* Share what the Lord has given you
None of these Christians felt that what they had was their own, and so they were able to give and share, eliminating proverty among them. They would not let a brother or sister suffer when others had plenty. How do you feel about your possessions? We should adopt the attitude that everything we have comes from God, and we are only sharing what is already his. (NLT)
Acts 4:32 – All the believers were of one heart and mind, and they felt that what they owned was not their own; they shared everything they had.
* David made a law that those who guarded the equipment were to be treated equally with those who fought in battle. (NLT)
1 Samuel 30:21-24 – When they reached Besore Brook and met the two hundred men who had been too tired to go with them, David greeted them joyfully. But some troublemakers among David’s men said, “They didn’t go with us, so they can’t have any of the plunder. Give them their wives and children, and tell them to be gone.”
But David said, “No, my brothers! Don’t be selfish with what the Lord has given us. He has kept us safe and helped us defeat the enemy. Do you think anyone will listen to you when you talk like this? We share and share alike—those who go to battle and those who guard the equipment.”
* Why we should share what we have with others
Recognizing the other believers as brothers and sisters in the family of God, the Christians in Jerusalem shared all they had so that all could benefit from God’s gifts. It is temptimg—especially if we have material wealth—to cut ourselves off from one another, concerning ourselves with only our interests and enjoying only our own little piece of the world. But as part of God’s spiritual family, it is our responsibility to help one another in every way possible. God’s family works best when its members work together. (NLT)
Acts 2:44 – And all the believers met together constantly and shared everything they had.
* How the early church shared
The early church was able to share possesions and property as a result of the unity brought by the Holy Spirit working in and through the believers’ lives. This way of living is different from communism because (1) the sharing was voluntary; (2) it didn’t involve all private property but only as much as was needed; (3) it was not a membership requirement in order to be a part of the church. The spiritual unity and generosity of these early believers attracted others to them. This organizational structure is not a biblical command, but it offers vital principles for us to follow. (NLT)
Acts 4:32-35 – All the believers were of one heart and mind, and they felt that what they owned was not their own; they shared everything they had. And the apostles gave powerful witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and God’s great favor was upon them all. There was no poverty among them, because people who owned land or houses sold them and brought the money to the apostles to give to others in need.
* We can afford to share
Paul could get along happily because he could see life from God’s point of view. He focused on what he was supposed to do, not what he felt he should have. Paul had his priorities straight, and he was grateful for everything God had given him. Paul had detached himself from the nonessentials so that he could concentrate on the eternal. Often the desire for more or better possesions is really a longing to fill an empty place in a person’s life. To what are your drawn when you feel empty inside? How can you find true contentment? The answer lies in your perspective, your priorities, and your source of power.
The Philippians shared in Paul’s financial support while he was in prison. (NLT)
Philippians 4:11-14 – Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to get along happily whether I have much or little. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need. But even so, you have done well to share with me in my present difficulty.
* Sharing is pleasing to God
Since these Jewish Christians, because of their witness to the Messiah, no longer worshiped with other Jews, they should consider praise and acts of service their sacrifices—ones they could offer anywhere, anytime. This must have reminded them of the prophet Hosea’s words, “Forigve all our sins and graciously receive us, so that we may offer you the sacrifice of praise” (Hosea 14:2). A “sacrifice of praise” today would include thanking Christ for his sacrifice on the cross and telling others about it. Acts of kindness and sharing are particularly pleasing to God, even when they go unnoticed by others. (NLT)
Hebrews 13:15-16 – With Jesus’ help, let us continually offer our sacrifice of praise to God by proclaiming the glory of his name. Don’t forget to do good and to share what you have with those in need, for such sacrifices are very pleasing to God.
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