Big Idea: Jesus took on our weakness so we might share in His power.
There is probably no more startling summary of the gospel than that found in 2 Corinthians 8:9. Jesus, who was rich in every sense of the word as God who existed from eternity past, became poor. He gave up His home, His comforts, and took on pain, wandering, and struggle. Beyond that, He gave up His communion with the Father as He became sin who knew no sin. Everything stripped away, the King of Glory was humble and poor. Why? So that we, through the very fact of His poverty, could become rich. He took on weakness and came to our level so that when we are identified with Him by faith, we are also joined with Him when He returned to His rightful place.
Jesus was not merely an example of what we could be or even a symbolic victor. His poverty is the key to our riches. The humility required to accept our weakness is one of the things that keeps many people from experiencing the power of life in Christ. He was our substitute, clothed in our sin so that we could be clothed in His righteousness.
Paul gives this spiritual reality a simple physical application. If Jesus became poor for us, we ought to be generous with our resources as well. The Macedonians gave generously of their possessions but only because they had already given themselves to God. If we have really recognized that we are not our own, how could we think that we possess anything? We should not hoard the things which we think we are entitled to, when all that really matters was a free gift. As the recipients of such incredible grace, we should hold our privileges loosely and be quick to open our hands to each other.
Discussion Idea: What are some things you are tempted to hold tightly? Why?
Prayer Focus: Praise God for giving up everything so He could share it with you.