The Smell of Generosity
But I have all, and abound: I am full, having received of Epaphroditus the things which were sent from you, an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to God. (Philippians 4:18)
The work of the ministry is accomplished through the generosity of the people, and God gave Paul a lot of work to do. Paul’s work could not have been achieved if people had not stepped up to the plate and given as the Holy Spirit directed them.
The churches in Macedonia didn't just give enough; they gave abundantly with passionate hearts.
Paul explained that he not only had enough to complete the mission but also abounded because of their generous giving.
Paul then noted something peculiar about their offering. He told them it gave off a sweet smell as God received it in the throne room of Heaven.
When priests made sacrifices in the Old Testament, they often burned incense on or around the fire to mask the smell of smoldering flesh.
This is what Paul is referring to. The Macedonians did not just give because Paul had a need or to fulfill some spiritual obligation. When they gave, they did so with a heart of worship, and that gift arose as a sweet smell that changed the scent of the throne room of Heaven.
That’s what happens when you worship God through your giving.
Practical Application – As you give this week, don’t just do so with the mindset of a transaction between you and God. Worship Him as you give.
2 Corinthians 11:9; 2 Corinthians 9:2