2 Corinthians 12 Expanded Bible (EXB)
A Special Blessing in Paul’s Life
12 I must continue to ·brag [boast]. It will do no good, but I will talk now about visions and revelations from the Lord. 2 I know a man in Christ [C a believer] who was ·taken up [caught up; snatched away] to the third heaven [C the presence of God] fourteen years ago [C Paul is indirectly referring to himself]. I do not know whether the man was in his body or out of his body, but God knows.
7 So that I would not become too proud ·of the wonderful things that were shown to me [or because of these extraordinary revelations; C this phrase may be part of the previous sentence], a ·painful physical problem [L thorn in the flesh] was given to me. This problem was a messenger from Satan, sent to ·beat [torment; harrass; trouble] me and keep me from being too proud. 8 I ·begged [pleaded with] the Lord three times ·to take this problem away from [L that it might leave] me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is ·enough for you [sufficient for you; all you need]. ·When you are weak, my power is made perfect in you [L For (my) power is perfected in weakness].” So I am very happy to ·brag [boast] about my weaknesses. Then Christ’s power can ·live [reside; or rest] in me. 10 For this reason I am ·happy [pleased; content] when I have weaknesses, insults, ·hard times [times of need], ·sufferings [persecutions], and ·all kinds of troubles [distress] ·for [for the sake of] Christ. Because when I am weak, then I am truly strong.
Paul’s Love for the Christians
11 I have ·been talking like [L become] a fool, but you ·made me [compelled me to] do it. You are the ones who should ·say good things about [have commended] me. Even if I am ·worth nothing [L nothing], I am not at all inferior to those “·great [super-] apostles.”
12 ·When I was with you, I patiently did the things that prove I am an apostle [L The signs of an apostle were performed among you, with all patience/perseverance]—signs, wonders, and ·miracles [powerful deeds]. 13 In what way were you treated worse than the rest of the churches, except that I was not a burden to you? Forgive me for this ·wrong [injustice]!
14 [T Behold; L Look] I am now ready to visit you the third time [2:1, 3], and I will not be a burden to you. I want nothing from you, except you. [L For] Children should not have to save up to give to their parents. [L Rather,] Parents should save to give to their children. 15 So I ·am happy to [most gladly] ·give everything I have for you, even myself [L spend and be spent for your lives/souls]. If I love you more, will you love me less?
16 ·It is clear [Granting that; or Be that as it may] I was not a burden to you, but ·you think I was tricky and lied to catch you [L being so crafty, I took you by deceit!; C Paul is being sarcastic]. 17 Did I ·cheat [take advantage of] you by using any of the messengers I sent to you? [C The Greek question assumes a negative answer.] 18 I ·asked [urged; encouraged] Titus [2:13] to go to you, and I sent our brother with him [8:18, 22]. Titus did not cheat you, did he? ·No, you know that Titus and I did the same thing [L Did we not walk in the same footsteps…?] and with the same spirit.
19 ·Do you think we have been defending ourselves to you all this time [or All this time have you been thinking that we are defending ourselves to you]? We have been speaking in Christ and ·before [in the presence of] God, ·dear friends [beloved], and everything we do is to ·make you stronger [build you up]. 20 [L For] I am afraid that when I come, you will not be what I want you to be, and I will not be what you want me to be. I am afraid that among you there may be ·arguing [quarreling], jealousy, anger, selfish ·fighting [or ambition], ·evil talk [slander], gossip, ·pride [arrogance], and ·confusion [disorder]. 21 I am afraid that when I come to you again, my God will ·make me ashamed [or humble/humiliate me] before you. I may ·be saddened by [or mourn/grieve over] many of those who have sinned because they have not ·changed their hearts or turned [repented] from their ·impurity [uncleanness], sexual sins and the ·shameful things [debauchery; licentiousness] they have done.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
It looks like you’re already subscribed to Bible Gateway Plus! To manage your subscription, visit your Bible Gateway account settings.
Want to get the most out of Bible Gateway? Find out why Bible Gateway Plus is the ultimate toolkit for anyone seeking to grow closer to the Word. For less than the cost of a latte, Plus membership gives you access to a complete digital Bible study library and reduced banner ads. Try it free for 30 days!
Three easy steps to start your free trial subscription to Bible Gateway Plus.