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“Why We Believe We Should Be Givers”

(Exodus 20:15; 2 Corinthians 8:1-15)



I. Introduction.
A. Orientation.

Seen God’s Law is law of love.

Shows God’s purpose in saving –

That stop hating, begin loving.


Are to use means to strengthen that love;

Commandments show us how to love.

How to love God by,

Putting Him first in our lives.

Giving our whole lives to Him/His service.

Making sure we keep our commitments to Him,

Spending His day with Him.


And how to love our neighbor by,

Respecting their authority,

Protecting their lives,

And their purity.


B. Preview.

This evening, see how to love them

By protecting their possessions

And by using our own to help them.
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II. Sermon.
A. First, we are to protect others’ possessions.

1. That’s what words mean: You shall not steal.

Tells us not take what doesn’t belong to us.


Years ago, went to friends house for a get together.

Someone brought guitar,

Set it up against house,

Left for just a minute,

Returned and was gone.


One time went over to pastor’s house

After having services in park,

Had brought guitar, amp, cables.

Parked on street next to house,

Went out in bit to get guitar to learn some music;

Came out a couple hours later

And car was gone.


Almost every year for about three years

Our shed has been broken into

And lawn equipment stolen.


All of us have had things stolen.

How does it feel?

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Did you enjoy having someone take what belongs to you?

No. Feel violated.

Want people to respect what is yours.

Not take it.


Lord says, Treat others way want treated (Luke 6:31) –

You don’t want people to take what’s yours:

Don’t take what’s theirs.

That’s simple enough.


But there are things we take don’t think stealing:

By not working as hard as reasonably should.

Being careless with things others let us borrow.

When invited over, being inconsiderate with how much we eat,

Or with amount of time we take from someone.

We need to be careful here as well.


We can also take things when breaking other commandments:

The first, when we don’t love God as should,


The second, when don’t serve/give honor as should,

Take credit for things haven’t done,

When should be giving to Him,


The third, when don’t keep our promises,

Either to God or each other.
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The fourth, when don’t spend time/day with the Lord,


The fifth, when don’t respect authority of those over us

And don’t submit to them,


The sixth, when don’t give necessary help,


The seventh, when we rob someone else

Of their purity, either in body, heart or mind.


The ninth, when rob their reputation,


The tenth, when we take what have in minds/hearts.


Goes without saying

If you have taken something,

Need to return it –

If don’t have it,

Need to make restitution,

If from an individual,

Need to ask forgiveness.


2. Command also has to do not only with not taking,

But protecting what belongs to others.

If see someone stealing,

Do what can to prevent it,
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Or contact someone who can.

Neighborhood Watch a way to keep 8
th
Commandment.


If neighbor leaves something outside, tell them.

If they’re not home, secure it for them.

If see neighbor’s dog out, tell them,

Or if not home, if can safely,

Catch and put in back yard.

Look out not just for own, but others’ things.


Should also protect neighbor’s belongings

In mind and heart –

Shouldn’t covet –

Since Lord devotes commandment to that

Won’t deal with it, but only mention.


B. This commandment not only deals

With respecting what belongs to others –

What the Lord gives them –

It also has to do

With what Lord gives you –

With your stewardship.


1. The Lord gives what He does for purpose,

When not faithful
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Then stealing from Him.


What think of a steward

Who spends all that’s entrusted on self,

But nothing for master’s use?


Not too long ago,

A local pastor was entrusted

With a member’s life savings

To build a museum.

Sadly, he embezzled the money,

Spent it all on self and family,

And then when confronted

Tried to cover his crime

By murdering that member.

He was an unrighteous and unfaithful steward of that man’s belongings.

We need make sure don’t do same

With what Lord entrusts to us.


Now Lord gives resources to provide for our needs –

It’s not that can’t use for self,

Or that doesn’t want us to own a house,

Or buy things we need,

Or to invest,

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Or provide for our future,

Or buy things we enjoy,

Or leave an inheritance to our children.

He does.

But there are other things

He wants us to invest in as well.


Some of these are connected with other commandments:

First and second remind us

That He wants us to support His work

Through tithes and offerings.


Fifth commandment,

That we are to support government

Through taxes.


Sixth, that we are to give to protect life.

There are a number of opportunities

In our worldwide community

Especially to help feed and educate children.


Of course, someone doesn’t have to be in danger of dying

Before we show them some kindness or mercy.


Paul tells the thief

Not to steal any longer,
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But to work to give to those in need.

Can relieve suffering,

Can encourage and bless through giving.


Let’s also not forget

We have other things can give/use to bless others.


Lord has given us gifts to build up body,

And time we need to do so.

He has given us to local body

For that reason.

If don’t use them to build up others –

We’re taking away what Lord given for a blessing.



Need to remember, we are merely stewards

Over what we have:

Our possessions don’t belong to us,

Our time, talents, gifts don’t belong to us,

We don’t belong to us –

We and all have belong to the Lord.

He has given us these things

To provide for us and ours.

But He also wants us to use them

For Him in other ways.
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This command calls us to be faithful to that stewardship

Knowing we will have to give an account.


There is one other thing

Has entrusted to you

That He wants you to be faithful

In giving away: Gospel.

It is the greatest treasure one can possess,

One that’s been given to you,

And something that can be given away freely.

Don’t hold onto that either,

But give it to as many as you can.


2. But let’s close with this:

Not only is giving right thing to do,

It’s way to greater blessing –

Jesus says, “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35).


At Christmas, especially as children,

Always enjoyed being on the receiving end.

As got older, began to enjoy giving more,

And found greater blessing in making others happy.


But that’s not necessarily kind of giving

The Lord is talking about here.
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Really has to do with

What position you’d rather be in:

Would you rather be in need,

Or be someone who can meet someone else’s need?

John Gill explains in his commentary, “It [i.e., to give rather than receive] is more
comfortable, honourable, pleasant, and profitable: 1) the giver is in a more
comfortable situation, having an abundance, at least a sufficiency, and
something to spare; whereas the receiver is often in want and distress, and so
uncomfortable: 2) it is an honour to give; an honour is reflected upon the giver,
both by the receiver, and others; when to receive is an instance of meanness, and
carries in it, among men, some degree of dishonour: (3) it is a pleasure to a
liberal man to distribute to the necessities of others; and it cannot be [a pleasure
for a man] to be in such circumstances, as make it necessary for him to receive
from others, and be dependent on them; 4) and great are the advantages and
profit which a cheerful giver reaps, both in this world, and that to come.
Wherefore the conclusion which the apostle would have drawn from hence is,
that it is much more [blessed] for a man to work with his own hands, and
support himself, and assist others, than to receive at the hands of others.”


Let’s also not forget,

That giving should be,

As much as possible, in secret.

And the Lord who sees in secret

Will openly reward (Matt. 6:4).


How can you be the one blessed?

Seek, by God’s grace

To be on giving end.

The more you’re faithful to give

The more you’ll receive from Him,

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So the more you’ll have to give.


Do you have to have a lot to give?

No. The widow had only one cent

But gave more than everyone else combined (Mark 12:42-44).


Sometimes the struggle we experience

With our resources –

Gifts, talents, time, even finances –

Might be because

We’re not faithful in our giving.


Scripture very clear

The more faithful we are

In using what the Lord gives us,

The more the Lord will entrust to us.

Here’s one example of this principle

Applied to giving to the Lord’s work, “‘Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing
Me! But you say, “How have we robbed You?” In tithes and offerings. You
are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing Me, the whole nation of you! Bring
the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and
test Me now in this,’ says the LORD of hosts, ‘if I will not open for you the
windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows’” (Mal.
3:8-10).

Here’s another applied to giving to the poor, “One who is gracious to a poor man
lends to the LORD, and He will repay him for his good deed” (Prov. 19:17).

And still another with regard to the poor, “But when you give to the poor, do not let
your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving will be in
secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you” (Matt.
6:3-4).
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Do you want more,

That you might do more?

Then do more with what you have –

Love the Lord and others more in this way –

And the Lord will give you more.


Not only will you experience more blessing

Being on the giving end,

Not only will you have more

Because of His blessing,

But you will have more treasure in heaven (Matt. 6:20).

And in giving, you’ll reflect more God’s character.

Jesus said, “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even
sinners love those who love them. If you do good to those who do good to you,
what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. If you lend to those
from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend
to sinners in order to receive back the same amount. But love your enemies, and
do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great,
and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and
evil men. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful” (Luke 6:32-36).

Amen.

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