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2 Corinthians 8:2

    2 Corinthians 8:2 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded to the riches of their liberality.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    how that in much proof of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    How while they were undergoing every sort of trouble, and were in the greatest need, they took all the greater joy in being able to give freely to the needs of others.

    Webster's Revision

    how that in much proof of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.

    World English Bible

    how that in much proof of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded to the riches of their liberality.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    how that in much proof of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.

    Clarke's Commentary on 2 Corinthians 8:2

    In a great trial of affliction - The sense of this verse is the following: The Macedonians, though both poor and persecuted, rejoiced exceedingly that an opportunity was afforded them of doing good to their more impoverished and more persecuted brethren. We can scarcely ever speak of poverty and affliction in an absolute sense; they are only comparative. Even the poor are called to relieve those who are poorer than themselves; and the afflicted, to comfort those who are more afflicted than they are. The poor and afflicted Churches of Macedonia felt this duty, and therefore came forward to the uttermost of their power to relieve their more impoverished and afflicted brethren in Judea.

    Barnes' Notes on 2 Corinthians 8:2

    How that, in a great trial of affliction - When it might be supposed they were unable to give; when many would suppose they needed the aid of others; or when it might be supposed their minds would be wholly engrossed with their own concerns. The trial to which the apostle here refers was doubtless some persecution which was excited against them, probably by the Jews; see Acts 16:20; Acts 17:5.

    The abundance of their joy - Their joy arising from the hopes and promises of the gospel. Notwithstanding their persecutions, their joy has abounded, and the effect of their joy has been seen in the liberal contribution which they have made. Their joy could not be repressed by their persecution, and they cheerfully contributed largely to the aid of others.

    And their deep poverty - Their very low estate of poverty was made to contribute liberally to the needs of others. It is implied here:

    (1) That they were very poor - a fact arising probably from the consideration that the poor generally embraced the gospel first, and also because it is probable that they were molested and stripped of their property in persecutions (compare Heb). Acts 10:34);

    (2) That notwithstanding this they were enabled to make a liberal contribution - a fact demonstrating that a people can do much even when poor if all feel disposed to do it, and that afflictions are favorable to the effort; and,

    (3) That one cause of this was the joy which they had even in their trials.

    If a people have the joys of the gospel; if they have the consolations of religion themselves, they will somehow or other find means to contribute to the welfare of others. They will be willing to labor with reference to it, or they will find something which they can sacrifice or spare. Even their deep poverty will abound in the fruits of benevolence.

    Abounded - They contributed liberally. Their joy was manifested in a large donation, notwithstanding their poverty.

    Unto the riches of their liberality - Margin, "Simplicity." The word (ἁπλότης haplotēs) used here means properly sincerity, candor, probity; then Christian simplicity, integrity; then liberality; see Romans 12:8 (Margin,); 2 Corinthians 9:11, 2 Corinthians 9:13. The phrase "riches of liberality," is a Hebraism, meaning rich, or abundant liberality. The sense is, their liberality was much greater than could be expected from persons so poor; and the object of the apostle is, to excite the Corinthians to give liberally by their example.

    Wesley's Notes on 2 Corinthians 8:2

    8:2 In a great trial of affliction - Being continually persecuted, harassed, and plundered.