• Bishop Keith Butler

But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints. For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem. It hath pleased them verily; and their debtors they are. For if the Gentiles have been made partakers of their spiritual things, their duty is also to minister unto them in carnal things. (Romans 15:25-27)

Paul taught the churches about the importance of giving. In Romans 15:25-27, he explained that the churches of Macedonia and Achaia were “pleased” to give to those in need in the church in Jerusalem, although they didn’t have much extra cash themselves.

The churches that Paul had poured his life into had become giving churches. He was alluding to the fact of that because they genuinely had partaken of spiritual things - like the ministry of the Word and ministry from the leaders in the churches. It was expected that their gratitude would translate into financial giving.

Gratefulness for what we have received from God should naturally lead us to generosity. Christians should give with a heart full of joy and gratitude. Giving with a right attitude comes not from focusing on what we lose when the gift leaves our hand, but from remembering all God has given us.

Gratitude is more than lip service. It’s one thing to say, “Thank You, Lord.” It’s another to give generously into God’s work and bless others simply because you are thankful for what God has done for you.

Practical Application – In what way can you show your gratitude through giving this week beyond your regular tithe and offering? Maybe you can give a little more in the offering or give to someone you know that is in need. Listen to your inner man and follow where you are led to give as an act of gratitude.

Psalm 50:4; 2 Chronicles 29:31

  • Bishop Keith Butler

After these things were ended, Paul purposed in the spirit, when he had passed through Macedonia and Achaia, to go to Jerusalem, saying, After I have been there, I must also see Rome. So he sent into Macedonia two of them that ministered unto him, Timotheus and Erastus; but he himself stayed in Asia for a season. (Acts 19:21-22)

Erastus was the treasurer of the city of Corinth. He collected taxes and was responsible for paying for the city’s expenses. Appointments to such positions were given only to those who had proven themselves in the private sector as businessmen.

Erastus was in the upper echelon of the wealthy citizens in Corinth. Everyone in the city knew who he was. He was also a devout Christian.

Erastus’ testimony is the fact that he didn’t think himself too highly. He did any task God would give him, to the extent that he became someone who would serve Paul in his efforts to spread the gospel. In Acts 19:21-22, Erastus was asked to travel with Timothy from Athens to Thessalonica. That trip was roughly 312 miles on foot. There aren’t too many successful businessmen who would be willing to go on such a dirty and dangerous road for God’s purpose. But Erastus had a servant’s heart. Erastus not only gave of his energy and strength to serve God but also his finances. He provided the funds for Paul and his companions to be fed, housed, and taken care of during their journeys throughout the empire to tell others of the good news of Jesus.

Erastus viewed everything he had as gifts from God and as tools for him to use to support the spread of the Gospel. This businessman was vital to the missionary journeys of the early church.

Practical Application – God has given you unique gifts, talents, and finances not solely for your comfort, but so you can use it to further kingdom purposes. How can God use you?

Romans 16:23; 2 Timothy 4:20

  • Bishop Keith Butler

And the whole city was filled with confusion: and having caught Gaius and Aristarchus, men of Macedonia, Paul's companions in travel, they rushed with one accord into the theatre. (Acts 19:29)

Paul didn’t travel alone; he had companions that were called and anointed to accompany him and help him in his apostolic ministry.

As you follow God’s direction for your life, He will send people across your path to help you succeed in your God-designed assignment.

God will probably call you to help someone else fulfill their calling; then He calls others to help you fulfill yours.

As you prepare to step into doing something God has birthed in your heart, be sure to spend time praying for those God has called to help and support you.

Ecclesiastes 4 tells us that two are better than one because companionship and community are integral to how He grows His church. Leaders may be called to begin something on their own, but the purpose of God will not grow without partners connected to it.

Everyone who helps you won’t remain with you forever, and not everyone who says they want to assist you actually desires to do so. It's essential to listen to the Holy Spirit about who He will send to support you in the calling of God on your life. Don't be desperate; be deliberate. Seek those who have the same faith and heart that you do and who will push forward with you in the things of God.

Practical Application – Spend time praying for those that God is sending to help you fulfill the calling of God on your life. Ask God to open your eyes to opportunities and wisdom in choosing friends that will push you forward in following God.

Acts 15:25; 2 Corinthians 1:1





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