As I prepared my message this past week entitled “Generous,” I utilized a number of resources alongside of the Bible that I found helpful in shaping my thoughts. Here are four that I thought were worth sharing.
Generous Justice by Tim Keller – a great take on what it means to be the people of God in word and deed by a committed evangelical.
The Rise of Christianity by Rodney Stark – a sociological take on what contributed to the rise of Christianity with particular attention to the role of mercy ministries.
Freedom of Simplicity by Richard Foster – one of Foster’s lesser known works that speaks powerfully to the role of simplicity and the grace of giving in the Christian life.
The latest issue of Christian History magazine on hospitals and healthcare.
Maybe you have your own resources alongside the Bible that you’d like to share. I’d love to hear about them.
Here are the discussion questions that accompany my message from this past weekend at Eastbrook Church entitled “Generous.”
1. Who is the most generous person that you have ever met? Why would you describe them in this way?
2. As we continue our “Living Church” series, we are looking at the topic of generosity. The starting point for generosity with others is God’s generosity with us. Take some time to read the following Scripture passages, and then describe, in your own words, the generosity of God:Read More »
This past weekend at Eastbrook Church, we continued our series “Living Church” by looking at the generosity of the early church in Jerusalem. My message was built around seven characteristics of the generosity seen in the early church in Acts 2:42-47 and Acts 4:32-37.
You can listen to my message online at the Eastbrook web-site here. You can also subscribe to the Eastbrook podcast here or follow Eastbrook Church on Twitter.
The message outline is included below.
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Every Sunday morning before church, I have been reading through chapters from the book Jesus, Keep Me Near the Cross. Each week, I am struck by the different facets of Jesus’ sacrifice and how that reflects the tremendous love of God. I have also been thinking about how my life should reflect Jesus’ pattern of self-giving love.
Jesus’ death on the cross is, at one level, an amazing illustration of His words that no one has greater love than to lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13). The cross was transformed from the most brutal image of death to the most shocking illustration of the love of God.
To what lengths will God go to show His love?
Beyond what we can imagine.
How much will He give?
And after taking up the humble task of washing his disciples’ feet, Jesus says to these His first followers, “I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. Very truly I tell you, servants are not greater than their master, nor are messengers greater than the one who sent them” (John 13:15-16).
He gave completely.
His giving was an act of divine love.
We too should give.
We should give completely.
Our giving should be an act of divine love.
“Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them” (John 13:17).