2 Corinthians 9:7

7 You should each give what you have decided in your heart to give. You shouldn't give if you don't want to. You shouldn't give because you are forced to. God loves a cheerful giver.

2 Corinthians 9:7 Meaning and Commentary

2 Corinthians 9:7

Every man according as he purposeth in his heart
Which is not to be understood of the quantity, or any set sum he has fixed upon in his mind to give; but of the quality or nature of giving; or of the manner in which he is to give:

so let him give;
of his own will and free choice, from his very heart; not as directed and forced by others, but according to his own counsel and determination:

not grudgingly;
or not of grief; with pain and uneasiness of mind, grieving at parting with what is given, reflecting on the persons that move him to it, or on the objects moved for. The Jews F7 reckon this the lowest degree of all in giving alms; "when a man gives to anyone" (bueb) , "with grief", to which the apostle seems to refer: who adds,

or of necessity;
of force, by coaction, being obliged to it by the influence, example, or commands of superiors; or through the powerful motives, or prevailing entreaties of others; for without these, men, according to their abilities, should give of themselves freely and liberally:

for God loveth a cheerful giver;
or one that gives (twpy Mynp rbob) , "with a cheerful countenance", as the Jews F8 say; or as elsewhere {i}, "with a cheerful heart": their rule is this,

``he that doth the commandment, i.e. alms, let him do it (xmv blb) , "with a cheerful heart".''

Who looks pleasantly on the person or persons that move him to it, or on the object to whom he gives; who parts with his money willingly, and takes delight in doing good to others; such givers God loves: not that their cheerful beneficence is the cause of his special peculiar love to them in his own heart, which arises from nothing in man, or done by him; but the meaning is, that God does well to such persons; shows his love to them; he lets them know how kindly he takes such acts of theirs, by prospering and succeeding them in their worldly affairs. In the Septuagint in ( Proverbs 22:8 ) are these words, "God blesses a cheerful man, and a giver", which the apostle refers to.


FOOTNOTES:

F7 Maimon. Mattanot Anayim, c. 10. sect. 14.
F8 Maimon. Mattanot Anayim, c. 10. sect. 13.
F9 Vajikra Rabba, fol. 174. 1. Parash. 34.

2 Corinthians 9:7 In-Context

5 So I thought I should try to get the brothers to visit you ahead of time. They will finish the plans for the large gift you had promised. Then it will be ready as a gift that is freely given. It will not be given by force.
6 Here is something to remember. The one who plants only a little will gather only a little. And the one who plants a lot will gather a lot.
7 You should each give what you have decided in your heart to give. You shouldn't give if you don't want to. You shouldn't give because you are forced to. God loves a cheerful giver.
8 And God is able to shower all kinds of blessings on you. In all things and at all times you will have everything you need. You will do more and more good works.
9 It is written, "They have spread their gifts around to poor people. Their good works continue forever." (Psalm 112:9)

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