Reasons for His Sending Titus. The Greater Their Bountifulness, the More Shall Be
the Return of Blessing to Them, and Thanksgiving to God.
1. For—connected with 2Co 8:16: "Show love to the messengers of the
churches; for as concerns the ministration for the saints, it is
superfluous for me to write to you who are so forward
write—emphatical: It is superfluous to
"write," for you will have witnesses present [Bengel].
2. ready a year ago—to send off the
money, owing to the apostle's former exhortation (1Co 16:1, 2).
your zeal—Greek, "the zeal from
you," that is, on your part; propagated from you to others.
provoked—that is, stimulated.
very many—Greek, "the greater
number," namely, of the Macedonians.
3. have I sent—we should say, "I send";
whereas the ancients put it in the past, the time which it would be by
the time that the letter arrived.
the brethren—(2Co 8:18, 22)—Titus and the two
should be in vain in this
behalf—"should be proved futile in this particular,"
however true in general (2Co 7:4). A
tacit compliment, softening the sharp monition.
as I said—as I was saying (2Co 9:2).
4. if they of Macedonia—rather as
Greek, "if Macedonians."
unprepared—with your collection; see
2Co 9:2, "ready," Greek,
we, not to say ye—Ye would
naturally feel more ashamed for yourselves, than we (who boasted of
you) would for you.
confident boasting—The oldest
manuscripts read simply "confidence," namely, in your liberality.
5. that they would go before—Translate,
"that they should," &c.
whereof ye had notice before—rather,
"promised before"; "long announced by me to the Macedonians" (2Co 9:2) [Bengel]. "Your promised bounty" [Ellicott and others].
not as of
covetousness—Translate, "not as matter of covetousness,"
which it would be, if you gave niggardly.
6. I say—Ellicott and others supply the ellipsis thus: "But
or "in blessings." The word itself implies a beneficent
spirit in the giver (compare 2Co 9:7, end), and the plural implies the
abundance and liberality of the gifts. "The reaping shall
correspond to the proportions and spirit of the sowing" [Bengel]. Compare Eze 34:26, "Showers of blessing."
7. according as he purposeth in his
heart—Let the full consent of the free will go with the gift
[Alford]. Opposed to "of necessity," as
"grudgingly" is opposed to "a cheerful giver" (Pr 22:9;
11:25; Isa 32:8).
8. all grace—even in external goods, and
even while ye bestow on others [Bengel].
that—"in order that." God's gifts are
bestowed on us, not that we may have them to ourselves, but that we may
the more "abound in good works" to others.
sufficiency—so as not to need the help
of others, having yourselves from God "bread for your food" (2Co 9:10).
in all things—Greek, "in
every good work—of charity to others,
which will be "your seed sown" (2Co 9:10).
9. As it is written—realizing the highly
blessed character portrayed in Ps 112:9.
He—the "good man" (Ps 112:5).
dispersed—as seed sown with full and
open hand, without anxious thought in what direction each grain may
fall. It is implied also that he has always what he may disperse
[Bengel]. So in Ps 112:9.
the poor—The Greek word is
found here only in New Testament, "one in straitened circumstances, who
earns his bread by labor." The word usually employed means "one so poor
as to live by begging."
his righteousness—Here "beneficence":
the evidence of his being righteous before God and man. Compare
24:13; Mt 6:1, "alms";
10. Translate, as in Isa 55:10, "He that ministereth (supplieth) seed
to the sower and bread for food" (literally, "bread for
minister—rather future, as the oldest
manuscripts, "Shall minister (supply) and multiply."
your seed—your means for
the fruits of your righteousness—the
heavenly rewards for your Christian charity (Mt 10:42). Righteousness shall be itself the
reward, even as it is the thing rewarded (Ho 10:12;
Mt 5:6; 6:33).
11. Compare 2Co 9:8.
"single-minded liberality." Translated "simplicity," Ro 12:8.
causeth through us—literally, "worketh
through us"; that is, through our instrumentality as the
thanksgiving—on the part of the
12. Greek, "The ministration of
this public service (on your part) is not only still
further supplying the wants of the saints (besides the supplies
from other quarters), but is abounding also (namely, in respect to
relieving the necessities of others in poverty) through many
thanksgivings to God."
13. by—through occasion of.
experiment—Translate, "the experience"
[Ellicott and others]. Or, "the
experimental proof" of your Christian character, afforded by "this
for your professed
subjection—Greek, "for the subjection of your
profession"; that is, your subjection in accordance with your
profession, in relation to the Gospel. Ye yield yourselves in willing
subjection to the Gospel precepts, evinced in acts, as well as in
distribution—Greek, "the liberality of your
contribution in relation to them," &c.
14. Translate, "Themselves also with prayer
for you, longing after you on account of the exceeding grace of God
(resting) upon you." English Version is, however, good sense:
They glorify God (2Co 9:13) by
the experimental proof, &c., "and by their prayer for you." But the
Greek favors the former.
15. his unspeakable gift—the gift of His
own Son, which includes all other inferior gifts (2Co 8:9; Ro
8:32). If we have received
from God "His unspeakable gift," what great thing is it, if we give a
few perishing gifts for His sake?