For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9)
This single verse is a powerful explanation of who Jesus is and what He did for His people. This verse presents:
– The riches of Jesus.
– The poverty of Jesus.
– The manner of His poverty.
– The reason for His poverty.
– The result of His poverty.
First, we learn that Jesus was rich. Before Jesus added humanity to His deity and walked this earth, Jesus was rich beyond measure. Jesus, as the eternal Second Person of the Trinity, as God the Son, living in the riches and splendor of heaven, was surrounded constantly by the glory, power, and majesty of God. These make any amount of wealth on earth seem poor. He was rich in possessions, honor, power, love, and happiness.
Second, Jesus became poor. Look at the whole nativity scene. The newborn King was not laid in a cradle of gold but in a feeding trough for animals, set in a humble stable, wrapped in the swaddling bands of poor children. His whole life was lived humbly. At a very young age, He was banished from His own country. Raised as the son of a humble carpenter, Jesus had no fancy clothes, no home of His own, and often relied on others for food. He never even owned His own grave.
Third, notice the manner of His poverty: He became poor. It does not say that Jesus was made poor by others; He volunteered to become poor Himself. Every moment of His life on this earth, Jesus made the conscious choice to live as a relatively poor man.
Fourth, the reason for His poverty: yet for your sakes He became poor. There was a real reason why Jesus did this, and it was not for His own sake. It was for your sakes – the sake of His people – that He became poor.
Look at the result of His poverty: that you through His poverty might become rich. Because of Jesus’ poverty (in all that related to it), His people can become rich. Believers have a share in Jesus’ eternal, heavenly wealth because He came and had a share in their poverty.
– As Jesus was rich in possessions, so are believers – especially contentment.
– As Jesus was rich in honor, so His people have the honor of being sons and daughters of God.
– As Jesus was rich in power, so Christians can come as sons and daughters to the God of all power.
– As Jesus was rich in love, so believers have the love of God poured out into our hearts.
– As Jesus was rich in happiness, so are His people with the peace that passes all understanding.
Finally, consider that Jesus isn’t poor any longer. If this is what Jesus did for His people when He was poor, how much more do you think He will do for them with His heavenly wealth?