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2 Corinthians 8 Young's Literal Translation (YLT)

And we make known to you, brethren, the grace of God, that hath been given in the assemblies of Macedonia,

because in much trial of tribulation the abundance of their joy, and their deep poverty, did abound to the riches of their liberality;

because, according to [their] power, I testify, and above [their] power, they were willing of themselves,

with much entreaty calling on us to receive the favour and the fellowship of the ministration to the saints,

and not according as we expected, but themselves they did give first to the Lord, and to us, through the will of God,

so that we exhorted Titus, that, according as he did begin before, so also he may finish to you also this favour,

but even as in every thing ye do abound, in faith, and word, and knowledge, and all diligence, and in your love to us, that also in this grace ye may abound;

not according to command do I speak, but because of the diligence of others, and of your love proving the genuineness,

for ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that because of you he became poor -- being rich, that ye by that poverty may become rich.

10 and an opinion in this do I give: for this to you [is] expedient, who not only to do, but also to will, did begin before -- a year ago,

11 and now also finish doing [it], that even as [there is] the readiness of the will, so also the finishing, out of that which ye have,

12 for if the willing mind is present, according to that which any one may have it is well-accepted, not according to that which he hath not;

13 for not that for others release, and ye pressured, [do I speak,]

14 but by equality, at the present time your abundance -- for their want, that also their abundance may be for your want, that there may be equality,

15 according as it hath been written, `He who [did gather] much, had nothing over; and he who [did gather] little, had no lack.'

16 And thanks to God, who is putting the same diligence for you in the heart of Titus,

17 because indeed the exhortation he accepted, and being more diligent, of his own accord he went forth unto you,

18 and we sent with him the brother, whose praise in the good news [is] through all the assemblies,

19 and not only so, but who was also appointed by vote by the assemblies, our fellow-traveller, with this favour that is ministered by us, unto the glory of the same Lord, and your willing mind;

20 avoiding this, lest any one may blame us in this abundance that is ministered by us,

21 providing right things, not only before the Lord, but also before men;

22 and we sent with them our brother, whom we proved in many things many times being diligent, and now much more diligent, by the great confidence that is toward you,

23 whether -- about Titus -- my partner and towards you fellow-worker, whether -- our brethren, apostles of assemblies -- glory of Christ;

24 the shewing therefore of your love, and of our boasting on your behalf, to them shew ye, even in the face of the assemblies.

2 Corinthians 8 New International Version (NIV)

The Collection for the Lord’s People

And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches. In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people. And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us. So we urged Titus, just as he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part. But since you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you[a]—see that you also excel in this grace of giving.

I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.

10 And here is my judgment about what is best for you in this matter. Last year you were the first not only to give but also to have the desire to do so. 11 Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means. 12 For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have.

13 Our desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed, but that there might be equality. 14 At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. The goal is equality, 15 as it is written: “The one who gathered much did not have too much, and the one who gathered little did not have too little.”[b]

Titus Sent to Receive the Collection

16 Thanks be to God, who put into the heart of Titus the same concern I have for you. 17 For Titus not only welcomed our appeal, but he is coming to you with much enthusiasm and on his own initiative. 18 And we are sending along with him the brother who is praised by all the churches for his service to the gospel. 19 What is more, he was chosen by the churches to accompany us as we carry the offering, which we administer in order to honor the Lord himself and to show our eagerness to help. 20 We want to avoid any criticism of the way we administer this liberal gift. 21 For we are taking pains to do what is right, not only in the eyes of the Lord but also in the eyes of man.

22 In addition, we are sending with them our brother who has often proved to us in many ways that he is zealous, and now even more so because of his great confidence in you. 23 As for Titus, he is my partner and co-worker among you; as for our brothers, they are representatives of the churches and an honor to Christ. 24 Therefore show these men the proof of your love and the reason for our pride in you, so that the churches can see it.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Corinthians 8:7 Some manuscripts and in your love for us
  2. 2 Corinthians 8:15 Exodus 16:18
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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