Anchored Daily: 2 Corinthians 8:1-9

posted by Bethel Communications | Jan 23, 2023

Hey everyone, Scott Chambers here. Over the past two weeks we’ve been talking about
God’s generosity and the generosity of the Gospel. We’ve learned that generosity is rooted
deeply in God’s heart and that’s why the Gospel is so generous. In this last week, we turn
the spotlight on our own hearts. How’s our generosity?

In II Corinthians 8 and 9, the Apostle Paul gives the Corinthian church, which was fairly well
off, some great teaching on generosity. He starts by pointing out that the gentile churches
in Macedonia were giving generously to support the church in Jerusalem even though they
themselves were quite poor. Many Jewish believers in Jerusalem were disowned by their
families and blacklisted so they couldn’t get work.

Paul writes that the Macedonians’ generosity was the result of God’s grace that had been
poured out on them. As a result, these young believers were “full of joy” and they gave
sacrificially. This is really important because most of us humans are pretty stingy at heart –
we like to keep things for ourselves. But when the grace of God gets ahold of us, God’s
generosity comes out. Zacchaeus is a great example of this. He’s described as wealthy chief
tax collector for the Roman government. But in Luke 19, he has a life changing encounter
with Jesus and declares to Him, “Behold, Lord, half of my possessions I am giving to the
poor. And if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I am giving back four times as much.”

Notice also in vs. 5 of II Corinthians 8 that Paul says of the Macedonian believers,
“they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us.” These folks had
committed their lives to the Lord. They saw the situation in Jerusalem and prayed about it,
and God directed them to give generously to help meet the need. And they obeyed.

Paul then writes that through Titus, he is urging the Corinthians to, “excel in everything—in
faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in love — see that you excel in this
act of grace also.” He finishes this portion by bringing it back to Jesus, reminding the
Corinthians that Jesus gave it all for them, becoming poor, so they could be rich in

This teaching speaks volumes to us today. Money is a major-league stronghold in our
American culture. But as God’s grace is shed abroad in our hearts, and as the Holy Spirit
lives in and through us, He desires to generously give through us. But He can’t do so if we
hold back. Jumping ahead to chapter 9, Paul writes, “Now I say this: the one who sows
sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the one who sows generously will also
reap generously. Each one must do just as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or
under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace
overflow to you, so that, always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an
abundance for every good deed….”
God wants to see our treasure grow – our treasure in heaven, that is. Jesus taught His
disciples in Matthew 6, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and
rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in
heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.”
If we take Him at His word on this, God will abundantly bless us with the joy that comes
from obeying Him, and He will meet our physical needs. As Jesus said in Matthew 6:33, 
“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be
added to you.”

Learning to give generously is a big part of becoming more like Jesus, which at the end of
the day is what discipleship is all about. How we spend our money is a good indicator of
what’s truly important to us. “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
(Matthew 6:21)

So, let’s covenant together to place the entirety of our lives, including our money, under the
Lordship of Christ. As we yield to Him, He will lavish His grace upon us, fill us with joy, and
guide us as we seek to invest our time, talent and treasure in His Kingdom.

Let’s pray – Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel, who alone does wondrous things.
Father, you have been so good to us by freely giving us the gift of Your Son. His life on
earth was full of generosity. And His sacrificial death on the cross was the ultimate,
priceless gift that makes it possible for us to be forgiven of our sins and enter into eternal
relationship with You. As we seek to grow up in you Lord, help us give back to you what you
have given to us, that you might use us and our resources for your purposes. We yield to
you. Please lead us in how we steward what you have given us. In Jesus name, amen.


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