She gave more than all of them

Sunday Sermon
May 9th 2010
Rhema Community Church

Sermon Skeleton

Sermonic Pericope: ESV Luke 21:1-4 Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, 2 and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins. 3 And he said, "Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. 4 For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on."

Sermonic Theme: Money (Do Not Be Deceived: Notice the generosity of this poor widow woman’s volition.)

Sermonic Subject: Stewardship (Divine Judgment: True value is not what you have it is in what you give.)

Sermonic Tension: If I give my all to God who will take care of me? (This poor widow woman shows no anxiety for her life.)

Sermonic Sentence: Give your all to God today. (She gave all she had while Jesus in a few chapters will give all He has, His life.)

Sermonic Question: Why did this poor widow woman do it? (I argue that she could not resist)

Sermonic Help: Stewardship. The principle of stewardship is closely linked to the concept of grace: everything comes from God as a gift and is to be administered faithfully on his behalf. There is thus both stewardship of the earth and stewardship of the gospel (cf. J. Goetzmann, TDNT II, pp. 253–256); stewardship of personal resources of time, money and talents, and stewardship of the resources of church and society. Along with questions of mission strategy and support there are issues of personal and corporate lifestyle, just wages and fair prices, poverty and wealth all related to explicit or implicit theologies of the kingdom of God, work and nature.

The theme of stewardship as a recognition of the unity of creation and the consequent need to care for the whole earth can be traced in Eastern Orthodoxy and in Western theology down to Calvin. Nevertheless it can be argued that in practice a more prevalent understanding of ‘dominion’ (Gn. 1:28) as domination rather than stewardship has been a justification, if not a cause, of much exploitation. However, international consciousness of the relationship between ecological and political exploitation and the need to seek what the World Council of Churches has called a ‘just, participatory and sustainable society’ has grown steadily since the publication of Only One Earth by Barbara Ward and René Dubois (London, 1972) and the Brandt Commission report North-South: A Programme for Survival (London, 1980), with much attention inside and outside the churches paid to the arms race and nuclear disarmament.

More recently, at least in Western Europe, the stewardship of human resources has become a major concern as churches seek to respond at a personal, community or national level to the social consequences of unemployment and technological change in industry.

From the Greek oikonomos, which refers to the manager of a household or estate. Stewardship is management of all God has entrusted. God bestows many things, yet the most important gift a Christian must invest wisely is his own life his abilities to think and to love: A Christian’s body and mind are to be a “living sacrifice” dedicated to God (Romans 12.1-2). A Christian should invest his time in study and service to God, seeking first His kingdom and His righteousness (Matthew 6.33). Once a Christian learns to be a good steward of mind and body then he will use all other gifts from God wisely. See: Luke 12.42; 16.1-8; I Corinthians 4.2; Galatians 4.2; Romans 16.23. 1 Corinthians 4.1, of preachers of the Gospel and teachers of the Word of God; Titus 1.7, of elders in churches; 1Peter 4.10, of believers generally.

Sermonic Title: “She Gave More than All of Them”

Sermonic Subtitle: “Going broke for God”

Sermonic Structure:

A. Jesus saw the rich people putting in their gifts
B. Jesus saw this poor widow woman putting in two small copper coins

A. Jesus speaks about how much she gave (more than all of them)
B. Jesus speaks about where their offering came from (out of their abundance)
C. Jesus speaks about where her offering came from (out of her poverty)

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