|CONTRIBUTION FOR THE SAINTS |
An offering for the church at Jerusalem that Paul raised among the churches outside of Jerusalem. When Paul and Barnabas visited the church in Jerusalem, they made a commitment to the leaders there to remember the poor in Jerusalem (Galatians 2:1-10).
Exactly why the church in Jerusalem had so many poor people is not clear. These Christians may have been economically isolated by the other Jews in Jerusalem.
Paul was true to his promise to help the poor in Jerusalem. He organized an offering among the churches he visited and established on his second and third missionary journeys.
Paul urged the church at Corinth to give to this offering (1 Corinthians 16:1-4). He evidently promoted the offering in the churches of Galatia (1 Corinthians 16:1) and in the churches of Macedonia (2 Corinthians 8:1). When the offering lagged in Corinth, he encouraged the church to give generously (2 Corinthians 8-9).
He mentioned the offering to the Romans (Romans 15:25-28). He pointed out that the offering was prompted by the sense of spiritual indebtedness that all of the other churches had toward the church in Jerusalem. Paul probably also promoted the offering as a way of building unity between Jewish and Gentile Christians.
When the offering was completed among the churches, the money was sent to Jerusalem. Paul accompanied some members of those churches to Jerusalem to deliver the offering (1 Corinthians 16:3,
Acts 24:17). See Jerusalem; Stewardship; Paul; Corinth.