Therefore show these men the proof of your love and the reason for our pride in you, so that the churches can see it. 2 Corinthians 8:24
“Paul’s understanding of generosity in remembering the poor is not only the heart of the gospel but is rooted in the story of Jesus Himself, in which the ‘self-lowering other-regard’ paradigm is visibly displayed.
For Paul, the poor as mentioned in Galatians 2:10 do not have geographical restrictions – they are both the poor in Jerusalem and the poor in the local congregations that he established in the Mediterranean basin.
Paul’s understanding of generosity and his vision of the right of all to have a fair share so that no one has needs is timely today especially in many instances where the rich are getting richer, and the poor poorer.
Christian generosity requires that a relative proportion of giving should be guided accordingly. The wealthier should be challenged to give more in terms of higher percentage, compared to those who are poorer so that the confession of the gospel of Jesus Christ can be authenticated through love in action.”
Kar Yong Lim in “Generosity from the Pauline Perspective: Insights from Paul’s Letters” in Evangelical Review of Theology37.1 (2013):33.
I hope you like the new header photo I shot at a coffee plantation in Antigua, Guatemala. I’ll share more about it in the coming days. For now, let’s focus on what it means for our Christian love to be authenticated.
This NT scholar from Malaysia nails it! God desires that all of us exhibit the ‘self-lowering other-regard’ paradigm of Jesus. We do this by remembering the poor. Our follow-through authenticates our faith. Unashamedly, I invite you to join me, like Paul, in doing some cross-border giving to demonstrate proof of your Christian love. Authenticate it!
In November and December 2020, I am praying for God to supply $125,000 USD to fund GTP global efforts to multiply faithful stewards and mobilize peer accountability groups in 2021. Click here to give.
But for us, remembering the poor means that when God supplied us with a $50,000 USD matching grant, we allocated it to help the underserved regions of the world rather than keeping it for ourselves.
As most charitable work in the last century has amounted to handouts that create dependencies, GTP aims to give a hand up to build disciples. Join us in this capacity building work. Allocate a portion of your giving to helping build up people in different regions of the world.
Visit the regional campaigns page at GTP and pick a region to support. Don’t just think about the poor and how they are suffering. As Paul, put it, demonstrate proof of your love. Authenticate your faith through the loving action of generous giving.