1Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia;2How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.3For to their power, I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves;4Praying us with much intreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints.5And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God.6Insomuch that we desired Titus, that as he had begun, so he would also finish in you the same grace also.7Therefore, as ye abound in every thing, in faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us, see that ye abound in this grace also.8I speak not by commandment, but by occasion of the forwardness of others, and to prove the sincerity of your love.9For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.10And herein I give my advice: for this is expedient for you, who have begun before, not only to do, but also to be forward a year ago.11Now therefore perform the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to will, so there may be a performance also out of that which ye have.12For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath not.13For I mean not that other men be eased, and ye burdened:14But by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may be a supply for their want, that their abundance also may be a supply for your want: that there may be equality:15As it is written, He that had gathered much had nothing over; and he that had gathered little had no lack.16But thanks be to God, which put the same earnest care into the heart of Titus for you.17For indeed he accepted the exhortation; but being more forward, of his own accord he went unto you.18And we have sent with him the brother, whose praise is in the gospel throughout all the churches;19And not that only, but who was also chosen of the churches to travel with us with this grace, which is administered by us to the glory of the same Lord, and declaration of your ready mind:20Avoiding this, that no man should blame us in this abundance which is administered by us:21Providing for honest things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men.22And we have sent with them our brother, whom we have oftentimes proved diligent in many things, but now much more diligent, upon the great confidence which I have in you.23Whether any do enquire of Titus, he is my partner and fellowhelper concerning you: or our brethren be enquired of, they are the messengers of the churches, and the glory of Christ.24Wherefore shew ye to them, and before the churches, the proof of your love, and of our boasting on your behalf.
2 Corinthians 8
English Standard Version
Encouragement to Give Generously
1We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches of Macedonia, (2Co 8:5)2for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. (Mr 12:44)3For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord, (1Co 16:2; 2Co 8:11)4begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints— (Ac 24:17; Ro 15:25; Ro 15:31; 2Co 9:2)5and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us. (2Co 8:1)6Accordingly, we urged Titus that as he had started, so he should complete among you this act of grace. (2Co 8:4; 2Co 8:17; 2Co 8:19; 2Co 12:18)7But as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in our love for you—see that you excel in this act of grace also. (1Co 1:5; 2Co 9:8)8I say this not as a command, but to prove by the earnestness of others that your love also is genuine. (1Co 7:6)9For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich. (Mt 20:28; 2Co 6:10; Php 2:6)10And in this matter I give my judgment: this benefits you, who a year ago started not only to do this work but also to desire to do it. (De 15:7; Pr 19:17; Pr 28:27; 1Co 7:25; 2Co 9:2; 1Ti 6:18; Heb 13:16)11So now finish doing it as well, so that your readiness in desiring it may be matched by your completing it out of what you have.12For if the readiness is there, it is acceptable according to what a person has, not according to what he does not have. (Mr 12:43; Lu 21:3; 2Co 9:7)13For I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened, but that as a matter of fairness14your abundance at the present time should supply their need, so that their abundance may supply your need, that there may be fairness. (Ac 4:34; 2Co 9:12)15As it is written, “Whoever gathered much had nothing left over, and whoever gathered little had no lack.” (Ex 16:18)
Commendation of Titus
16But thanks be to God, who put into the heart of Titus the same earnest care I have for you. (2Co 2:14; Re 17:17)17For he not only accepted our appeal, but being himself very earnest he is going to you of his own accord. (2Co 8:6)18With him we are sending the brother who is famous among all the churches for his preaching of the gospel. (1Co 7:17; 2Co 12:18)19And not only that, but he has been appointed by the churches to travel with us as we carry out this act of grace that is being ministered by us, for the glory of the Lord himself and to show our good will. (1Co 16:3; 2Co 4:15; 2Co 8:6)20We take this course so that no one should blame us about this generous gift that is being administered by us,21for we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord’s sight but also in the sight of man. (Ro 12:17; Ro 14:18; Php 4:8; 1Pe 2:12)22And with them we are sending our brother whom we have often tested and found earnest in many matters, but who is now more earnest than ever because of his great confidence in you.23As for Titus, he is my partner and fellow worker for your benefit. And as for our brothers, they are messengers of the churches, the glory of Christ. (Phm 1:17)24So give proof before the churches of your love and of our boasting about you to these men. (2Co 7:4; 2Co 7:14; 2Co 9:2)