2 Corinthians 9:4 (KJV)
Lest haply if they of Macedonia come with me, and find you unprepared, we (that we say not, ye) should be ashamed in this same confident boasting.
None of us like to be judged. Especially is this true when we are being judged concerning what someone else has said of us.
Consider this scene:
Paul has boasted, in his travels, of the generosity of the Christians in the church at Corinth. Paul was so confident that they would give significantly for the relief of the believers in Jerusalem that he had used them to provoke others to do the same.
Now he is making reading to go to Corinth and take up this collection and the thought comes to him, “What if some of those who have heard my boasts come along with me? What if Corinth isn’t as prepared for this offering as I have boasted?“
He chooses to send representatives ahead to give Corinth time to be ready lest, Paul says, he “be ashamed.” He specifically placed the shame upon himself and not Corinth should that be the case. He would be his shame, not that he boasted, but that he had not adequately prepared them.
I can hear someone in Corinth saying”
- Who says we have to make Paul look good?
- Who cares if others think less of us than Paul boasted?
- Who says we have to be generous just because Paul has bragged we are generous?
Fact is, none of us care to be held to higher expectations. We don’t like the pressure of others looking at us as examples. We certainly don’t want to be judged for what someone we did not know was looking sees in us.
I think this is the point of the passage. We may not care for it but it is a fact. It is a fact that the Bible acknowledges and instructs us here to bow to.
- Be an example.
- Be prepared to be an example and
- Don’t begrudge being made an example
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2 Corinthians 9:4 Be An Example
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