30th November 2019

Giving—Our Act of Worship

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variation, neither shadow of turning.”
James 1:17 (NKJV)

When we give a gift it is to express love, concern, appreciation and thanks. Take a look at a person’s face when you give them a gift, especially children. The gift could be expensive or it could be hand-made and not too expensive but it will still be appreciated. Yet the gifts that we give and receive pale in comparison to God’s greatest gift that He gave to the world—His one and only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. God gave His Son, Jesus Christ, who offered Himself up on the cross, that we might have eternal life (John 3:15). God also gave us redemption from sin (Hebrews 9:12), salvation through Christ (Hebrews 5:9), a kingdom (2 Peter 1:10-11), and everlasting Joy ((Isaiah 51:11), just to name a few of God’s gifts to His children.

Giving is important to Christianity. One of the ways we give to God is through our worship. The Israelites gave to God through worship. Let’s take a look at a few examples that should encourage us in our giving. In Exodus 35:21-29 we find that:
verse 21 says their hearts were stirred, their spirits were willing. In verses 22-23, they gave sacrificially, things which they treasured most. The Israelites gave their personal talents for use (verses 22-24). Verses 27-28 tell of Israel’s rulers bringing precious stones, spices and oil as offerings, and in verse 29 it says the children of Israel gave a freewill offering—by choice.

The Israelites gave generously for the building of a physical temple which is no longer in existence. How much more should God’s children give to the spiritual temple that will last for ever in order that others can hear the good news of our Lord and Saviour. Jesus came to this earth in order to sacrifice His life to save sinners and open the way that all may come to Him with repentance and baptism, to have their sins forgiven and receive the promise of eternal life. As God has given to us generously, we are to give cheerfully, not by necessity or grudgingly. For God loves a cheerful giver (2 Corinthians 9:6-8).

There are many benefits from giving back to God: a deeper love and commitment in serving God will develop through giving; in times of stress our faith will be stronger when we give; God will give us inner peace, joy and grace, a sense of fulfilment as we become like Him, the greatest Giver of all. Our focus will be less on physical provision and more on worship in giving and there will be a greater desire to share what God has freely given when we unselfishly think of others in giving (1 Corinthians 2:12).

Prayer
Eternal God, thank you for the gift of giving, but whatever we give or how much cannot be compared with the greatest gift of all—our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. It’s in His name we pray.
Amen

Study by Dennis Payne
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About the Author:
Dennis Payne attends the North London Congregation of Grace Communion International.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion International London
Indian YMCA
Mahatma Gandhi Hall
41 Fitzroy Square
LONDON
W1T 6AQ

Meeting Time:
Saturday 2:30pm

Local Congregational Contact:
Barry Robinson
Email: london@gracecom.church

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