The Review and Herald

1746/1902

April 18, 1912

Our Gifts and Offerings

EGW

Our churches are often appealed to for gifts and offerings to aid missionary enterprises in the home field and to sustain the missionary work abroad. Let us not complain because we are often asked to give for the upbuilding of the cause. What is it that makes these frequent calls a necessity? Is it not the rapid increase of missionary enterprises? Shall we, by refusing to give, retard the growth of these enterprises? From every church, prayers should ascend to God for an increase of devotion and liberality. Those whose hearts are knit with the heart of Christ will be glad to do what they can to help the cause of God. They will rejoice in the continual expansion and advancement, which means larger and more frequently given offerings. RH April 18, 1912, par. 1

We may well feel that it is a privilege to be laborers together with God by giving of our means to set in operation that which will carry out his purposes in the world. All who possess the Spirit of Christ will have a tender, sympathetic heart, and an open, generous hand. Nothing can be really selfish that has Christ for its absorbing object. True faith works by love and purifies the soul. It is a holy faith, superior to sensual delight. It is a power enabling the soul to apply itself resolutely to irksome tasks and self-sacrifice for the Master's sake. RH April 18, 1912, par. 2

To us has been entrusted the work of proclaiming the last message of mercy to be given to our world,—the message that is to prepare a people to stand in the day of God. Do we realize our accountability? Are we acting our part in the proclamation of the message? The present time is burdened with eternal interests. We are to unfurl the standard of truth before a world perishing in error. God calls for men to rally under Christ's blood-stained banner, give the Bible to the people, multiply camp-meetings in different localities, warn the cities, and send the warning far and near in highways and byways of the world. RH April 18, 1912, par. 3

However large the income of the possessions of any person, any family, or any institution, let all remember that they are only stewards, holding in trust the Lord's money. All profit, all pay, our time, our talents, our opportunities, are to be accounted for to Him who gives them all. The Lord is constantly proving us, to see if our work is free from selfishness and pride. Those workers will have the richest reward who prove that they love God supremely and their neighbors as themselves. RH April 18, 1912, par. 4

Consider the necessities of our mission fields throughout the world. Our missionaries labor hard and earnestly, but often they are greatly hindered in their work because the treasury is empty, and they can not be given facilities necessary for the greatest success of their labor. RH April 18, 1912, par. 5

May God help those who have been entrusted with this world's goods to awaken to his design and to their individual responsibilities. God says to them, I have put you in possession of my goods that you may trade upon them to carry forward the Christian missions that are to be established far and near. I have given you the benefits of accumulated knowledge. The advantages of the past and present are yours. The truth for this time must be carried to those who have never heard it. Not all can go as missionaries to foreign lands, but all can do the work waiting for them in their own neighborhood. All can give of their means for the carrying forward of foreign missionary work. RH April 18, 1912, par. 6

Many today are keeping back that which the Lord has entrusted to them for the carrying forward of his work. Year after year thousands pass into the grave unwarned and unsaved, while the talent of means is hidden in a napkin, buried in worldly enterprises. The guilt of thus hiding the Lord's money passes all computation. When I see persons spending money for needless trimmings and needless furnishings, I think of Jesus. He might have come to this earth adorned with the glory of kingly power. But he chose a life of self-denial and self-sacrifice. “If any man will come after me,” said Christ, “let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” Those who follow in his footsteps will remember that every dollar they can spare is needed in the work that God has said shall be done in the earth. RH April 18, 1912, par. 7

Be merciful, even as your Father in heaven is merciful. Think of the great gift God has made for you. Think of what he has done to secure your salvation. Your sinful condition demanded a sacrifice. In your spiritual destitution you had nothing to offer. But Christ came to the world, and on the cross offered himself as a sacrifice for you. Herein is love. God has given you a proof of his love that defies all computation. We have no line with which to measure it, no standard with which to compare it. God invites you to let your gratitude flow forth in gifts and offerings. He calls upon you to be his merciful helping hand. Can you refuse the request of One who has done so much for you? RH April 18, 1912, par. 8

Christ wept at the sight of woe. Let his tenderness come into your hearts. Practise self-denial that you may have wherewith to relieve the suffering of God's children. Let the same mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus. He is the author of your faith, and he will be the finisher if you will be partakers of his self-sacrifice. Many of you enjoy a portion of this world's goods. When spending your money, think of what Jesus would do were he in your place. He calls upon his followers to tread in his footsteps of self-denial and self-sacrifice. The character of the Christian is to be a reproduction of the character of Christ. The same love, the same grace, the same unselfish benevolence, seen in his life, is to characterize the lives of his followers. God will bless all who are willing to give and to labor for the salvation of the world as did his beloved Son. RH April 18, 1912, par. 9

There are many clear and striking promises to the liberal. “The liberal soul shall be made fat; and he that watereth shall be watered also himself.” “Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom.” “Honor the Lord with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: so shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.” Brethren and sisters, try the experiment. Be liberal in your dealing with the Lords work. RH April 18, 1912, par. 10

God will encourage his faithful stewards who are ready to put all their energies and God-given endowments to the very best use. As all learn the lesson of faithfully rendering to God what is his due, he through his providence will enable some to bring princely offerings. He will enable others to make smaller offerings; and the small and the large gifts are acceptable to him if given with an eye single to his glory. “He that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness; being enriched in everything to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God.” RH April 18, 1912, par. 11