Sunday Considerations: Liberal Giving

Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word.
(2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 ESV)

We ought to be free in our giving to others since God has been so free in His giving to us. As He has abounded toward us in infinite liberality, we ought to abound towards all with whom we come in contact up to the full measure of our ability in all love and kindness and mercy. In every benevolent enterprise Christian men should take a hearty interest. Read that 17th verse “Comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work.”

I am a man and being a man everything that concerns men concerns me. I am a Christian man and as a follower of Christ, the Son of Man, everything that can do good to my fellow men is a matter in which I delight to take my share. This should be done in direct actions as well as in words. Read – “Establish you in every good word and work.” Certain of the oldest manuscripts run, “In every good work and word” and I suppose in our new translation we shall have it so and very properly, too. In this case work is probably first and word next.

Some Christian people think that “word” should be everything and work nothing, but the Scriptures are not of their mind. These professors speak a great deal about what they will do; talk a great deal about what other people ought to do and a great deal more about what others fail to do – and so they go on with word, word, word and nothing else but word. They do not get as far as “work” – but the Apostle put work first in this case, as much as to say, “whether you talk about it or not, do it. Be established in every good work even if you do not get so far as being capable of a multiplicity of words.”

Brethren, let us yoke word and work together—every good thing should command our advocacy and secure our aid to the fullest of our ability. Direct practical assistance should be rendered by us all, since our Lord loves not in word, only, but in deed and in truth. This should be done without pressure. No one could lay constraint upon God to bless His people. No pressure was put upon Christ to redeem us! Everything, as we have shown, was spontaneous, sovereign, free. Even so should men give to God out of an overflowing heart. Give to Him as a king gives to a king! How does a king give? Why, as he likes and that is the way to give – to give because you are delighted to give – not because you feel obliged to do it by being observed by others, but out of a royal heart which delights in liberal giving!1

  1. Charles Spurgeon. Excerpt from sermon “Free Grace a Motive for Giving”. June 13, 1880

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