The Power of Sacrificial Giving

You must have heard the popular saying that givers never lack and that it is more blessed to give than to receive. Well, whether you’re familiar with the saying or not, it’s very true. Now, it is one thing to give, and it is another thing to give sacrificially - this is what our article today discusses.

The Power of Sacrificial Giving - Godgift Godwin

To begin, the Bible is full of examples of sacrificial giving. In 1st Kings 17:13, the widow at Zarephath first made Elijah, the prophet, a cake with everything she had left. As a result, God provided enough oil and meal for Elijah, the widow woman, and her son to survive throughout the drought. In Matthew 26:7, a woman poured her very expensive perfume from the alabaster jar over Jesus’ head. In Luke 21, Jesus recognized the poor widow woman’s tiny gift as more than the large gifts from the rich. In Acts 2:44, the early church members sold their property and possessions to give to anyone in need. In Acts 4:32, again the early church shared everything they had. In 2 Corinthians 8:2, Paul writes of the Macedonian churches giving out of their extreme poverty, beyond their ability. 

This confirms that in reality, rich people don't help/give to people - only good people help or give. So, if someone helps or gives you, don't feel that they have so much - its simply because they have a good heart. At the same time, it is sad that some people are actually so poor that all they have is money. This is another story for some other day.

We all have needs in our life from time to time. Sometimes, it might be a monetary need, but at other times it is a physical healing, a spiritual healing, or just the need for peace in our lives.

Our heavenly Father loves to give good gifts to his children. Jesus said in (Matthew 7:11), “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to our children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!”God loves to give to you. God loves to meet all of your needs. However, as believers in Christ, we must follow Christ’s example and give sacrificially.

What are the benefits of Sacrificial Giving?

There are many benefits that a believer enjoys when you decide to be a sacrificial giver

1. Sacrificial Giving Stores up Heavenly Riches for you

Paul writes, “Moreover, as you Philippians know, in the early days of your acquaintance with the gospel, when I set out from Macedonia, not one church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you only; for even when I was in Thessalonica, you sent me aid again and again when I was in need. Not that I am looking for a gift, but I am looking for what may be credited to your account.”

Their gift brought Paul joy not because of its personal material benefit to him, but because of its spiritual benefit to them. The principle that those who give generously will be blessed is taught repeatedly in Scripture. Solomon wrote, "There is one who scatters, and yet increases all the more, and there is one who withholds what is justly due, and yet it results only in want. The generous man will be prosperous, and he who waters will himself be watered" (Prov. 11:24-25). Later in Proverbs he added, "One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the Lord, and He will repay him for his good deed" (Prov. 19:17), "He who is generous will be blessed" (Prov. 22:9), and "He who gives to the poor will never want" (Prov. 28:27). In Luke 6:38 Jesus said, "Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure—pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.

2. It is a Fragrant offering and Acceptable Sacrifice which is pleasing to God

In verse 18, Paul uses some Old Testament terms to describe the sacrificial gift given by the Philippians. It says, “I am amply supplied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent. They are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God. Genesis 8:20-21 also talks about how Noah built an altar to the Lord, took some of all the clean animals and clean birds and sacrificed burnt offerings on it. The Lord smelled the pleasing aroma and decided in his heart to never curse the ground because of humans or destroy all living creatures.

Again, Exodus 29:18 says, “Then burn the entire ram on the altar. It is a burnt offering to the LORD, a pleasing aroma, a food offering presented to the LORD and Leviticus 19:5 says, “When you sacrifice a fellowship offering to the LORD, sacrifice it in such a way that it will be accepted on your behalf.”

Psalm 51:19 says, “Then you will delight in the sacrifices of the righteous, in burnt offerings offered whole; then bulls will be offered on your altar.” Paul saw the Philippians' gift as a sacrificial act of worship to God. Such spiritual sacrifices are required of New Covenant believers instead of the animal sacrifices of the Old Covenant. In Romans 12:1 Paul commands believers, "Present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship." The writer of Hebrews exhorts, "Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name. And do not neglect doing good and sharing, for with such sacrifices God is pleased" (Heb. 13:15-16). Peter reminds believers that they are "a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ" (1 Peter 2:5). Paul's joy that the Philippians would make such an acceptable sacrifice to God far surpassed his joy at receiving their gift.

All these verses are only pointers to the fact that God sees a cheerful giver who sacrificially gives as as “A fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God”

3. It allows God to meet our needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus

Paul knew that the Philippians would not only receive spiritual blessings in heaven for their generosity, but also that God would supply all their physical needs in this life. The Philippians had sacrificially (2 Cor. 8:1-3) given of their earthly possessions to support God's servant, Paul. In return, God would amply supply their needs; Paul would not be in their debt. Having sown bountifully, they would reap bountifully (2 Cor. 9:6); having "honor[ed] the Lord from [their] wealth and from the first of all [their] produce... [their] barns will be filled with plenty and [their] vats will overflow with new wine" (Prov. 3:9-10). They would discover that it is impossible to out give God.

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The phrase according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus reveals the extent to which God would supply the Philippians' needs. He would do so according to His riches, not out of them; His giving to them would be relative to the immensity of His eternal wealth, that is, as generously as is consistent with His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. The New Testament repeatedly presents Christ Jesus as the source of all of God's riches. In Ephesians 1:23 the apostle described Jesus as "Him who fills all in all." Peter wrote, "His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence" (2 Peter 1:3).

Read: 7 Lessons from the Life of David

In conclusion, Sacrificial giving is like a key to a treasure chest in the kingdom of heaven. In Matthew 13:44-46, Jesus describes the value of the kingdom of heaven by saying that the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man finds it, he hides it again, and then in his joy goes to sell all he had and bought that field. Jesus also likened the kingdom of heaven to a merchant looking for fine pearls and when he finds one of great value, he goes to sell everything he has to but it. In the same way, Jesus has already given us the kingdom of heaven so when we give sacrificially, it is like a key to the treasures in heaven. It opens up God to give to us, not out of his wealth, but as large as his wealth. According to the Apostle Paul, when we give sacrificially, “God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. Believers should thus learn to give sacrificially to God - give of your money, time, resources and your life because you truly can never out give God!

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