II Corinthians 9:7-15

Sunday, April 27th, 2014

Text: II Corinthians 9:7-15

PRINCIPLES OF CHRISTIAN GIVING

INTRODUCTION:

We have been looking at the principles of Christian giving in II Corinthians 9 .

We remind ourselves that the principles of Christian giving in II Corinthians 9 do not concern the support of the local church through the tithes and offerings of the people. They concern the collection for the impoverished saints in Jerusalem. Tithing is taken for granted. The giving in this chapter is for a special offering and is not intended to support the local church in Corinth.

We have already seen that -

I. MONEY WAS TO BE SET ASIDE IN ADVANCE - 9:1-5

II Corinthians 9:1-5 - (1) For as touching the ministering to the saints, it is superfluous for me to write to you: (2) For I know the forwardness of your mind, for which I boast of you to them of Macedonia, that Achaia was ready a year ago; and your zeal hath provoked very many. (3) Yet have I sent the brethren, lest our boasting of you should be in vain in this behalf; that, as I said, ye may be ready: (4) Lest haply if they of Macedonia come with me, and find you unprepared, we (that we say not, ye) should be ashamed in this same confident boasting. (5) Therefore I thought it necessary to exhort the brethren, that they would go before unto you, and make up beforehand your bounty, whereof ye had notice before, that the same might be ready, as a matter of bounty, and not as of covetousness.

In addition, we have already seen that -

II. GIVING PAYS DIVIDENDS - 9:6

II Corinthians 9:6 But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.

As we continue from last week, we see -

III. WHAT CHRISTIAN GIVING SHOULD BE LIKE - 9:7

II Corinthians 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

In verse 7 Paul advises each believer to give as he determines in his heart, but he is not to give unwillingly or because he is coerced to give. Instead, God wants believers to give because they want to give rather than because they feel like they have to give. This is not speaking of tithing but of the collection for the impoverished saints in Jerusalem.

Every man is each one or every one and is not limited to adult males.

According as is just as.

He purposeth means that he reaches a decision beforehand, chooses (for himself), commits himself to, prefers, undertakes, determines, decides, or makes up his mind. He determines this on his own and is not forced or coerced into it.

In his heart is used in the sense of in his mind or in his thought process. It is not something that is emotional or based on feeling.

So let him give is implied in answer to according as he purposeth in his heart and, as indicated by the italics, has been supplied by the translators. It means that he must give in accordance with what he purposes in his heart.

Not grudgingly indicates how a believer is not to give. It is literally, not out of pain of mind (or spirit), not out of grief, not out of sorrow, or not out of affliction, and implies not reluctantly.

Or of necessity likewise suggests out of necessity or out of constraint inherent in the nature of things, meaning out of necessity or out of pressure of any kind.

For introduces the reason giving should not be grudgingly or out of necessity and is understood in the sense of because.

God refers to God the Father.

Loveth is loves, the sort of love which gives itself completely on behalf of another without expecting anything in return.

What God loves is a cheerful giver. He does not want giving to be done grudgingly or out of necessity. Speakers frequently note that the English characters for the Greek word translated cheerful, when transliterated into English, form the English word hilarious. It is not proper, however, to transliterate a word in this manner and assign an English meaning to it even though it might sometimes fit. An example of where this wrong practice might lead is that the Greek word meaning layman transliterates as idiot, which in most cases would render an inaccurate description of a layman!

Cheerful giver suggests someone who gives cheerfully or gladly in the sense of without reluctance.

A summary of how giving on this special occasion for the offering for the impoverished saints in Jerusalem should be done.

1. It should be on a free will basis - "as he purposeth in his heart." It is a test of sincerity and love. It is the responsibility of both poor and wealthy.

2. It should not be grudgingly, i.e. reluctantly

3. It should not be of necessity, i.e. out of compulsion

4. It should be cheerfully

IV. THE REWARDS OF GIVING - 9:8-15

1. There is increased ability to give - 9:8-11

II Corinthians 9:8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work.

According to verse 8, God enables people to give who desire to give.

And God (i.e. God the Father) is able suggests God's competence to do something in the sense of, And God is in a position to.

To make all grace abound suggests to cause all grace to exist in abundance and means to cause all grace to abound.

Grace is used here in the sense of favor.

Toward you is unto you Corinthian believers.

That is understood in the sense of in order that or for the purpose that. This purpose is: that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work.

Ye . . . may abound is, You Corinthian believers may have an abundance (i.e. may abound, may be rich, or may have ample means).

Always is at all times.

Having is because (i.e. since or inasmuch as) you have.

All sufficiency indicates what the believers in Corinth have or may have. All sufficiency speaks of a state of having what is adequate (to support yourself without aid from others) and suggests having enough of everything.

In all things is in every thing.

Ye may abound to every good work is you may abound for every good deed or you may abound for every good accomplishment. When someone wants to give over and above his ability, God is able to enable him to do so.

II Corinthians 9:9 (As it is written, He hath dispersed abroad; he hath given to the poor: his righteousness remaineth for ever.

Verses 9-10 form a parenthetical statement, which means that the thought of verse 8 is continued in verse 11.

In verse 9 Paul quotes Psalms 112:9 in order to show that God is able to make all grace abound toward the Corinthian believers.

Psalms 112:9 - He hath dispersed, he hath given to the poor; his righteousness endureth for ever; his horn shall be exalted with honour.

As is just as and introduces a comparison.

It is written is it has been written and has been translated in a way which emphasizes the result of its action. What has been written is: He hath dispersed abroad; he hath given to the poor: his righteousness remaineth for ever.

He hath dispersed abroad, where he speaks of someone who fears the Lord, is he dispersed abroad. It has been translated in a way which emphasizes the result of its action. It speaks of distributing in various directions in the sense he scattered abroad or he distributed.

Here, more specifically it is saying, He hath given to the poor.

Again, he refers to a generous person who fears the Lord.

Hath given is gave, and it has been translated in a way which emphasizes the result of its action.

To the poor speaks of the class or group of those who are needy. It suggests that they are obliged to work for a living but are not reduced to begging.

His righteousness, where his refers to the one who fears the Lord, is His uprightness. It does not refer to the Lord.

Remaineth is remains, continues, or abides; and its tense indicates that this is a timeless truth, something which is always true under all circumstances.

For ever means that his righteousness will remain without ever coming to an end. It does not mean that he has attained righteousness by his generous giving; instead, it means that his generous giving has demonstrated his righteousness as a genuinely saved individual. The result of his righteous deed will last throughout all eternity.

II Corinthians 9:10 Now he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;)

Verse 10 completes the parenthetical statement begun in verse 9.

In verse 10 Paul expresses his desire that the result of the Corinthian believers' righteousness in giving will be that God will increase His provision for their needs.

Now he that ministereth is Now the One Who conveys, Now the One Who gives, or Now the One Who grants and refers to God.

What He gives is seed, and He gives it to the sower, i.e. to the one who sows (or is sowing).

There are three things Paul wishes God to do: 1) minister bread for your food, 2) multiply your seed sown, and 3) increase the fruits of your righteousness.

Minister is provide, supply, or supply in abundance.

Bread for your food is bread for food.

And introduces a second thing Paul wishes God to do: multiply your seed sown.

Multiply is increase.

Your seed sown is your store of seed, which suggests your store of things to distribute to the needy. Paul desires that the seed which the Corinthians have sown be increased so that they will be able to sow even more seed.

Another and introduces Paul's third wish for God to do: increase the fruits of your righteousness.

Increase suggests to cause to become greater in the sense of grow or cause to grow.

The fruits of your righteousness suggests the fruits produced by your righteousness (or uprightness).

II Corinthians 9:11 Being enriched in every thing to all bountifulness, which causeth through us thanksgiving to God.

Verse 11 indicates the result Paul desires for the Corinthian believers: that they be bountifully enriched, which will result in thanksgiving being given to God.

Being enriched is understood in the sense of with the result that you are enriched.

In every thing is simply in every and may be understood as in everything or as in every way.

To all bountifulness is unto all bountifulness, unto all generosity, or unto all liberality.

Which refers to bountifulness and is understood in the sense of which to be sure or which by its very nature.

Causeth suggests is causing, is bringing about, is producing, or is creating.

Through us means through Paul.

What bountifulness is producing is thanksgiving to God.

Thanksgiving suggests the rendering of thanks or the giving of thanks.

To God is to God the Father and indicates that He is the One Who is receiving the thanksgiving or being thanked. Paul is thanking God for the generosity of the Corinthian believers.

2. There is increased thankfulness to God - 9: 12

II Corinthians 9:12 For the administration of this service not only supplieth the want of the saints, but is abundant also by many thanksgivings unto God;

Verse 12 supplies the reason Paul desires God's blessing upon the Corinthian believers: the ministry of the collection for the impoverished saints in Jerusalem provides the needs of the saints in Jerusalem and also results in many thanksgivings being given to God.

For is the word ordinarily translated because and is used in this sense here as well.

The administration of this service is the ministry of this service. It speaks of Paul's ministry or service rendered in taking on himself the collection and delivery of this offering for the saints in Jerusalem.

Not only . . . but . . . also indicates two things accomplished by the collection.

Supplieth suggests is supplying, is filling up, or is replenishing.

The want of the saints is the wants (i.e. needs or deficiencies) of the saints, particularly the saints in Jerusalem.

But introduces a statement in strong contrast to supplieth the want of the saints: is abundant also by many thanksgivings unto God.

Is abundant is is extremely rich, is extremely abundant, or is overflowing.

Also suggests that, in addition to supplying the want of the saints, the collection for the saints will result in many thanksgivings being given to God by the saints in Jerusalem.

By many thanksgivings unto God is through many thanksgivings to God, through many expressions of gratitude to God, or through many renderings of thanks to God. This gift will result in people in Jerusalem thanking God for providing their needs.

3. There is increased glory for God and the Gospel - 9:13-15

II Corinthians 9:13-15 - (13) Whiles by the experiment of this ministration they glorify God for your professed subjection unto the gospel of Christ, and for your liberal distribution unto them, and unto all men; (14) And by their prayer for you, which long after you for the exceeding grace of God in you. (15) Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.

Verse 13 indicates that the saints in Jerusalem will approve this ministry on their behalf as a result of the Corinthian believers' generous contribution, not only to them, but to others as well. This will convince them of the genuineness of the salvation of the Corinthian believers.

Whiles . . . they glorify God means while glorifying God the Father or while they glorify God the Father.

By (or through) the experiment refers to the experience of going through a test with special reference to the result, i.e. the proof or character.

Of this ministration is of this ministry or of this service in gathering the collection from the Gentile churches and distributing it to the impoverished saints in Jerusalem.

For your professed subjection is for the subjection (or obedience) produced by your confession.

Unto the gospel of Christ indicates what the Corinthians had subjected themselves to. It suggests that their profession of salvation expressed itself in obedience to its demands.

The gospel of Christ is the good news about Christ, i.e. He died on the cross in payment for the sins of the whole world, He was buried, and He rose again the third day from the dead.

For your professed subjection unto the gospel of Christ means that the saints in Jerusalem will be convinced of the genuineness of the salvation of the Corinthian believers.

And for introduces a second thing for which the Jerusalem saints will be glorifying God: your liberal distribution, which refers to the generous contribution made by the Corinthian believers on behalf of the saints in Jerusalem.

Unto them refers to the impoverished saints in Jerusalem.

And unto all men suggests that the Jerusalem saints were not the only recipients of the sincere (or bountiful) generosity of the Corinthian believers. It is literally unto all and is not limited to adult males. Men has been supplied by the translators in the sense of people.

II Corinthians 9:14 And by their prayer for you, which long after you for the exceeding grace of God in you.

Verse 14 introduces two additional results of the believers in Corinth sending relief to the saints in Jerusalem: 1) the saints in Jerusalem would pray for the church in Corinth, and 2) there would be feelings of affection for the believers in Corinth.

And by their prayer for you is and by their prayer on behalf of you and indicates that the Jerusalem saints will be praying for the Corinthian believers.

Which long after you suggests who are longing after you Corinthian believers.

For the exceeding grace of God in you is because of God's extraordinary favor on you Corinthian believers to enable you to give generously to aid the impoverished saints in Jerusalem.

II Corinthians 9:15 Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.

In verse 15 as Paul concludes his discussion of the principles of Christian giving, he cannot help but rejoice in the greatest gift of all time, God's unspeakable gift in sending the Lord Jesus Christ to die on the cross to provide salvation for all people.

Thanks (or gratitude) is a response to what God has given.

As indicated by the italics, be has been supplied by the translators. It is implied in the context.

Be unto God is, is to God, specifically to God the Father.

For his unspeakable gift speaks of His indescribable gift of salvation in sending Christ to die on the cross in payment for the sins of all humanity.

CONCLUSION:

So, let's give. But let's realize that, although it is easy to tire of financial statements, they have their proper place. Let's realize that giving returns dividends. Let's realize that we need to have the right attitudes in giving, that giving is to be free-will, that giving is not to be done reluctantly or out of compulsion, but cheerfully. Let's realize that our giving brings an increased ability to give, increased thankfulness to God, and increased glory for God and the gospel.