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October 12

2 Corinthians 9:6-9

6 The point is this: The person who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the person who sows generously will also reap generously. 7 Each person should do as he has decided in his heart—not reluctantly or out of compulsion, since God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work. 9 As it is written: He distributed freely; he gave to the poor; his righteousness endures forever. — 2 Corinthians 9:6-9

Law of the Harvest

by Ron Hutson
Brentwood Campus

I only vaguely remember my college days, but I can recall my study habits weren’t to be envied. I practiced the habit of putting off studying until the last moment and then “cramming” all night for exams. I generally received the short-term goal of a respectable grade on the test, but my long-term retention of the material left a lot to be desired. I was violating the principles contained in the “Law of the Harvest.”

Simply stated, the Law of the Harvest includes the following primary philosophies:

  1. Success requires disciplined daily effort; there are no “shortcuts” to a bountiful harvest.
  2. You reap what you sow.

Paul had written an earlier letter to the church in Corinth concerning an offering that was to be collected for the struggling church in Jerusalem. He suggested that the members should set aside an amount on the first day of each week, in keeping with how they had prospered, so they would be prepared when he arrived in Corinth to collect their gift.

In the opening verses of 2 Corinthians 9, Paul told them he had bragged to the churches in Macedonia about their preparations and zeal to give during the year. Nevertheless, he was going to send some of the brothers to Corinth to insure their generous gift would be ready when he arrived so they wouldn’t be embarrassed.

Beginning with verse 6, Paul reminded them that the harvest is directly related to how they have sown. If they sow sparingly, they will reap sparingly. If they sow generously, they will reap generously. Verse 7 follows with an additional principle concerning their giving: “So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver” (NKJV).

We are to be good stewards of everything God gives us. Paul provides simple yet very clear guidelines for our giving. Our gifts should be in keeping with how we have prospered and should be given generously from the heart.

Praxis

1. Our motives matter to God. “You ask and don’t receive because you ask with wrong motives” (James 4:3 HCSB).
2. Am I a cheerful giver, or do I give grudgingly, out of necessity? Are my motives for giving from my heart, or am I seeking praise or some reward from others?