Embedded in Judea-Christian teaching is the principle of stewardship, generosity and giving. This has affected how Christians have lived in the world, though “not of the world” (John 17:14-15). It has been a discipleship journey of learning to be generous in giving to the Church and her range of ministries, orphanages, social work, medical work and educational institutions and so on.
On top of that, Singaporeans have reached out to surrounding nations and much resource has been given to spreading the Gospel and uplifting of these societies.
The Church also learns to do things more cost effectively, funded by a "currency of love". There is a high level of lay volunteerism. The Church's contribution to a society’s social, cultural and spiritual wealth is incalculable.
I once attended a conference where a political expert lamented that some gifted Christians have dropped out as economic contributors. I think we should rejoice. Singapore will be a lot poorer today if everything in life is about a citizen maximising his capacity for wealth.
A Singapore dollar goes a long way in other parts of the world. Every year, our PCC and Missions Committees seek to balance the budget and ensure we are helping as many as possible. We are dependent on the commitment of the congregation to tithing, pledging and free-will offerings. The principle of tithing reflects a wonderful principle of proportion, even if the teaching itself may have evolved from that taught in the Old Testament. If every Christian is faithful to his or her lot, we believe MPCC can rise up to her obligations year after year.
We need to sow a seed into God's Kingdom in time (future) and space (society and world). Previous generations have given so that today, we may be able to continue the giving. God's Church constitutes an amazing ecosystem. May each of us do our part to “seek first His Kingdom.” (Matthew 6:33) Indeed, it is a privilege and I invite you to join in this continuous stream of giving.
However, we should not just focus on the function or effects of giving. Giving itself is worship. It is an act of discipleship as we follow a Master who gave Himself. It is an act which keeps greed and the love of money at bay. Giving represents an attitude which says like King David: “
“But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you.” - 1 Chronicles 29:14