Thank you for considering supporting the ministries of Magdalen Road Church. Take a look at getting involved for ways to give of your time and talent. Alongside practical support, we could not fulfil the vision of the church without the generous financial giving of God's people.
If you just need to know how to give to the church, please contact out treasurer here. Otherwise, here are some pointers to help understand financial giving as a Christian.
God calls us to be good stewards of his good gifts. That includes our money. All income, benefits and savings are gifts from God. So it is not really our money, but his and we are to be wise in how we use it for him.
Part of being a good steward is giving back to God a proportion of what is his. In the Old Testament this was known as tithing - God's law required Israelites to give a tenth of their income (plus various other offerings) back to God. Because of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, God’s people now enjoy a new relationship with God (called the New Covenant). The New Covenant supersedes the covenant that God made with Israel in the Old Testament. Therefore, much of the Law of Moses has become obsolete and we are not commanded to give a specific percentage of our income in the New Testament.
However, under the New Covenant, the Holy Spirit works to write God’s eternal law upon our hearts (Jeremiah 31:33-34; Ezekiel 36:26-27). He grows true righteousness in us. This is a righteousness which the Old Covenant and the Law of Moses pointed to, but lacked power to produce. Since we now have that power from the Holy Spirit, the Christian life should be characterised by generosity, just as Israel’s was supposed to be. Therefore, you may decide that tithing remains an appropriate baseline for Christian giving. This is good, so long as it flows from a heart that desires to be generous and honour God.
But we have further reasons to give financially. The whole earth belongs to our God. He also knows our needs, even before we ask, and he cares greatly for us. Therefore, we can trust God to provide for our material needs like food and clothes. Rather than worrying about them, we can get on with prioritising God’s kingdom and his righteousness (Matthew 6:25-34). Seeking first the kingdom includes giving to the work of the kingdom, much of which is carried out through the local church. The local church is the primary means for making Jesus known, discipling people and caring for those in need. As we spend our earthly treasure giving to the work of the kingdom, Jesus says we store up treasure in heaven (Matthew 6:19-24). Therefore, part of Christian discipleship is learning to give to the local church, trusting God to provide for our needs as we make financial sacrifices.
The apostle Paul gives us these wonderful encouragements and assurances about financial giving:
Remember this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. As it is written:
‘They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor;
their righteousness endures for ever.’
Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.
2 Corinthians 9:6-11