Bible Commentaries
2 Corinthians 9

Dummelow's Commentary on the BibleDummelow on the Bible

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Verses 1-15

(c) 9:1-15. Exhortations to Generous Giving

There is no need to write to you about the purpose and necessity of the collection, for your zeal in the matter is well known, and has been used by me as a stimulus to the Macedonians. I send our friends to you only to make sure that our boast of you has not been vain. Remember that the blessing you receive will be in proportion to your giving, and that much spiritual benefit will come both to you and to them by this interchange of sympathy.

1. The ministering] St. Paul had already written on the collection in general (1 Corinthians 16:1-4), and had sent instructions by Titus on his first visit (2 Corinthians 12:18). The saints] the Christians in Jerusalem.

2. The forwardness of your mind] RV ’your readiness.’ A year ago] see on 2 Corinthians 8:10. Provoked] RV ’stirred up.’

4. We (that we say not, ye)] He bids them realise how much he would be ashamed before the Macedonian delegates if they were unprepared: at the same time he suggests in passing that he is sure their own shame would not be less than his.

5. Your bounty, whereof ye had notice before] RV ’your aforepromised bounty.’

Bounty, and not.. covetousness] He desired their gift to be ready before he came, that it might be evident to the delegates that they had given it of their own free-will, and did not need to have it dragged out of them through shame in his presence.

7. As he purposeth in his heart, so let him give, etc.] i.e. do not let a man give what he grudges or because he feels that he must do as the others; let the open hand correspond to the willing spirit.

8-11. Paraphrase. ’And God has power to enrich you with all earthly blessings, that ye may have sufficient for yourselves and the means of helping those who need, (9) and so experience the fulfilment of the promise of God’s Word. (10) Now God, who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food, will both provide for your wants and abundantly bless your charity and make it fruitful for good; (11) for your willingness to give freely of what you have freely received will cause those to whom we bear your bounty to give thanks to God for your thoughtful love.’

8. All grace] every earthly blessing that will give them opportunity of blessing others.

That ye.. may abound] The purpose of God’s gifts to them is that they may share them with others: cp. for the thought 2 Corinthians 1:4.

9. As it is written] Psalms 112:9. His righteousness remaineth] In return for his generosity, God will give him continually the disposition to be generous; the charitable man has his reward in becoming more charitable—a true spiritual blessing.

12-15. Paraphrase. ’For this charity has a twofold benefit: it supplies the needs of the brethren in Jerusalem, and it makes them give thanks and praise to God. (13) They give glory to God because they see in this bounty the proof of your obedience to Christ, and they praise Him for your generous gift to them and to others, (14) while they express in prayer their fervent longing that all blessings may be yours. (15) God be praised for this great boon, whose blessedness no tongue can tell.’

12. The exercise of the gift of charity had both a material and a religious value.

13. Whiles by the experiment of this ministration] RV ’Seeing that through the proving of you by this ministration.’ The reception of the collection would be proof to the Church in Jerusalem of the true Christianity of those who called themselves Christians in Corinth: cp. 1 John 4:20.

15. His unspeakable gift] The establishment of these happy relations between the Churches, each giving thanks for the others and praying for their growth in all goodness, was a blessing from God beyond the power of words to express.

Bibliographical Information
Dummelow, John. "Commentary on 2 Corinthians 9". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". 1909.