2 Corinthians 8:13
For I mean not that other men be eased, and ye burdened:
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(13) For I mean not that other men be eased.—The disclaimer is obviously an answer to something that had been said. The “charity begins at home” argument, with which the workers in the cause of missions and other distant works of charity are but too familiar, would seem not to have been unknown in the Church of Corinth.

2 Corinthians 8:13-15. I mean not that other men — Those who are now in want; should be eased — Plentifully supplied; and ye be burdened — Straitened to relieve them; that is, that ease should be to the brethren in Judea, through distress to you. But by (εξ, on account of) an equality — That a distribution should be made according to their necessity and your ability; that at the present time your abundance may be a supply for the wants of the brethren in Judea, and that at another time, if God, in the course of his providence, should hereafter change your conditions, and you should stand in need of it; their abundance may be a supply for your wants, so as that there may be an equality — That there may be no want on the one side, nor superfluity on the other. The words may likewise have a further meaning: that as the temporal bounty of the Corinthians supplied the temporal wants of their poor brethren in Judea, so the prayers of these might be a means of bringing down many spiritual blessings on their benefactors. So that all the spiritual wants of the one might be amply supplied; all the temporal of the other. As it is written — As it was in the gathering of the manna; He that gathered much had nothing over, &c. — Had only his proportion. For what any person gathered more than a homer, was put into a common stock, to make up that quantity to the aged and infirm, who gathered little.

8:10-15 Good purposes are like buds and blossoms, pleasant to behold, and give hopes of good fruit; but they are lost, and signify nothing without good deeds. Good beginnings are well; but we lose the benefit, unless there is perseverance. When men purpose that which is good, and endeavour, according to their ability, to perform also, God will not reject them for what it is not in their power to do. But this scripture will not justify those who think good meanings are enough, or that good purposes, and the mere profession of a willing mind, are enough to save. Providence gives to some more of the good things of this world, and to some less, that those who have abundance might supply others who are in want. It is the will of God, that by our mutual supplying one another, there should be some sort of equality; not such a levelling as would destroy property, for in such a case there could be no exercise of charity. All should think themselves concerned to relieve those in want. This is shown from the gathering and giving out the manna in the wilderness, Ex 16:18. Those who have most of this world, have no more than food and raiment; and those who have but little of this world, seldom are quite without them.For I mean not that other men be eased ... - I do not intend that others should be eased in order to relieve you. Literally, "Not that there should be rest (ἄνεσις anesis, a letting loose; remission, relaxation) to others, but affliction (θλίψις thlipsis) to you." Probably the Corinthians were able to contribute more than many other churches, certainly more than the churches of Macedonia 2 Corinthians 8:2, and Paul therefore presses upon them the duty of giving according to their means, yet he by no means intended that the entire burden should come on them. 13. For—Supply from 2Co 8:8, "I speak." My aim is not that others (namely, the saints at Jerusalem) may be relieved at the cost of your being "distressed" (so the Greek for "burdened"). The golden rule is, "Love thy neighbour as thyself," not more than thyself. I do not press you to such proportions in giving as should make your afflicted brethren rich, and you poor.

For I mean not that other men be eased and you burdened. Referring either to the givers; and that either to the richer and meaner sort in this church; the apostle's sense being, not to put the whole burden of the collection upon some only, whilst others were excused doing little or nothing; but that everyone should give according to his ability; or to other churches in poorer circumstances; and the apostle's meaning was, not that these churches by reason of their meanness should be entirely free from this service, as it was plain they were not, by the instance of the Macedonians; and that the whole be devolved upon the Corinthian church, and others that were rich; but that all should contribute according to their circumstances: or this may refer to the persons given to, and for whom this beneficence was asked; for the words may be rendered, "for not that there may be ease", or relaxation "to others, and to you affliction" or straitness; that is, his meaning was, not that there should be such a contribution raised for these poor saints at Jerusalem, that they should live in ease and great abundance; whilst their benefactors, through an over abundant generosity to them, were straitened, and their families reduced to great difficulties; this was what was far from his intentions. {7} For I mean not that other men be eased, and ye burdened:

(7) Christian liberality is mutual, so that one does not have too much, and the other to little.

2 Corinthians 8:13. Confirmation of the previous οὐ καθὸ οὐκ ἔχει from the aim of the present collection.

The words usually supplied after οὐ γάρ (Beza, Flatt, and others: hoc dico; Erasmus and Grotius: sic dandum est; Rosenmüller and Fritzsche, ad Rom. p 48: volo; comp. Osiander; Rückert has γίνεται τοῦτο, comp. Ewald, and previously Luther) are superfluous, and therefore to be rejected. There is nothing to be supplied but after θλίψις and γίνεται (see 2 Corinthians 8:14) at the end of the verse: for not in order that there may be to others refreshing, to you distress, but on a footing of equality at the present time your superfluity reaches to the lack of those, is applied to remedy their lack. The punctuation is to be corrected accordingly. Since the sentence in this way flows logically and grammatically without any obstacle, there is not to be placed after θλίψις (Beza, Elzevir, Flatt, and many others), or yet even after ἰσότητος (Griesbach, Lachmann, Tischendorf, Rückert, de Wette, Osiander, and others), any colon, by which, moreover, ἐν τῷ νῦν καιρῷ would receive an emphasis not justified by any contrast, and would come in very abruptly, having no connecting particl.

ἄλλοις] means the Christians in Jerusalem. The same are afterwards meant by ἐκείνων. Probably opponents in Corinth had said: “he wishes to fleece us and bring us to want, that others may have good times or the like.”

On the contrast of ἄνεσις and θλίψις, comp. 2 Thessalonians 1:6 f. The asyndeton: ἄλλοις ἄνεσις, ὑμῖν (δέ is not genuine) θλίψις presents the contrast more vividly. Paul, however, uses ἄλλοις, not ἑτέροις (as in 2 Corinthians 8:8), because he has been thinking of others generally, other persons than the readers.

ἐξ ἰσότητος] ἐκ, as in 2 Corinthians 8:11, used of the standard. The establishment of equality (between you and others) is the norm, according to which, et.

ἐν τῷ νῦν καιρᾷ] awakens the thought of a future, where the state of the case might be reversed. See 2 Corinthians 8:14. Hofmann thinks that Paul had here in view the definite inversion of the situation in such wise, that after Israel’s conversion (2 Corinthians 3:16) there would be in the Holy Land a Christian church under more prosperous fortunes than the body of Gentile Christians then sorely tried. But this is not to be made good by 2 Thessalonians 2:3, and it has against it Romans 11:25, according to which, before the conversion of Israel will ensue, the whole Gentile world must first be converted, and accordingly Paul could hardly have thought of casual collections from Judaea as then either necessary or effectual for the Gentiles (apart altogether from the expected nearness of the Parousia).

On γίνεσθαι εἰς, to come unto, reach towards, be apportioned to (Plato, Tim. p. 57 A; Luc. Caucas, 19, al.), comp. on Galatians 3:14.

2 Corinthians 8:13-14. οὐ γὰρ ἵνα κ.τ.λ.: for the collection is not made in order that there may be relief to others, i.e., to the Judæan Christians, and pressure to you, but by equality, your abundance at the present season being a supply for their want, that their abundance also may prove to be a supply for your want, sc., at some future time, that there may be equality, i.e., reciprocity. There is no thought here of Jerusalem giving spiritual benefits in return for the material benefits given by Corinth (cf. chap. 2 Corinthians 9:14 and Romans 15:27); what is meant is that if it ever came to the turn of Corinth to be poor, then it would be for Jerusalem to contribute for her support: Such an idea as that of the transference of the merits of the saints is, of course, quite foreign to the context.

13. that other men be eased, and you burdened] This translation is partly due to the Geneva Version and partly to Tyndale. Literally it runs, that other men should have relief (see note on ch. 2 Corinthians 7:5) and ye tribulation. (That it be remissioun to other men and to you tribulation. Wiclif. Similarly the Rhemish Version.) “Again, in St Paul’s spirit of entreaty we remark the spirit of reciprocity. It might have been supposed that because St Paul was a Jew he was therefore anxious for his Jewish brethren; and that in urging the Corinthians to give liberally, even out of their poverty, he forgot the unfairness of the request, and was satisfied so long as only the Jews were relieved—it mattered not at whose expense.” Robertson.

2 Corinthians 8:13. Οὐ γὰρ) for not, viz. the object aimed at is not. The rule of exercising liberality.—ἄνεσις· θλίψις) The same antithesis is found, 2 Thessalonians 1:6-7.—ἐξ ἰσότητος, by an equality) in carnal things. [Love thy neighbour, as thyself (not more).—V. g.]—ἐν τῷ νῦν καιρῷ, at the present [juncture] time) This limitation does not occur again in the following verse.—τὸπερίσσευμα, abundance) in external resources [means]. The imperative γενέσθω is courteously omitted, for he does not command, 2 Corinthians 8:8.

Verse 13. - And ye be burdened; literally, for not that there may be relief to others, but to you affliction. In other words, I have no wish that you should distress yourselves to set others at ease. You must not suspect me of Jewish proclivities which would lead me to impoverish you to provide luxuries for the Christians at Jerusalem. Others refer it to the Macedonians: "I do not wish to burden you, but the Macedonians, who are poor, have contributed, and if you join them in this good work now they may help you hereafter." But there is no hint of this anywhere. 2 Corinthians 8:13
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