Biblical teaching on giving and sharing – Christian Gratitude – Sermons and Biblical Studies

Biblical teaching on giving and sharing – Christian Gratitude

Christian Gratitude

Biblical teaching on giving and sharing is an integral part of Christian doctrine, emphasizing the importance of generosity as a reflection of God’s character and love. Here are some key principles and teachings from the Bible on this topic:

  1. Giving as an Act of Worship and Obedience:
    • Giving is often seen as an act of worship and obedience to God. In the Old Testament, the Israelites were instructed to give offerings as a part of their worship (Leviticus 27:30, Numbers 18:26).
    • Proverbs 3:9 advises to “honor the Lord with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops.”
  2. The Joy and Blessing of Giving:
    • The New Testament emphasizes the joy and blessing that comes from giving. Acts 20:35 quotes Jesus: “It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
    • 2 Corinthians 9:7 states, “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”
  3. The Principle of Tithing:
    • Tithing, or giving ten percent of one’s income to the church or the needy, is a practice established in the Old Testament (Genesis 14:20, Leviticus 27:30) and often referenced in Christian teachings as a guideline for giving.
  4. Generosity Reflects God’s Generosity:
    • Christians believe that since God has been generous towards them, especially in spiritual blessings, they are called to be generous as well. Ephesians 1:7-8 speaks of the richness of God’s grace that He lavished on believers.
    • The ultimate act of generosity is seen in Jesus Christ’s sacrifice, as stated in John 3:16.
  5. Supporting the Needy:
    • The Bible has numerous exhortations to care for the poor, widows, orphans, and strangers. For example, Proverbs 19:17 says, “Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.”
    • Jesus’ teachings also emphasize caring for the less fortunate (Matthew 25:34-40).
  6. Sharing as a Community:
    • The early Christian community in Acts shared their possessions and provided for each other as needed (Acts 2:44-45, Acts 4:32-35). This model of communal living and sharing is often cited as an example of Christian generosity and unity.
  7. The Importance of Integrity in Giving:
    • The Bible stresses honesty and integrity in giving. An example of this is the story of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5:1-11, who faced dire consequences for lying about their donation.
  8. The Role of Faith in Giving:
    • Giving is also an act of faith, trusting that God will provide and that by prioritizing others’ needs, one’s own needs will also be met (Matthew 6:33, Philippians 4:19).
  9. Not Neglecting Other Duties:
    • Jesus criticized the Pharisees for their meticulous tithing while neglecting more important matters of justice, mercy, and faithfulness (Matthew 23:23). This indicates that while giving is important, it should not overshadow other moral and spiritual duties.
  10. Giving in Secret:
    • In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus teaches to give in secret rather than for show, promising that God who sees in secret will reward such giving (Matthew 6:1-4).

Biblical teaching on giving and sharing emphasizes generosity as a fundamental aspect of Christian life, reflecting God’s character and love. It’s seen not just as a duty, but as a joyful, faith-filled response to God’s generosity, and an essential part of living out one’s faith in community and the world.