8:1 We want you to know, brethren, about the grace of God which has been shown in the churches of Macedo'nia,
8:1 We want you to know, brothers and sisters, about the grace of God that has been granted to the churches of Macedonia;

8:2 for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of liberality on their part.
8:2 for during a severe ordeal of affliction, their abundant joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part.

8:3 For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own free will,
8:3 For, as I can testify, they voluntarily gave according to their means, and even beyond their means,

8:4 begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints --
8:4 begging us earnestly for the privilege of sharing in this ministry to the saints--

8:5 and this, not as we expected, but first they gave themselves to the Lord and to us by the will of God.
8:5 and this, not merely as we expected; they gave themselves first to the Lord and, by the will of God, to us,

8:6 Accordingly we have urged Titus that as he had already made a beginning, he should also complete among you this gracious work.
8:6 so that we might urge Titus that, as he had already made a beginning, so he should also complete this generous undertaking among you.

8:7 Now as you excel in everything -- in faith, in utterance, in knowledge, in all earnestness, and in your love for us -- see that you excel in this gracious work also.
8:7 Now as you excel in everything--in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in utmost eagerness, and in our love for you--so we want you to excel also in this generous undertaking.

8:8 I say this not as a command, but to prove by the earnestness of others that your love also is genuine.
8:8 I do not say this as a command, but I am testing the genuineness of your love against the earnestness of others.

8:9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich.
8:9 For you know the generous act of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich.

8:10 And in this matter I give my advice: it is best for you now to complete what a year ago you began not only to do but to desire,
8:10 And in this matter I am giving my advice: it is appropriate for you who began last year not only to do something but even to desire to do something--

8:11 so that your readiness in desiring it may be matched by your completing it out of what you have.
8:11 now finish doing it, so that your eagerness may be matched by completing it according to your means.

8:12 For if the readiness is there, it is acceptable according to what a man has, not according to what he has not.
8:12 For if the eagerness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has--not according to what one does not have.

8:13 I do not mean that others should be eased and you burdened,
8:13 I do not mean that there should be relief for others and pressure on you, but it is a question of a fair balance between

8:14 but that as a matter of equality your abundance at the present time should supply their want, so that their abundance may supply your want, that there may be equality.
8:14 your present abundance and their need, so that their abundance may be for your need, in order that there may be a fair balance.

8:15 As it is written, "He who gathered much had nothing over, and he who gathered little had no lack."
8:15 As it is written, "The one who had much did not have too much, and the one who had little did not have too little."

8:16 But thanks be to God who puts the same earnest care for you into the heart of Titus.
8:16 But thanks be to God who put in the heart of Titus the same eagerness for you that I myself have.

8:17 For he not only accepted our appeal, but being himself very earnest he is going to you of his own accord.
8:17 For he not only accepted our appeal, but since he is more eager than ever, he is going to you of his own accord.

8:18 With him we are sending the brother who is famous among all the churches for his preaching of the gospel;
8:18 With him we are sending the brother who is famous among all the churches for his proclaiming the good news;

8:19 and not only that, but he has been appointed by the churches to travel with us in this gracious work which we are carrying on, for the glory of the Lord and to show our good will.
8:19 and not only that, but he has also been appointed by the churches to travel with us while we are administering this generous undertaking for the glory of the Lord himself and to show our goodwill.

8:20 We intend that no one should blame us about this liberal gift which we are administering,
8:20 We intend that no one should blame us about this generous gift that we are administering,

8:21 for we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord's sight but also in the sight of men.
8:21 for we intend to do what is right not only in the Lord's sight but also in the sight of others.

8:22 And with them we are sending our brother whom we have often tested and found earnest in many matters, but who is now more earnest than ever because of his great confidence in you.
8:22 And with them we are sending our brother whom we have often tested and found eager in many matters, but who is now more eager than ever because of his great confidence in you.

8:23 As for Titus, he is my partner and fellow worker in your service; and as for our brethren, they are messengers of the churches, the glory of Christ.
8:23 As for Titus, he is my partner and co-worker in your service; as for our brothers, they are messengers of the churches, the glory of Christ.

8:24 So give proof, before the churches, of your love and of our boasting about you to these men.
8:24 Therefore openly before the churches, show them the proof of your love and of our reason for boasting about you.