Standing in your place
Apr 16, 2017
The Resurrection was required for eternal life
Apr 16, 2017
The greatest victory in life is the victory over self
I preached this message last Sunday and write it now for those who wish to read rather than listen online.
This time of year, even the tightwads become givers and the stiff and unfriendly become cheerful well-wishers. There is no question that the greatest gift that was ever given was given by the Gift Giver, God. 2 Cor. 9:15 states, “Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable Gift.” Please read Romans 5:15-18 and notice three times the words “The free Gift” is used referring to Christ Jesus. James 1:17 states “Every Good and every perfect Gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father…” Psalm 116:12 asks, “What shall I render unto the LORD for all His benefits toward me?” That is a good question! What are you and I going to give God? The sad fact is that many people give little thought to God’s Gift to mankind and what we should give to Him for all His benefits to us.
I want to share just two simple thoughts concerning giving gifts to The Gift Giver.
- Please read 2 Cor. 8:1-5 and notice verse 5, which states “…but first gave their own selves to the Lord.” Question: Have you given yourself to the Lord? This is the starting point in giving to God. Notice the word “first.” The reason this is important is because God can receive nothing else from us until He has received us through repentance and faith. Our money does not matter unless we have first given ourselves unto the Lord. Our good works do not matter unless we have first given ourselves to the Lord. Our praise and worship is empty unless we have first given ourselves to the Lord. Have you had a time in your life when you personally gave yourself to the Lord as a sinner in need of the Saviour? Read Rom. 15:4-7 and notice vs. 7. Which states, “as Christ also received us…” If you will give yourself to Him in repentance and faith, believing the Gospel, He will receive you and save you. Please read 2 Cor. 6:17-18
- Please read Romans 12:1-2. After we have given ourselves to the Lord in repentance and faith, we are to give ourselves to Him for service. Notice “acceptable to God” and “reasonable service.” This is simply living a life of faithfulness to God, including prayer, worship, Church attendance, testimony and witness. It is unreasonable to accept the gift of God for salvation and then not give the gift of your life back to God for His glory.
Dear reader. There are only two things the Gift Giver wants from us: 1. Our soul to save, and 2. Our life to serve. Have you given to the Gift Giver? He will receive you if you will give yourself to Him for salvation and then for service. God bless you in the coming year is my prayer.
Part 2 added from a message preached 12-19-12 “Making sure your gift prospers.”
Prov. 17:8 “A gift is as a precious stone in the eyes of him that hath it: whithersoever it turneth, it prospereth.”
Prov. 18:16 “A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.”
Please read Romans 1:8-12 and notice verse 11 “For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;” This is speaking of a Spiritual endowment.
Rom. 11:29 “For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.” Again, this is talking about a Spiritual endowment. Please read Romans 12:4-9 and notice “Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;” 1 Cor. 12:1-8 should be read and notice especially verse 7 “But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.”
Notice also Eph. 4:8; James 1:17 and 1 Pet. 4:7-11 deal with the same subject.
Matthew 25 is a good illustration of the purpose of God in giving gifts to His people. One received 5 talents; one received 2 and one received 1 talent. The master called His servants and “delivered unto them His goods.” Later He came back to check on their profit. The one with five doubled as well as the one with two, however, the receiver of the one hid his and was condemned by his Lord.
What are you doing with what God has delivered unto you? Have you hid your gift? Some people are sitting on their God-given gifts and some are misusing them.
What are you doing with the “Spiritual Endowments” that God has given you????
- First, We have to identify our God-given gifts.
As I have shown in the verses above, our gifts are given to us to “profit withal”…indicating we obviously must know them. Influence, persuasion, music, teaching, labor skills, administration skills, are only a few of the gifts God gives man.
- Then our gifts have to be dedicated to God in order to be valuable,
because whatever we are not willing to dedicate to Him will lose it’s value. All of the gifts of God can be misused. 2 Cor. 3:5-6
- We have to be watchful to protect our gifts from perversion, because Satan will attempt to pervert our use of them.
Paul feared being put on the shelf and not being able to be a blessing to the cause of Christ! 1 Cor. 15:9-10 This may sound like a New Year message, but it is simply a message asking “What are you giving God that will prosper His Gospel?”