gained those possessions and how we used them will largely determine where we will be in eternity. Are you a Christian that gives with gladness?

 

††††††††††† Will you accept God's wonderful good news that Jesus died for your sins? Will you be baptized into Christ to put on Christ so that your sins can be forgiven by His blood? "For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ." (Galatians 3:26-27) Believers contact Christ's saving blood by being baptized into His death. Those that have put on Christ must give with gladness.

 

By Charles Box, Walnut Street Church of Christ, P.O. Box 551, Greenville, Alabama 36037 USA