Saturday Sermon: Concept of re-gifting as old as time

By Gene Rice

The concept of re-gifting may seem like a relatively new idea, but it is not. The fact is, the idea is as old as time itself. It is also very biblical. In Genesis 1:27, we read: "So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them." God's first gift to us was his own image. It is the new gift of life, not life as it had been, but life brand new. This life bears the permanent mark of God, with the distinctive twist of free choice.

It is out of this mind-set that Paul writes in second Corinthians 1, we should comfort one another in time of need with the comfort we have received from God when we were hurting and in need. Why? Because God's gifts are designed to be given away. These gifts do not fulfill their purpose until they are given away. It is the only way we can create enough room in our hearts for the next gift God has for us.

He's much like the man who was always getting new clothes from family and friends. However, he was perfectly happy with the clothes he had. He would regularly re-gift to those in need around him. He could have kept the new clothing for himself. However he would re-gift with his new clothes and give to those in need.

This is basically what God did when He sent Jesus. This was His greatest gift and His most precious. Easter is a constant reminder of the power of re-gifting. God gifted us with life at our creation and then He re-gifted us with eternal life in Christ Jesus. What God does for us He wants us to do for others. God does not send us the leftovers, He sends us the best. In turn, He wants us to give our best to others. John put it this way - For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends.

The Rev. Gene Rice is pastor of The Church at Spring Creek in Victoria.