“All right then,” I hear you say, “we agree that he himself had none of our money.” But are you thinking that I nevertheless was rogue enough to catch you by some trick? Just think. Did I make any profit out of the messengers I sent you? I asked Titus to go, and sent a brother with him. You don’t think Titus made anything out of you, do you? Yet didn’t I act in the same spirit as he, and take the same line as he did?
Some of you are saying, “It’s true that his visits didn’t seem to cost us anything, but he is a sneaky fellow, that Paul, and he fooled us. As sure as anything he must have made money from us some way.”
And why is it that I keep coming across these whiffs of gossip about how my self-support was a front behind which I worked an elaborate scam? Where’s the evidence? Did I cheat or trick you through anyone I sent? I asked Titus to visit, and sent some brothers along. Did they swindle you out of anything? And haven’t we always been just as aboveboard, just as honest?
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