God is the source of all blessings, temporal and spiritual; all that we have and are we owe to Him. Christians have a spiritual debtorship to the whole world, a holy trusteeship in the gospel, and a binding stewardship in their possessions. They are therefore under obligation to serve Him with their time, talents, and material possessions; and should recognize all these as entrusted to them to use for the glory of God and for helping others. According to the Scriptures, Christians should contribute of their means cheerfully, regularly, systematically, proportionately, and liberally for the advancement of the Redeemer’s cause on earth.
Genesis 14:20; Leviticus 27:30-32; Deuteronomy 8:18; Malachi 3:8-12; Matthew 6:1-4,19-21; 19:21; 23:23; 25:14-29; Luke 12:16-21,42; 16:1-13; Acts 2:44-47; 5:1-11; 17:24-25; 20:35; Romans 6:6-22; 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 4:1-2; 6:19-20; 12; 16:1-4; 2 Corinthians 8-9; 12:15; Philippians 4:10-19; 1 Peter 1:18-19.
In the story of the Bible, God is depicted as a generous host who provides for the needs of his guests. However, humans live from a mindset of scarcity and hoard God’s many gifts. In this video, we explore God’s plan for overcoming our selfishness by giving the ultimate gift of himself in the person of Jesus.Generosity, The Bible Project
Giving is the overflow of joy in God that gladly and lovingly meets the need of another person.
Giving within the church is central to the character of the people of God because of all that God has given to us. When Paul exhorts the Corinthians to give, he reminds them, “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich” (2 Cor 8:9). Jesus humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death on a cross (Phil 2:8), and while Christians cannot give another person such a gift of atoning sacrifice, his example is called upon by Paul to bring about generosity in the hearts of the Corinthians. God initiated his love toward us in Christ, and we love one another generously because he first loved us (1 John 4:7–12). Christian giving, based on the work of Christ, is done in joy. We are called upon as Christians to rejoice in the Lord always (Phil 4:4), and this includes our giving. We are to overflow with joy in God in a way that meets the needs of others (2 Cor 8:17). God loves a cheerful giver, not one who gives under compulsion or reluctantly (2 Cor 9:7). As we know God and experience his grace more fully, generosity expands toward those in need with a glad heart.
This also implies that we are embracing the call to love as God loves us in Christ and that we are aware of the needs around us. Jesus was constantly moved with compassion toward people in his incarnation (Matt 9:36; 11:28–30; 15:32), noticing and ministering to the needs of others, always pointing them to the truth that would set them free. Christians likewise are called to count others as more significant than themselves and consider other people’s interests as more important than their own (Phil 2:3–4).
Jeremy Kimble, “Giving in the Life of the Church,” in Lexham Survey of Theology, ed. Mark Ward et al. (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2018).