The generous acts of one group of people encourage other people to give. Paul had seen that as he spoke in various churches across Macedonia. The Christians of Corinth, in Achaia, were preparing to send a generous gift to help Judea’s poor Christians. Paul told Macedonia’s Christians about those preparations. The result was that Macedonia’s Christians wanted to give, too*.
In fact, they offered not just their gifts, but themselves for this task too. Luke, Sopater, Aristarchus and Secundus, who were all from Macedonia, took the gift, with some other men, to Judea*. That was a long and dangerous journey.
Paul did not expect that reaction from Macedonia’s Christians*. He was aware that they were very poor people*. In addition, they had already given generously for Paul’s own work*. Paul mentions these gifts again in his letter to Philippi, which was in Macedonia*.
Probably, Paul was not even asking Macedonia’s Christians to give for Judea’s Christians. It was they, the Christians in Macedonia, who urged Paul to allow them to give. They did not want to lose the opportunity. Achaia was not far from Macedonia. Therefore, if Achaia’s Christians had the opportunity to send a gift to Judea, so did Macedonia’s Christians. Judea’s Christians were the first Christians, and from there God’s message had gone out across the world. It seems unlikely that Macedonia’s Christians had ever been able to send a gift to Judea previously. Therefore, this gift was a wonderful opportunity for them to give to God and to help Judea’s very special Christians.
* See complete article for these Bible references.
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© 2016, Keith Simons.