Love Others Through Our Generosity

Series: Come Live The Church's Vision

Love Others Through Our Generosity

June 14, 2020 | John Ewart

Passage: Matthew

6.14.20 Come Live the Church’s Vision: Love Others through Our Generosity


As I shared last week, it is very important in the midst of the earthly storms and confusion in which we find ourselves, to be reminded of why we are and who we are supposed to be.

From COVID 19 pandemic issues of health and separation to contextual issues such as racism and social justice, how do we define what is important and not important?

Why do we value what we value?

What do we believe because of that understood value? How do I think and live based upon that?


Remember, the understood value of something is often based upon our experience and worldview.

Kingdom people live in two worlds.

We will be torn and stretched between the two.

What will we value?

How generous will we be in extending and investing in that which we value?


From our Discipleship Goal Guide

As imperfect people, saved by grace and rooted in Christ, we seek to imitate Jesus by loving God and loving others. We believe every member is equipped by the Holy Spirit to grow in the following core competencies, which define who we are and set the agenda for our ministry focus:

Love Others Through Our Generosity

We will love others and follow the example of Christ by joyfully denying self, with open hands putting others’ needs ahead of our own.

  • Identify as a cheerful steward, and never an owner, of my time, talent and treasure.
  • Understand that biblically, giving is both a command and a privilege, and should be done joyfully.
  • Develop a regular habit of sacrificially giving through my church in order to advance God’s kingdom agenda.


We must follow the example of Jesus who gave all. 

We must give all to and for Him.

I am afraid many have made a tragic mistake.

Some have come to believe in great error that stewardship is simply fundraising.

That it is just about giving or getting money.

That is not biblically true.

Biblical stewardship is the committed management of all God has given to us out of our love for Him in order to bring Him glory.

A committed management and generous giving of all we have for Him.

Now, immediately some folks are tuning out because they think this is just some sermon about money and right now with all that is going on, this is not the best time for a sermon about money.

I mean, Dr. Ewart, a lot of folks have lost their jobs or may still lose their jobs.

Businesses are failing or barely making it.

Earthly investments are failing.

Remember, you told us one of the reasons people in our communities give as to why they do not go to church is because they believe all the church cares about is getting their money.

In fact, one of the reasons people said they would leave the church is because all they care about is my money.

So, you are going to preach about this?

Now hang in there!

This is not some sermon about getting your money.

I need to talk about the committed management of all God has given to us out of our love for Him in order to bring Him glory.

What is the value of your earthly life?

Of every second, minute, hour and day?

Of your highest priorities?

Of how you invest your greatest energy and focus?


If you can hold what you value most in your pocket, then you are missing something.

Let me ask you: How generous are you with your time in God’s Word? Your prayers? Your worship? Your evangelism? Your church relationships? Your ministry? Your forgiveness?

In loving God and loving others?


Are you, from our Discipleship Goal Guide

Loving others and following the example of Christ by joyfully denying self, with open hands putting others’ needs ahead of our own?

Remember there is a huge difference between ownership and stewardship.


Do you from our Discipleship Goal Guide

Identify as a cheerful steward, and never an owner, of your time, talent and treasure?


What I want to share about is your total life.

Your contentment, satisfaction, purpose, and peace.

The proper, generous use of this gift called life that we have been given.

We did not earn it. You do not own it. He does.

Sound like a sermon about money yet?


But if I am sharing about all of life, should it not also include that treasure part too?

People care a lot about money.

They get angry about it, they prioritize their entire lives around it, even commit crimes for it, and behave badly because of their love of it.

But others give generously and sacrificially and invest wisely and recognize it is a steward’s tool of blessing and worship.

So, it would be incomplete not to say something about it, even in times like this.

Perhaps especially because of times like this.

Jesus certainly did and He was often speaking to people who had little to nothing.

16 of the 38 parables were concerned with how to handle money and possessions.

There are 27 references to the stewardship of possessions in His Sermon on the Mount in Matt 5, 6, 7. In fact, it speaks more about this than virtually any other subject.

In the Gospels, an amazing 1 out of 10 verses (288 in all) deal directly with the subject of money.

The Bible offers 500 verses on prayer, less than 500 verses on faith, but more than 2,000 verses on money and possessions.

And yet some preachers seem afraid to talk about it.

They are not preaching the whole counsel of God.

And I must.

God knew this could be a big issue for us.

So, let’s find the proper biblical balance even in, especially in, the midst of the current historical and personal context in which we find ourselves.

A right attitude toward life, its value, and generous use is a mark of maturity.

Adjectives like abundant, enthusiastic and generous, should characterize all of life and all God provides us. Not just money!

Remember the 3 D’s: We must be completely devoted to prayer, thoroughly defined by God’s Word, and totally dependent upon the Holy Spirit.

Listen to key principles of this generous stewardship of life Jesus preached in the Sermon on the Mount:


Matthew 5:38-41 “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. 40 If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, let him have your cloak also. 41 And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two.


  1. The Principle of Extravagant Intention

Kingdom citizens are those who always intend to give more of themselves than is required.

Roman law required any citizen of a captured country to carry a Roman’s soldier’s equipment 1 mile whenever requested.

They were required to stop whatever they were doing and go the 1 mile.

They most likely counted the exact minimum numbers of steps and couldn’t wait to drop the pack at the 1-mile mark and not one step further.

Jesus says, “Just keep on walking”.

How many have been saved or blessed because some Christian has gone the extra or second mile?

Our Lord came to fulfill the law.

His intention was never to dumb down the requirements of the law.

The Old Testament had very specific laws clearly defining what to do or give, when, and how.

But the New Testament is based on something else. Something more generous…on grace.

New Testament stewardship does not stop with the minimum.

It might begin with the minimum but then goes beyond.

We generously manage the time, talents and treasure entrusted to us by our Lord as an act of worship.

Are you generous in your intentions?

Do you have the mindset that you will give all you can possibly give of all you possibly possess whenever you possibly can?

Is this maximum intention your beginning point?

Not all can give the same. Never could.


Mark 12:41-44 Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. 42 Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites, which make a quadrans. 43 So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; 44 for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.”


From our Discipleship Goal Guide,

We will love others and follow the example of Christ by joyfully denying self, with open hands putting others’ needs ahead of our own. Develop a regular habit of sacrificially giving through my church in order to advance God’s kingdom agenda.


Don’t just think about money with these goals.

Think about your intentions, that which you  value most, what is most important to you.

Do you intend to give all of who you are in a generous and extravagant way because that is what Jesus taught us to do and modeled for us?

Or is your first thought how can I hold back and keep for myself what I think is mine?

Let me add another subtle layer to this.

Jesus continues later in the sermon…


Matthew 6:1-4 Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven. Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.


  1. The Principle of Extraordinary Integrity

 “Take heed” or “Beware” = apply the mind.

Charles Spurgeon – A fool may make money, but it needs a wise man to spend it.

Jesus did not simply say don’t give to the poor before men.

It’s virtually impossible, practically, to give without some men knowing about it.

Some pass or hold the plate for example.

Some count the offering.

Some fill out the deposit slip.

It’s not the act of giving before men Jesus forbids.

It’s doing it IN order to be seen by men.

The issue is not the act, it is the motive behind the act that concerns our Lord.

It’s your integrity.

Don’t blow your own trumpet.

In giving we receive but giving in order to receive is not right.

Kind of defies the prosperity gospel doesn’t it?

We must maintain our integrity in our generosity.

Why do you give? Any and all of yourself?

It should be a proactive act of worship to God and not an act of selfish desire for yourself.

 The generous giving of sacrifice or offerings was not simply a part of the law.

It existed before the law in Genesis.

It was an act of worship and acknowledgement of God’s Lordship.

It was a reminder of to whom the whole belonged.

Therefore, giving the first fruits back as an offering was an act of recognition and acknowledgement.


The New Testament church would have thought how little 10% might be at times for example!

Remember our study in Acts.

They gave all to meet real need and bring God glory.

Do the same. But not just with your money!

Generously engage in discipleship, in life groups, to understand your spiritual giftedness, to volunteer to serve, to love God and love others.

Listen to the Lord…


Matthew 6:19-21 Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.


III. The Principle of Eternal Investment  

Written in the present tense = keep on.

Treasures on earth are insecure and will decay.

“Do not lay up” = to amass, heap together.

“Break in” = dig through = mud home.

The Christian message is a gospel of hope, not only for now but for tomorrow, for eternity.

This is the basis of Christ-like stewardship, our committed management of all God gives us.

We sacrificially give now for eternity: time, talent, and treasures.

What is your heart’s greatest treasure?

What is your greatest understood value?

Is it earthly or eternal?

Jesus commands His followers to not accumulate possessions they do not use for His Kingdom’s work.


Luke 12:15  And He said to them, “Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses.


This does not mean it is wrong to be wealthy. It is simply asking why are you wealthy and what do you plan to do with that wealth?

Wealth in money, time, giftedness, experience, wisdom, abilities, and so forth.

Don’t be a hoarder.


The danger of focusing simply on earthly prosperity is clear: it binds us to the world.

Pursuing earthly prosperity first leads us to think we must find our place in the world, when the reality is, the world simply finds its place in us.


I Timothy 6:6-10 Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.


Jesus died to live again, and we die to self to live through and for Him.

We have been bought with a price, redeemed.

Generous living comes by dying, keeping comes from giving, gaining by losing.

We must invest generously in those things we can take with us beyond the grave with our time, talents and treasures.


From our Discipleship Goal Guide  

Understand that biblically, giving is both a command and a privilege, and should be done joyfully.

Develop a regular habit of sacrificially giving through my church in order to advance God’s kingdom agenda.


When we give, we are reminded of the opportunity for eternal investments; time, talents or treasure.

This is one reason why the giving of our financial offerings is a prominent and consistent part of our worship service.

It is not just because there are salaries, bills, and ministry for which to pay although there are.

To be frank about it for a moment to members, our current context affects how church money should be spent and great wisdom is being applied to that.

And now is the time to truly support the people and ministries you have voted as a congregation to support.

It is time to catch up on our budget so we can maintain the resources and people we need, to minister to this world that is hurting around us.  

Rid your life of anything that hinders your ability to invest in eternal things whether it’s your money or your time or your giftedness, or your best energy, or your focused love.


Finally, Jesus says…


Matthew 6:21-33 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.22 “The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness! 24 “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon. 25 “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? 26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? 28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; 29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.


  1. The Principle of Enormous Indebtedness

Our generosity is a matter of proper authority.

You only have two options according to Jesus.

It is often difficult for people to get this.

We must recognize God’s ownership of all things and our debt to Him.

Many believe their stuff and time belongs to them.

Nothing belongs to you.

You are a steward of what God owns.

He is the Lord.


From our Discipleship Goal Guide,

Identify as a cheerful steward, and never an owner, of your time, talent and treasure.


All of your actions and attitudes must be framed with this biblical worldview.

You could die today. Then what?


We must not make our money, our possessions, our time, our energy…our God.

Master = one to whom is required total allegiance.

“Mammon” – all of a person’s material resources.

We must choose between competing loyalties.


Matthew 6:33  But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.


And you MUST seek!

This is not automatic.

Seek first the kingdom of God and make its success the generous priority of your life.


The great paradox is to give all generosity with God’s kingdom as your highest priority and you will gain all.

During these difficult days, trust God day by day.


Matthew 6:11 Give us this day our daily bread.


Acknowledge the bread giver, His grace, and your faith in Him as the source of all things.

Nothing puts us in a position to trust Him like acknowledging every day that even the very basics of life are from Him.

Our breath, our heartbeat, every second, every ability, every dollar, every slice of bread.

No act more greatly acknowledges His ownership of all things than the daily giving of ourselves.  

The sheer consistency and repetition, the habitual, generous daily process is a constant reminder of his ownership and an encouragement to trust Him.

Biblical, generous stewardship begins by yielding your entire life to Him. That is your first offering.


Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.


From around AD 52-57 Paul spent time and energy organizing a collection among the Gentile churches for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem.

They were being persecuted and ostracized.

They were going through a famine.

The Jews in Palestine were subjected to twofold taxation.

They were hungry, hurting, having a hard time.

You know anyone like that?

In encouraging the Corinthians to give, Paul shares the good example of the Macedonians.

He commended them for giving to meet other’s needs though they were not wealthy themselves.

Grace not wealth, enables a person to give generously.

Paul then turns to the example of Christ.


II Corinthians 8:9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.


Jesus was the supreme example of one who showed eagerness and generosity as a demonstration of love.

Out of His riches, He gave grace.

Will you love God generously?

Will you love others with a generous love?

Will you forgive generously?

Will you pray, worship, share the Gospel, minister…generously?

Will you give generously?


From our Discipleship Goal Guide: Love Others Through Our Generosity

We will love others and follow the example of Christ by joyfully denying self, with open hands putting others’ needs ahead of our own.

  • Identify as a cheerful steward, and never an owner, of my time, talent and treasure.
  • Understand that biblically, giving is both a command and a privilege, and should be done joyfully.
  • Develop a regular habit of sacrificially giving through my church in order to advance God’s kingdom agenda.


For what are you saving?


Philippians 3:7-8 But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ.

Series Information

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