Ministering To The Saints

Every one of us has received help from other people.  You have received help from your parents, your instructors, your friends and perhaps many other people.  You even received help from God and Christ.   Romans 5:6-8 “For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.  For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die.  But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”  The help we received from God is what He has done for our salvation; we cannot save ourselves without His help. 

Even though you have received help, you should realize that it is better to give help than to receive help.  The Apostle Paul worked hard to be able to help himself and those with him.  Act 20:34-35 “Yes, you yourselves know that these hands have provided for my necessities, and for those who were with me.  I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” Jesus also taught that helping others may be a big factor in our salvation.  Matthew 25:34-36 “Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:  for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’”  Continuing in verses 41-43  “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels:  for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’”  If you will be judged, at least in part, based upon how much you helped your brethren, you should be eager to provide help.  How are you in helping others?   The Apostle Paul puts it this way:  Romans 12:13a “Distributing to the needs of the saints.” 

Look at the attitude of the Macedonian churches.  2 Corinthians 8:1-4 “Moreover, brethren, we make known to you the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia:  that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded in the riches of their liberality.  For I bear witness that according to their ability, yes, and beyond their ability, they were freely willing, imploring us with much urgency that we would receive the gift and the fellowship of the ministering to the saints.”  The churches of Macedonia were eager to help their fellow brethren even when they themselves were very poor.  You also should be willing and eager to give whether you are rich or poor.  God is interested in the attitude of your heart towards giving.  2 Corinthians 9:6-7 “But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.  So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.”  I take several points from this passage.  You should give as you purpose in your heart; there is no fixed amount or required percentage.  God loves you to give from a cheerful heart.  And you will reap little or much based upon how much you give. 

My encouragement to you is summarized in the following passage.  Hebrews 6:10  “For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister.  And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end.”

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