Proverbs 22:9

He that hath a bountiful eye shall be blessed; for he giveth of his bread to the poor.
– Proverbs 22:9

The word for bountiful means good. A good eye is linked with generosity, or a generous disposition. The figure of the eye is used to emphasize seeing needs. A good eye contrasts with the stingy and covetous, evil eye in the New Testament (Matthew 6:21-24; 20:1-16; Mark 7:22). The evil, or dark, eye is a figure of one who greedily hoards his own treasure and will not share, or shares begrudgingly, with those who have needs (Proverbs 23:6-7; 28:22). Wisdom teaches an open-handed, giving disposition to the poor will be blessed (Proverbs 11:24-26; 19:17).

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Proverbs 11:24

There is that scattereth, and yet increaseth; and there is that withholdeth more than is meet, but it tendeth to poverty.
– Proverbs 11:24

This proverb and the next two deal with generous giving and its reward. This first proverb reveals God’s counterintuitive economy. The one who scatters is the one who gives generously with an open hand. It would seem that generous giving would diminish and reduce a person to poverty. Yet, wisdom teaches the contrary that it increases a person. He that withholds is stingy, greedy, and grasping. They cannot and will not give because they believe it will lead them to poverty. Yet, wisdom teaches that is exactly what happens to those who withhold.

The few proverbs here don’t give a full explanation of the rewards for giving, but we can fill out that picture from the rest of Scripture. Some have erred badly here by supposing they have found some secret to growing rich on this earth. Prosperity preachers grow rich by selling this erroneous notion to eager coveters. God does reward generous giving (Deuteronomy 15:10-11; Psalm 112:9; 2 Corinthians 9:6-9). The few verses referenced sufficiently show that God’s reward of giving is not to make a person wealthy on this earth. He rewards giving by the giver having sufficient for his needs and to keep on giving. Unquestionably, some of those rewards are spiritual rewards and treasure laid up in Heaven (Matthew 6:19-20).

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