2 Corinthians 9:2 “…Achaia was ready a year ago…”
Paul does this a good bit in his writing. He says he knows he doesn’t need to remind someone of something, but he does it anyway. His subtle way of saying, by the way. Another reference to the fact that they had begun a collection, but hadn’t completed it.
5 “…may be ready as a matter of generosity and not as a grudging obligation”
He could be giving reasons for the reminder as a way of prompting them to finish. I’m sure he also knows how easy it is to allow something to fall by the wayside, even something they wanted to do. Reminding them would save them from possible embarrassment as well as show the offering as a free gift and not something they were forced to give.
7 “…let each one give as he purposes in his heart…”
We have a choice. Even though we have received Christ, we’re not obligated or forced to do good works or behave a certain way. But we have been freed from sin so we have the ability to choose. Salvation and actually our entire existence is about a relationship with God. He loves us and wants us to love Him. But we must choose, He won’t force us to do so. Good deeds are not from an obligation, but because of our love for Him.
7 “…God loves a cheerful giver”
There is a spiritual gift of giving just like preaching or teaching. For some people, being able to give to others is something of a passion. To them, giving is as good or better than receiving. But is it also something we all can participate in and receive the rewards from it. We don’t have to be given the particular gift in order to do it.
8 “…may have an abundance…”
Reminds me of the admonition to give out of the overflow. We give out of the abundance that He gives to us. While I know we should have the attitude of sacrificial giving when God calls for it, He doesn’t expect that in all things, all the time. Otherwise, we would be in need all the time as those we’re trying to help. In giving from our reserves, there is also the possibility of us doing so for our glory and not for His. All things must be from the heart with the right intent.
12 “…abounding through many thanksgivings to God”
Giving to others because of Christ doesn’t just supply their need. It becomes the means by which Christ is providing for their need, which brings thanksgiving and glory to Him. God can supply any and all needs, both spiritual and physical, by any means He wishes, even making things appear out of nothing. But He chooses to use His people by giving to them so they can give to others. It allows us to participate in His work and receive a blessing from it. This is also a great responsibility on our part. We should be watchful and obedient when Christ shows us another’s need. If He has given us an abundance, or if He has placed us in a position of influence or advantage, perhaps He is calling for us to be His hands and feet in providing for their need.
I hope you enjoy reading and studying His word. May it accomplish what He desires. Please feel free to comment or post questions. Thanks for reading!
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.