From my reading in 2 Corinthians 8 in the One Year Bible New Testament.
Giving is a gateway to joy!
In this passage we can learn several principles of how to experience the joy of generous giving. Note: most of these are not direct commands, but principles I pick up from the passage.
1. Poverty is not an excuse for being stingy.
“They are being tested by many troubles, and they are very poor…” 2 Cor 8:2a
2. Joy is a motivation for generous giving.
“But they are also filled with abundant joy, which has overflowed in rich generosity.” 2 Cor 8:2b
3. Give sacrificially and freely.
“For I can testify that they gave not only what they could afford, but far more. And they did it of their own free will.” 2 Cor 8:3
4. Give eagerly.
“They begged us again and again for the privilege of sharing in the gift for the believers in Jerusalem.” 2 Cor 8:4
5. Give to the Lord first, then others.
“They even did more than we had hoped, for their first action was to give themselves to the Lord and to us, just as God wanted them to do.” 2 Cor 8:5
6. Keep your giving commitments.
“So we have urged Titus, who encouraged your giving in the first place, to return to you and encourage you to finish this ministry of giving.” 2 Cor 8:6
“Here is my advice: It would be good for you to finish what you started a year ago. Last year you were the first who wanted to give, and you were the first to begin doing it. Now you should finish what you started. Let the eagerness you showed in the beginning be matched now by your giving.” 2 Cor 8:10-11a
7. You can excel at giving.
“Since you excel in so many ways—in your faith, your gifted speakers, your knowledge, your enthusiasm, and your love from us—I want you to excel also in this gracious act of giving.” 2 Co 8:7
8. Give out of genuine love.
“I am not commanding you to do this. But I am testing how genuine your love is by comparing it with the eagerness of the other churches.” 2 Cor 8:8
9. Jesus is our ultimate example of generosity.
“You know the generous grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty he could make you rich.” 2 Cor 8:9
10. Give in proportion to what you have.
“Give in proportion to what you have. Whatever you give is acceptable if you give it eagerly. And give according to what you have, not what you don’t have. Of course, I don’t mean your giving should make life easy for others and hard for yourselves. I only mean that there should be some equality. Right now you have plenty and can help those who are in need. Later, they will have plenty and can share with you when you need it. In this way, things will be equal.” 2 Cor 8:11b-14
Which of these giving principles do you need to work on?
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