1 Now brothers and sisters, we are making you aware of God’s grace that has been given to the Macedonian churches, 2 that in the midst of a severe ordeal of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have produced an abundance of their generosity. 3 For I testify that they voluntarily gave according to their means and even beyond their means, 4 urgently pleading with us for the privilege of participating in this ministry to the saints. 5 And not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and also to us through God’s will. 6 So we encouraged Titus to finish up the collection of this charitable offering with you just as he had already begun. 7 But just as you abound in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete devotion, and in your love for us—see that you also excel in this charitable offering.
8 I am not saying this as a command, but I am testing the genuineness of your love through the eagerness of others. 9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ—that although he was rich, he impoverished himself for your sakes so that you might be enriched by his poverty. 10 And I am giving you my opinion on this matter because this is to your advantage. Last year you began not only to act but also to desire to act. 11 But now also finish what you started so that your eager desire to do it is matched by your completion of it according to what you have. 12 For if the willingness is present, the act is acceptable according to whatever one might or might not have. 13 For it is not that others should have relief and you be burdened, but it is a matter of fairness. 14 At the present time, your abundance can meet their need so that someday their abundance might meet your need so that there will be fairness. 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” [Ex. 16:18].
16 But thanks be to God, who put the same devotion I have for you into the heart of Titus. 17 Because he not only accepted my appeal, but also, being even more eager, he is coming to you on his own initiative. 18 And we sent with him the brother whose fame in connection with the gospel has spread through all the churches. 19 And not only that, but he was also chosen by the churches to be our traveling companion in connection with this charitable offering that is administered by us for the glory of the Lord himself as well to show our willingness to help. 20 We did this to prevent anyone from finding fault with us in this liberal gift that we are administering. 21 For we are concerned about doing what is right not only in the Lord’s sight but also in the sight of men [Prov. 3:4]. 22 And with them we sent our brother whose diligence we have often tested and proved in many ways but now is even more diligent because of his confidence in you. 23 As for Titus, he is my partner and also a fellow worker for you. As for our brothers, they are envoys of the churches, a glory of Christ, 24 so show them proof of your love and of our boasting about you before the churches.