By Bill Sexton.
(2 Cor. 8:5; John 3:16)
Introduction: What is this month known for? GIFTS, right! I challenge each of us to answer the question: What is the greatest gift I can Give/Receive?
"And not only as we had hoped, but they first gave themselves to the Lord, and then to us by the will of God"(2 Cor. 8:5)
"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life" (John 3:16)
It is better to give than receive: "I have shown you in every way, by labouring 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’" (Acts 20:35)
What shall a man give in exchange for his soul: "For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?" Matthew (16:26)
First, as Paul says of some people, First, they gave themselves to the Lord! There is not a greater gift that one can give than to give them self!
- To the Lord
- Then to others, determine to be assisting!
A Greater gift one cannot receive than to receive the gift of God, His salvation. (Romans 6:23), which is IN CHRIST. Therefore, we urge all of us as we THINK about gift giving this part of the year to be reminded that there are GREAT gifts, and let us evaluate and act accordingly.
Unless we present ourselves to the Lord, we’ll not receive the greatest gift available.
Secondly, if we do not receive that gift, any other gift we receive will not be GREAT—it will be very limited in value in comparison, and will have limited use and worth! If we understand this principle, then I believe we can have a wonderful season, regardless of our limited ability, and resources. Beloved, let us examine ourselves (2 Cor. 13:5) to see if we have received the greatest of all gifts –salvation in Christ! If we haven’t then let us commit our lives to Christ in obedience to Him. Look at (Romans 6:16-18; along with 1 Peter 1:22-23). That will be the exchange of the two greatest gifts!
If we have done that, let us give ourselves to helping/assisting others in that which is good for them, according to God’s will. One of the greatest things we can do for another is to present the truth of the gospel message to them and show them the power of that message in our lives.
These gifts, the GREATEST, are within the reach of each of us. There are a lot of expensive gifts, perhaps, we’d be inclined to give, if we have the resources (money), but we are unable to purchase them. However, we each can give ourselves to the lord, and then to others, and receive the greatest of all gifts, and give the greatest gift that can be given.
Beloved, let us all recognise how wonder-fully blessed we are! We are able to both give and receive the greatest of all gifts. So, instead of being caught up in some frenzy, of shopping and looking for the gifts that we can’t afford, let us thank God that we are able, as His creatures, to give and receive the greatest. We can be happy, make others happy and be prepared for that eternity that is coming up for each of us. Whether the end of our earthly journey is just a few days away or many years, we can sing the happy songs praising God, and teaching and admonishing each other daily (Col. 3:16-17).
May you be aware of the greatest of all gifts, and give and receive such. May the Lord bless us all this season and the rest of our lives.