CHEERFUL GIVING METHOD: THE MACEDONIAN MODEL
Series: The Methods for Ekklesia Growth
Title: Part 2: Cheerful Giving Method: The Macedonian Model
Speaker: Ptr. Boy Glinoga
Passage: 2 Corinthians 8:11
Service: New Life Bible Class
Date: December 3, 2015
THE METHODS FOR EKKLESIA GROWTH
CHEERFUL GIVING METHOD: THE MACEDONIAN MODEL
“Now therefore perform the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to will, so there may be a performance also out of that which ye have.” -2 Corinthians 8:11
Cheerful Giving has been the way of life of our Ekklesia since I started teaching it to our people in 1976. It served as one of the major factors that led our ekklesia and all our ministries to success and fruitfulness. Today, by the grace of the Lord and because of our faithful members who have grown to be cheerful givers and my partners in the ministry, we have before us great ministries to perform and opportunities to reach for the Lord more people globally speaking. However, this is just the 60% of our membership. There is still 40% in our midst who are still stubborn and covetous. Some are giving but not giving right and there are some who are not giving at all. And this I can’t understand why. I pray that God will touch their hearts and lead them to change. And may the example of the Macedonian believers teach them to be obedient to the Lord in Cheerful Giving.
The Macedonian believers were examples of:
1. Living in the grace of God (2 Cor. 8:1-2 ). They had presented themselves to God and gave everything they possessed for the use of the Gospel. And so God had richly rewarded their lives by letting them experience how it was to live under His loving, enabling and sustaining GRACE:
1.1. It enabled them to become instruments of God’s grace to others.
1.2. It taught them that the “greater was their afflictions,” “the greater was the abundance of joy.”
1.3. The “deeper their poverty,” only “abounded unto the riches of their liberality.” Here the power of God’s grace was evidently manifested and proven to be greater than any trying moments in their lives. Yes, we can trust that God’s grace can far exceed even the greatest trials of our faith in Christ and love for Him.
2. Giving Sacrificially—”beyond their power” THEY GAVE (2 Cor. 8:3-4 ). This recognition must have been given to the Ekklesia in Philippi because we find in Paul’s testimony that only the believers there contributed much or heavily to his support ( P hil. 4:10, 15, 16 ) . No believer can say that he truly loves the Lord if he is not willing to sacrifice for Him and the cause of the Gospel.
3. Lovingly and humbly gave themselves to God first and second, to the man of God (2 Cor. 8:4-5 ). There is no doubt that these believers gave themselves first unto God with all humility and true love in their hearts. And because they have been obedient to God, they also have found giving themselves to the servant of God—whom they have acknowledged to be God’s precious gift to the Ekklesia that they can be taught of him all the counsel and ways of God. They gave their Pastor the double honor he fully deserved. What a generous heart God can give to every humble, obedient and generous cheerful giver!
4. “Proving the sincerity of their love” and of their resolve to give (2 Cor. 8:8). “Forwardness” means “earnestness” and “diligence.” The Macedonian believers were the kind of believers who have understood that their new life in Christ was no longer for themselves but for the Lord and others. Thus, they have become forward, earnest and diligent in their giving and in their pursuit of Christ and His Gospel. Their testimony of generosity and love for Christ became a force to reckon with in spite of the great trials of their faith.
5. Christ-likeness (2 Cor. 8:9). Jamieson, Fausset, Brown Commentary states that, “If the Lord did so much more, at so much heavier the cost, for your sakes; much more may you do an act of love to your Ekklesia at so little a sacrifice of self.” It only means that God will never put us to a place where His demand would be greater than the grace He provides us. What the Lord just wanted for us to learn is what cheerful giving really means and that is not just to give from our abundance but most importantly, we learn to give sacrificially just like the Lord Jesus Christ. King David demonstrated it perfectly when he resolved not to offer anything to God that would cost him nothing (2 Samuel 24:24).
6. 2 Corinthians 8:10-12, “And herein I give my advice…” Apostle Paul here continued his teaching on the subject of the grace of giving still by the inspiration of the Spirit, not a command, so that the offering of God’s people may be given freely, lovingly and spontaneously which are in effect the important characteristics and the very essence of Cheerful Giving.
“To be Forward” means in the Greek, “to be WILLING,DOING and COMPLETING.” May this all be the desire and prayer of our hearts as God’s cheerful givers. And for all of us who believe and live in the grace of God, may Cheerful Giving always be our lifestyle, our way of life. I have here another formula to test how you really perform and advance as a cheerful giver. I call it the 4-WAY TEST ( 2 Cor. 8:11-12 ) .
1. PERFORM THE DOING OF IT
2. READINESS TO WILL
3. A PERFORMANCE
4. A WILLING MIND
And we also call it the GRACE-WAY of the MBBE. Praise the Lord for the gift and grace of giving!
—BMA’s Messages 12.06.15