2 Corinthians 8
1 Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia;
The unmerited favor of God given to the Corinthian church, is also given to the churches in Macedonia.
2 How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.
The Macedonian Christians are a very impoverished people, but they had one mind, they sought to do the work of The Lord, feeding The Truth everywhere they could. They understood true wealth.
3 For to their power, I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves;
They may not have been able to give a bunch of money or things, but they gave Truth, God's Word wherever they could go.
4 Praying us with much intreaty that we would receive the gift, and take upon us the fellowship of the ministering to the saints.
The Macedonians served God in every way they possibly could. Prayer, money, clothing, Word. They are the church of God.
5 And this they did, not as we hoped, but first gave their own selves to the Lord, and unto us by the will of God.
They didn't have much to give, so they gave of themselves. They went out to help where they could, while spreading The Word to those open to listening.
6 Insomuch that we desired Titus, that as he had begun, so he would also finish in you the same grace also.
Titus brought excitement to the churches in Corinth and here Paul uses that as an example for the excitement happening in the churches of Macedonia.
7 Therefore, as ye abound in every thing, in faith, and utterance, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your love to us, see that ye abound in this grace also.
8 I speak not by commandment, but by occasion of the forwardness of others, and to prove the sincerity of your love.
This is asking the Corinth's to show the love they have for Paul, that they tithe in order to help the work of the churches. He isn't begging, it's not a command. It's a matter of the heart or love for others, not guilt.
9 For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.
Christ Jesus could have been the most powerful human in the physical sense. He could have ruled the world as whatever He wanted, but He gave His life, suffering in every way as a human, that we may have life and be rich in mind, body and soul today and forever.
10 And herein I give my advice: for this is expedient for you, who have begun before, not only to do, but also to be forward a year ago.
At this point, It's been a year sincee Paul had spoke to the Corinthians about tithing.
11 Now therefore perform the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to will, so there may be a performance also out of that which ye have.
Practice what you preach. Once you have been given understanding, you must use what you have been given. God expects this in all your blessings He has given us. The Word is to spread just as much as your economic blessings God has given you. Neither is to be buried. When we see someone in need, we step up and help. It could be as little as helping an elderly person cross the street or feeding a village, food or The Word of God. Be a blessing to as many as you can each day. †
12 For if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath not.
Are you willing to help others or must you be forced or swayed into helping others. The more God commits to your wisdom and knowledge or to your life in comfort, the more you are required to use that knowledge or things within your life to advance the will of God. Look around, your someone's blessing today.
13 For I mean not that other men be eased, and ye burdened:
You give according to your ability. You don't need to suffer in order to help others. It's not for show, or because they're beggars, but because your able to help and it's from the heart, so you do it.
14 But by an equality, that now at this time your abundance may be a supply for their want, that their abundance also may be a supply for your want: that there may be equality:
It's like this, you know the events of the end times. You know who comes first and it's your love for others, you want them to know it also. It's doing you good to have it, but you see their need. You gave it and it didn't hurt you by doing so.
15 As it is written, He that had gathered much had nothing over; and he that had gathered little had no lack.
Our faith is but part of our walk. We know our blessings are for others and by given we are blessed. God replenishes what we give. Our faith touches us in our giving. He will provide! 2 Cor. 9:6-7 6 But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. 7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
16 But thanks be to God, which put the same earnest care into the heart of Titus for you.
Paul reminds them, Titus wanted to share his gifts freely and from the heart with you Corinthians.
17 For indeed he accepted the exhortation; but being more forward, of his own accord he went unto you.
Titus could see they were in need of hearing more of The Word. He could see they were having trouble within the church in Corinth. He was willing to help.
18 And we have sent with him the brother, whose praise is in the gospel throughout all the churches;
This other brother sent was more than likely Luke. Luke was very well liked and praised throughout all the churches. As a physician, I'm sure he helped in more situations than many others could.
19 And not that only, but who was also chosen of the churches to travel with us with this grace, which is administered by us to the glory of the same Lord, and declaration of your ready mind:
20 Avoiding this, that no man should blame us in this abundance which is administered by us:
There will be more than one person jointly collecting the donations. This is so there's a witness as to the amounts collected and the amounts given. Now there won't be any accusations that can't be proven otherwise.
21 Providing for honest things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men.
Having a witness is just a smart thing to do, even if the Corinthians have nothing but confidence in them both.
22 And we have sent with them our brother, whom we have oftentimes proved diligent in many things, but now much more diligent, upon the great confidence which I have in you.
Paul has sent Luke with Titus to the Corinthians. They'll collect the tithes and continue to spread The Word throughout every place they travel.
23 Whether any do enquire of Titus, he is my partner and fellowhelper concerning you: or our brethren be enquired of, they are the messengers of the churches, and the glory of Christ.
Titus and Luke are the "messengers" = apostles of the church of God for the glory of Christ Jesus. They know how to get things done, they know how to preach The Word in understanding for everyone.
24 Wherefore shew ye to them, and before the churches, the proof of your love, and of our boasting on your behalf.
Paul wants the Corinthians to show the love of Christ Jesus to these two messengers of the church, Titus and Luke.