9
The fund is not a requisition but a blessing
1I do not think there is any need for me to say more about your part in this fund. 2I have told many of your own readiness to give. I have told the churches in Asia that Achaia has long been laying by for it, and for some time past your example has stimulated them. 3Now I send the committee of three brethren whom I have mentioned to complete the matter. 4You will see to it that what I have spoken about you has not been spoken in vain, that when they come, I may not be found to have boasted of you to no purpose, and that I, not to say yourselves, may have no reason to be ashamed. 5I told them they would find you ready, and that there was no idea in your minds that this fund was a requisition, but that it stood for a blessing. These were the words with which I sped them on their way.
6I will say but this, that to sow plentifully is to reap plentifully, and that a niggard spirit will never receive a blessing for that which was not given as a blessing. 7“God loveth a cheerful giver” (Prov. xxii. 8). He can make you abound in everything that is good. 8He can give you that self-reliance and competency within and without which will accomplish everything good. 9“He hath dispersed, he hath given to the poor; his righteousness endureth for ever” (Ps. cxii. 9). 10It is He who supplies “the seed to the sower, and the bread to the eater” (Is. lv. 10). 11-13He shall multiply what you have in Him, your seed and your fruit, and the perfection from which they flow. Those riches grow for those who are simple and honest in heart, and the greatest possession is that gratitude which we feel to God, and that is the secret of this fund which I have organised. It does not merely fill the want of churches elsewhere, it is the sure and abounding fruit of great gratitude to God in our midst. Those receiving it will praise God the more joyfully when they realise the test which this contribution has put you to, when they see your obedience and common acknowledgement of the gospel of the Christ, when they feel the simplicity of heart with which the gift is made to themselves and which is present also in all your dealings towards others, 14and will pray for you, and long after you in the gospel of God, because of the divine manifestation in your midst. 15God be praised for His gift which passes all utterance, all power of expression.
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