A most sacred knowledge to haveRev. Ivan Foster2 Corinthians 8:9Sun Oct 30, 2022 · Sunday - PM

(At the end of the audio recording you have the opening part of the Communion Service, just before the elements were distributed.)

“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,” 2 Corinthians 8:9.

The apostle Paul was accustomed to illustrating every subject and duty, relevant to the Christian’s life, by a reference to the life and sufferings of the Lord Jesus Christ. This verse sets forth the duty of giving liberally to those deserving of benevolence, and that in the light of the Lord Jesus becoming poor in order that He might benefit others.

The idea is that, He Who was Lord and Proprietor of the universe, and Who possessed all things, was willing to leave His exalted station in the bosom of the Father and to become poor, in order that we might become rich in the blessings of the gospel, in the means of grace, and as heirs of all things; and that we who are thus benefitted, and who have such an example, should be willing to part with our earthly possessions in order that we may benefit others. Let us note:—


1. It is a knowledge given to us, as it was wonderfully given to the healed blind man, John 9:35-38. A wonderful encounter with Christ.

2. Not just knowing ‘about’ it but the Christian has ‘experienced’ it. Like the blind man, we responded. “And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him,” John 9:38. A wonderful encounter with Christ.

3. Nothing will show like an experience of Christ’s grace. “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” 2 Cors 5:17, John 15:5, Rom 8:1.


1. The word ‘poor’ means ‘beggar’. This is the only place the Greek term underlying this word appears. The poverty of the Lord Jesus at the cross was unique. No one was ever so poor.

2. His poverty entailed the loss of His Father’s presence. The word means to ‘totally abandon’. Paul said of his great troubles: “We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed,” 2 Cors 4:8-9. Believers can never experience what Christ did on the cross. “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him,” 2 Cors 5:21.

3. His poverty was magnified because of His incalculable riches. His poverty is incomprehensible so also His riches! “Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross,” Philippians 2:6-8.


“That ye through his poverty might be rich.”

1. By nature we are utterly poor before God. Irrespective of the earthly riches we may possess, we are eternally poor. “Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked,” Rev 3:17. None more poor than the naked!

2. Yet to such pity is shown. “Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him. For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust,” Psalm 103:13-14.

The pity shown was the revealing of the gospel to them. “For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: but God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: that no flesh should glory in his presence,” 1 Cors 1:26-29.

3. The saved sinner, because of Christ becoming poor is rich beyond measure! “The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,” Ephesians 1:18. “That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus,” Ephesians 2:7.

The riches bestowed upon you, Christian, are ‘unsearchable’ - ‘past finding out’ “Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,” Ephesians 3:8. The Greek word for ‘unsearchable’ appears in only one other place.

“O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!” Romans 11:33.

ID: 12141416575402 · A most sacred knowledge to have