See God as the Greatest Giver
We often think of someone who is a giver as having human inconsistencies and failings. However, God is the greatest giver of all, with no mortal limitations, no imperfect motivations, and with no questionable intentions. His giving is selfless, merciful, and expressive of love in ways that the recipients would normally never consider.
As a father, I can’t imagine handing over one of my sons to suffer the judicial penalty for someone else’s crimes. Yet, that is precisely what God did, “who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all” (Romans 8:32). We, who were the guilty sinners, happily living indifferent to the Lord of glory, happily indulging in sinful attitudes and behavior without giving a second thought. Yet, “God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
James G. Small, published a hymn in 1863 titled; “I’ve found a Friend, oh, such a friend”! Verse 4 tells the Christian love song;
Naught that I have mine own I call,
I’ll hold it for the Giver,
My heart, my strength, my life, my all
Are His, and His forever.
Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ have the greatest story to tell. They’ve abandoned all of self, and gained all of Christ. They’ve relinquished the momentary, decaying pleasures and treasures of this world to invest in the eternal wealth of Heaven. They have recognised that this is only possible through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and dependence upon Jesus suffering the death penalty on the cross that belonged to them. Like Paul, Christians can say “the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).
The Gift of Understanding
The apostle Paul, drew the Corinthians attention to the fact that “God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness’, has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6). What an awakening this is, for us to be recipients of this breath-taking gift, the realisation that we have access to Almighty God through Jesus Christ. This realisation was not cooked up by ourselves, it was not inherited from past generations, it was not induced by any internal philosophical process, and it was no pushed on us by any religious organisation. No, it was placed within us by God. Not only so, but spiritual understanding was given for the sole purpose of equipping us to perceive the glory of God in the person of His Son the Lord Jesus Christ.
Earlier Paul wrote to the same Christians in Corinth of his response to God for the way in which the Lord had treated them. Paul said; “I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that was given you in Christ Jesus” (1 Corinthians 1:4-6). Thanks for what God has and continues to do in others’ lives is the right response, even when we may not understand all the details. We are to be thankful that others are recipients of God’s grace and that they too have been given the understanding of who Jesus Christ really is and what Christ has done for them.
Today, be one who sees God as the greatest giver, particularly in other’s lives. Encourage someone else by telling them that you can recognise God’s work of giving in their life. Then, be thankful with them!
Together for Christ: Lincoln Forlong www.bbf.net.nz