¶ I do you to wit brethren of the grace of God, which is given in the congregations of Macedonia, how that the abundance of their rejoicing is, that they are tried with much tribulation. And how that their poverty, though it be deep, yet hath followed over, and is be come unto them riches in singleness. For to their powers (I bear them record) yea and beyond their power, they were willing of their own accord, and prayed us with great instance, that we would receive their benefit, and suffer them to be part takers with other in ministering to the saints. And this they did, not as we looked for: but gave their own selves first to the Lord, and after unto us by the will of God: so that we could not but desire Titus to accomplish the same benevolence among you also, even as he had begun.
¶ Now therefore, as ye are rich in all parts, in faith, in word, in knowledge, in all ferventness, and in love, which ye have to us: even so see that ye be plenteous in this benevolence. This say I not as commanding: but because other are so fervent, therefore prove I your love, whether it be perfect or no. Ye know the liberality of our Lord Iesus Christ, which though he were rich, yet for your sakes became poor: that ye thorow his poverty might be made rich.
¶ And I give counsel hereto: For this is expedient for you, which began, not to do only: but also to will, a year ago. Now therefore perform the deed, that as there was in you a readiness to will, even so ye may perform the deed, of that which ye have. 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.
¶ It is not my mind that other be set at ease, and ye brought into cumbrance: but that there be egalness. Let your abundance succour their lack at this present time of dearth: that their abundance may supply your lack: that there may be equality, agreeing to that which is written: He that gathered much had never the more abundance, and he that gathered little, had nevertheless. Thanks be unto God, which put in the heart of Titus the same good mind toward you. For he accepted our request. yea rather he was so well willing, that of his own accord came unto you.
¶ We have sent with him that brother whose laud is in the gospel thorowout all the congregations: and not so only, but is also chosen of the congregations to be a fellow with us in our journey, as concerning this benevolence that is ministered by us unto the praise of the Lord, and to stir up your prompt mind. And this we eschew that any man should rebuke us in this abundance, that is ministered by us, and make provision for honest things, not in the sight of God only, but also in the sight of men.
¶ We have sent with them a brother of ours whom we have oft times proved diligent in many things, but now much more diligent. The great confidence which I have in you hath caused me this to do: partly for Titus' sake which is my fellow, and helper as concerning you: partly because of other which are our brethren, and the messengers of the congregations, and the glory of Christ. Wherefore shew unto them the proof of your love, and of the rejoicing that we have of you, that the congregations may see it.
© Faith of God
William Tyndale 1526