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Published byMervyn Young Modified over 7 years ago
Liturgy and Life Session Nine
What Shall We Give? What’s the best gift you have ever given to someone else? Have you ever received a gift that truly honored you? Do you think that, on the whole, our current culture forms people to be better or worse at giving to others?
Gifts for God Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all. Both riches and honor come from thee, and thou rulest over all. In thy hand are power and might; and in thy hand it is to make great and to give strength to all. And now we thank thee, our God, and praise thy glorious name. "But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from thee, and of thy own have we given thee. I Chronicles 11:11-14 According to David, why should we give to God? Are we able to give God what we really owe him?
Offering and Sacrifice: Old Testament Sacrifice is a concept common to nearly all religions: because God is good, I should give some what I have to Him—give it over for God’s use The Old Testament law laid down a complex system of sacrifices and offerings for different purposes: tithe (10% of produce), firstfruits, thanksgiving sacrifice (offered in gratitude), sin-offering (offered to restore broken relationship with God).
Offering and Sacrifice: New Testament Jesus offered the great and final sacrifice in His death on the Cross—so there is no need for the sin-offering sacrifices of the temple “But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the age to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.” Hebrews 9:26 “All glory be to thee, Almighty God, our heavenly Father, for that thou, of thy tender mercy, didst give thine only Son Jesus Christ to suffer death upon the cross for our redemption; who made there, by his one oblation of himself once offered, a full, perfect, and sufficient sacrifice, oblation, and satisfaction, for the sins of the whole world.” BCP, Euch. Prayer I
The Christian Offering Christians don’t need to offer God some sacrifices (sin offerings), but they have even more reason for other sacrifices (tithes, thank-offerings) The Eucharist is the Christian sacrifice— our thank-offering and our remembrance [making present] of Christ’s sin offering We bring God our tithes for His work We offer God bread and wine for his saving purposes We offer our whole lives for his service
Offering: The Tithe God calls all Christians to give 10% of their income to His work in the Church and the world Percentage giving means that God has the first place in your financial planning—we don’t just share the leftovers We consecrate our workday life to God in the Sunday tithe The tithe is a statement of faith- I can trust God to meet my needs Bring the full tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house; and thereby put me to the test, says the LORD of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you an overflowing blessing.” Malachi 3:10
Offering Bread and Wine Bread and Wine is brought to the Church’s Altar— symbols of God’s provision, to be transformed by God into the means of grace—Christ’s Body and Blood “Blessed are you, O Lord our God, King of the Universe, because we have this bread to offer; which earth has given and human hands have made, it will become for us the bread of life.”—Offering Prayer, also “And we offer our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving to you, O Lord of all; presenting to you, from your creation, this bread and this wine.” Eucharistic Prayer B The Eucharist is God’s work—a grace-but God chooses to use our gifts for his purposes Why might Bread and Wine be especially appropriate for this purpose?
Offering Our Lives “I appeal to you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” Romans 12:1 “And here we offer and present unto thee, O Lord, our selves, our souls and bodies, to be a reasonable, holy, and living sacrifice unto thee.” Euch. Prayer I What does it mean to be a “living sacrifice?” How should this approach to life affect your relationships with others? What does God with our sacrifices? What does that suggest about offering ourselves to Him? Do you think our Liturgy makes the idea of offering our lives clear and understandable? How could we make this clearer?
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