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Discovery Magazine 12/1/2009

The Generous Church

by  AP Staff

Has anyone ever gone out of his or her way to bake you cookies, wash your clothes, or do you a huge favor when you had a need? If someone has, didn’t that feel great?! Although those friendly people did not have to do those nice things for you, the church has been given specific charitable duties. The first-century church was a great example of generosity. Luke wrote: “All who believed were together, and had all things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need” (Acts 2:44-45). Faithful Christians showed their love for each other when they sold their possessions and gave the money to those who were in need. By giving material possessions to others, especially our brethren, we can show the same type of self-sacrificial love that Christ showed for us on the cross. A great church is a generous church!

The early church was described as a great people. They “were of one heart and one soul…had all things in common…and great grace was upon them all” (Acts 4:32-33). Not all people in the church are as generous, kind, and loving as was the early church. Church members who are materialistic are those who are too concerned with wealth and possessions. They do not fully understand what God has given to them. A charitable, godly church not only gives things to needy people, but also cares for them. That is how we should live our lives.

Worldly people lack spirituality, and are devoted to material possessions. Godly people are to focus on spiritual things, and should be devoted to heavenly treasures. Paul wrote: “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (Romans 12:2). Christians should be generous, kind, compassionate, charitable, and loving.

A generous church is made up of generous individuals. The Bible tells us to be generous in all that we have, whether it is our riches, time, or love. Just as you enjoy others doing nice things for you, you should also do good things for others. Jesus set the perfect example of generosity by dying on the cross for our sins. One way we can express our gratitude for His generosity is to be generous to others, “especially those of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10).

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