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Pastor Shane Ham : Overflowing Joy

Signs · 49:48 · Recorded October 10, 2021

Overflowing Joy

2 Corinthians 8:1-15 (NIV) 1And now, brothers, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches. 2Out of the most severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. 3For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, 4they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the saints. 5And they did not do as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God’s will. 6So we urged Titus, since he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part. 7But just as you excel in everything–in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us–see that you also excel in this grace of giving. 8I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others. 9For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich. 10And here is my advice about what is best for you in this matter: Last year you were the first not only to give but also to have the desire to do so. 11Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means. 12For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have. 13Our desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed, but that there might be equality. 14At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. Then there will be equality, 15as it is written: “He who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little.”

The nature of money

Money can act constructively or destructively in your life.

Because we need to have a part of the world to care for:

Money was designed to bring us dignity.

Because of the effects of sin:

Money has become our definition.

Three principles that will lead to “joy”

1. God owns everything. You are a trustee.

Psalm 24:1 (NASB) The earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains, The world, and those who live in it.

2 parts to being a trustee:

You have something to take care of.

You don’t have ultimate ownership of it!

Malachi 3:7-11 (TEV) 7“…Turn back to me, and I will turn to you. But you ask, ‘What must we do to turn back to you?’ 8I ask you, is it right for a person to cheat God? Of course not, yet you are cheating me. ‘How?’ you ask. In the matter of tithes and offerings. 9A curse is on all of you because the whole nation is cheating me. 10Bring the full amount of your tithes to the Temple, so that there will be plenty of food there. Put me to the test and you will see that I will open the windows of heaven and pour out on you in abundance all kinds of good things. 11I will not let insects destroy your crops, and your grapevines will be loaded with grapes.”

Ephesians 4:28 (NIV) Let the thief no longer steal, but let him give and be generous.

Psalm 82:3 (NLT2) “Give justice to the poor and the orphan; uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute.”

2. Jesus gave everything.

Matthew 5:2 (NIV) “…blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

3 biblical guidelines on giving:

Your tithe

Your lifestyle

Your attitude

3. You CAN take it with you!

Take the long view – the eternal view.

Matthew 6:26 (NIV) “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?”

Talk It Over
  • With what are you generous? Your money? Time? Talents? Toys? With what are you stingy?

  • Reread 2 Corinthians 8:1-15. What do you learn about the Macedonians from their giving? In light of the struggles in Corinth, why would Paul draw their attention to the Macedonian example? What would this test of generosity reveal? What principles about giving do you observe?

  • If you were to evaluate your zeal for God from your checkbook, what grade would you give yourself? What from Jesus’ example in verse 9 prompts you to be generous with your money, time, and energy?

  • How can the “equality principle” in verses 13-15 help you decide what cause needs your immediate attention? What does this principle say about getting your needs met?

  • Over the course of your life, think about times when money has had a constructive effect on your life. A destructive effect. Do you see the correlation of dignity and definition? Share this with your small group and discuss steps or strategies to keep you on the side of dignity.

  • Shane talked about three biblical guidelines on giving. Do you struggle with any of these? Is one very easy for you? Spend some time in prayer or journaling your thoughts. Ask God for his help to clearly see his desire for you in each of these areas and thank him for all he provides for you.

  • Parents – Read Matthew 6:26 with your children this week and work on memorizing it together. Remind them that they should not worry about anything, but fully trust and rely on God, who will supply all of their needs.

Talk It Over
  • With what are you generous? Your money? Time? Talents? Toys? With what are you stingy?

  • Reread 2 Corinthians 8:1-15. What do you learn about the Macedonians from their giving? In light of the struggles in Corinth, why would Paul draw their attention to the Macedonian example? What would this test of generosity reveal? What principles about giving do you observe?

  • If you were to evaluate your zeal for God from your checkbook, what grade would you give yourself? What from Jesus’ example in verse 9 prompts you to be generous with your money, time, and energy?

  • How can the “equality principle” in verses 13-15 help you decide what cause needs your immediate attention? What does this principle say about getting your needs met?

  • Over the course of your life, think about times when money has had a constructive effect on your life. A destructive effect. Do you see the correlation of dignity and definition? Share this with your small group and discuss steps or strategies to keep you on the side of dignity.

  • Shane talked about three biblical guidelines on giving. Do you struggle with any of these? Is one very easy for you? Spend some time in prayer or journaling your thoughts. Ask God for his help to clearly see his desire for you in each of these areas and thank him for all he provides for you.

  • Parents – Read Matthew 6:26 with your children this week and work on memorizing it together. Remind them that they should not worry about anything, but fully trust and rely on God, who will supply all of their needs.

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