Sermon Notes

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Love Gives Gladly (2 Corinthians 9:5-12)

By Pastor David Hillis, 11.18.18

2 Corinthians 9:5-12 (NLT)

So I thought I should send these brothers ahead of me to make sure the gift you promised is ready. But I want it to be a willing gift, not one given grudgingly. Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop. You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. “For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.” And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. As the Scriptures say, “They share freely and give generously to the poor. Their good deeds will be remembered forever.” 10 For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you. 11 Yes, you will be enriched in every way so that you can always be generous. And when we take your gifts to those who need them, they will thank God. 12 So two good things will result from this ministry of giving—the needs of the believers in Jerusalem will be met, and they will joyfully express their thanks to God.

BIG IDEA: God wants us to love and trust Him enough to give gladly, because He loves to be able to entrust us with more.

Sowing and reaping is a universal, God-given principle. (2 Corinthians 9:6)

  • Sow little, reap little -- deciding the best way to invest applies when investing in seeds in the ground, cash in a mutual fund or when giving to God’s kingdom.
  • Sowing in faith gives us a return on investment when we get to Heaven, because that’s the time God thinks it makes the most sense for us to enjoy it.
  •  It’s not wise to enjoy treasures now by spending it all on ourselves, on stuff that will break, wear out, and we can’t take with us when we die anyway.
  • God loves to see our motivation to cheerfully store up our treasures in Heaven.

God wants us to make giving decisions gladly, not under pressure. (2 Corinthians 9:7)

  • We can give everything we possess, but if we don’t do it from a glad and cheerful heart, we gain nothing.
  • We give our best to God, because He’s given His best for us and He wants to bless us.
  • Love is what motivates us to give gladly; to give away our own recourses to God, and to others.

When we give gladly, God increases our capacity to give so we can continue to be generous. (2 Corinthians 9:8-11)

  • God blesses us with the capacity to give more by having our needs met (not our wants), with plenty leftover to share with others.
  • God is crazy generous and loving, but He is not going to give us more if He sees it will hurt us or make us more selfish.
  • When we share freely and give generously, God remembers it, forever! He has a long memory and gladly stores us treasures in Heaven for our arrival there one day.

NEXT STEP: Do your giving patterns show that you love and trust God? Has God asked you to give in a way that you have resisted, or done grudgingly? What might you do for God to trust you more?


Online Resources:

  • Watch this amazing story about a Minnesota vet that gave away everything he owned, from toys and books to home appliances, furniture and more!
  • How can I become a more cheerful giver


  1. Dive a little more in depth to the story of what was happening with the Corinthians and the offering being taken for the poor in Jerusalem by reading 2 Corinthians 8-9 (there are also references to it in 1 Corinthians 16:1-4, Romans 15:14-32 and Acts 24:17). Learn more of what was going on at that time and why Paul collected and delivered an offering to the Jerusalem Church at
  2. God's call for us to give gladly out of love for God and our neighbor is found throughout Scripture. Meditate on Scriptures like Deuteronomy 15:7-11; Proverbs 3:9-10, 3:27-28, 11:24-25; and 1 Corinthians 13:3. Think about the situations where it is easy for you to give to others, as well as the ones that are hard. What makes the harder ones that way? Ask God to speak to you about those situations and His desires for you, and consider how love is a factor in them.
  3. Take some time this week to carefully consider your giving patterns in all areas of your life (some examples include your giving to the church, to charities, to people you encounter in need). Consider how you give (your time and your finances). How have they changed over the years in response to God's working in your life? Do you see evidence that you are growing in these areas? Talk with God about how you want to grow in these areas in the future, the struggles you might face, and how you want God to make you more of a cheerful giver. To reflect on more of what it means to be a cheerful giver, read the article at
  4. We are learning in this series that God is a giver. In fact, He is the ultimate giver. Consider these passages about Christ's own disposition toward humanity: 2 Corinthians 5:14-15, 8:9; Philippians 2:5-8 and Hebrews 12:2. Still others show this giving love from God the Father's point of view: John 3:16; Romans 5:8, 8:32-33; Ephesians 2:4-10; James 1:16-18 and 1 John 4:7-10. As you read these Scriptures, consider how they are gifts to you personally, God's motivation behind them, and how you might respond to these gifts.

Click here to listen to previous sermons in our current sermon series, "Love Gives."