The Money for God's People
1 I don't need to write you about the money you plan to give for God's people. 2 I know how eager you are to give. And I have proudly told the Lord's followers in Macedonia that you people in Achaia have been ready for a whole year. Now your desire to give has made them want to give. 3 This is why I am sending Titus and the two others to you. I want you to be ready, just as I promised. This will prove we were not wrong to brag about you.
4 Some followers from Macedonia may come with me, and I want them to find that you have the money ready. If you don't, I would be embarrassed for trusting you to do this. But you would be embarrassed even more. 5 So I have decided to ask Titus and the others to spend some time with you before I arrive. This way they can arrange to collect the money you have promised. Then you will have the chance to give because you want to, and not because you feel forced to.
6 Remember this saying,
“A few seeds make
a small harvest,
but a lot of seeds make
a big harvest.”
7 Each of you must make up your own mind about how much to give. But don't feel sorry that you must give and don't feel you are forced to give. God loves people who love to give. 8 God can bless you with everything you need, and you will always have more than enough to do all kinds of good things for others. 9 The Scriptures say,
“God freely gives his gifts
to the poor,
and always does right.”
10 God gives seed to farmers and provides everyone with food. He will increase what you have, so you can give even more to those in need. 11 You will be blessed in every way, and you will be able to keep on being generous. Then many people will thank God when we deliver your gift.
12 What you are doing is much more than a service that supplies God's people with what they need. It is something that will make many others thank God. 13 The way in which you have proved yourselves by this service will bring honor and praise to God. You believed the message about Christ, and you obeyed it by sharing generously with God's people and with everyone else. 14 Now they are praying for you and want to see you, because God used you to bless them so very much. 15 Thank God for his gift that is too wonderful for words!
© Contemporary English Version, Second Edition (CEV®) © 2006 American Bible Society. All rights reserved.