If the Church is going to be truly benevolent, we must understand this key passage, "let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven" (Matthew 5:16, NKJV). This series of lessons will examine benevolence and ask tough questions of Christians who say they're giving, but might not truly be up-to-snuff. As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.
samaritans, saints, and salvation
The Parable of the Good Samaritan is about so much more than we may realize at first or second readings. It is fundamentally about what God has done for His children. When Jesus was asked "who is my neighbor," He answered in the grandest of all ways - He answered not as the Son of Man, but the Son of God. God is truly our source and inspiration for knowing what benevolence truly is, and if we want to be like Him, we better be generous, giving, and ready to serve.
a golden oldie
The Golden Rule, "do unto others and you would have them do unto you" is one of the keys of genuine benevolence. Reaching out to others in moments of need is the most selfless thing a person can do in this world. It's truly the highest form of devotion and sacrifice. As we search through Scripture for God's thoughts on benevolence we'll find this common idea coming up over and over again, "it is better to give than to receive."
LIARS, THIEVES, AND DEAD MEN
When we study the story of Ananias and Sapphira we see the opposite of benevolence. We see greed, hypocrisy, jealousy, and sin. Their story is a grim tale of death and destruction. We will examine the thoughts behind their sinful actions and see the unfortunate connection far too many people still make today.
love in action
The First-Century Church showed us how to be truly benevolent in their service to one another. As we examine their outreach to their fellow brothers we'll see a great example for us serving the Lord in the 21st century. Their love was plentiful and their benevolence a natural response. May we ever strive to not just learn from them, but emulate them as well.