Introduction

Paul, (A)an apostle of (B)Christ Jesus (C)by the will of God, and our brother (D)Timothy,

To (E)the church of God which is at (F)Corinth with all the [a]saints who are throughout (G)Achaia:

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

(I)Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and (J)God of all comfort, who (K)comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in [b]any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For just (L)as the sufferings of Christ are [c]ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ. But if we are afflicted, it is (M)for your comfort and salvation; or if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which is effective in the patient enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer; and our hope for you is firmly grounded, knowing that (N)as you are partners in our sufferings, so also you are in our comfort.

For (O)we do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, of our (P)affliction which occurred in [d](Q)Asia, that we were burdened excessively, beyond our strength, so that we despaired even of life. [e]Indeed, we had the sentence of death within ourselves so that we would not trust in ourselves, but in God who raises the dead, 10 who (R)rescued us from so great a danger of death, and will rescue us, He [f](S)on whom we have set our hope. And He will yet deliver us, 11 if you also join in (T)helping us through your prayers, so that thanks may be given by (U)many persons in our behalf for the favor granted to us through the prayers of many.

Paul’s Integrity

12 For our [g]proud confidence is this: the testimony of (V)our conscience, that in holiness and (W)godly sincerity, (X)not in fleshly wisdom but in the grace of God, we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially toward you. 13 For we write nothing else to you than what you read and understand, and I hope you will understand (Y)until the end; 14 just as you also partially did understand us, that we are your reason to be proud as you also are ours, on (Z)the day of our Lord Jesus.

15 In this confidence I intended at first to (AA)come to you, so that you might [h]twice receive a [i](AB)blessing; 16 [j]that is, to (AC)pass [k]your way into (AD)Macedonia, and again from Macedonia to come to you, and by you to be (AE)helped on my journey to Judea. 17 Therefore, I was not vacillating when I intended to do this, was I? Or what I decide, do I decide (AF)according to the flesh, so that with me there will be [l]yes, yes and no, no at the same time? 18 But as (AG)God is faithful, (AH)our word to you is not yes and no. 19 For (AI)the Son of God, Christ Jesus, who was preached among you by us—by me and (AJ)Silvanus and (AK)Timothy—was not yes and no, but has been yes (AL)in Him. 20 For (AM)as many as the promises of God are, (AN)in Him they are yes; therefore through Him also is (AO)our Amen to the glory of God through us. 21 Now He who (AP)establishes us with you in Christ and (AQ)anointed us is God, 22 who also (AR)sealed us and (AS)gave us the Spirit in our hearts as a [m]pledge.

23 But (AT)I call God as witness to my soul, that it was (AU)to spare you that I did not come again to (AV)Corinth. 24 Not that we (AW)domineer over your faith, but we are workers with you for your joy; for in your faith you are (AX)standing firm.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Corinthians 1:1 Lit holy ones; i.e., God’s people
  2. 2 Corinthians 1:4 Lit every
  3. 2 Corinthians 1:5 Lit to us
  4. 2 Corinthians 1:8 I.e., west coast province of Asia Minor
  5. 2 Corinthians 1:9 Lit But we ourselves
  6. 2 Corinthians 1:10 One early ms on whom we have set our hope that He will also
  7. 2 Corinthians 1:12 Or source of pride
  8. 2 Corinthians 1:15 Lit have a second grace
  9. 2 Corinthians 1:15 One early ms joy
  10. 2 Corinthians 1:16 Lit and
  11. 2 Corinthians 1:16 Lit through you into
  12. 2 Corinthians 1:17 I.e., a strong yes and no
  13. 2 Corinthians 1:22 Or first installment

Reaffirm Your Love

But I decided this [a]for my own sake, that I (A)would not come to you in sorrow again. For if I (B)cause you sorrow, who then will be the one making me glad but the one who is made sorrowful by me? This is the very thing I (C)wrote you, so that (D)when I came, I would not have sorrow from those who ought to make me rejoice; having (E)confidence in you all that my joy was the joy of you all. For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I (F)wrote to you with many tears; not so that you would be made sorrowful, but that you might know the love which I have especially for you.

But (G)if anyone has caused sorrow, he has caused sorrow not for me, but in some degree—[b]not to say too much—for all of you. Sufficient for such a person is (H)this punishment which was imposed by the majority, so that on the other hand, you should rather (I)forgive and comfort him, otherwise such a person might be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. Therefore I urge you to reaffirm your love for him. For to this end (J)I also wrote, so that I might [c](K)put you to the test, whether you are (L)obedient in all things. 10 But one whom you forgive anything, I also forgive; for indeed what I have forgiven, if I have forgiven anything, I did so for your sakes (M)in the presence of Christ, 11 so that no advantage would be taken of us by (N)Satan, for (O)we are not ignorant of his schemes.

12 Now when I came to (P)Troas for the (Q)gospel of Christ and when a (R)door was opened for me in the Lord, 13 I (S)had no rest for my spirit, not finding (T)Titus my brother; but (U)saying goodbye to them, I went on to (V)Macedonia.

14 (W)But thanks be to God, who always (X)leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us reveals the (Y)fragrance of the (Z)knowledge of Him in every place. 15 For we are a (AA)fragrance of Christ to God among (AB)those who are being saved and among those who are perishing: 16 (AC)to the one an [d]aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life. And who is (AD)adequate for these things? 17 For we are not like the many, [e](AE)peddling the word of God, but (AF)as from sincerity, but as from God, we speak in Christ (AG)in the sight of God.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Corinthians 2:1 Or as far as I am concerned
  2. 2 Corinthians 2:5 Lit so that I not be burdensome
  3. 2 Corinthians 2:9 Lit know the proof of you
  4. 2 Corinthians 2:16 Or odor
  5. 2 Corinthians 2:17 Or diluting

Ministers of a New Covenant

Are we beginning to (A)commend ourselves again? Or do we need, as some, (B)letters of commendation to you or from you? (C)You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all people, revealing yourselves, that you are a letter of Christ, [a](D)delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of (E)the living God, not on (F)tablets of stone but on (G)tablets of [b](H)human hearts.

Such is the (I)confidence we have toward God through Christ. Not that we are adequate in ourselves so as to consider anything as having come from ourselves, but (J)our adequacy is from God, who also made us adequate as (K)servants of a (L)new covenant, not of (M)the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but (N)the Spirit gives life.

But if the (O)ministry of death, engraved (P)in letters on stones, came [c]with glory (Q)so that the sons of Israel could not look intently at the face of Moses because of the glory of his face, fading as it was, how will the ministry of the Spirit fail to be even more with glory? For if (R)the ministry of condemnation has glory, much more does the (S)ministry of righteousness excel in glory. 10 For indeed what had glory in this case has no glory, because of the glory that surpasses it. 11 For if that which fades away was [d]with glory, much more that which remains is in glory.

12 (T)Therefore, having such a hope, (U)we use great boldness in our speech, 13 and we are not like Moses, (V)who used to put a veil over his face so that the sons of Israel would not stare at the end of what was fading away. 14 But their minds were (W)hardened; for until this very day at the (X)reading of (Y)the old covenant the same veil [e]remains unlifted, because it is removed in Christ. 15 But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their hearts; 16 (Z)but whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where (AA)the Spirit of the Lord is, (AB)there is freedom. 18 But we all, with unveiled faces, (AC)looking as in a mirror at the (AD)glory of the Lord, are being (AE)transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from (AF)the Lord, the Spirit.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Corinthians 3:3 Lit served
  2. 2 Corinthians 3:3 Lit hearts of flesh
  3. 2 Corinthians 3:7 Or in glory
  4. 2 Corinthians 3:11 Lit through
  5. 2 Corinthians 3:14 Or remains, it not being revealed that it is done away in Christ

Paul’s Apostolic Ministry

Therefore, since we have this (A)ministry, as we (B)received mercy, we (C)do not lose heart, but we have renounced the (D)things hidden because of shame, not walking in trickery nor (E)distorting the word of God, but by the open proclamation of the truth (F)commending ourselves to every person’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our (G)gospel is (H)veiled, it is veiled [a]to (I)those who are perishing, in whose case (J)the god of (K)this [b]world has (L)blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that [c]they will not see the (M)light of the gospel of the (N)glory of Christ, who is the (O)image of God. For we (P)do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants [d]on account of Jesus. For God, who said, “(Q)Light shall shine out of darkness,” is the One who has (R)shone in our hearts to give the (S)Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.

But we have this treasure in [e](T)earthen containers, so that the extraordinary greatness of (U)the power will be of God and not from ourselves; we are (V)afflicted in every way, but not (W)crushed; (X)perplexed, but not despairing; (Y)persecuted, but not (Z)abandoned; (AA)struck down, but not destroyed; 10 (AB)always carrying around in the body the dying of Jesus, so that (AC)the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. 11 For we who live are constantly being handed over to death because of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our mortal flesh. 12 So death works in us, but life in you.

13 But having the same (AD)spirit of faith, according to what is written: “(AE)I believed, therefore I spoke,” we also believe, therefore we also speak, 14 knowing that He who (AF)raised the Lord Jesus (AG)will also raise us with Jesus, and will (AH)present us with you. 15 For all things are (AI)for your sakes, so that grace, having [f](AJ)spread to more and more people, will cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.

16 Therefore we (AK)do not lose heart, but though our outer person is decaying, yet our (AL)inner person is (AM)being renewed day by day. 17 For our momentary, (AN)light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, 18 while we (AO)look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Corinthians 4:3 Lit among
  2. 2 Corinthians 4:4 Lit age
  3. 2 Corinthians 4:4 Or the light...image of God, will not shine upon them
  4. 2 Corinthians 4:5 Two early mss through Jesus
  5. 2 Corinthians 4:7 Or earthenware containers
  6. 2 Corinthians 4:15 Lit multiplied through the many