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2 Corinthians 8 GW/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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GOD'S WORD Translation (GW) New International Version (NIV)
1 Brothers and sisters, we want you to know how God showed his kindness to the churches in the province of Macedonia. 1 And now, brothers, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches.
2 While they were being severely tested by suffering, their overflowing joy, along with their extreme poverty, has made them even more generous. 2 Out of the most severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity.
3 I assure you that by their own free will they have given all they could, even more than they could afford. 3 For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own,
4 They made an appeal to us, begging us to let them participate in the ministry of God's kindness to his holy people [in Jerusalem]. 4 they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the saints.
5 They did more than we had expected. First, they gave themselves to the Lord and to us, since this was God's will. 5 And they did not do as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God's will.
6 This led us to urge Titus to finish his work of God's kindness among you in the same way as he had already started it. 6 So we urged Titus, since he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part.
7 Indeed, the more your faith, your ability to speak, your knowledge, your dedication, and your love for us increase, the more we want you to participate in this work of God's kindness. 7 But just as you excel in everything--in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in your love for us--see that you also excel in this grace of giving.
8 I'm not commanding you, but I'm testing how genuine your love is by pointing out the dedication of others. 8 I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others.
9 You know about the kindness of our Lord Jesus Christ. He was rich, yet for your sake he became poor in order to make you rich through his poverty. 9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.
10 I'm giving you my opinion because it will be helpful to you. Last year you were not only willing [to take a collection] but had already started to do it. 10 And here is my advice 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 So finish what you began to do. Then your willingness will be matched by what you accomplish 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 with whatever contributions you have. Since you are willing to do this, [remember] that people are accepted if they give what they are able to give. God doesn't ask for what they don't have. 12 For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what he does not have.
13 I don't mean that others should have relief while you have hardship. Rather, it's a matter of striking a balance. 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 surplus fills their need so that their surplus may fill your need. In this way things balance out. 14 At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. Then there will be equality,
15 This is what Scripture says: "Those who had gathered a lot didn't have too much, and those who gathered a little didn't have too little." 15 as it is written: "He who gathered much did not have too much, and he who gathered little did not have too little."
16 I thank God for making Titus as dedicated to you as I am. 16 I thank God, who put into the heart of Titus the same concern I have for you.
17 He accepted my request and eagerly went to visit you by his own free will. 17 For Titus not only welcomed our appeal, but he is coming to you with much enthusiasm and on his own initiative.
18 With him we have sent our Christian brother whom all the churches praise for the way he tells the Good News. 18 And we are sending along with him the brother who is praised by all the churches for his service to the gospel.
19 More than that, the churches elected him to travel with us and bring this gift of God's kindness. We are administering it in a way that brings glory to the Lord and shows that we are doing it willingly. 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 don't want anyone to find fault with the way we are administering this generous gift. 20 We want to avoid any criticism of the way we administer this liberal gift.
21 We intend to do what is right, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of people. 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 men.
22 We have also sent with them our Christian brother whom we have often tested in many ways and found to be a dedicated worker. We find that he is much more dedicated now than ever because he has so much confidence in you. 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 If any questions are raised, remember that Titus is my partner and coworker to help you. The other men are representatives of the churches and bring glory to Christ. 23 As for Titus, he is my partner and fellow worker among you; as for our brothers, they are representatives of the churches and an honor to Christ.
24 So give these men a demonstration of your love. Show their congregations that we were right to be proud of you. 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.