What The Bible Says Good Samaritan's Penny Pulpit by Pastor Ed Rice
The Biblical Plan for Supporting Missionaries Jesus gave the church a very clear commandâ€”evangelize the world. But each church cannot do this alone. The only way we can reach the world before the â€œnight cometh when no man can workâ€ is to support the work of pioneering missionaries.There are different ways churches have supported missionaries. Some give because of an emotional appeal. Others give as part of their budgets. But one of the most effective, biblical means to support missions is through a method called faith missions giving.I first learned about faith missions giving while preaching in a missionary conference at the Marquette Manor Baptist Church in Chicago. I had been a missionary to Japan for five years and even pastored before going to Japan, but I had never heard of faith missions giving. When I heard the pastor teach on the subject from 2 Corinthians 8 and 9, I was convinced that this was God's plan for financing missions. When I returned to my sending church after the conference, I could not wait to tell my pastor what I had learned. We agreed to present this to our church at the next missions conference. I well remember taking a faith missions card at that conference in 1968 and committing to give $5 per week to missions. We have made over fifty faith missions commitments since then, and Virginia and I increased our giving every year. For many years now, the largest item in our budget has been faith missions giving.God blesses faith. I have preached in over 1,300 missions conferences and taught on faith missions giving in most of those churches. Following are some of the reasons I have told them why they should consider giving by faith missions:A Biblical PlanSecond Corinthians 8 and 9, two entire chapters in the Bible, are given to one subjectâ€”an offering. The offering was not for the church at Corinth. Instead, it was to be given for causes outside the church. When we think of our church financially supporting causes outside our own church, we naturally think of missions. It is an offering that is given through the church but not for the church.God has a perfect plan for supporting missions with the offerings of the members. Paul points out that everyone should give: â€œEvery man as he purposeth in his heart so let him giveâ€ (2 Corinthians 9:7). He makes it clear that this is an offering by grace (2 Corinthians 8:7). It is not something we have to do but something we get to do. He tells the believers that it is good for the giver: â€œThis is expedient for youâ€ (2 Corinthians 8:10). God's provisions are promised to those who give. â€œHe which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifullyâ€ (2 Corinthians 9:6). â€œGod is able to make all grace abound toward youâ€ (2 Corinthians 9:7). These are only a few of the great truths taught about faith missions giving in these two chapters.A Simple PlanWith faith missions giving, once a year every member of the church is challenged to give something above his tithe and regular offering to his church for missions. This can be done during a missions Sunday, or, even better, a missions conference. When these commitments are collected and counted, the missions budget for the new year is established.There is a place on most offering envelopes for missions giving as well as the tithe and other special offerings. Church members can write one check, and the funds are divided among the various projects. A separate account is set up for the missions giving, and from that account the missionaries and other missions projects are supported. For both legal and ethical reasons, it is very important that faith missions is used only for missions projects and missionaries.An Effective PlanChurches are able to give much more by this method than by just taking the missions money from their regular budget. Contrary to the thinking of many, the regular budget does not suffer because of the emphasis on missions giving. In nearly every church I have known, when people get involved in giving by faith to missions, their giving to the general fund of the church increases. Faith missions giving is good for the church; it is good for the giver; and it is good for the cause of worldwide evangelism.Perhaps the greatest benefit of faith missions giving is that it teaches us to trust the Lord. Hebrews 11:6 says, â€œWithout faith it is impossible to please Him.â€ It works in any geographical location, and it works in any economical situation. God's Word says, â€œGive and it shall be given unto youâ€ (Luke 6:38).Years ago I was teaching the leaders in a church about this method of giving to missions. The pastor was preparing the leaders before he presented it to the church. As I was enthusiastically teaching about the value of faith missions giving, a deacon raised his hand and asked, â€œBrother Sisk, do you mean to tell us that we have been giving to missions the wrong way all of these years?â€I thought for a minute and responded, â€œNo, there is no wrong way to give to missions. Emotional giving is not bad. In fact, if you get emotional and give me $10,000 today, both of us will get emotional!â€ Budget giving is not bad. It is more consistent than emotional giving. I believe, however, that the best way to financially support missions is the faith missions method. Please study these two chapters in the Bible, and let God speak to your heart about giving to missions by faith.
God is not a patriotic American.Ã‚Â Before you try to crucify me for making a statement like that, let me explain what I mean.Ã‚Â God has no preferential treatment among nations.Ã‚Â He would be just as pleased to bless Pakistan, South Africa, Ukraine, or America.Ã‚Â It is all the same to Him.Ã‚Â In fact, I believe that Scripture teaches clearly that God would be very happy to bless every nation on earth.Ã‚Â Yet if this is true then why is it that God has blessed America so abundantly as compared to every other nation on earth.Ã‚Â The current international climate seems to indicate that God does favor America...that perhaps God is an American patriot.Ã‚Â Scripture defines two standards by which God judges nations.Ã‚Â Those nations that practice these two principles, he blesses.Ã‚Â Those who ignore these two end up living in the dark ages for thousands of years.Ã‚Â God has blessed America so greatly not because we are the bastion of liberty or because of our national pride, or because he is an American patriot.Ã‚Â He has blessed America only because we have historically followed these two principles.Ã‚Â So what are the principles that either drive nations to great blessing or to their knees?Ã‚Â "Righteousness exalteth a nation..."Ã‚Â ~ Proverbs 14:34 The first principles is our nation's relationship to righteousness.Ã‚Â God has blessed America because our nation has spent great effort promoting righteousness.Ã‚Â Historically many of our nation's laws were grounded in the Word of God.Ã‚Â Historically speaking our nation has been a religious people that promoted doing right.Ã‚Â Now our nation is quickly sliding down the road of embracing immorality and pure ungodliness as right.Ã‚Â On April 27, it became legal to marry men with men and women with women in the state of Iowa.Ã‚Â This only follows the trend of a few other states and helps to pave the way for others to come.Ã‚Â Even our president touts to the world that we are not a Christian nation.Ã‚Â And although you might debate about the idea that we may have once been a Christian nation, I believe that I must agree with our far left liberal president on this issue.Ã‚Â Today we are not a Christian nation.Ã‚Â The truth is that our nation is not characterized by rightousness as it once was.Ã‚Â In the 1800's a man named Alexis de'Toqueville came to America from France to observer and study the American model.Ã‚Â Our fledgling nation was rapidly expanding, our industries were booming, and our economy was strong.Ã‚Â After his study he cam to this conclusion, "Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret and genius of her power.Ã‚Â America is great because America is good.Ã‚Â And if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great."Ã‚Â Would he come to that same conclusion if he were to have made his visit to America today? "And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed." ~ Genesis 12:3 The second principle is our nation's relationship to Israel.Ã‚Â Isn't it Ironic that within a week of American diplomats urging Israel to pull out of Gaza our nation was hit with one of the worst hurricanes our nation has experienced.Ã‚Â No friends, I don't believe it is ironic that Hurricane Katrina followed on the footsteps of these events.Ã‚Â I believe that it was the hand of an almight God who was simply following through on a promise that he made to an old man all those years ago.Ã‚Â If our nation continues to turn her back on the people that God has chosen to safeguard, then soon God will turn his back on our nation.Ã‚Â They are currently passing a bill in Congress that will make it illegal for preachers to proclaim the truth about the wickedness of homosexuality.Ã‚Â Preaching against sin will soon be classified as "hate crimes."Ã‚Â The world looks on us as if we are crazy, divisive, and exentric.Ã‚Â They believe that so much, in fact, that they are willing to pass laws to illegalize our preaching against sin.Ã‚Â They must silence us.Ã‚Â Yet they fail to realize this one thing.Ã‚Â We are not the enemies to the government.Ã‚Â We are not the enemies to this nation.Ã‚Â Their sin is.Ã‚Â The preaching of rightousness from the pulpits across this nation is the only thing that can save our nation from total destruction.Ã‚Â We must once again elevate the Word of God and the power of the cross in our churches.Ã‚Â We must stand up, stand up for Jesus ye soldiers of the cross!A new stimulis package is not going to save our economy.Ã‚Â Rightousness will.Ã‚Â Prison reform will not curb crime in America.Ã‚Â Righteousness will.Ã‚Â Increased education spending will not save our nation's youth.Ã‚Â Righteousness will.Ã‚Â Righteousness will.Ã‚Â Righteousness will.In Christ,Nicholas Z. Cardot
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