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Our Theology of Giving

"Now concerning the contribution for the saints: as I directed the churches in Galatia, so you also are to do.  On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as [you] may prosper, so that contributions need not be made when I come.  And when I arrive, I will send those whom you accredit by letter to carry your gift to Jerusalem.  If it seems advisable that I should go also, they will accompany me." (1 Cor. 16:1-4)

First Presbyterian Church is a congregation which invites her members to reflect on the biblical teachings around faith and money.  In his text Generous People, Eugene Grimm reminds us that in I Corinthians, the Apostle Paul presents what may be the most succinct theology of Christian giving ever written.  He gives us four admonitions:

1. Giving is an act of worship: On the day of worship, Sunday, set aside an offering.
2. Give Systematically:  If we give when we worship, we will give regularly.
3. Give Proportionately to Income:  We cannot give what we have not received.  But we can withhold what we have received.  Giving an amount in proportion to what we earn – a percentage of our income - controls that selfish human reflex.
4. Plan Your Giving In Advance:  “By the time I arrive,” says Paul, “the offering will be in hand”.

As we work on our discipleship practices at First Presbyterian, the Stewardship Ministry invites each member to reflect on the teachings of scripture and their connection to our own resources. Ask yourself these questions: What is the connection between what God has revealed in Jesus Christ and how I deploy my money and possessions?  What is the connection between my money, my possessions and my faith?  If I am a follower of Jesus, what am I called to do with the material possessions with which I have been blessed?