Give and Take, Jn 3:16

When we were teaching a men’s Bible study on Monday nights at the church, we were going over some instructions on how to identify the pertinent parts of a verse and how to expound and outline each of those parts.  When we finished dealing with two verses on money, our youth pastor said, “In those two passages of scripture dealing with money, you have God and the devil.  One is give, give, give and the other is take, take, take.”  That’s right.  And so I am preaching give and take; God and the devil.

God is all give – Jn 3:16 – “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son.”  He “giveth life unto the world,” Jn 6:33.  “The gift of God is eternal life,” Rom 6:23.  God “giveth to all life, and breath, and all things,” Acts 17:25.  God “giveth rain upon the earth,” Job 5:10.  God “giveth food to all flesh,” Ps 136:25.  God “giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength,” Is 40:29.  God “giveth grace to the humble,” 1 Pet 5:5.  He gives us abundant life, Jn 10:10, spiritual blessings, Eph 1:3. spiritual fruit, Gal 5:22-23, spiritual gifts, 1 Cor 12:7-10, Rom 12:6-8,  his word, Ps 68:11, the increase in the body of Christ, 1 Cor 3:6, and so much more.  God is a giver.  Jesus Christ gave up heaven and all of his glory to come to earth and give his life for us, 2 Cor 8:9.  When he died, he had given everything; there was nothing left to give.  He gave it all.

The devil is all take – Jn 10:10 – “the thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.”  The devil took Adam’s dominion, Gen 3.  He is now the god of this world, 2 Cor 4:4.  He took the words of God and twisted them, Gen 3.  The devil tried to take God’s throne in heaven, Is 14:12-14.   He will sit “in the temple of God , shewing himself that he is God,” 2 Thes 2:4.  The devil takes control of people’s bodies, Matt 4:24.  He takes control of their minds, Mk 5:4-5, 15, and their lives, Heb 2:14.  He takes treasures and he takes the world, Is 10:13-14.   The devil takes it all, that is, all that he can get.

Conclusion: oddly, the devil is the one who gains the whole world and loses his own soul, Mk 8:36.  Jesus is the one who gave up the whole world to win our souls.  He ends up king of the whole world, Rev 11:15.  The devil takes it all and loses it all; the Lord gives it all and gets it all back. Matt 28:18, 1 Cor 15:24-25.  So, why don’t you be like Jesus the cheerful giver [2 Cor 9:7] rather than like the devil, the insatiable taker [1 Tim 6:10].