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Paul Defends His Authority

10 Now (A)I, Paul, myself (B)plead with you by the (C)gentleness and forbearance of Christ—I who (D)am humble when face-to-face with you, but courageous toward you when absent! But I beg that (E)when I am present I need not act so courageously with the confidence that I consider to daringly use against (F)some, who consider us as if we walked (G)according to the flesh. For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war (H)according to the flesh, for the (I)weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but [a]divinely powerful (J)for the tearing down of strongholds, as we tear down speculations and every (K)lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to the (L)obedience of Christ, and are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever (M)your obedience is fulfilled.

[b](N)You are looking at [c]things as they are outwardly. (O)If anyone is confident in himself that he is Christ’s, let him consider this again within himself, that just as he is Christ’s, (P)so also are we. For even if (Q)I boast somewhat [d]further about our (R)authority, which the Lord gave for building you up and not for tearing you down, I will not be put to shame, [e]for I do not wish to seem as if I would terrify you by my letters. 10 For they say, “His letters are weighty and strong, but his [f]personal presence is (S)weak and (T)his [g]words contemptible.” 11 Let such a person consider this, that what we are in word by letters when absent, such persons we are also in deed when present.

12 For we do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with [h]some of those who (U)commend themselves, but when they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are without understanding. 13 But we will not boast (V)beyond our measure, but [i](W)within the measure of the area of influence which God apportioned to us as a measure, to reach even as far as you. 14 For we are not overextending ourselves, as if we did not reach you, (for (X)we were the first to come even as far as you in the (Y)gospel of Christ), 15 not boasting (Z)beyond our measure in (AA)other men’s labors, but having the hope—that as (AB)your faith grows—to be (AC)enlarged even more by you [j]within our area of influence, 16 so as to (AD)proclaim the gospel even to (AE)the regions beyond you, and not to boast [k](AF)in what has been accomplished in the area of influence of another. 17 But (AG)he who boasts is to boast in the Lord. 18 For it is not the one who (AH)commends himself that is approved, but the one (AI)whom the Lord commends.


  1. 2 Corinthians 10:4 Or mighty before God
  2. 2 Corinthians 10:7 Or Look at... or Do you look at...?
  3. 2 Corinthians 10:7 Lit what is before your face
  4. 2 Corinthians 10:8 Or more abundantly
  5. 2 Corinthians 10:9 Lit so that I may not seem
  6. 2 Corinthians 10:10 Lit bodily presence is weak
  7. 2 Corinthians 10:10 Lit word
  8. 2 Corinthians 10:12 Or any
  9. 2 Corinthians 10:13 Lit according to the measure
  10. 2 Corinthians 10:15 Lit according to our area of influence
  11. 2 Corinthians 10:16 Lit to the things prepared in the