I have received full payment and even more; I am amply supplied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent. They are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God. And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:18-19, NIV)
There are many reasons to give money for missions.
Giving money toward God's work is an expression of worship.
Such gifts, says the Apostle Paul, are a "fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice" to God. In I Corinthians 8:5, Paul mentions the Macedonian believers who gave themselves first to the Lord and then to Paul by cooperating in his collection for the poor. If we truly love God, we will want to give ourselves to him. When we give everything we are to him, we will also give everything we have to him. A true worshiper recognizes that everything he has is a gift from God, a trust to be used wisely in his service.
Giving money toward God's work is an expression of love toward those who benefit from it.
As disciples of Jesus, we follow his example of giving. The Apostle John put it this way. "This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth." (I John 3:16-18, NIV) Fellow believers who benefit from our generosity will give thanks to God as well as you. The Apostle Paul encourages and stimulates the Corinthian believers in their giving with these words. "This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, men will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has given you." (II Corinthians 9:12-14, NIV)
Giving money toward God's work is a way of storing up treasure in heaven.
Looking for a risk-free investment with amazing returns? Invest in heaven! Jesus warned that all of our possessions here on earth will eventually disappear, but investing in heaven will give lasting rewards. "Do not accumulate for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal. But accumulate for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." (Matthew 6:19-21, NET) Paul, in an apparent reference to these words of Jesus, told Timothy "Command those who are rich in this world’s goods not to be haughty or to set their hope on riches, which are uncertain, but on God who richly provides us with all things for our enjoyment. Tell them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, to be generous givers, sharing with others. In this way they will save up a treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the future and so lay hold of what is truly life." (I Timothy 6:17-19, NET)
Giving money toward God's work can be part of a process whereby the Holy Spirit frees us from the love of money and the selfish desire to exercise control over our own lives.
Jesus said, "Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." Our affections follow our investment. As we cheerfully give toward God's work, God builds in our hearts a love for the things that he loves.
As the Apostle Paul received donations from the Philippian believers, so missionaries today often depend on the financial support of believers from their sending countries. The reason we are able to do church planting in Japan is because there are people who are willing to contribute toward our expenses. We are grateful for the many churches and individuals who give regularly so that we can work to build up the church in Japan.
If you would like to know how you or your church can give toward our work in Japan, please contact us or go to http://www.omf.org/omf/us/get_involved__1/give/missionaries_and_staff.