We meet again this Sunday, 2pm in Melville, Hamilton for the ‘mutual edification of each other’ according to Eph 4:11-16 and 1 Cor 14:26 and 1 Pet 4:10 et al. Don’t forget to bring something to bless the fellowship –a word, a testimony of His grace, a song, a hymn, a prayer, a message in the Spirit, an interpretation, a prophetic utterance, a poem, a smile, a story, your presence… Don’t rely on the other brother or sister to do all the work of the ministry, share the burden and the privilege of ‘ministering and edifying one another’. ‘You may all speak one by one’, Paul tells us. So, let’s obey the Word of God together and do exactly that.
Giving: Bye-the-bye, each time we meet there is opportunity to share financially as well, as you feel inclined. We have been doing this since the beginning and we use this, and have been doing so, to give to those among us who may be suffering hardship of some kind and to whom a contribution can be both a help, an encouragement and a practical proof and demonstration of our love for one another. We believe that this is the Biblical purpose of giving. There is no Biblical basis for tithing in the NT, but we are strongly urged to ‘give’, and to give generously to each other.
‘Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again’. Luke 6:38
Paul, writing to the Corinthians when encouraging them to give towards the suffering saints in Jerusalem, urged them to give in these words,
'Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him (or her!)…’ 1 Corinthians 16:2.
Again, James says very clearly, in the context of faith and works, i.e. the evidence of genuine faith,
‘What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.’ James 2:14-18
Further, we are also exhorted,
‘As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.’ Galatians 6:10.
PS If you’re unsure about the matter of the Biblical basis for tithing in the New Testament please don’t hesitate to ask for further explanation.