In Romans 5:15-18, the term “gift” is used several times, and it is paired with “free” twice. In context, it is talking about the gift of righteousness which comes only by faith in Jesus Christ. For now, I just want us to focus on the term free gift. One would think that it is a gift, then it is automatically free. Not so. The world often gives gifts with strings attached, fine print, and bait and switch schemes. Some might give you a gift supposedly for free – until they 'call the loan”.... I mean, “gift”. I forgot, didn't I just “lend” that to you? However, this is not the way God gives. Free gift means free gift. It cost God His best, but it cost you nothing to receive it. Yes, it will cost you in the sense of persecution and the like, but you don't have to purchase God's gifts – Jesus already has. We just need to receive in faith.
Jesus said it is more blessed to give than to receive (Act 20:35), and He gave His best. So to be a giver is to be like God. Let's look at four things the Bible says about God's gift giving: 1.God is the great gift giver of the universe. Every good and perfect gift comes from Him (Jam 1:17). He gives good gifts to those who ask (Mt 7:11). He loved mankind so much, that He gave His only begotten Son to purchase us out from the kingdom of darkness (Jn 3:16). He is the One who knows when you've been sleeping or awake, good or bad, truthful or lying. He knows all, He sees all, He is all powerful. He's the true gift giver.
2. His gifts are by grace (Eph 3:7, 4:7). He gives freely. You cannot earn a gift from God. You might have to change some things in your life to be able to receive God's gifts, but you don't earn them. That would make His gifts wages, and you would therefore deserve them. You don't deserve them, and they can only be received by faith. 3. His gifts are not taken back (Rom 11:29). God doesn't give a gift and then take it back. You might relinquish it through unbelief or disobedience, but what God gives he gives. Perhaps you have been doing your own thing for months or years, and you feel like God cannot do anything to help you. Let me tell you, God hasn't moved – you have. His will and destiny and gifts for you have not changed. You just have to be in a position to receive them. Get your heart right today, and get on board with God's will for your life.
4. His gifts are to be shared (1Pt 4:10). His greatest gift, eternal life, is to be shared with others. That is called the great commission. The gifts of the Spirit (1Cor 12), the motivational gifts (Rom 12), and the ministry gifts (Eph 4), are all for other people to be blessed by. We aren't to hoard up God's gifts, but we are to share them with others. As we continuously give out, God continuously fills us, and there is an abundance. However, if there is a block to the flow, it can kill the body. Think about a heart attack. When the blood is continually pumping, it carries nutrients and oxygen over all the body. But if it gets blocked, it does major damage. Don't block the flow! Be a giver! Don't be a Scrooge!
What are some of God's gifts? Well, there is the gift of righteousness (Rom 5:17). There are monetary gifts, which God gives through other people (2Cor 8:4, Philp 4:17). There is the gift of celibacy (1Cor 7:7), in which, if you do not have this gift, it is not wise to commit to it. The Holy Spirit Himself is called a gift (Act 2:38, 8:20, 10:45, 1Tim 4:14, 2Tim 1:6, Lk 11:13). What a gift indeed. That God's Holy Spirit lives inside of the believer. As a Christian, you are the temple of the Holy Spirit. That is awesome. As already mentioned, the gifts given by the Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ (Eph 4, 1Cor 12, Rom 12). But the greatest gift of all, is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. If we knew God's gift and how marvelous it is, we would ask for it, and receive living water (Jn 4:10).
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. In the beginning was .the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name. For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God. And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift. Have a very Merry Christmas, and until next time, rejoice in the Lord!