"THE SECOND EPISTLE TO THE CORINTHIANS" Chapter Nine OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER 1) To see how Paul had used the Corinthians' zeal to motivate the Macedonians in their giving (whose sacrificial giving had been used in chapter eight to motivate the Corinthians) 2) To appreciate what kind of giving is pleasing to God 3) To see the relation between sowing and reaping, and what is the proper use of what we have reaped 4) To observe what a collection like this was designed to produce SUMMARY As he continues his discussion about the collection for the needy saints, Paul confesses that his writing may be superfluous. That is because he knows their willingness of which he boasted to the Macedonians, who in turn were stirred up by the zeal of the Corinthians. Yet Paul felt it necessary to send the messengers to ensure that the Corinthians had their gift ready, and that it was one of true generosity and not out of a grudging obligation. To find them unprepared would be embarrassing to both Paul and the Corinthians (1-5). That they might give liberally, Paul reminds them of the principle of sowing and reaping, and that God loves a cheerful giver. He also writes of God's ability to give them an abundance for every good work, and prays that God will multiply the seed they have sown so they will be enriched in all things for even more liberality on their part (6-11). He concludes this section by pointing out the effect this collection will have. It not only supplies the needs of the saints, it will abound in thanksgiving and praise to God, and produce prayers and longing in the hearts of the recipients for their benefactors. This prompts Paul to give thanks to God, for it is He who makes these things possible (12-15)! OUTLINE I. PURPOSE OF THE MESSENGERS (1-5) A. PAUL'S WRITING MAY BE SUPERFLUOUS (1-2) 1. For he knows their willingness, of which he boasted to the Macedonians (1-2a) 2. Their zeal had stirred up the majority (2b) B. BUT PAUL STILL BELIEVED THE MESSENGERS WERE NECESSARY (3-5) 1. Lest his boasting of them be in vain (3-4) 2. To make sure the Corinthians were prepared with their gift (5a) 3. To ensure that their gift was one of generosity, and not of a grudging obligation (5b) II. ENCOURAGEMENT TO GIVE LIBERALLY (6-15) A. FOR ONE REAPS WHAT THEY SOW (6) 1. He who sows sparingly will reap sparingly (6a) 2. He who sows bountifully will reap bountifully (6b) B. FOR GOD LOVES A CHEERFUL GIVER (7) 1. Each one must give as they have purposed in their heart (7a) 2. Not grudgingly or of necessity, for God loves cheerful giving (7b) C. FOR GOD WILL INCREASE THEIR ABILITY TO DO GOOD (8-11) 1. God is able to give an abundance for every good work (8-9) 2. A prayer that God will supply and increase the fruits of their righteousness (10) 3. So that their enrichment will produce more liberality, leading many to give thanks (11) D. FOR THE EFFECT IT HAS (12-15) 1. It supplies the needs of the saints (12a) 2. It produces many thanksgivings to God (12b) 3. It causes people to glorify God for the Corinthians' obedience to the gospel and their liberal sharing (13) 4. It creates prayer and longing for the Corinthians by the recipients of the gift (14) -- All this prompting Paul to thank God for this wonderful gift! (15)
REVIEW QUESTIONS FOR THE CHAPTER Move your mouse pointer underneath each question to see the answer.
1) What are the main points of this chapter? 2) Why was Paul's writing to the Corinthians about this collection superfluous? (1-2) 3) Why were the messengers being sent? (3-5) 4) What is the relation between sowing and reaping? (6) 5) What kind of giving pleases God? (7) 6) What is God able to do? (8a) 7) What is the purpose of the abundance we receive from God? (8b) 8) Why did Paul pray that God supply and multiply the seed sown by the Corinthians? (10) 9) When one is enriched in everything, for what purpose is it? (11) 10) What four things did the administration of this service (the collection) supply? (12-14)