These daily online studies are adapted from our Quiet Time Bible Guide. The studies go through the Old and New Testaments in just over two years. The approach taken by our quiet time Bible studies does not include answers. The goal of the study is to help you dig into Scripture for yourself. You can go deeper using a commentary, Bible background guide or Bible handbook.
2 Corinthians 8:1-9:15: The Need to Give
For more context before you begin studying, read this introduction to the book of 2 Corinthians.
The privacy of the purse makes it extremely difficult for Christians to talk about their money. The fig leaf has slipped from the genitals to the wallet. The problem is compounded by hard-sell media evangelists raising funds for their personal empire. But Paul devotes two whole chapters to the grace of giving, because both he and the Corinthians have a problem in this area.
Warming Up to God
Reflect on your own pattern of giving. When is it hard for you?
Read 2 Corinthians 8:1-9:15
Discovering the Word
- In what ways are the Macedonians excellent examples of generosity (8:1-5)?
- In both chapters Paul refrains from using the word money. Instead he speaks of sharing (8:4; 9:13), service (8:4, 18; 9:1, 12-13),offering (8:19), grace (8:6-7) and gift (8:12, 20; 9:5). What insights do these words give us into the nature of giving?
- Paul never raised money for himself, for his own missionary organization or even for Corinth Community Church. What is the primary goal that governs his appeal for gifts (8:10-15)?
- What care does Paul take to avoid any suspicion of dishonesty or self-interest as he handles this large gift (8:16-24)?
- Some people teach that giving money to the Lord's work results in your getting more money yourself. What does Paul say about the personal benefits of giving (9:6-11)?
Applying the Word
- What positive and negative feelings do you have about people raising money for a Christian cause?
- Paul encourages cheerful giving (v. 7). The word is the root of our English hilarious. It is the exact opposite of calculated giving under compulsion. According to these two chapters, how could you become a more cheerful giver?
- What difference will this study make in the stewardship of your resources?
Responding in Prayer
Pray for the needs of believers around the world, especially those who suffer persecution.