This morning I contacted a number of churches, and asked them how they refer to the time in the service when money is collected.
was the reply of the majority of the people I asked. I was surprised, and asked ‘Why’?
“We encourage people to give electronically.”
Several churches had boxes at the back of church for cash giving, but where this box exists, it usually received no more than a one-line mention during the service. In summary, giving is rarely mentioned up front, nor giving time in the service to take place.
I find this fascinating, and a little concerning.
“New Testament scholar Craig Blomberg calls stewardship of material possessions “the most important test-case of one’s profession of discipleship,” and names materialism as “the single biggest competitor with authentic Christianity for the hearts and souls of millions in our world today.”
Giving is important:
- Giving is a way of honouring God (Proverbs 3:9, 2 Corinthians 9:6-7).
- Giving allows us the joy of being part of God’s mission (2 Corinthians 8).
- Giving keeps our heart with the one true God (Matthew 6:21)
- Giving provides for our family (the church) (1 Corinthians 16:1).
- Giving provides the labourer with his wages (Luke 10:7)
- Giving reveals who our true master is, and our dependence on, and service of, him (Matthew 6:24).
- Giving meets needs (2 Corinthians 8:13-15)
- Giving is an opportunity to reap bountifully (2 Corinthians 9:6).
- Giving shows that we get grace (2 Corinthians 8:9).
- Giving is a way of serving others (2 Corinthians 8:4)
- Giving is an opportunity to excel in godliness (2 Corinthians 8:7)
- Giving demonstrates that what we have isn’t ours, but God’s, entrusted to us.
- Giving (and the stewardship of other gifts) will be the bases of some of Jesus’ judgement (Matthew 25:14-30).
- Giving is budgeting for judgement day.
- Giving allows us to be rich towards God (Luke 12:21)
So, why are we so reluctant to talk about giving in our weekend services?