“For this is not for the ease of others and for your affliction, but by way of equality- at this present time your abundance being a supply for their need, so that their abundance also may become a supply for your need, that there may be equality; as it is written, “HE WHO gathered MUCH DID NOT HAVE TOO MUCH, AND HE WHO gathered LITTLE HAD NO LACK.”” (8:13-15)
This last quote is a throw back to the story in Exodus 16 about the manna God provided to feed the people in the desert. That story is a personal favorite of mine, because there are so many principles to glean from that instance.
Everyone went out to gather food, and obviously not everyone has equal gathering skills. Some had a lot, some had a little. Everyone measured out an omer (because that was the commanded portion) and it worked out that there was enough for every person to have an omer! God provides enough for everyone! Poverty doesn’t have to be a thing.
What’s interesting (albeit, not totally surprising) is that a lot of people acted out and tried to hoard some, aka not eat it all and save it for later. Why would they do that? Maybe they didn’t believe the manna would always appear. Maybe they thought they could be a secondary supplier and sell the extra. Who knows. The point is, they tried to hoard it and it spoiled, really grossly, very quickly. It’s intended purpose was to last a day. DAILY BREAD. This was to teach Israel to TRUST God with His ability to faithfully provide for them. FRESH DAILY. And to share. There’s also a bonus lesson in there about the sabbath because GOD IS SERIOUS ABOUT YOU TAKING A DAY OFF.
Paul uses this example for the Corinthians then, as a reason why they can afford to be generous to impoverished fellow believers. This example still stands.
Where do we think our money comes from? Why do we think we need to hoard some of it? “God gave me this bonus check, I need to steward it wisely, because He probably won’t provide it another way. This could be my only chance.” That seems all good and nice and wise and churchy, but God always wants us to remember that He is the source of the manna, and He commands generosity.
I’ve seen time and time again, how God faithfully replenishes generous people. He likes giving money to people who give it away.
“Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this,” says the LORD of hosts, “if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows.” (3:10)
“Therefore openly before the churches, show them the proof of your love and of our reason for boasting about you.” (8:24)
Ask God how He would challenge you to be generous today: how, who, when, where, etc.