2 Corinthians 8:9
For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor…
According to the teaching of the New Testament, human kindness should be based upon Divine benevolence. Such is the import of this wonderful parenthesis - a jewel which the inspired writer drops by the way and passes on.
I. CHRIST'S NATIVE RICHES CONTRASTED WITH HIS VOLUNTARY POVERTY,
1. His proper rightful wealth is apparent, not only from his nature as the Son of God, but from his evident command, during his earthly ministry, of all the resources of nature. Bread, wine, money, he could multiply or create; the earth and the sea obeyed his will; diseases and demons fled at his bidding.
2. His poverty was not compulsory; it was a "grace." We see it in his incarnation, in which he emptied himself of his glory; in his ministry, passed in a lowly and all but destitute condition of life; in his refusal to use his power for selfish ends; in his cheerful submission to a shameful death. Compare the glory which he claimed to have had with the Father before the world was, with the homelessness and poverty of his life and the desertion and ignominy of his death, and his "grace" appeals to every just mind, to every sensitive heart.
II. OUR NATIVE SPIRITUAL POVERTY CONTRASTED WITH OUR ACQUIRED SPIRITUAL WEALTH.
1. Our natural destitution is undeniable; by sin we have lost our possessions, our inheritance, our powers of acquisition, and are left resourceless and friendless. Apart from the interposition of Christ, and where Christianity is unknown, such is still the state of man.
2. Christ's humiliation was for the sake of man's spiritual enrichment. Only by condescension, compassion, and sacrifice could man be reached. Thus he drew near to us, and imparted to us of his own true and Divine riches, of knowledge, of righteousness, of favour, and of glory.
3. By Christ's mediation all things are ours, God, giving Christ, gives with him all good things. "I have all things and abound," is the testimony of every right-minded and appreciative disciple of Christ. The history of the Church is the history of the enrichment of the race; and this in turn is the pledge and promise of the inestimable and inexhaustible riches of eternity. - T.
Parallel VersesKJV: 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.