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The Order Of Service

2Co 8:3-5, 3 For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, 4 begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints— 5 and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us.

The grace of God warmed their hearts to give according to their means and beyond. I do not believe “beyond their means” meant getting into debt (like credit card in our day) to give. I believe it meant that their hearts were larger than their purses. They gave what they had with a merry heart and they would have readily done more in the event that they had the capacity. The Macedonians foundation was established in evident devotion and this was the incredible recognition of it.

They performed this good work by first giving themselves to the Lord, and then they gave unto others their contributions by the will of God (2Co 8:5). The second we offer ourselves to the Lord, and what we have, we demonstrate that our treasures are stored in heaven and not on things here, below, that perish. We hold tightly to heavenly treasures and loosely to the earthly. Generosity is not a waste neither is it a loss. To cite John Piper, “What will make Jesus more valuable is when because of how precious He is to us that we sacrifice to the good of others so that it looks to them like we have a treasure somewhere else than in the stuff”. To be continued…

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