Giving: What Should I Consider?

Giving: What Should I Consider?

By Larry Fayer

There are many factors to consider as one decides how much, where and when she/he is going to give.  When the apostle Paul talked about giving he said a good place to start would be by  remembering the words of Jesus, “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35 ESV).  He expands on things to consider as he discusses giving with the church in Corinth in 2 Corinthians chapters 8 and 9.

First, realize that giving is something that can be done in a variety of circumstances.  The churches of Macedonia gave, “in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part” (2 Corinthians 8:2 ESV).  They were dealing with a huge amount of affliction — think about what went on in the cities of Philippi, Thessalonica and Berea (Acts 16-17:14).  Yet they were still giving.  The letters to the Philippians and Thessalonians both constantly emphasize the joy among these Christians.  Although they were living in “extreme poverty” themselves, yet they chose to share.

Secondly, they gave according to and beyond their means BUT they did this of their own free will.  2 Corinthians 8:3 “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” (NLT).  No one was telling these Christians how much to give.  Rather the Scriptures go on to say, “They begged us again and again for the privilege of sharing in the gift for the believers in Jerusalem” (2 Corinthians 8:4 NLT).  When Jesus has you, it will be impossible to withhold from giving.

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