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2 Corinthians 8 NCV/NIV - Online Parallel Bible

 
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1 And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace God gave the churches in Macedonia. 1 And now, brothers, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches.
2 They have been tested by great troubles, and they are very poor. But they gave much because of their great joy. 2 Out of the most severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity.
3 I can tell you that they gave as much as they were able and even more than they could afford. No one told them to do it. 3 For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own,
4 But they begged and pleaded with us to let them share in this service for God's people. 4 they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the saints.
5 And they gave in a way we did not expect: They first gave themselves to the Lord and to us. This is what God wants. 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 So we asked Titus to help you finish this special work of grace since he is the one who 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 You are rich in everything -- in faith, in speaking, in knowledge, in truly wanting to help, and in the love you learned from us. In the same way, be strong also in the grace of giving. 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 am not commanding you to give. But I want to see if your love is true by comparing you with others that really want to help. 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 the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. You know that Christ was rich, but for you he became poor so that by his becoming poor you might become rich. 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 This is what I think you should do: Last year you were the first to want to give, and you were the first who gave. 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 now finish the work you started. Then your "doing" will be equal to your "wanting to do." Give from what you have. 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 If you want to give, your gift will be accepted. It will be judged by what you have, not by what you do not 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 We do not want you to have troubles while other people are at ease, but we want everything to be equal. 13 Our desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed, but that there might be equality.
14 At this time you have plenty. What you have can help others who are in need. Then later, when they have plenty, they can help you when you are in need, and all will be equal. 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 As it is written in the Scriptures, "The person who gathered more did not have too much, nor did the person who gathered less 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 because he gave Titus the same love for you that I have. 16 I thank God, who put into the heart of Titus the same concern I have for you.
17 Titus accepted what we asked him to do. He wanted very much to go to you, and this was his own idea. 17 For Titus not only welcomed our appeal, but he is coming to you with much enthusiasm and on his own initiative.
18 We are sending with him the brother who is praised by all the churches because of his service in preaching 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 Also, this brother was chosen by the churches to go with us when we deliver this gift of money. We are doing this service to bring glory to the Lord and to show that we really want to help. 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 are being careful so that no one will criticize us for the way we are handling this large gift. 20 We want to avoid any criticism of the way we administer this liberal gift.
21 We are trying hard to do what the Lord accepts as right and also what people think is right. 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 Also, we are sending with them our brother, who is always ready to help. He has proved this to us in many ways, and he wants to help even more now, because he has much faith 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 Now about Titus -- he is my partner who is working with me to help you. And about the other brothers -- they are sent from the churches, and they 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 show these men the proof of your love and the reason we are proud of you. Then all the churches can see it. 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.