The doctrine of glorifying God, Part 12, John 15:8.
length: 1:04:05 - taught on Feb, 10 2012
Title: The doctrine of glorifying God, Part 12, John 15:8.
j. Giving with right motivation glorifies God, 2 Co 9:13.
The Corinthians had promised a gift to Paul’s ministry in Macedonia a year prior, but then they thought better of it, and the gift didn’t arrive. The Corinthians out of fellowship thought of the gift grudgingly. Paul had already boasted about the graciousness of the Corinthians so in order to save them the embarrassment he writes to them the law of giving.
No one can get around the Law of Giving. All of us and in every dispensation, reap what we sow.
The reason why giving is a law is that it is a part of the essence of God. God is love and love motivates Him to give. But this law cannot include the human type of love since all of God’s essence is governed by Justice. Human love is selfish and self motivated, but under God’s Justice love must follow rules of divine perfection.
Any giving by the believer must be motivated by divine agape love and not human love, therefore the right attitude in giving can only exist by means of doctrine and the Spirit.
Since divine love can only exist within us by means of the word and the Spirit then giving essentially must follow the same pattern, as Paul communicates by means of the Spirit in this passage.
2 Cor 9:5 So I thought it necessary to urge the brethren that they would go on ahead to you and arrange beforehand your previously promised bountiful gift, that the same might be ready as a bountiful gift, and not affected by covetousness.
2 Cor 9:6 Now this I say, he who sows sparingly shall also reap sparingly; and he who sows bountifully shall also reap bountifully.
The Law of Giving applies to all dispensations.
There is one who scatters, yet increases all the more,
And there is one who withholds what is justly due, but it results only in want. The generous man will be prosperous,
And he who waters will himself be watered.
2 Cor 9:7 Let each one do just as he has purposed in his heart [giving is based on a system of thinking from grace and therefore it is based in doctrine]; not grudgingly or under compulsion [no pressure, no gimmicks, and no compulsion]; for God loves a cheerful giver.
2 Cor 9:8 And God is able [powerful] to make all grace abound to you, that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed [giving and all other functions that glorify God];
2 Cor 9:9 as it is written [PSA 112:9],
"He scattered abroad [in eterity past], he gave [in time] to the poor [all of us - the helpless],
His righteousness abides forever."
2 Cor 9:10 Now He who supplies [epichoregeo] seed to the sower and bread for food [logistical grace], will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness;
God provides the money to give, but He also provides the doctrinal teaching that produces a gracious attitude as well as faith in the Law of Giving.
The greatest example of this is the widow’s 2 copper coins. Another example is from the churches in Macedonia [Philippi, Thessalonica, and Berea].
2 Cor 8:1 Now, brethren, we wish to make known to you the grace of God which has been given in the churches of Macedonia,
2 Cor 8:2 that in a great ordeal of affliction their abundance of joy and their deep poverty overflowed in the wealth of their liberality.
2 Cor 8:3 For I testify that according to their ability, and beyond their ability they gave of their own accord,
2 Cor 8:4 begging us with much entreaty for the favor of participation in the support of the saints,
2 Cor 8:5 and this, not as we had expected, but they first gave themselves to the Lord and to us by the will of God.
2 Cor 9:11 you will be enriched [made rich] in everything for all liberality [generosity of soul], which through us is producing thanksgiving to God.
2 Cor 9:12 For the ministry of this service is not only fully supplying the needs of the saints [the poor in Jerusalem], but is also overflowing through many thanksgivings to God [attitude of gratitude].
2 Cor 9:13 Because of the proof given by this ministry they will glorify God for your obedience to your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for the liberality of your contribution to them and to all,
The point needs to be made that the Jews and Greeks didn’t like each other. We seem to have an easier time giving to those that we like, but personal issues should never be involved in giving, but only impersonal unconditional love.
Giving becomes a test when you do not like the object of your gift. The right attitude in giving brings glory to God.
Receiving in grace can also be a test. The Jews were raised to hate the goyimGentiles, and so through doctrine they had to overcome their personal prejudice. But Paul assures them that the Corinthians gave by grace and that they loved doctrine as much as the Jewish believers in Jerusalem.
This caused the Jewish believers to give glory to God.
2 Cor 9:14 while they also, by prayer on your behalf, yearn for you because of the surpassing grace of God in you.
2 Cor 9:15 Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!
Paul ends the passage as it should be with God’s gift. The Lord Jesus Christ was given graciously with no strings attached and so shall we receive and give.
He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?
Paul made this point to the Corinthians.
2 Cor 8:9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich.
2 Cor 8:10 And I give my opinion in this matter, for this is to your advantage, who were the first to begin a year ago not only to do this, but also to desire to do it.
2 Cor 8:11 But now finish doing it also; that just as there was the readiness to desire it, so there may be also the completion of it by your ability.
The Corinthians instinctively didn’t like the Jews and vice versa. However, the Jews in Jerusalem gave glory to God because they realized that the Corinthians didn’t give as a burden or grudgingly, but by means of grace.
The church in Jerusalem was not just out to get stuff nor were they looking for free stuff. They had a legitimate need because of the persecution they were under as Jews who were Christians.
Giving graciously has its greatest benefit to the giver, above the one who receives.
Phil 4:10 But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity.
Phil 4:11 Not that I speak from want; for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.
Phil 4:12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.
Phil 4:13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
Phil 4:14 Nevertheless, you have done well to share with me in my affliction.
Phil 4:15 And you yourselves also know, Philippians, that at the first preaching of the gospel, after I departed from Macedonia, no church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving but you alone;
Phil 4:16 for even in Thessalonica you sent a gift more than once for my needs.
Phil 4:17 Not that I seek the gift itself, but I seek for the profit which increases to your account.
Phil 4:18 But I have received everything in full, and have an abundance; I am amply supplied, having received from Epaphroditus what you have sent, a fragrant aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well-pleasing to God.
Phil 4:19 And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
Phil 4:20 Now to our God and Father be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
Point 3: The person and work of God brings glory to Himself.
a. God alone is worthy of glorification and this has been and will always be true whether there are creatures to acknowledge it or not, EPH 1:3.
EPH 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,
“blessed” - euvlogeto,j [eulogetos] = worthy of praise and glorification.
I am the Lord , and there is no other;
Besides Me there is no God.
I will gird you [Cyrus, king of Persia], though you have not known Me;
"Remember the former things long past,
For I am God, and there is no other;
I am God, and there is no one like Me,
'See now that I, I am He,
And there is no god besides Me;
It is I who put to death and give life.
I have wounded, and it is I who heal;
And there is no one who can deliver from My hand.
"Cease striving and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth."
1 Chron 29:11
Thine, O Lord , is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, indeed everything that is in the heavens and the earth; Thine is the dominion, O Lord , and Thou dost exalt Thyself as head over all.
1 Chron 29:12
Both riches and honor come from Thee, and Thou dost rule over all, and in Thy hand is power and might; and it lies in Thy hand to make great, and to strengthen everyone.
"And I shall magnify Myself, sanctify Myself, and make Myself known in the sight of many nations; and they will know that I am the Lord ."'
Often man takes the best part of himself and magnifies this to the nth degree and calls that God, when in fact this comes far short of the mark. God says that there is no one like Him.
This error makes for man to then turn around and think that same self-improvement that they think is the essence of God is actually God’s goal for them. This also falls very far from the mark.
This is made clearer in heaven, when after the Rapture of the Church, but before the end of the Tribulation, the winner believers of the Church-age described as the 24 elders sing to their King and Lord:
"Worthy art Thou, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for Thou didst create all things, and because of Thy will they existed, and were created."
The word “worthy” is the Greek a]xioj [axios] and it originally meant weight as in the right weight to balance scales. So one could imagine God’s person and work on one side of the scale and worthiness or glorification on the other side.
Whether there are creatures to acknowledge it or not there is a glory on the scale that must perfectly balance His essence on the other side.
This word is also applied to the believer in the Church in the balance of what he has been elected to in Christ.
Election, unique to the Church, is God’s desire for every believer which is to receive His highest and best, which has been predestined for us as the unfathomable riches of Christ.
EPH 4:1 I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, entreat you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called,
EPH 4:2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing forbearance to one another in love,
EPH 4:3 being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
A believer living in the cosmic system in reversionism is completely out of balance which results in confusion and stress, which is unworthy of our so great election.
This believer must resort to defense mechanisms in an effort to correct his instability, but it is like trying to balance a baseball bat on your chin where there is adjustment after adjustment which only results in more stress and confusion and instability. Being born again to a new life, a new hope, and new union makes the kosmos disagreeable to what you are.
We must also live in balance. That balance consists of election on one side of the scales and God being glorified on the other side as the only One worthy.
Residing in the plan of God and abiding in Christ is the only way to gain stability on the firm foundation of Christ, His word, and His Holy Spirit that He sent to us as Helper so that we grow to maturity and glorify God by receiving His highest and best. This is the only balance or stability for the believer.