Rev. Ronald C. Purkey, an ordained minister, claims no originality for this Bible study outline.
However, every Bible study posted on this website has been taught by Rev. Purkey.
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SCRIPTURE: Exodus 35:20-29; 2 Corinthians 9:6-8
KEY VERSE: But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. (2 Corinthians 9:6)
INTRODUCTION: The following are some contrasts between Old Testament giving and Christian giving.
A. Old Testament giving: Under the Law the tithe was a tax paid to God, the owner of the Promised Land, and was paid in crops produced by the land. It was used to support the nation’s priests and worship system and also to help provide for the poor.
The New Testament assumes a stewardship based on God’s ownership of all we have and are. There is no “rent” to pay, no temple or priesthood to support. As Christians we are to be aware of NEEDS (both locally and globally) where we may give out of Christian love. We must realize that churches, pastors, staff, and missionaries need our support!
INSIGHT: In the human body the blood system carries the elements each cell needs to survive and function throughout the body. Money is nothing more or less than life-bringing blood. Giving is sharing it with those in such need they could not survive or function as the church without it. With these foundational concepts in mind, we can see a number of principles in this Bible study intended to guide our giving as Christians.
B. New Testament giving: Three things help us understand New Testament teaching on giving.
1. Giving was primarily to meet the needs of Christians who were vulnerable because of famine or other life-threatening situations.
2. The word for giving Paul uses is koinonia, “fellowship,” or “sharing.”
3. The Apostle Paul’s vision of the church as the body of Christ shapes his teaching on giving.
INSIGHT: Here are some thoughts on Christian giving. Give YOURSELF. God wants US, not our money. When we have given OURSELVES to the Lord, our giving will fall into line. Also, if the tithe was 10% under the Law, Christians should give at least 10% (maybe more). This is because the “Lamb of God” (i.e., “Jesus Christ”) and His “shed blood” are greater than any sacrifices, gifts, or offerings in the Old Testament.
I. GIVING OF OUR POSSESSIONS. (Exodus 35:20-24)
INSIGHT: When Moses was on Mt. Sinai with God, one of the things the Lord gave him was the plans for the Old Testament Tabernacle. The Tabernacle is where Israel would worship the LORD with their offerings and sacrifices. Moses urged the Hebrew people to give gifts and offerings in order to build and furnish the Tabernacle, clothe the Levities and priests with holy garments, and care for the other things for this holy place.
A. Acceptable giving comes when our hearts are right with God. (Exodus 35:20-21)
(Exodus 35:20-21) 20 And all the congregation of the children of Israel departed from the presence of Moses. 21 And they came, every one whose heart stirred him up, and every one whom his spirit made willing, and they brought the Lord's offering to the work of the tabernacle of the congregation, and for all his service, and for the holy garments.
The whole community of Hebrew people left Moses and returned to their tents. Those godly people whose hearts were stirred and whose spirits were moved came and brought their sacred offerings to the LORD of the Bible (Jehovah). They brought all the materials needed for the Tabernacle, for the performance of its rituals, and for the sacred garments.
B. Acceptable giving comes from both men and women with gifts for God. (Exodus 35:22)
(Exodus 35:22) And they came, both men and women, as many as were willing hearted, and brought bracelets, and earrings, and rings, and tablets, all jewels of gold: and every man that offered offered an offering of gold unto the Lord.
These godly men and women came with willing hearts. They brought offerings of gold (brooches, earrings, rings from their fingers, and necklaces) to their God. Their gold objects of every kind were given as a special offering to the God of the Bible.
C. Acceptable giving comes when everyone does what they can do. (Exodus 35:23-24)
(Exodus 35:23-24) 23 And every man, with whom was found blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine linen, and goats' hair, and red skins of rams, and badgers' skins, brought them. 24 Every one that did offer an offering of silver and brass brought the Lord's offering: and every man, with whom was found shittim wood for any work of the service, brought it.
All those who owned items of blue, purple, and scarlet thread; fine linen and goat hair for cloth, and tanned ram skins and fine goatskin leather willingly brought them as their offering to the Lord. Everyone who had silver and bronze objects gave them as a sacred offering to Jehovah their God. Also, those who had acacia wood brought it for use in the project.
II. GIVING OF OUR TALENTS. (Exodus 35:25-29)
A. The women used their talents for the Lord. (Exodus 35:25-26)
(Exodus 35:25-26) 25 And all the women that were wise hearted did spin with their hands, and brought that which they had spun, both of blue, and of purple, and of scarlet, and of fine linen. 26 And all the women whose heart stirred them up in wisdom spun goats' hair.
The women who were skilled in spinning and sewing prepared blue, purple, and scarlet thread, and fine linen cloth. Other women used their skills to spin goat hair into yarn.
B. The rulers used their talents for the Lord. (Exodus 35:25-26)
(Exodus 35:27-28) 27 And the rulers brought onyx stones, and stones to be set, for the ephod, and for the breastplate; 28 And spice, and oil for the light, and for the anointing oil, and for the sweet incense.
The leaders of the nation brought onyx stones and the special gemstones to be set in the ephod and the priest’s chest-piece. These leaders also brought spices and olive oil for the light, the anointing oil, and the fragrant incense to be used in the Tabernacle.
C. The whole nation used their talents for the Lord. (Exodus 35:29)
(Exodus 35:29) The children of Israel brought a willing offering unto the Lord, every man and woman, whose heart made them willing to bring for all manner of work, which the Lord had commanded to be made by the hand of Moses.
The people of Israel (every man and woman who was eager to help in the work their God had given them through Moses) brought their gifts and gave them freely to the Lord.
INSIGHT: These verses suggest the sacrificial spirit in which the giving was accomplished. It is noted that both men and women helped (Exodus 35:22), and that every man and everyone brought gifts (Exodus 35:23–24). Every person could contribute! Women spun (Exodus 35:25–26); and rulers gave precious stones, spices, and oil (Exodus 35:27–28). The conclusion was that the children of Israel brought a willing offering unto the Lord (Exodus 35:29). Christian giving today should be modeled after that of Israel’s on this occasion.
III. GIVING CHEERFULLY AND PURPOSEFULLY. (2 Corinthians 9:6-8)
A. Christians are to give with a purpose. (2 Corinthians 9:6-7)
1. The Principle (2 Corinthians 9:6).
(2 Corinthians 9:6) But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.
Paul associated the act of giving with the principle of sowing and reaping. Farmers can keep and eat all of their grain, or they can “lose” it by throwing it out over the ground. Naturally, the more generous the sowing, the more bountiful the rewards.
This principle holds true in the spiritual sphere as well. The liberal giver need not fear destitution, for this giver would receive in return gifts out of all proportion to what had been given (Prov. 11:24, 25; 19:17; Luke 6:38).
2. The Procedure (2 Corinthians 9:7).
(2 Corinthians 9:7) Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
Knowing the law of the harvest (verse 6), each believer should give “as he purposes in his heart”. The believer is to give freely and cheerfully, not out of compulsion, and without regret. Christ loves givers who are sincere (not reluctant), spontaneous (not under compulsion), and joyful (not begrudging). He does not look at the amount but at the heart (Mark 12:41–44).
B. Christians are to give with a promise. (2 Corinthians 9:8-9)
1. A promise of spiritual blessings (2 Corinthians 9:8).
(2 Corinthians 9:8) And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work:
I have never known anyone who has gone broke giving to the Lord’s work. There may be some who have, but I have never met them in my ministry. I believe that God will bless you. I don’t think the blessings He gives to you will always be material blessings.
INSIGHT: A great many people think they can hold God to a promise of “material” blessings. I don’t think you can. But God DOES promise to bless us with all spiritual blessings.
2. A promise of eternal blessings (2 Corinthians 9:9).
(2 Corinthians 9:9) As it is written, He hath dispersed abroad; he hath given to the poor: his righteousness remaineth for ever.
This is a quotation from Psalm 112. It calls the man blessed who fears the Lord and who gives to the poor. We are to share with those who do not have as much. I believe that in the church we ought to take care of our own. There are so many opportunities to share with people.
INSIGHT: Many Christians have the gift of hospitality -- and that is a gift. They have a way of opening their homes and making people feel at home. Often they take people to church first so they hear the gospel and then have them in their home for dinner afterward. That is a marvelous way of witnessing. It is a way to reach the lonely and those who lack fellowship.
The Benefit of Christian Giving
By Richard De Haan
Remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive. – Acts 20:35
· After the great Chicago fire of 1871, D. L. Moody went to New York to solicit funds for its victims.
When he arrived, he was introduced to a wealthy man who was reported to be very generous. Impressed by the great need in Chicago, he gave Moody a check for a great sum of money. He then directed the evangelist to several other men in the area, who also gave large contributions.
· When Mr. Moody was about to leave, he shook the benefactor's hand and made this parting comment: "If you ever come to Chicago, be sure to call on me. I'll return your favor."
The man responded, "Mr. Moody, don't wait for me to come. Do it to the first man who comes along." Commenting on that experience, Moody said, "I never forgot that remark. It had the ring of the true Good Samaritan."
· That man was the kind of giver who pleases God.
Moved by the needs of others, he willingly gave of his means to alleviate their suffering. He didn't give to gain attention or to satisfy his ego. Nor did he give "grudgingly or of necessity," but cheerfully (2 Corinthians 9:7).
· We can be sure that we benefit the most when we give, because the Lord Jesus said, "It is more blessed to give than to receive" (Acts 20:35).
– Adapted from Richard De Haan, Our Daily Bread, December 21, 2000
He who has no other pleasure
Ever may rejoice in this:
Not in having or receiving
But in giving, there is bliss. —Anonymous
CONCLUSION: The Apostle Paul asked the Corinthian Christians to give generously to their needy fellow Christians in Jerusalem. The lord asks us to be aware of the needs in our local community and in other parts of the world.
· Paul expected Christians to happily comply with his request and therefore live up to his boasting of them to the Christians in Macedonia.
· Likewise, we too are to be generous givers to the Lord’s work.
· After all, every good thing we have has come from God; therefore, we should give back to the Lord both freely and cheerfully.
THOUGHT TO REMEMBER: “The greatest blessing comes to the One who freely gives and expects nothing in return.”
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REFERENCES: References used in these Bible studies are the King James Bible (KJV), The Moody Bible Commentary, Dr. J. Vernon McGee © Thru the Bible Radio Network ( www.ttb.org ), the Scofield Study Bible, the Believer’s Bible Commentary, Dr. Charles J. Woodbridge Bible Outlines, Dr. Lee Roberson’s Sermons, Dr. Charles Stanley: ( http://www.intouch.org/ ), Don Robinson’s Bible Outlines, Women’s Study Bible, The Bible Reader’s Companion Ed. 3, The Nelson Study Bible: New King James Version, KJV Bible Commentary, Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines of the New Testament ed. 4, Dr. David Jeremiah: ( http://www.davidjeremiah.org/site/ ), Dr. Cliff Robinson’s Bible Outlines, Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines of the Old Testament, Dr. Alan Carr’s The Sermon Notebook ( www.sermonnotebook.org ), With the Word Bible Commentary, Wiersbe’s “Be” Series: Old & New Testaments, RBC Ministries ( http://rbc.org/ ), selected illustrations, and other references.
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