There is no way we can remove the idea of giving from the concept of grace. Giving is the essence of grace. God doesn’t charge us for His grace; He gives it to us. When we come to Him, by faith in His Son, God doesn’t frown and say, “That’ll be $2,500, please…plus tax!” No, He gives us His forgiveness. He gives us His love. He gives us eternal life with the promise of heaven. We’ve established that kind of grace as vertical grace…God’s giving to us what we do not deserve, what we can never repay. We’ve also examined horizontal grace—our giving to others. We don’t give to reciprocate. We give because we have received grace as a gift from God. That gift motivates us to be people of grace, and where there is grace there must be giving. It’s like love—God first loved us when we were unlovely and unattractive. Because He continues to love us, we, in turn, should love one another. God also gave to us—and continues to give—despite our waywardness, rebellion, and ingratitude. In turn, that kind of “grace giving” ought to flow from our hands to others’ hearts.
2 Corinthians 8:1–9; 9:3–8, 13–15
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