We are to share with others whatever good things the Lord gives us, “Freely you have received, freely give”, as this enables us to have a healthy perspective towards our possessions (Num 10:32; Mt 10:8; Lk 3:11; Rom 12:13). By sharing, we find release from enslavement to earthly things, we enrich the lives of others and put ourselves where we can be blessed in return, for it is written, “Give and it will be given to you” – in the proportion we bless others, we will be rewarded in some way, at some time (Prov 3:9,10, 11:24,25; Mal 3:10,11; Lk 6:35,38, 14:12-14; 2 Cor 9:6; Gal 6:7-10). After all we are only stewards of what we have been blessed with. What we have has come to us by God’s mercy (1 Chr 29:14; Jn 1:16).
Joshua reminded his soldiers to share the blessings equally with others; similarly, David decreed that all who had input into a situation equally share in the rewards (Josh 22:8; 1 Sam 30:23,24).
Our attitude to sharing governs our personal future for if we selfishly hold tightly onto life, we will lose out but if we expend it for the Kingdom of God we will find it and be eternally blessed. Similarly hoarding things is short-sighted while being other-focused has eternal consequences (Mt 6:19,20, 10:39, 19:29; Lk 12:16-21; 1 Tim 6:17-19).
Sharing in the master’s happiness is part of the reward for being a wise and obedient servant in the parable of the talent’s teaching about the Kingdom of God (Mt 25:14-23). As fellow Christians we share in the grace of God, and He works on our character to bring it into proper alignment with His, so that ultimately we will share in the glories of heaven (Gal 5:22,23; Phil 1:7; Heb 3:14, 12:10; Rev 22:19).
Share yourself as well as your things
which you can build bridges to present Christ to them, but “Do not share in the sins of others”, keep your distance from those who are actively sinning, especially if they claim to be Christians (1 Cor 5:9-11; 1 Tim 5:22; Rev 18:4). We should be actively sharing the good news with those who do not have hope, not just indulging in the benefits of salvation ourselves while others are not aware of what is available in Christ (2 Kgs 7:9).
We share family characteristics by inheritance. We will reap blessings if our parents have walked uprightly but may also share in the penalties if they have rebelled against God (Ex 20:5,6; Josh 7:24-26). While those who sin will pay the primary penalty, there is a sense in which sins committed by ancestors will affect succeeding generations – we are all suffering because of Adam and Eve’s sin (Gen 3:1ff; Ezek 18:4,13,18,20,30). However, by ‘looking to Jesus’ we can come into a new and positive dimension of life.
Sharing involves both the good and the bad in life. The way of Jesus is identifying with people in distress, and assisting in their release. This involves taking up our cross and following Him, All who determine to live godly lives will suffer persecution but if we want to enjoy the blessings of Christ, we must experience the sufferings that will accompany them, for the two are inseparably linked (Mt 16:24; Rom 8:17; Phil 3:10; 2 Tim 3:12; Heb 2:10, 12:2; 1 Pet 5:1). When it is your time of need others can share with you (2 Cor 8:13-15).
Personal involvement with simple acts of helping
and will encourage others (Act 18:24-26; Rom 15:14). Through balanced sharing across the broad spectrum of life, communicate and share your heartaches as well as your joys – “sharing our lives” (2 Cor 1:7; Gal 6:2,6; 1 Thes 2:8). Humbly share your failings, not to get sympathy but so others can pray for you in these areas of expressed need (Jas 5:16). When speaking of your successes, ensure the glory goes to God (Deut 8:18; Act 12:23).
The world’s way is to buy and sell, God’s way is give and receive. The early church believers pooled their resources and assets so they could distribute to those in need. It was a voluntary choice and didn’t involve all their private property (Act 2:44,45, 4:32-36). Selfish people are focused on what they can get rather than what they can give but the generous say, ‘I’ve been blessed, I want to bless you’ (1 Tim 6:18). When we see a need, if it is in our power to assist, we can to show Christ’s attitude of blessing others in appropriate ways (Mt 25:34-45; Act 10:38; Phil 2:5-8).