Epiphany 2023 sermon series – ‘The Grace of Giving’

Mark BradfordBible, NewsLeave a Comment

We’re looking at this series on giving for a number of reasons. Certainly, we need to continue to broaden our giving base at St Cuthbert’s. However, giving goes beyond simply what people offer to the vision and maintenance of our church family. There are other causes that people might give to, and, though financial giving is certainly in view in 2 Corinthians 8-9, we need to also see the giving of our time and talents as equally important.

For many of us, money is tighter than it has been for a long time. It would be an easy time to cut back on giving – and for some this will be a necessary, and right, choice. However, this is an important time to reflect on what giving is all about. Do we see it financial giving as a ‘Christian tax’? Is it something to do through gritted teeth? Or, as 2 Corinthians 8-9 suggests, is it our graced-response to the grace of God already shown to us in Jesus Christ?

How much should we give? Some Christians practice tithing. Others give more or less than this. 2 Corinthians 8-9 does not place a value on our giving in terms of a %, but does encourage a value of generosity. The inference is also that giving is not only for ‘the good times’ but an essential practice for all who follow in the way of Jesus.

In these times of tightening purse-strings, perhaps there needs to be a ‘coming in the opposite spirit’ as we continue to practice grace and generosity. Something happens within us, I believe, when we case to give. However, it must always be between the individual and the Lord to decide what that giving looks like specifically.

Let’s continue to pray for a spirit of gift, grace, and generosity to flow through us, through our life together at St Cuthbert’s, and out into our community. Not least in this season when we anticipate and celebrate the extraordinary gift of the God who gave himself to us in his Son, Jesus Christ! ‘Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!’ (2 Corinthians 9:15).

You can find more information about 2 Corinthians 8-9 HERE.

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