081819.ca_.logo_.jpg

Expository Studies

Play Video
Play Video

Daily Encouragement

Play Video

September 21, 2010

Giving in Jesus

 Fitting for Me Today

“and if it is fitting for me to go also, they will go with me.”

1 Corinthians 16:4, page 1803

     Paul had traveled all over the Mediterranean world.  As part of God’s global ministry team, Paul and his friends in Christ traveled under the direction of the Holy Spirit.  At times, the Holy Spirit prohibited the ministry team from entering certain places, while specifically directing them to new places.  You may recall the Macedonian vision  (Acts 16:1-13, page 1731), where the Holy Spirit told the team not to continue in the Roman area of Asia, but rather to go to Macedonia work there.  Today, the Holy Spirit provides very specific guidance not only for travel, but also for travel and giving together.

       In 1 Corinthians 16:4, Paul indicates that he wants to go to Corinth, again, to see the saints there.  You should always remember when you read the New Testament that the term “saint” refers to a believer, and not some special believer.  All believers were saints, and in fact, they still are.  Paul has just explained that the Corinthians should prepare their gift to the saints in Jerusalem, and they should “approve” someone to take the gift personally.  Now Paul shifts the focus to himself, and raises the possibility that he may also accompany them to Jerusalem.

Principle of Giving:

Sometimes Delivering Gifts Unites

Believers in Journeys

       Paul had this keen sense that God controlled his schedule, and when and where he would be going.  As you read through 1 Corinthians 16:5-9, you see that Paul stayed where “doors” for effective service opened for him, even if he had many adversaries there.  In 1 Corinthians 16:4, Paul discusses the opportunity to travel to Jerusalem accompanied by the Corinthian messengers.  One part of discipleship will also involve spending time with each other, especially time doing things that have spiritual benefit to other believers.

Principle of Giving:

Flexibility in Delivering Gifts

Unites Believers

       Paul does not demand that the Corinthian delegation to Jerusalem travel with him, but left it as “and if it is fitting” (“ἐὰν δὲ ἄξιον“).  Part of giving means that each local assembly decides about how much and when to give, but giving also unites people throughout the world.   If you have ever read the epistle of 1 Corinthians, then you know that the Corinthians, as a group, were “fleshly” babes in Christ, divided, distorted, and drunk at times.   Yet, these same people had a lot of spiritual activity, and also united around sharing gifts with Jerusalem.    If it works out for the Corinthians and for Paul, they can travel together.  If not, Paul will send letters with them.  The point here is flexibility.    Notice here that the needs of Jerusalem were strong enough that Paul raised funds for them in the churches abroad, but then he did not feel so compelled to act now that he said drop everything and send the gift without him.   Apparently, the poor in Jerusalem needed ongoing support, and the support could be provided over time.  This principle of flexibility in giving and delivering gifts should always be kept in mind. 

        ●   So, we learn some more about giving in Christ.

        ●  We learn that giving includes flexibility in delivering gifts to friends in Christ, and also unites people in fellowship.

        ●  We learn to give better by allowing our gifts to be sent along by people willing to go, and who will be a blessing to the recipients.

       ●  We hinder our giving when do not allow for flexibility on passing gifts along, or when we insist on doing everything our own personal way.  Sometimes, we need to accommodate the needs of our friends in Christ in delivering the gifts, especially when it comes to timing.  

Application for Today

        Today, I want to encourage my friends not only to give, but also to take greater interest in how the gifts are used and delivered for the glory of God.  Do you know where your gifts are going today?

 Christ Assembly Basics 

Christ Assembly provides free access to various studies from the Bible, the Word of God. The studies in this website are not inspired, but God produced the Bible, consisting of sixty-nine books (39 Old Testament and 27 New Testament). The Holy Spirit inspired authors to produce original autographs of the Bible in Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek. Those original authors wrote over the course of many centuries. They wrote divinely inspired words and every word was divinely inspired. The authors communicated in their own styles, and with their own vocabulary, but God breathed out every word of the final autographs. The words in the Bible really matter, and deserve careful study. 
 
As we study, we seek to love Jesus more because His word has instructed us so that we learn His ways. Eternal life consists in knowing God the Father, and Jesus Christ Whom God sent. As the eternal God of Glory, One with His Father, the Son of God took flesh and dwelt among us. Because of His death, He used His blood to purchase our redemption. He was raised for our justification. We now live by faith in the Son of God, Who loved us and gave Himself for us. By the grace of God, the Holy Spirit abides in every born-again believer and fills us with His presence and blessings. He leads us into all truth. Jesus is the truth, and the way, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Jesus, our Lord. 
 
We look forward to His imminent return to the clouds of earth, to snatch away the believers alive on earth, so that we may be forever with the Lord. When He returns to the clouds, He will bring with Him all those people in Christ who died before His return to the clouds. We encourage one another with the promises of God, Who makes our path grow brighter and brighter, until the full light of day shines forth. We love Jesus and look forward to seeing Him soon. After Jesus removes the believers from the earth, then a terrible period of seven years follows where God brings measured and precise judgments upon the people alive on earth. God cut those days of  Tribulation short, or no flesh would have been saved. Jesus will then return to earth, slay His enemies, and place His feet on the Mount of Olives where He ascended to heaven. He will then reign on earth for a thousand years, and believers will reign with Him. After the Millennial Reign of Christ, all unbelievers will be judged at the Great White Throne Judgment, and they will suffer according to their deeds done on earth. They will be cast into the Lake of Fire, a place of torment night and day for eternity, because they never received the free gift of salvation while alive on earth. One day, every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is Lord, to the glory of God. Today we invite you to come and see Jesus, and learn from Him, for He is gentle and humble in heart. Take His yoke upon you, for His burden is easy and His yoke is light. He will give you rest for your soul as you trust Him. We receive salvation only from Jesus, by faith alone in Jesus, Who gives us the free gift of eternal life. 
 
We accept the teaching of the Word of God. As born again believers, baptized by Jesus with the Holy Spirit, the anointing from God teaches us all things. We love to study the Word of God as we abide in Christ Jesus our Lord. God blesses all of us when we read His word, hear His word, and heed His word. We share original studies of the Word of God without cost and we do not receive donations. We support the finances of this ministry through private means, so that we are not a burden to anyone. We oppose charging people to read books, articles, journals or other studies of the Word of God. Such work should be supported by donations, but not in prescribed amounts and not as a requirement to gain access to what God has freely provided. What God has freely given, we should freely share. Just as Paul worked making tents, so we work to support this ministry. 
 

 Christ Assembly License

The author of all original material on this website retains all legal and equitable rights to the properties at issue. The author granted Christ Assembly a limited-use, revocable license to publish material on this website, while reserving all ownership rights to the original author. You may use any original material on this website to the glory of God, but you may not receive anything of value for such use. You may not receive any donations related to any original material on this website. All use of original material on this website is subject to the revocable, limited license above. You must conspicuously indicate on any use of the original material that it originated from ChristAssembly.org.  Any revocation of the license shall be posted on this website and all rights to use material may be revoked without prior notice. By copying and using any original material from this website, you consent to such license. Christ Assembly opposes any payment for access to studies, articles, journals, or other publications of studies concerning the Word of God. As God has freely given, so also the products of His grace should be freely shared.