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 <<  2 Korintus 8 >> 

The collection for the church in Jerusalem

1WE must tell you, friends, about the grace that God has given to the churches in Macedonia.

2The troubles they have been through have tried them hard, yet in all this they have been so exuberantly happy that from the depths of their poverty they have shown themselves lavishly open-handed.

3Going to the limit of their resources, as I can testify, and even beyond that limit,

4they begged us most insistently, and on their own initiative, to be allowed to share in this generous service to their fellow-Christians.

5And their giving surpassed our expectations; for first of all they gave themselves to the Lord and, under God, to us.

6The upshot is that we have asked Titus, since he has already made a beginning, to bring your share in this further work of generosity also to completion.

7You are so rich in everything -- in faith, speech, knowledge, and diligence of every kind, as well as in the love you have for us -- that you should surely show yourselves equally lavish in this generous service!

8This is not meant as an order; by telling you how keen others are I am putting your love to the test.

9You know the generosity of our Lord Jesus Christ: he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that through his poverty you might become rich.

10Here is my advice, and I have your interests at heart. You made a good beginning last year both in what you did and in your willingness to do it.

11Now go on and finish it. Be as eager to complete the scheme as you were to adopt it, and give according to your means.

12If we give eagerly according to our means, that is acceptable to God; he does not ask for what we do not have.

13There is no question of relieving others at the cost of hardship to yourselves;

14it is a question of equality. At the moment your surplus meets their need, but one day your need may be met from their surplus. The aim is equality;

15as scripture has it, “Those who gathered more did not have too much, and those who gathered less did not have too little.”

16I thank God that he has made Titus as keen on your behalf as we are!

17So keen is he that he not only welcomed our request; it is by his own choice he is now leaving to come to you.

18With him we are sending one of our company whose reputation for his services to the gospel among all the churches is high.

19Moreover they have duly appointed him to travel with us and help in this beneficent work, by which we do honour to the Lord himself and show our own eagerness to serve.

20We want to guard against any criticism of our handling of these large sums;

21for our aims are entirely honourable, not only in the Lord's eyes, but also in the eyes of men and women.

22We are sending with them another of our company whose enthusiasm we have had repeated opportunities of testing, and who is now all the more keen because of the great confidence he has in you.

23If there is any question about Titus, he is my partner and my fellow-worker in dealings with you; as for the others, they are delegates of the churches and bring honour to Christ.

24So give them, and through them the churches, clear evidence of your love and justify our pride in you.

 <<  2 Korintus 8 >> 

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