Stewardship - Generous Giving
Stewardship - Generous Giving
(From 11/12/17 sermon - Daniel McIntosh)
● Middle school gathering - Nov 15 at Pechmann home
● Seating on Sunday - We encourage you to arrive early on Sundays and try to sit up front if you can.
See if there is anyone who wants to share a short testimony, or if there are there specific praise updates or victories that someone might want to share.
III. READ TOGETHER
Mark 12:41-44 41 And he sat down opposite the treasury and watched the people putting money into the offering box. Many rich people put in large sums. 42 And a poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which make a penny. 43 And he called his disciples to him and said to them, “Truly, I say to you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the offering box. 44 For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.”
*Be sure to take time to slowly walk through this passage, preferably having a Bible teacher provide context and overview.
Q - Sermon takeaways from those who were in attendance? (Spend time receiving reflections from those who were in the service.)
Daniel introduced us to our new sermon series on Christian Stewardship & Generous Giving this past Sunday. We were reminded that the first schism recorded in the Bible started because the two brothers, Cain and Abel were supposed to bring their best as an offering to the Lord, but Cain chose to hold onto his best instead of releasing it to the Lord, and the Lord did not accept his offering. We were also reminded that 15% of Jesus’ teachings were about money and/or stewardship. Therefore, it must be an important topic. Notice in the parable that the widow, although poor, gave everything that she had as an offering.
Q - When we talk about possessions and stewardship we often refer to open-handedness . a) What exactly does it mean to hold onto our money and possessions with open hands? b) What does/should that look like in practical terms? c) Why is it such a difficult concept to apply in our lives? Discuss.
Daniel gave a great illustration this morning of how selfishness is truly passed on to our kids through the sin genes of Adam and Eve and the fact that we can see it when our little ones fight with one another over a toy while crying aloud “Mine!” He was also quick to point out there is nothing wrong with ownership in general. The Lord does give us things to enjoy and to use on this earth, and in our world’s system it is good to establish ownership boundaries. For example, if you pay off your car then having a title in your name is indeed a good thing and is opposed to socialist philosophies regarding possessions. However, even though the deed has our name written on it, as Christians we understand, or we should understand, that the Lord’s name is above ours because “grace is the channel through which all of God’s blessings flow” and our possessions are simply an extension of His grace...the things are ultimately His, and we are simply serving as stewards of them. Go back and re-read the Parable of the Widow’s Offering. Q1 - In order for the widow to be so generous with her giving, what does she believe that you and I may not...or that we often forget?
Q2 - Ultimately, what are the results of her belief...or of a belief system such as hers?
Job 41:11 reads, “ Who has first given to me, that I should repay him? Whatever is under the whole heaven is mine.”
Q - What are the implications of this verse...in general? What are the implications of this verse...to you personally?
V. FURTHER APPLICATION
Spend time this week asking “What am I holding onto with a closed fist that I need to hold onto with open hands?” and “How can I better steward what God has entrusted to me?”.
I am holding onto with an open hand recognizing that these truly belong to Him.
I am holding onto with a closed fist not recognizing that He is the owner and I am but a steward.
VI. BE ON_MISSION
If you have never given an offering to RSC, we encourage you to do so. If you give but only sporadically, we encourage for you to become a regular giver. If you give regularly, we encourage you to pray about giving even more sacrificially. The point is that we simply want the body of believers who make up Red Stone Church to order their lives in such a way that they worship the Lord fully and are free from any bondage that the world might give. We want to encourage faith-driven worshipful Christian stewardship.
VII. LOOKING AHEAD
Advent and Christmas are just around the corner, so be thinking about how to ensure that your heart and the hearts of family members are focused on the grandeur of Christ’s coming during this Christmas season.