He Became Poor
The NT contains several single verses that summarize the entire Gospel message into one weighty statement. Examples might be John 3:16, 1 Cor 15:3-4, or 2 Cor 5:21. Such verses capture the main elements of the Gospel in one pithy statement.
Tonight I want to consider one such summary statement of the Gospel:
2 Co 8:9 For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.
This verse stands within a passage in which Paul is exhorting his readers to give generously to an offering he was collecting for the poor saints in Jerusalem. Jesus is an example of one who gave generously for the benefit of others. In fact, Jesus gave more and it cost him more than anyone else ever did. But it was through his generosity that we are saved. Gratitude for this grace should motivate us to give generously. God’s grace as displayed in the sacrificial work of Christ is the best example of true generosity.
What Jesus gave generously was his own life. He left the glories of heaven, took upon him the form of a servant, and became obedient unto death, even the death of a cross.
Today is Good Friday, the day that we especially commemorate the death of Christ. His death was a good example of generosity, but it was far more than that. 2 Cor 8:9 tells us several important truths about Jesus’ death.