Generosity and Impact of the Early Church

(Andrew Ingram) #1


I’m turning to you instead of google because I’ve found you all to be far more helpful. You guys are great.

Jo Vitale discussed the rapid growth of the early church in a recent podcast with Vince. One reason that the church grew so quickly, she said, was because of their generosity. Do any of you know of passages in the Bible and additional material that discusses this?


(Kathleen) #2

Hi, @AndrewIngram!
I realise you’re asking specifically about the early church, but, off the top of my head, I wanted to share this documentary with you from Australia’s Centre for Public Christianity in Sydney. It came out last year, and it examines the Western church in history…both the highs and lows. :slight_smile:

John Dickson, one of the guys at the CPX who worked on that doc, also has written on the virtue of humility and how it shifted the honour/shame social framework in the 1st century. He’s done lectures on this topic as well, but I’m having trouble finding them!

(Jimmy Sellers) #3

Here is a post I did awhile back in response to @CarsonWeitnauer post on gratitude. This is not necessarily the answer that you are looking for but I believe that you will find if useful when you consider that the 1st century culture was steeped in the idea of patron/client and benefactor/beneficent economy. You might ask what does this have to do with generosity? If you think of Messiah as a gift a gift that is priceless you will feel compelled to declare the greatness of the Gift and the greatness of the Giver to all that you meet. I am sure that in this declaration you will find the need to invest in those that respond to the call.

(Nancy Gifford) #4

John Dickson has kindly sent us this information: I have certainly written a lot both on humility (see my book Humilitas) and generosity in the early church (see my Best Kept Secret of Christian Mission).

But more simply, you can just go to the scenes from the new documentary: for humility see

and for charity see



(Andrew Ingram) #5

Thanks for your feedback. I’ll look into the resources you’ve suggested.