Paul closes his letter by telling them about his plans and reminding them about the collection he is raising to help the needy Christians in Jerusalem. “On the first day of every week, each of you is to put something aside and store it up, as he may prosper, so that there will be no collecting when I come”(1 Cor 16:2). Rather than just a procedural point, Paul is teaching them how to think about others and plan to share. As the Corinthians make money throughout the week (“as he may prosper”), they learn not to assume that this money is solely for them. They remember those in need even as their own needs are met.
Paul makes plans to visit Corinth (1 Cor 16:5-7), which will become a point of contention in 2 Corinthians. He wants to stay in Ephesus “for a wide door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many adversaries”(1 Cor 16:9). In the next few days we will see him continue that work until he is unable to stay there any longer. Perhaps most surprisingly, Paul sends this sharp letter with young Timothy and expects the Corinthians to “put him at ease among you” and “let no one despise him”(1 Cor 16:10, 11). Timothy will report back to Paul about their reaction to his rebukes.
Christian budgeting includes planning to share. This may involve a collection like the one in Corinth, but it is certainly not restricted to such. When God provides for us, he also provides opportunities for us to “have something to share with anyone in need”(Eph 4:28).
------------- One Thing to Think About: How well do I plan to share?
One Thing to Pray For: Eyes open to the needs of those around me
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