Bible Truth Restored

Bible Truth Restored

If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.           1 Peter 4:11

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Fullness of joy is obtained not in receiving but in giving. It should therefore be our joy to deny ourselves for Jesus. Joy in the Lord should become the motive of all our sacrifice. Jesus once related a parable of a man, who finding treasure in a field went and for joy thereof sold all that he had and bought that field (Matt. 13:44). So great was his desire to have and to hold that treasure which he had found that he was prepared joyfully to sacrifice all his possessions.

Have the riches of Christ had that effect upon us? Are our sentiments those of the apostle Paul, who counted all things but loss that he might win Christ?

What a searching thought it is that we must deny ourselves with joy. We must not act from a sense of duty; we must not give grudgingly but it must come from the fullness of our hearts, because we want to give sacrifice and praise. The Scriptures are never lacking in examples, and there is a fine illustration of this spirit in the Macedonian believers whose example Paul commends to the Corinthians (2 Cor. 8:1-3). Though they were in a deep trial of affliction, though they were in great poverty, yet they were filled with an abundant joy that had overflowed in their generosity to the poor saints at Jerusalem. Their joy had been manifest in their giving to the utmost of their ability.

This joy of the Macedonians is particularly apparent in the Epistle to the believers in Philippi, which was a chief city of Macedonia. “Rejoice in the Lord” is its keynote. What force these words must have had for the Philippians coming as they did from the apostle Paul, who had left them such a wonderful example of how to rejoice in the Lord when he had suffered shame in their own local gaol. Their appreciation of the exhortation was enhanced, as ours must be also, by the knowledge that when the apostle penned these words he was even then a prisoner of Rome; yet he could speak of rejoicing in the Lord always (Phil. 3:4).

This is so important that when the Tabernacle was being established in Moses' time, God specifically instructed that those who offered were of a willing heart:

Exo 35:4  And Moses spake unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, saying, This is the thing which the LORD commanded, saying,
Exo 35:5  Take ye from among you an offering unto the LORD: whosoever is of a willing heart, let him bring it, the LORD'S offering; gold, and silver, and brass ...

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