1 Now it is unnecessary for me to write you about this service to God's holy people [in Jerusalem, who were in need]. 2 For I know how eager you [already] are, and I have boasted about you to the Macedonians, that Achaia [Note: This was the southernmost province of Greece, where Corinth was located] has been prepared [to give] since last year. And your enthusiasm has stirred up most of them [to give also]. 3 But I have sent the brothers [See 8:18, 22], so that our boasting about you being prepared will not prove to be empty words. 4 For if any Macedonians come with me and learn that you are not prepared, we, not to mention you, will be ashamed for having been so over confident. 5 So, I thought it necessary to urge the brothers [See verse 3] to visit you ahead of time and arrange beforehand for your previously promised generous gift. Then it will be ready [when I arrive] as a generously given gift and not as something given grudgingly.
6 But [remember] this: The person who plants only a few seeds will harvest a meager crop. And the one who plants many seeds [Note: The Greek says, "plants with blessings"] will harvest a bumper crop. 7 Each person should give what he has decided to in his heart, not grudgingly, nor out of a feeling that he has to, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to provide you with abundant gifts, so that you will always have plenty of everything, and that you will also have plenty for doing every good deed. 9 As it is written [Psa. 112:9], "He has distributed [gifts] widely; he has given to poor people; his generosity will last forever."
10 Now God, who provides seeds to the planter and bread for food, will [also] supply and [even] multiply your seeds for planting, and will increase the harvest of your generosity. 11 You will be made rich in everything so you can be generous in every way. This will result in people thanking God [for what you have done] through us. 12 For the rendering of this service not only [fully] meets the needs of the saints [i.e., God's holy people], but also produces overflowing expressions of thanksgiving to God from many people. 13 Because you people have proven [yourselves] by this service, the poor Christians in Jerusalem will praise God for your obedient [spirit] in professing [commitment to] the Gospel of Christ, and for your generous contribution to them and to everyone else. 14 And when they see the outstanding [evidence of] God's favor in you, they will pray for you with deep affection [or, "will long to see you"]. 15 I thank God for His indescribable gift [i.e., Christ. See Rom. 8:32].