Churches Giving to Special Needs II Cor. 8:9-15 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
We have the opportunity now to give to several special needs that our missionaries have. In order to do this we need to see what it takes on the part of churches giving to special needs. It takes:
Grace – 2 Cor 8:9 – Jesus had everything and gave it all up to make us rich – rich in faith – rich in mercy – rich in grace – rich in life – rich in charity – rich in inheritance – I don’t think rich in possessions, though [Rev 3:16-17].
Willingness – 2 Cor 8:11-12 – I may be willing to give $1,000,000 – but I may only have $20 – so do I not give the $20 because it isn’t $1,000,000 – no – with that attitude, if I ever do get $1,000,000 I’ll never give it – so Paul says to give out of what you have – and for the rich young ruler that was everything though he gave none.
Performance – 2 Cor 8:11-12 – the performance of giving after this example is out of that which ye have – for Barnabas that was everything [he gave all] – for Zachaeus it was half [and he gave it] – for Ananias and Sapphira it was what ever they wanted to give as long as they didn’t lie about it [they lied] – in all these cases, God didn’t ask them to give more than a hundred percent – yet he expected them to give something of what they had.
Equality – 2 Cor 8:13-15 – now the Lord wasn’t looking to put so much of a burden on a few by this method – he was looking for everyone to give but he recognized that some were going to be able to give more than others because some had more than others – so his method of giving was based on equality [or balance] – those who have more give more so that those who have none are supplied – and when it is meted out there is an equality – a balance – and as long as people are always doing this there is always an equality – what tips the balance is when someone is always on the receiving end [at sometime they are to supply someone’s want] and someone is always having to be on the giving end as a result – what else tips the scale is when someone has the need and those that have the supply don’t meet it [1 Jn 3:17].
In 1997, I preached this text and the notes from that sermon back then read as follows:
“Now consider the missionaries we have – Demopoulos [church building and print ministry] – Thompson [church building] – Castellaw [church building] – Tillman [Mongolian hospital church planting ministry] – these are all in need right now.
Now consider us – we have $271,000 in the bank – we have a church building we are trying to build – right now we are running out of room but we aren’t quite there yet – we have architect, engineer, and permit fees that must be paid before we can even build – so, our project is some time off – in other words it is not immediate – so we have [2 Cor 8:12] – but we don’t have more than we are going to need to build in the future – we have far less than we are going to need THEN.
What do we do? Do we continue to build up what we are GOING to need to build in the future or do we supply the missionaries with some of it NOW? We can trust God to meet their immediate need NOW and to supply what we are going to need LATER.
The lad with the 5 loaves and 2 fishes gave everything he had – God blessed it – he fed 5,000 men besides women and children – and there were 12 baskets left over – so the lad had enough to eat to feed himself right then and if he received any of the leftovers he had enough to eat later – in other words God, took care of his immediate needs and added enough to cover his future. The widow who fed Elijah gave everything she had left to feed the prophet and then the Lord supplied all her need out of the same provision until the rain came.
Prov 11:24 There is that scattereth and yet increaeth – there is that witholdeth more than is meet and it tendeth to poverty.
I believe we are supposed to give some of it to meet some of these needs that we know exist – when Bro. Thompson alerted us all about the trusses he was looking for a number of churches to each pay for one truss – we ended up doing way more than that [nearly $10,000 and 2 other churches did the same thing] those were the only 3 churches who responded – but because they did more than he asked [we did what the Lord wanted us to do] the need was met – and everyone of our needs has been met, as well – for us to pass on these needs might actually be withholding more than is meet now – and if that is so it will only tend to poverty – I’d rather scatter it and increase it than withhold more than is meet. That night we committed to do the following:
Castellaw – commit to give $10,000 when he gets a building
Thompson – send $15,000
Demopoulos – send $10,000
Tillman – send $5,000”
Well, that was 7 years ago and since then the Lord has supplied us with hundreds of thousands of dollars to build the building we are in now. Everything here is paid for and the Lord used men to be a supply for our want [2 Cor 8:14]. Truly remarkable!!
Tonight we have 10 missionaries with special needs and we must seek God’s wisdom to know what part he would have us do in making up these needs. Amen!