But I pray to God that you may do nothing wrong. Not so that we [and our teaching] may appear to be approved, but that you may continue doing what is right, even though we [by comparison] may seem to have failed.
But I pray to God that you may do nothing wrong, not in order that we [our teaching] may appear to be approved, but that you may continue doing right, [though] we may seem to have failed and be unapproved.
We pray to God that you will not do anything wrong. Our concern here is not for people to see that we have passed the test in our work with you. Our main concern is that you do what is right, even if it looks as if we have failed the test.
We pray to God that you will not do anything ·wrong [evil]. It is not important ·to see [that people see; or for it to appear] that we have passed the test, but it is important that you do what is ·right [good], even if it seems we have failed.
You should be looking at yourselves to make sure that you are really Christ’s. It is yourselves that you should be testing, not me. You ought to know by this time that Christ is in you, unless you are not real Christians at all. And when you have applied your test, I am confident that you will soon find that I myself am a genuine Christian. I pray God that you may find the right answer to your test, not because I have any need of your approval, but because I earnestly want you to find the right answer, even if that should make me no real Christian. For, after all, we can make no progress against the truth; we can only work for the truth.
Test yourselves to make sure you are solid in the faith. Don’t drift along taking everything for granted. Give yourselves regular checkups. You need firsthand evidence, not mere hearsay, that Jesus Christ is in you. Test it out. If you fail the test, do something about it. I hope the test won’t show that we have failed. But if it comes to that, we’d rather the test showed our failure than yours. We’re rooting for the truth to win out in you. We couldn’t possibly do otherwise. We don’t just put up with our limitations; we celebrate them, and then go on to celebrate every strength, every triumph of the truth in you. We pray hard that it will all come together in your lives.
I pray to God that you won’t do anything wrong. I don’t pray so that people will see that I have passed the test. Instead, I pray this so that you will do what is right, even if it seems I have failed.
We pray to God that you will not do what is wrong by refusing our correction. I hope we won’t need to demonstrate our authority when we arrive. Do the right thing before we come—even if that makes it look like we have failed to demonstrate our authority.
But we pray to God that you will never, ever, do anything wrong; not so that we can be shown up as having passed the test, but so that you will do what is right, even if that means that we appear like people who’ve failed.
but we pray to God that you will stay away from evil. What’s important is not whether we appear to have passed the test, but that you do what is right and act honorably, even if it appears that we have failed.
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