For his unspeakable gift. Such is the conclusion, which the apostle puts to the subject upon alms-deeds. In the following chapter he proceeds to a new subject; but first thanks the Almighty, that he has enriched the Corinthians with so charitable a disposition. St. Chrysostom, Theo., and some other commentators think, that by the expression, his unspeakable gift, is meant the incarnation of Christ. The fruit of alms-deeds is the increase of grace in all justice and good works to life everlasting; God granting these blessings for a reward and recompense of charitable works, which therefore are called the seed, (ver. 10, above) or meritorious cause of these spiritual fruits. _ In omnem simplicitatem, aploteta, upon which St. Chrysostom says, om. k., aploteta ten dapsileian kalei, a plentiful abundance.
The word gift refers to all the blessings which come from almsgiving, both to those who receive and to those who give. Or it refers to the inexpressible gift which Christ bestowed liberally on the whole world by his incarnation. The second interpretation seems to be the more likely meaning.
And here he calls gift, even those so many good things which are wrought by almsgiving, both to them that receive and them that give; or else, those unspeakable good things which through His advent He gave unto the whole world with great munificence, which one may suspect to be the most probable. For that he may at once both sober, and make them more liberal, he puts them in mind of the benefits they had received from God. For this avails very greatly in inciting unto all virtue; and therefore he concluded his discourse with it. But if His Gift be unspeakable, what can match their frenzy who raise curious questions as to His Essence? But not only is His Gift unspeakable, but that peace also passes all understanding, Philippians 4:7 whereby He reconciled the things which are above with those which are below.
3. Seeing then that we are in the enjoyment of so great grace, let us strive to exhibit a virtue of life worthy of it, and to make much account of almsgiving. And this we shall d...