In this post I want to focus on chapter 9 particularly chapter 9 verse 7,
“Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” -2 Cor. 9:7
Oh how DISAPPOINTING that this verse has been used by some preachers as an excuse not to preach on giving and even more DISAPPOINTING this verse has almost been used by some to reject appeals to give.
The unwise preacher says, “People need to give based upon what is in their heart not because I am guilting them into it with a sermon.”
The preacher who makes such a statement obviously hasn’t read the all of chapter 9, they’ve only read the verse 7. Because the entirety of chapter 9 is an appeal sermon for a church to give. It starts off with the stated expectation that they will give in abundance. Then a recognition that they may not, but they should and that is why Paul is writing. Then there is the verse some preachers would never dare say because they don’t want anyone to give under compulsion,
“The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.” -2 Corinthians 9:6
Paul actually says, “The point is this if you’re cheap with God then you limit God’s blessing.” Wow!
Oh and the amusing perspective to me in regards to this text is that it is Paul’s text IMMEDIATELY before the text most preachers use to “NOT” preach or make appeals for money.
After then the text we all know, “…God loves a cheerful giver” Paul tells the people for the rest of the chapter why they should want to give and how their giving will help.
The unwise member says, “They (the church) shouldn’t ask me for money so I am not going to give so it is not under compulsion.”
Paul’s argument to that would be,
“Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!” -2 Corinthians 9:15
In other words “the compulsion of your heart should always be towards greater and still greater generosity because of Jesus inexpressible gift of salvation to all of us. PERIOD.
After all that I feel like I should make an appeal.
Jesus in the 20 years and nearly 1 month (April 26, 1996) since He came into my heart has never allowed me to forget how horrible life felt when I was pushing Him away and what peace there was when I stopped pushing/running/dodging/denying and finally accepted that He loved me with all His heart! Because of what Jesus did for me, I have dedicated my life to making Jesus better known and better loved in the heart of every person I have the potential to reach. We, the Spencerville Church, have an opportunity through the use of modern technology (the internet, ROKU, etc) and in partnership with the HOPE Channel, to share globally the love of Jesus. We are in the midst of a project to build at the Spencerville Church our own little media center (without effecting the aesthetics of our beautiful sanctuary that Jesus has blessed us to be able to worship in) but making it feasible for the Gospel to go far beyond our walls. I know there are millions of people in the world, I know there are friends and family of mine, friends and family of yours that need to know the peace that comes when they stop pushing/running/dodging/denying the love of Jesus! Maybe, through our media ministry we can reach some of those people. Maybe your family or friend maybe mine or maybe someone all the way on the other side of the world can learn more about Jesus and thus love Him more through this ministry. Would you be 1 of 600 people to commit a one time gift of $200 or maybe a gift of $200 spread out over several months to help us at Spencerville fulfill the God-given burden placed on my heart more than 20 years ago, to make Jesus better known and better loved. If so you can very easily and safely give here: spencerville.church
I hope your heart is compelled to help us in this endeavor…if not I pray it is compelled to serve Jesus with your means in one of His many other ministries!
So let us all give cheerfully because Jesus loves us with an everlasting unimaginable love!
Next Reading: Exodus 25-28