2 Cor 8.1-24 tells us about how Paul will try to stir up the Corinthians in the collection for the poor believers in Judea and uses the example of the Macedonian assemblies; some practical instruction regarding biblical giving; how to treat Titus and others who will come to collect.
v 1…Now, brethren, we make known to you the grace of God (to help the needy) which has been given in the assemblies of Macedonia (it existed among them there),
v 2…that in a great ordeal of affliction (by their neighbors) their abundance of joy and their deep poverty overflowed (when they were poor they still gave to help others) in the wealth of their liberality (they gave all in a comparable manner, like the poor widow in Mark 12.44).
v 3…For I testify (stand as a witness) that according to their ability and beyond their ability of their own accord(from a willing heart/desire),
v 4…begging us with much entreaty (requesting of us) for the favor of participation in the support of the saints (tzadikim; righteous),
v 5…and not as we had expected (knowing their condition) but they first gave themselves to the Lord (kept nothing back) and to us by the will of the Lord (they complied with what Paul was asking and followed his directions).
v 6…Consequently we urged Titus (to raise funds) that as he had previously made a beginning (he began a collection while in Corinth), so he should also complete in you this gracious work as well (they needed to give what they had pledged).
v 7…But just as you abound in everything (making prioress), in faith and utterances (speech) and knowledge (of the Scriptures/Tanak) and in all earnestness (diligence) and in the love we inspired in you, that you abound in this gracious work also (to put others first by giving).
v 8…I am not speaking this as a command (based on any Torah commandment), but as proving through the earnestness of others (the Macedonians) the sincerity of your love also (to help the needy in Judea).
v 9…For you know the grace of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, that though he was rich (his pre-existent state), yet for your sake (benefit; on account of you) he became poor (impoverished in his human state) that you through his poverty might become rich (in the benefits and purposes of the kingdom of God, his movement and rule in action and power).
v 10…And I gave my opinion in this matter, for this is to your advantage (spiritually and morally profitable to you), who were the first to begin a year ago (from last year) not only to do this, but also to desire to do it (the Corinthians began to make a collection even before the Macedonians).
\v 11…But now finish doing it also that just as there was the readiness to desire it, so also the completion of it by your ability (financially).
v 12…For if the readiness is present, it is acceptable according to what a man has, not according to what he does not have (give according to what you have, not on what you don’t have).
v 13…For this is not for the ease of others and for your affliction, but by way of equality (in the givers and receivers).
v 14…at this present time your abundance being a supply for their want, that their abundance also may be a supply for your want (someday their abundance may supply Corinthian want), that there may be equality (a balance in giving and receiving).
v 15…As it is written (already recorded), “He who gathers much did not have too much and he who gathered little had no lack (Exo 16.18 in respect to the manna).”
v 16…But thanks be to God, who puts the same earnestness on your behalf in the heart of Titus )to do it -his burden for the Corinthians was from God).
v 17…For he not only accepted our appeal (to go to the Corinthians for help), but being himself very earnest, he has gone to you of his own accord (voluntarily went to complete this collection).
v 18…And we have sent along with him the brother whose fame in the things of the gospel (basar) has spread through all the assemblies (who this was is uncertain, but he was well-known there);
v 19…and not only this, but he has also been appointed by the assemblies to travel with us in this gracious work, which is being administered by us for the glory (deserving of the highest regard) of the Lord himself, and to show our readiness (Paul was the administrator of these contributions as the Gabbai Tzedakah, or keeper of the charities),
v 20…taking precaution that no one should discredit us in our administration of this gracious gift (saying it was for their private use, or for “the ministry”, like many false teachers do today),
v 21…for we have regard for what is honorable, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men (he was open for examination).
v 22…And we have sent with them our brother (a third), whom we have often tested and found diligent in many things (we can speak highly of him), but now even more diligent, because of his great confidence in you (that they would give abundantly).
v 23…As for Titus, my partner and fellow worker among you; as for our brethren, messengers (Hebrew “shaliachim” or sent ones) of the assemblies, a glory to Messiah.
v 24…Therefore openly before the assemblies (in their presence) show them the proof of your love (demonstrate it by action) and of our reason for boasting in you (that you will receive them and help them raise funds).