Sacrificial and Cheerful Stewardship
Read Psalm 116:12-13, 17-19. In this Offertory from Divine Service 1, we ask the question of what is worthy enough for us to give to God in thanksgiving for everything He has given us. Why do we give our offerings?
In Financial Peace University, Ramsey’s slogan is “Live like no one else so that you may live and give like no one else.” He focuses on the sacrifices needed to get the finances back in line so that we have money to be able to freely and cheerfully give.
With sacrificial offering, you give until it hurts. Read Genesis 22:1-18. What is the sacrifice God demands of Abraham? Is there more than one level of understanding this divine command? Why was Abraham willing to fulfill this divine command? Read Hebrews 11:17-19.
Even the strict ten-percent tithe can be a sacrifice for some people. Much of this has to do with having our finances in order. While Ramsey labels himself as an Evangelical Christian, he points out that it is his belief that the tithe is a mandatory ten-percent minimum. God set up a sliding scale on his offerings, especially the whole burnt offering. Read Leviticus 1. God sets up a scale for the Israelite upper, middle and lower classes. Why is this important? Read Luke 2:22-24. What was Joseph and Mary’s status when Jesus was born?
Sacrificial giving is praised by Jesus throughout the Gospels. Read Mark 12:41-44. How much did the widow give? How is that related to all the others who brought offerings to the Temple that day? Read John 6:1-13. Where did the Apostles get the five loaves and two fish?
God accepts offerings of a little or a lot, not because of the amount, but because of the faith in which the offerings are given. Read 2 Corinthians 9:6-11. How much does God command us to give?
One of the greatest examples of a cheerful giver is Noah. Read Genesis 8:20-22. What is the first thing Noah does when he leaves the Ark?
Cheerful giving allows for creativity. Everyone has different gifts. Read Romans 12:6-8. How creative can you be with your God-given gifts?
Cheerful giving is generous. We have all heard stories of people “paying it forward” in the drive-thru lane or even at the gas pump. This is creative generosity. Give the person in the drive-thru line a $100 bill for your $1 sweet tea and have them keep going with the cars behind you until the money ran out.
Read Psalm 50:7-15. What kind of sacrifice does God want?
Read 1 Timothy 6:17-19. Who are the truly rich in this life?