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2 Corinthians 1 Contemporary English Version (CEV)

From Paul, chosen by God to be an apostle of Jesus Christ, and from Timothy, who is also a follower.

To God’s church in Corinth and to all of God’s people in Achaia.

I pray that God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ will be kind to you and will bless you with peace!

Paul Gives Thanks

Praise God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! The Father is a merciful God, who always gives us comfort. He comforts us when we are in trouble, so that we can share that same comfort with others in trouble. We share in the terrible sufferings of Christ, but also in the wonderful comfort he gives. We suffer in the hope that you will be comforted and saved. And because we are comforted, you will also be comforted, as you patiently endure suffering like ours. You never disappoint us. You suffered as much as we did, and we know that you will be comforted as we were.

My friends, I want you to know what a hard time we had in Asia. Our sufferings were so horrible and so unbearable that death seemed certain. In fact, we felt sure that we were going to die. But this made us stop trusting in ourselves and start trusting God, who raises the dead to life. 10 God saved us from the threat of death,[a] and we are sure that he will do it again and again. 11 Please help us by praying for us. Then many people will give thanks for the blessings we receive in answer to all these prayers.

Paul’s Change of Plans

12 We can be proud of our clear conscience. We have always lived honestly and sincerely, especially when we were with you. And we were guided by God’s wonderful kindness instead of by the wisdom of this world. 13 I am not writing anything you cannot read and understand. I hope you will understand it completely, 14 just as you already partly understand us. Then when our Lord Jesus returns, you can be as proud of us as we are of you.

15 I was so sure of your pride in us that I had planned to visit you first of all. In this way you would have the blessing of two visits from me. 16 Once on my way to Macedonia and again on my return from there. Then you could send me on to Judea. 17 Do you think I couldn’t make up my mind about what to do? Or do I seem like someone who says “Yes” or “No” simply to please others? 18 God can be trusted, and so can I, when I say that our answer to you has always been “Yes” and never “No.” 19 This is because Jesus Christ the Son of God is always “Yes” and never “No.” And he is the one that Silas,[b] Timothy, and I told you about.

20 Christ says “Yes” to all of God’s promises. That’s why we have Christ to say “Amen”[c] for us to the glory of God. 21 And so God makes it possible for you and us to stand firmly together with Christ. God is also the one who chose us 22 and put his Spirit in our hearts to show that we belong only to him.

23 God is my witness that I stayed away from Corinth, just to keep from being hard on you. 24 We are not bosses who tell you what to believe. We are working with you to make you glad, because your faith is strong.

Footnotes:

  1. 1.10 the threat of death: Some manuscripts have “many threats of death.”
  2. 1.19 Silas: The Greek text has “Silvanus,” which is another form of the name Silas.
  3. 1.20 Amen: The word “amen” is used here with the meaning of “yes.”

2 Corinthians 1 New International Version (NIV)

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother,

To the church of God in Corinth, together with all his holy people throughout Achaia:

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Praise to the God of All Comfort

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.

We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters,[a] about the troubles we experienced in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. 10 He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, 11 as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.

Paul’s Change of Plans

12 Now this is our boast: Our conscience testifies that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially in our relations with you, with integrity[b] and godly sincerity. We have done so, relying not on worldly wisdom but on God’s grace. 13 For we do not write you anything you cannot read or understand. And I hope that, 14 as you have understood us in part, you will come to understand fully that you can boast of us just as we will boast of you in the day of the Lord Jesus.

15 Because I was confident of this, I wanted to visit you first so that you might benefit twice. 16 I wanted to visit you on my way to Macedonia and to come back to you from Macedonia, and then to have you send me on my way to Judea. 17 Was I fickle when I intended to do this? Or do I make my plans in a worldly manner so that in the same breath I say both “Yes, yes” and “No, no”?

18 But as surely as God is faithful, our message to you is not “Yes” and “No.” 19 For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us—by me and Silas[c] and Timothy—was not “Yes” and “No,” but in him it has always been “Yes.” 20 For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God. 21 Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, 22 set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.

23 I call God as my witness—and I stake my life on it—that it was in order to spare you that I did not return to Corinth. 24 Not that we lord it over your faith, but we work with you for your joy, because it is by faith you stand firm.

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Corinthians 1:8 The Greek word for brothers and sisters (adelphoi) refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God’s family; also in 8:1; 13:11.
  2. 2 Corinthians 1:12 Many manuscripts holiness
  3. 2 Corinthians 1:19 Greek Silvanus, a variant of Silas
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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