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Finish the Collection

Now brothers,[a] we want you to know about the grace of God that was given in the churches of Macedonia: In a severe test of trouble, their overflowing joy and their deep poverty overflowed into an abundance of their generosity.[b] I testify that of their own free will they gave according to their ability, and even beyond their ability, pleading with us with an urgent request for the gracious privilege of joining in this service to the saints. And they did this not as we had expected, but in keeping with God’s will they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us. As a result we urged Titus, since he had already made a beginning, to bring to completion this gracious gift on your part. But just as you overflow in every way—in faith, in word, in knowledge, in all diligence, and in your love for us[c]—see that you also overflow in this gracious gift.

I do not say this as a command, but to test how genuine your love is, by comparing it with the eagerness of others. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that although he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that through his poverty you might become rich.

10 And I am giving advice in this matter because it is going to be helpful for you. Last year, you were not only the first to take action, but also the first to be willing. 11 Now bring the work to completion too, so that your eagerness to start may be matched by your completing it with what you have. 12 For if the eagerness is there, a gift is acceptable according to what someone has, not according to what he does not have.

13 Certainly, our goal is not that others take it easy while you are burdened, but that there may be equality. 14 At the present time, your abundance will provide what they lack, in order that their abundance will also provide what you lack—in this way there will be 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.”[d]

16 Thanks be to God, who put into the heart of Titus the same concern I have for you, 17 because he accepted our encouragement and went to you eagerly, of his own free will. 18 We sent along with him the brother who is recognized by all the churches for his preaching of the gospel. 19 Not only that—but also he was elected[e] by the churches to be our traveling companion, as we administer this gracious gift to the glory of the Lord and to show our eagerness to help. 20 We are trying to avoid any criticism of the way we are administering this lavish gift. 21 To be sure, we are taking into consideration what is proper, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of other people.

22 We sent along with them our brother who has often proved to us in many tests that he is eager, and now is even more eager, because of the great confidence he has in you.

23 As for Titus, he is my partner and fellow worker for your benefit. Our brothers, messengers sent by the churches, are the glory of Christ. 24 So then, show the evidence of your love in the sight of the churches, and demonstrate why we boasted to them about you.


  1. 2 Corinthians 8:1 When context indicates it, the Greek word for brothers may refer to all fellow believers, male and female.
  2. 2 Corinthians 8:2 Or single-mindedness
  3. 2 Corinthians 8:7 Some witnesses to the text read in our love for you.
  4. 2 Corinthians 8:15 Exodus 16:18
  5. 2 Corinthians 8:19 Or chosen