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                "THE SECOND EPISTLE TO THE CORINTHIANS"

                             Chapter Eight

OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER

1) To see how Paul motivated others in their giving

2) To ascertain what principles ought to govern our giving

3) To appreciate the honorable manner in which Paul handled the
   collection for needy saints

SUMMARY

At this point Paul addresses an issue that occupied much of his 
interest during his missionary journeys:  the collection for the needy
Christians in Judea (cf. Ga 2:9-10; Ro 15:25-28; 1 Co 16:1-2).  In this
letter, two entire chapters are devoted to the subject.

He begins by mentioning the churches in Macedonia.  Despite a great 
trial of affliction and their own deep poverty, their abundance of joy
and eagerness to participate in this ministry resulted in great 
liberality (1-5).

Having sent Titus to assist the Corinthians in carrying through with 
their own desire to give, Paul exhorts them not only by the example of
the Macedonians but by the example of Jesus Christ (6-9).  Since it is 
to their advantage that they complete what they began a year earlier,
Paul reminds them of the principles that ought to govern their giving.
These principles involve willingness, ability, and equality (10-15).

In an effort to do everything honorable in the sight of others, the 
collection is to be handled by three men other than Paul.  Titus is 
one, but the other two men are unnamed.  However, they are well known
and proven in their service to the Lord.  Paul encourages the
Corinthians to demonstrate to these men and to all the churches the
proof of their love in this collection and that Paul's boasting about 
the church in Corinth was not in vain (16-24).

OUTLINE

I. MACEDONIA'S EXAMPLE IN GIVING (1-5)

   A. AFFLICTED AND POOR, THEY ABOUNDED IN LIBERALITY (1-2)
      1. God's grace was bestowed upon the churches of Macedonia (1)
      2. Despite affliction and deep poverty, with an abundance of joy
         their poverty abounded in riches of liberality (2)

   B. PAUL'S OBSERVATION OF THEIR GIVING (3-5)
      1. They gave beyond their ability (3a)
      2. They gave willingly (3b)
      3. They implored Paul to accept their contribution (4)
      4. Beyond Paul's expectations, they gave themselves first to the
         Lord and then to Paul as God willed (5)

II. PAUL'S EXHORTATION TO THE CORINTHIANS (6-15)

   A. TO ABOUND IN THIS GRACE (6-7)
      1. Titus was sent to complete this grace in them (6)
      2. As the Corinthians abounded in many other things, Paul 
         encourages them to abound in this grace also (7)

   B. TO BE MOTIVATED BY THE EXAMPLES OF OTHERS (8-9)
      1. Not by commandment, but the example of others Paul seeks to
         test their love (8)
      2. Remembering the example of Jesus, through whose poverty we
         became rich (9)

   C. TO COMPLETE WHAT THEY STARTED (10-11)
      1. It is to their advantage to complete what they started a year
         before (10)
      2. So that there is not only a desire to do it, but the
         completion of it as well (11)

   D. TO GIVE WILLINGLY AND ACCORDING TO ABILITY (12)
      1. There must first be a willing mind (12a)
      2. Then it should be according to what one has (12b)

   E. TO GIVE SO THAT THERE MIGHT BE EQUALITY (13-15)
      1. Paul does not desire that they burden themselves to ease
         others (13)
      2. But that their abundance might supply others' lack, so there
         can be equality (14)
      3. As in the case of gathering manna, recorded in Exodus 16:18
         (15)

III. THE MESSENGERS ADMINISTERING THE COLLECTION (16-24)

   A. TITUS (16-17)
      1. Paul could see that God put earnest care for the Corinthians 
         in Titus' heart (16)
      2. For he not only accepted the encouragement to go, but went on
         his own accord (17)

   B. A BROTHER WHOSE PRAISE IS IN THE GOSPEL (18-21)
      1. Not mentioned by name, but whose praise was known by all the
         churches (18)
      2. Chosen by the churches to travel with Paul, so that none would
         question Paul's handling of the collection (19-21)

   C. A BROTHER OFTEN PROVED DILIGENT IN MANY THINGS (22)
      1. Also not mentioned by name, but well proven (22a)
      2. Known for his diligence, he was very diligent in view of 
         Paul's confidence in the Corinthians (22b)

   D. SUMMARY COMMENTS ABOUT THESE THREE MEN (23-24)
      1. Titus is Paul's partner and fellow worker (23a)
      2. The two unnamed brethren are messengers of the churches, the
         glory of Christ (23b)
      3. Corinth encouraged to prove their love and Paul's boasting on
         their behalf to these messengers (24)

REVIEW QUESTIONS FOR THE CHAPTER

1) What are the main points of this chapter?
   - Macedonia's example in giving (1-5)
   - Paul's exhortations to the Corinthians (6-15)
   - The messengers administering the collection (16-24)

2) What was the condition of the churches in Macedonia?  Yet what did
   they have in abundance? (2)
   - They were in a great trial of affliction and had deep poverty
   - Their joy

3) What three things are said in how they gave? (3-4)
   - Beyond their ability
   - Freely willing
   - Imploring with much urgency that their gift be received

4) How did they go beyond Paul's expectations? (5)
   - By giving of themselves first to the Lord, and then to others

5) Why did Paul send Titus? (6)
   - To complete this grace in them, i.e., help them to prepare their
     gift

6) What two examples did Paul use motivate them to give? (8-9)
   - The diligence of others (e.g., the Macedonians)
   - The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ

7) What three guidelines does Paul give to govern their giving? (12-14)
   - There must first be a willing mind
   - It is to be according to what one has
   - The idea is equality

8) What three men were sent to administer this collection? (16,18,22)
   - Titus
   - The brother whose praise is in the gospel
   - The brother who has often proved diligent in many things

9) Why were these men handling the collection, and not Paul? (20-21)
   - To avoiding possible blame; to provide things honorable in the 
     sight of the Lord and men

10) What did Paul want the Corinthians to show to these men and the
    other churches? (24)
   - The proof of their love and of Paul's boasting in them
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