1. In Luke 20:20-26, Jesus is asked about paying taxes or tribute money to the Romans. Jesus then took a coin and asked whose image or picture was on it and of course they said "Caesar's." He said, "Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar's, and unto God the things which be God's."
  2. In Luke 20:27-38, the Sadducees asked Jesus the question of the women whose husband died and she remarried six times, whose wife would she be in the resurrection. They didn't even believe in a resurrection! Jesus told them, "Do ye not therefore err, because ye know not the scriptures, neither the power of God?"
  3. Luke 20:40 then says this, "And after that they durst not ask him any question at all." Jesus silenced the critics and amazed the crowds with His answers to their trick questions. But that is not what I want you to see in these verses of scripture. I want you to only see the setting of what Jesus is about to say next. Because at the same time that Jesus was answering the Pharisees, Scribes, Chief Priests, Scribes, and Sadducees, He was also paying attention to something that He was about to make His disciples aware of. Something that He makes a big deal about. It has to do with the Jews who were coming in and out of the Temple in Jerusalem that day. The thing that got the attention of our Lord was what He saw going on with the people giving their offerings at the Temple. Look at Luke 21:1-4 again,

"And he looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury. And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites. And he said, Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all: For all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had."

Verse one says that the Lord Jesus was actually watching what these people were giving in their offerings. He was looking to see exactly what they were putting in the plates. They didn't have offering plates like we have here. They had metal bins that were called "trumpets" because of their shape. These trumpets were made of metal and made a lot of noise when coins were placed or thrown into them.

Could you imagine if we stood over you and watched exactly what each person placed in the offering as the plates passed by? It would without a doubt be very uncomfortable for both parties. Well our text today says that Jesus was watching what they were giving and He was about to make an example out of a little widow woman that day. I want to look at several things about this passage that I hope will be a help to you today in this matter of giving to the Lord's work on this very important day in the life and ministry of this church in regards to our Mission support for the coming year.

#1) God sees everything:

The Bible said in Luke that he looked up and saw the rich men giving and in Mark's gospel it says that he beheld how the people cast money into the treasury. I believe that Jesus not only saw what they gave but HOW they gave it. Mark 12:41 says that Jesus beheld HOW they cast their money into the treasury. God is concerned not only about what you give but your heart's attitude about what you are giving!

A) God sees our hearts when we give:

Paul said it this way in II Corinthians 9:6 & 7,

"But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver."

Humor:

A mother wanted to teach her daughter a moral lesson. She gave the little girl a quarter and a dollar for church "Put whichever one you want in the collection plate and keep the other for yourself," she told the girl. When they were coming out of church, the mother asked her daughter which amount she had given. "Well," said the little girl, "I was going to give the dollar, but just before the collection preacher said that we should all be cheerful givers. And I knew I'd be a lot more cheerful if I gave the quarter, so I did."

God loveth a cheerful giver. The word in the Greek for cheerful is "hilaros" where we get the word hilarious from. We are to give to the work of the Lord cheerfully and happily and with a purpose in our giving. Paul relates giving to planting a crop and says that if you sow or plant sparingly then you will reap sparingly however if you sow or plant bountifully then you will also reap bountifully!

B) God sees our faith by what we give:

The Bible principle for getting or accumulating is giving. We are taught that in order to accumulate wealth, we must save a store away our money or invest it in something that will bring us a high return or yield. Now while that may be smart for investing for our retirement, it goes directly opposite to what the Bible teaches about giving!

Our church calls our missions giving Faith promise giving. That is what we give, over and above the Tithe, by faith and not by sight, to support worldwide church planting missionaries!!

In Luke 6:38, Jesus gives the principles for Christian giving. He says,

"Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again."

What Jesus is saying is that the more you give, the more you will get! In the Old Testament book of Malachi the Bible says in chapter three and verse ten,

"Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it."

God says to put Him to the test. "Prove me now herewith." He sees how much faith we have when we put Him to the test by giving even when we cannot see how we are going to give. Faith is doing something without seeing. The Bible says in Hebrews 11:1,

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." If you could see it, than it is no longer of faith!

Augustine said, "Faith is to believe what we do not see, and the reward of faith is to see what we believe."

C) God sees our level of sacrifice by how much we give:

In the text today, a widow woman gave two mites. A mite was a small brass coin which was equivalent to about one third of a cent. It obviously wasn't the size of the offering that got the Lord's attention, but that this widow gave all that she had from her poverty. The size of the rich men's offering was much more than anything that this widow had, but the thing that caught our Lord's attention was that the rich men gave from their abundance and it really wasn't a lot compared to all that they had, but though what this widow gave was obviously a minuscule amount, according to Jesus, she gave more than the rich men did.

  1. We must be willing to give more than money, we must give ourselves to the Lord.

-Give Him our souls for salvation. "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."(Rom 10:13)

-Give Him our bodies for service. I Corinthians 6:19-20,

"What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."

Romans 12:1,

"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service."