Daily Bread 5-25-16
2 Corinthians 8:1-5
1 Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the Churches of Macedonia;
2 How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.
3 For to their power, I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves;
4 Praying us with much entreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of ministering to the saints.
5 And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God.
ref. - Mark 12:44 - For all they did cast in their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.
Acts 11:29 - Then the disciples, every man according to his ability, determined to send relief unto the brethren which dwelt in Judaea:
Romans 15:25 - But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints.
Romans 6:13 - Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.
We look at the Macedonians as a people who gave more than they had, tried harder than they could, and were willing to do more than they thought possible to help further the Gospel. Paul and his men were not expecting this nor did they ask for it. What made the impossible possible is revealed in the fifth verse. They first gave their own selves to the Lord. Many people wander around looking for the blessing but are not willing to actually give themselves to God. They hold back part of themselves, whether it be for family, jobs, money, doesn't matter. What we must do in order to do extraordinary things is we must let God change us into extraordinary people. If we could only just for a moment give ourselves completely to God the fight would be over. The Macedonians came from deep poverty to a prosperous state just because they surrendered all to God in Jesus Christ. Now, you might say, does this mean I will be rich? Maybe. But we must look at what riches truly are in god's eyes and what really helps the saints to function. There are gifts in the Bible that many know they are unqualified for, not educated for, not even close to capable of performing. But if we give ourselves completely to God we will be put in a position in ways, shapes, and forms that are unexplainable to men. They will cast us down, they will speak poorly of us, because they cannot explain how we do what we do. Fact of the matter is, we don't do what we do, God does! So, if God puts it in our hearts to help, carnally or spiritually, the saints of God, and if he is in us he will, let us first totally surrender ourselves to God in the name of Jesus Christ and be soundly saved, not letting our guards down to sin and temptation, but letting our guards down to God instead and allowing him to work in us and through us. This, my brethren, will be always remembered as God's will and God's Son living through us! Our testimony and our fruit will change the world if it contains Jesus Christ throughout as Jesus Christ is changing worldly people into spiritual people every day! Are you one of them? We sure hope so!! Have a great day!!!