The Second Epistle to the Corinthians
© 2005 William R. Finck Jr.
For a full audio and written commentary on this epistle see The Second Epistle of Paul to the Corinthians - Audio and Written Bible Commentary or for a simple index: Paul's Second Epistle to the Corinthians - Podcast Index
I 1 Paul, ambassador of Yahshua Christ by the will of Yahweh, and Timotheos the brother, to the assembly of Yahweh which is in Korinth, with all of the saints who are in the whole of Achaia, 2 favor and peace to you from Yahweh our Father and Prince Yahshua Christ.
3 Blessed is Yahweh, even the Father of our Prince, Yahshua Christ, the Father of compassions, Yahweh also is of all encouragement. 4 He is encouraging us upon every one of our afflictions, for us to be able to encourage those in every affliction, through the encouragement with which we ourselves are encouraged by Yahweh. 5 Because just as the sufferings of the Anointed are abundant to us, in that manner through the Anointed our encouragement also is abundant. 6 Now, whether we are afflicted on behalf of your encouragement and preservation, or if we are encouraged on behalf of your encouragement which is being produced in the endurance of the same sufferings by which we are also affected, 7 then our hope for you is steadfast, knowing that just as you are partners of the sufferings, in that manner also of the encouragement.
8 For we do not wish you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning our affliction which happened in Asia, because we were exceedingly oppressed, beyond ability, consequently for us to despair even of living. 9 Yet we had within ourselves that sentence of death in order that we would rely not upon ourselves, but upon Yahweh who raises the dead; 10 who from so great a death has protected us, and will protect; in whom we trust because also still He will protect; 11 you also cooperating on our behalf in prayers in order that from many persons, the gift to us would be thanksgiving by many on our behalf. 12 Therefore this is our reason to boast: the testimony of our conscience, that in sanctity and sincerity of Yahweh, (and not with fleshly wisdom, but with favor of Yahweh,) we have had our dwelling in the Society, and more extraordinarily in reference to you. 13 For we do not write other things to you but those which you have read, or even know; and I expect that even until the fulfillment you will know, 14 just as also you have known us to some degree, seeing that we are your boast, just as you also are ours in the day of Prince Yahshua. 15 And with this confidence I had planned to come to you earlier, in order that you would have a second favor; 16 and by you to pass through into Makedonia, and again from Makedonia to come to you, and by you to be escorted into Judaea. 17 Therefore planning this, had I indeed been in want of easiness? Or that which I plan, do I plan in accordance with flesh, in order that with me it would be ‘yea, yea’ then ‘nay, nay’? 18 But trusting is Yahweh, seeing that our word to you is not ‘yea’, then ‘nay’. 19 For the Son of Yahweh, Yahshua Christ, who among you has been proclaimed by us, (by me and Silvanos and Timotheos,) has not been ‘yea’ then ‘nay’, rather with Him it has been ‘Yes’. 20 For however so many of Yahweh’s promises there are, with Him is the Yes, and through Him the Truth, with honor to Yahweh through us. 21 Now He who is establishing us with you in the Anointed, and anoints us, is Yahweh: 22 who is also confirming us, and is providing the deposits of the Spirit in our hearts.
23 Now I appeal to Yahweh as a witness upon my soul, that sparing you I had not yet come to Korinth. 24 Not because we lord over your faith, rather we are colleagues of your joy: for you are established in the faith. II 1 But I have decided this within myself: not to come back to you in grief. 2 For if I grieve you, then who is gladdening me, if not he who is being grieved by me? 3 And I have written this same thing, in order that coming I do not have grief from those whom there is need for me to be delighted with; having confidence in all of you, because my joy is of all of you. 4 From much tribulation and anguish of heart I have written to you through many tears, in order that you would not be grieved, rather that you would know the love which I so abundantly have for you. 5 Now if anyone causes grief, he does not cause me grief, but in some part (at which I should not be burdensome) you all. 6 Befitting such a one is this penalty, which is by the many. 7 Consequently, on the other hand still more you are to show kindness and encourage, lest perchance such a one would be consumed in more abundant grief. 8 On which account I encourage you to confirm love in regard to him. 9 For this also I have written, in order that I would know of your tried character, if in everything you are obedient. 10 Now to anyone whom you are obliging, likewise I am; and for my part whomever I oblige, if anyone I oblige, it is for your sakes, in the presence of Christ; 11 in order that we are not taken advantage of by the Adversary, for we are not ignorant of his designs.
12 Now coming to Troas in regard to the good message of the Anointed, and an opportunity being opened to me by the Prince, 13 I had no rest in my Spirit, with my not finding Titos my brother; then taking leave of them, I had gone out into Makedonia. 14 But thanks to Yahweh, who is always leading us among the Anointed in triumph, and the essence of the knowledge of Him is being made manifest through us in every place. 15 Seeing that we of the Anointed are a sweet fragrance to Yahweh, among these being preserved and among those being destroyed; 16 Although in those, a fragrance of death into death, yet in these, a fragrance of life into life; and who for these things is befitting? 17 For we are not as the many, selling the word of Yahweh in trade, but as from sincerity, rather as from Yahweh. Before Yahweh we speak in respect of the Anointed.
III 1 Do we begin anew to introduce ourselves? Or do we, as some, need letters of introduction to you, or from you? 2 You are our letters, having been inscribed in our hearts, being known and being read by all men, 3 being made manifest because you are Christ’s letter, ministered to by us; having been inscribed not with ink but with the Spirit of the living Yahweh; not on tablets of stone, but on fleshly tablets of heart. 4 Now confidence such as this we have throughout the Anointed regarding Yahweh, 5 not because we are competent by ourselves to reckon anything as from of ourselves, but our competency is from Yahweh, 6 who also makes us competent servants of a new covenant; not of letter, but of Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit produces life. 7 And if the service of death in letters, being engraved in stones, had been produced with honor so that the sons of Israel were not able to gaze into the face of Moses, on account of the effulgence of his face (which is being left unemployed,) 8 how not shall the service of the Spirit still more be in honor? 9 For if in the service of condemnation there is honor, much more abundant is the service of righteousness in honor. 10 And that which had not been honored was being honored in this respect, on account of that surpassing honor. 11 If that which is being left unemployed is in a state of honor, much more in honor is that which remains. 12 Therefore having such expectations we use much openness, 13 and not as Moses placed a veil upon his face, for the sons of Israel not to gaze into the fulfillment of that which is being left unemployed. 14 Yet their minds were hardened; even to this day today the same veil remains upon the reading of the old covenant, which not being uncovered is left unemployed in Christ. 15 Then until this day, whenever Moses is read a veil lies upon their hearts. 16 But when perhaps you should turn to the Prince, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Prince is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Prince is, there is freedom. 18 And we all, with uncovered faces, are beholding as in a mirror the honor of the Prince. We are being transformed into that same image, from honor into honor, just as a Spirit from the Prince.
IV 1 For this reason, having this service, just as we have received mercy we do not falter. 2 Rather, we renounce the covers of disgrace, not walking in villainy nor disguising the word of Yahweh; but in the manifestation of truth, establishing ourselves against all consciences of men in the presence of Yahweh. 3 And if then our good message is covered, by those being destroyed it is covered; 4 by whom the ‘god’ of this age has blinded the minds of the unbelieving, for not to shine the light of the good message of the honor of the Anointed, who are the image of Yahweh. 5 We do not proclaim ourselves, but Prince Yahshua Christ; and of ourselves, your bondmen for the sake of Yahshua. 6 Because Yahweh speaking out of darkness shines forth light, which has shone in our hearts, for illumination of the knowledge of the honor of Yahweh in the person of Yahshua Christ. 7 Now we have this treasure in earthen vessels, in order that the greatness of the power would be of Yahweh, and not from us. 8 Being oppressed in every way, but not crushed; being without means, but not destitute; 9 being persecuted, but not abandoned; being cast down, but not destroyed; 10 at all times bearing about the death of Yahshua in the body, in order that also the life of Yahshua in our body may be manifested. 11 Always we who live with death are delivered for the sake of Yahshua, in order that also the life of Yahshua may be manifest in our mortal flesh; 12 consequently death operates in us, and life in you; 13 but having the same Spirit of the faith, in accordance with that which has been written: “I have believed, therefore I have spoken;” we also believe, therefore we also speak; 14 because knowing that he who raised Prince Yahshua, also will raise us with Yahshua, and will be present with you. 15 All things are for the sake of you, in order that the favor, abounding over the greater number, would exceed the thankfulness to the honor of Yahweh.
16 On which account we do not falter, rather then if our outer man is being destroyed, then our inner is being restored day by day. 17 For the present lightness of our tribulation, an exceedingly surpassing eternal abundance of honor is earned by us; 18 we not considering the things being seen, but the things not being seen; the things being seen temporary, but the things not being seen eternal.
V 1 Therefore we know that if perhaps our earthly house of the tabernacle would be destroyed, we have a building from Yahweh, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 And we bemoan in this, yearning to be clothed with our dwelling which is from of heaven. 3 If indeed even being stripped, we shall not be found naked. 4 And indeed we who are being burdened in the tabernacle bemoan, since we wish not to be stripped, but to be clothed in order that the mortal would be consumed by life. 5 Now He who has been cultivating us for this same thing is Yahweh, who has been giving to us the deposits of the Spirit. 6 Therefore always having courage, and knowing that residing in the body, we sojourn away from the Prince; 7 indeed we walk by faith, not by that which is seen; 8 now we have courage, and we are still more pleased to travel out of the body and to reside with the Prince. 9 On which account we also strive eagerly, either residing at home or sojourning, to be pleasing to Him. 10 For we all must appear in front of the judgment seat of the Christ, in order that each should be provided for the things after the body, from that which he has practiced, whether good or bad. 11 Then knowing the awe of the Prince, we persuade men. Now to Yahweh we have been made known, but I also hope to have been made known in your consciences.
12 We do not again introduce ourselves to you, rather giving to you an occasion of boasting on our behalf, in order that you should hold up against those boasting in appearance and not in heart. 13 For either we change our position with Yahweh, or we are temperate with you. 14 The love of the Christ constrains us, having decided this: since one has been slain on behalf of all, then all have been slain; 15 and on behalf of all He has been slain, in order that those who are living would no longer live for themselves, but for He who had been slain on behalf of them, and has been raised. 16 Consequently we from thereafter know no one in relation to flesh. Even if we had known Christ in relation to flesh, yet now we no longer know. 17 Therefore if one is among the number of Christ a new creation, the old things pass away. “Behold! New things have come!” 18 But all things from Yahweh, who has reconciled us to Himself through Christ, and is giving the service of reconciliation to us. 19 How that Yahweh was within Christ reconciling the Society to Himself, not accounting their offenses to them, and placing in us the word of that reconciliation. 20 Therefore on behalf of Christ we serve as ambassadors, as Yahweh is exhorting through us. We ask on behalf of Christ: you be reconciled to Yahweh. 21 For He who knew not error, on our behalf had caused error, in order that we would come into the righteousness of Yahweh with Him.
VI 1 Now working together we also exhort you not to accept the favor of Yahweh to no purpose. 2 (For He says, “In an acceptable time I have listened to you, and in a day of deliverance I have come to help you.” Behold, the present time is well acceptable. Behold, the present day is of deliverance.) 3 Not one by any means giving offense, in order that fault would not be found with the service; 4 rather in everything engaging ourselves as servants of Yahweh; with much endurance in tribulations, in constraints, in difficulties, 5 in calamities, in imprisonments, in disturbances, in labors; with wakefulness, with fastings, 6 with purity, with knowledge, with patience, with kindness, with the Holy Spirit, in love without acting, 7 in the word of truth, in the power of Yahweh; through the arms of justice on the right and left; 8 through honor and dishonor; through bad words and good words, as are deceptions and truths; 9 as if being ignorant, and discovering; as if being slain, and behold, we live; as if being disciplined, and not being condemned; 10 as if being grieved, but always rejoicing; as beggars, but being much enriched; as having nothing, and possessing all.
11 Our mouths have been opened to you, Korinthians, our hearts enlarged. 12 You are not straitened by us, but you are straitened in your affections. 13 Now for that same reward, (as if to children I speak,) you also be enlarged. 14 Do not become yoked together with untrustworthy aliens; for what participation has justice and lawlessness? And what fellowship has light towards darkness? 15 And what accord has Christ with Beliar? Or what share the faithful with the faithless? 16 And what agreement has a temple of Yahweh with idols? For you are a temple of the living Yahweh; just as Yahweh has said, “I will dwell among them, and I will walk about; and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” 17 On which account “Come out from the midst of them and be separated,” says the Prince, and “do not be joined to the impure, and I will admit you”. 18 “And I will be to you for a father, and you will be mine for sons and daughters, says the almighty Prince.” VII 1Therefore having these promises, beloved, we must cleanse ourselves from every defilement of flesh and of Spirit, accomplishing sanctity in awe of Yahweh.
2 Make room for us; we have wronged no one, we have ruined no one, we have defrauded no one. 3 I do not speak for condemnation, for I have said before that you are in our hearts, for which to die together and to live together. 4 Great to me is openness towards you. Great to me is a reason to boast concerning you. I am filled with encouragement. I overflow in joy at all of our tribulation. 5 For we indeed, going into Makedonia, had not any relaxation of our flesh, but in every way being afflicted: battles from without, fears from within. 6 But He who encourages those who are humbled has encouraged us: Yahweh; in the arrival of Titos. 7 And not only in his arrival, but also in the encouragement with which he had been encouraged by you; relating to us your longing, your lamentation, your zeal on behalf of me; consequently for me to rejoice still more. 8 Because if then I had grieved you with the letter, I do not regret it, even though I had regretted it; for I see that that letter, even if for a while, had grieved you. 9 Now I rejoice, not because you have been grieved, rather because you have been grieved into repentance; for you had been grieved by Yahweh, in order that in nothing have you been damaged by us. 10 For that grief which is by Yahweh accomplishes repentance for preservation not to be regretted, but the grief of the Society accomplishes death. 11 Therefore behold, this same thing that by Yahweh you are to have been grieved, at what price has it cultivated diligence in you, but an explanation, but irritation, but fear, but longing, but jealousy, but an avenging? In each you yourselves have continued to be pure in the matter. 12 Next then, I had written to you not for the sake of he who had been doing wrong, nor for the sake of he who had been wronged, but for the sake of making manifest your diligence, which is on our behalf to you before Yahweh. 13 On this account we have been encouraged. And upon our encouragement still more abundantly have we rejoiced in the joy of Titos, because his Spirit has been refreshed by all of you. 14 Because if to him I had boasted anything concerning you, I have not been disgraced, but as we have spoken all things in truth to you, in that manner also our reason to boast to Titos had become truth; 15 and exceedingly are his inward affections for you, remembering the obedience of you all, how you had received him with fear and trembling. 16 I rejoice, because in everything I have confidence in you.
VIII 1 Now we make known to you, brethren, the favor of Yahweh which has been given in the assemblies of Makedonia; 2 because with quite a test of tribulation, the abundance of their joy, and contrary to their copious poverty, they have advantage in the riches of their sincerity. 3 Because by ability, I attest, even beyond ability, they are volunteers 4 asking of us with much exhortation the favor and the fellowship of the service of that which is for the saints. 5 And not exactly as we had expected, rather they had given of themselves first to the Prince, and to us through the will of Yahweh, 6 for which to summon Titos to us, in order that just as he had begun before, in that manner then would he accomplish this favor with you also. 7 But just as in everything you have advantage, in faith, and in word, and in knowledge, and in all diligence, and in that love from us in you, see that also in this favor you would have the advantage. 8 I do not speak in the way of a command, but through the diligence of others and testing the legitimacy of your love. 9 Now you know the favor of our Prince, Yahshua Christ, that for the sake of you, He being wealthy had been in need, in order that in that need you would be enriched. 10 And in this I give an opinion, this to you is beneficial: whoever not only would do, but also to be willing have begun before, from last year. 11 But now also accomplish the doing, so that just as there is the readiness to be willing, so also from that have the completion. 12 If that readiness is set forth, according to whatever one would have is acceptable, not according to that which one does not have. 13 Not in order that there is relaxation for others, and pressure for you, but from equality, 14 at the present time your abundance for their deficiency, in order that also their abundance would be for your deficiency, that in some way there would be equality. 15 Just as it is written, “The great have not had excess, and the small have not been diminished.”
16 Now gratitude is to Yahweh, by whom that same diligence is being given in the heart of Titos on your behalf, 17 seeing that the encouragement he indeed has received, now being more diligent, voluntarily he has gone out to you. 18 And we have sent along with him that brother of whom there is approval in the good message throughout all of the assemblies; 19 and not only, but our fellow traveler has also been handpicked by the assemblies to be endued with this favor, in which he would serve under us to the honor of the Prince Himself; and our eagerness 20 is avoiding this: not a one would find fault with us in this strength which is serving under us. 21 Indeed we have noble intentions not only in the presence of the Prince, but also in the presence of men. 22 Now we have sent our brother with them, whom we have approved to be very diligent in many things, and now much more diligent in the great confidence which is in you. 23 Whether concerning Titos, my partner and a colleague to you, or our brethren, to be ambassadors of the assemblies is an honor of the Anointed. 24 Therefore the proof of your love, and of our boasting concerning you, is being displayed to them in the presence of the assemblies.
IX 1 Certainly it is superfluous for me to write to you concerning the service which is for the saints. 2 I know your readiness, which concerning you I boast of to Makedonians; because Achaia had been prepared a year ago, and that of your zeal the greater amount is provoked. 3 Now I have sent the brethren, in order that our boasting concerning you would not be made empty in this respect, that just as I have been saying, you would be preparing; 4 lest perhaps if Makedonians should come with me, and they find you unprepared, we would be disgraced (‘we’, in which case I do not say ‘you’,) in this matter. 5 Therefore I have regarded it necessary to summon the brethren in order that they would go to you in advance, and put in order beforehand your previously announced blessing, this to be ready as a blessing, and not just as an advantage. 6 Now this: he who is sowing sparingly, sparingly then shall he reap; and he who is sowing by blessings, by blessings then shall he reap. 7 Each one just as he purposes in the heart; not from out of grief or from out of necessity, for Yahweh would love a cheerful giver. 8 And able is Yahweh to make abundant every favor for you, in order that in everything, at all times, having all self-sufficiency, you may have the advantage in every good deed. 9 Just as it is written, “He has dispensed, he has given to the poor, his righteousness remains for the age”. 10 Now He who is supplying besides seed to he who is sowing also wheat-bread for food, He will supply and He will multiply your sowing, and He will increase the produce of your justice; 11 in every way being enriched in all sincerity, which through us accomplishes gratitude to Yahweh. 12 Because the service of this ministry is not only its replenishing of the deficiencies of the saints, but also its having abundance through many thanksgivings to Yahweh, 13 through the proof of this service honoring Yahweh, upon the submission of your agreement to the good message of the Anointed, and sincerity of the partnership for them and for all, 14 and in their entreaty for you, yearning for you for the sake of the favor of Yahweh overflowing upon you. 15 Now gratitude to Yahweh for His indescribable gift.
X 1 Now I myself, Paul, exhort you by the gentleness and fairness of the Anointed, who concerning stature am humble among you, but being absent am bold towards you; 2 but I want, not being present, to be bold with the confidence with which I reckon to be daring towards certain others who are reckoning us as walking in accordance with the flesh. 3 Indeed walking in the flesh, we do not serve in accordance with flesh. 4 For the arms of our warfare are not fleshly, but through Yahweh they are able to destroy strongholds, 5 destroying reasonings and every bulwark raising itself up against the knowledge of Yahweh, and taking captive every thought into the obedience of the Anointed; 6 also being in readiness to avenge all disobedience, whenever you shall have fulfilled your obedience.
7 You must look at things according to appearance. If one is confident in himself to be of the Anointed, he must again reckon this by himself: that just as he is of the Anointed, even so are we. 8 Then if perhaps I would boast somewhat more excessively concerning our authority, which the Prince has given for building and not for your destruction, I shall not be disgraced. 9 At which I would not think as if to frighten you through letters, 10 because the letters, says one, are burdensome and severe, but the presence of the body weak, and the speech nothing. 11 Such a one must reckon this: that as we are in pretense through letters being absent, even so in reality being present. 12 For we do not venture to rank or compare ourselves with any of those recommending themselves; rather these, measuring themselves with themselves, and comparing themselves with themselves, do not understand. 13 Now we will not boast in regard to things without measure, but according to the measure of the standard of which Yahweh has of measure distributed to us, to reach even as far as you. 14 For not as if reaching to you do we overextend ourselves, indeed as far as you we also came before with the good message of the Anointed; 15 not in regard to things without measure boasting in others’ troubles; but having hope, increasing your faith, with you to be magnified in accordance with our standard for abundance; 16 to announce the good message to those beyond you, not ready to boast by another’s standard for things, 17 but “he who is boasting, in Yahweh he must boast.” 18 For it is not he who is recommending himself, who is the person approved, but he whom the Prince recommends.
XI 1 I would be obliged were you to bear with me in a little folly. Rather, indeed bear with me. 2 For I admire you with zeal of Yahweh; for I have joined you to one Husband, to present a chaste virgin to Christ. 3 But I fear lest in any way, as the serpent had thoroughly beguiled Eve in his villainy, your thoughts would be corrupted from that sincerity and that purity which is with the Anointed. 4 For if indeed one coming proclaims another Yahshua whom we did not proclaim, or you admit a different spirit which you have not received, or a different good message which you had not accepted, would you hold up well? 5 For I reckon in nothing to have been inferior to those most eminent ambassadors. 6 And even if unpracticed in speech, yet not in knowledge; but rather in every way being made known in all things to you. 7 Can it be that I have made an error, humbling myself in order that you may be elevated, because I have announced the good message of Yahweh to you freely? 8 I have deprived other assemblies, taking provisions for your service. 9 And being present with you and wanting, I had burdened no one, (indeed my need had been filled by the brethren who came from Makedonia,) and in everything I have kept and will keep myself unburdensome to you. 10 The truth of Christ is in me, for that this reason to boast shall not be contained in me within the regions of Achaia. 11 For what purpose? Because I do not love you? Yahweh knows. 12 But that which I do, and I will do, in order that I cut off the pretext of those desiring a pretext at which in that they may boast that they would be found just as we. 13 Such as these are false ambassadors, treacherous workers, transforming themselves into ambassadors of Christ. 14 And no wonder, for the Adversary himself transforms himself into a messenger of light. 15 Therefore it is no big thing if even his ministers transform themselves as ministers of justice; of whom the end shall be in accordance with their deeds.
16 Again I say, no one should suppose me to be a fool, otherwise even if as a fool you accept me, that I then at least may boast a little. 17 That which I speak, I do not speak with authority but as if in folly, in this the substance of that reason to boast. 18 Since many may boast in accordance with the flesh, then for my part I will boast. 19 For you, being prudent, gladly bear with those being fools. 20 You bear it if anyone enslaves you, if anyone devours your substance, if anyone takes, if anyone exalts himself, if anyone thrashes you upon the face. 21 I speak concerning dishonor, as though we had been weak; but with this should anyone be daring (in folly I speak,) I also am daring. 22 Are they Hebrews? I am also. Are they Israelites? I am also. Are they offspring of Abraham? I am also. 23 Are they servants of Christ? (I speak wandering from reason.) I am even more. In labors more excessively, in imprisonment more abundantly, in thrashings exceedingly, in perils of death often. 24 By Judaeans five times I have received forty lashes except one, 25 three times I have been beaten with rods, once I have been stoned. Three times I have been shipwrecked, I had done a night and a day in the deep. 26 In journeys many times in dangers of rivers, in dangers of pirates, in dangers from kinsmen, in dangers from heathens, in dangers in the city, in dangers in the desert, in dangers on the sea, in dangers among false brethren; 27 in labors and hardships, often in sleeplessness; in hunger and thirst, often in fasting; in cold and in nakedness. 28 Apart from the external things hindering me daily is the care of all of the assemblies. 29 One is weak, and I am not weak? One is entrapped, and I am not inflamed? 30 If there is need to boast, I will boast of the things of my weakness. 31 Yahweh, even the Father of our Prince Yahshua Christ knows, He who is being praised to the ages, that I do not speak falsely. 32 In Damaskos, the ethnarch of Aretas the king had been guarding the city of the Damaskenes, to lay hold of me. 33 Then through a window in a basket I had been let down over the city wall, and had escaped his hands.
XII 1 A need to boast is truly not beneficial, but I do come into visions and revelations of the Prince. 2 Fourteen years ago I knew a man among the number of the Anointed, (whether in the body I know not, or outside of the body I know not: Yahweh knows,) such a man being carried off to the third region of heaven. 3 And I know such a man, (whether in the body or apart from the body I know not: Yahweh knows,) 4 that he had been carried off into that paradise, and he had heard unutterable sayings, which to speak with a man is not permitted. 5 I will boast on behalf of such a man, but I will not boast on behalf of myself, unless in respect of weaknesses. 6 If perhaps I should desire to boast, I would not be foolish; indeed I speak truth, but I am sparing; unless anyone would reckon in regard to me more than what he sees of me, or whatever he hears from me. 7 And in order that I would not be exalted in the excellence of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh has been given to me, an adverse messenger, that it would strike me in order that I would not be exalted. 8 Three times I have exhorted the Prince concerning this, that it may depart from me, 9 and He told me, ‘My favor is enough for you; since the power is perfected in weakness.’ Therefore most gladly will I still more boast in my weakness, in order that the power of the Christ would dwell upon me. 10 On which account I am well pleased with weaknesses, with injuries, with torments, with persecutions and difficulties on behalf of Christ; for when I am weak, then I am powerful.
11 I have become foolish; you have compelled me. Indeed I ought to be joined by you. For in nothing am I inferior to those most eminent ambassadors, if also I am nothing. 12 Indeed the signs of the ambassador were accomplished among you in all endurance, with signs and wonders and powers. 13 What is it in which you have been inferior in, more than the rest of the assemblies, except that I myself have not been burdensome to you? Forgive me this injustice. 14 Behold, readily this third time I engage to come to you, and I will not be burdensome to you; for I do not seek your things, but you. The children are not obliged to store up for the parents, but the parents for the children. 15 Now I will most gladly spend, and be wholly expended, on behalf of your souls, even if loving you more abundantly, I am loved less. 16 But it is that I have not imposed on you, otherwise being villainous I have taken you with guile. 17 Of those several whom I had sent to you, through them have I defrauded you? 18 I have summoned Titos, and have sent with him the brother. Has Titos defrauded you? Have we not walked in the same Spirit? Nor in the same steps? 19 But now, do you suppose that we are speaking in defense to you? We speak among the Anointed before Yahweh, and all things, beloved, on behalf of your building. 20 For I fear, having come, perhaps I should not find you such as I desire, and I would be found by you such as you do not desire; lest perhaps there be contention, jealousy, angers, intrigues, braggings, slanders, indignations, disturbances. 21 Again, upon my having come, should my God humble me before you? And should I mourn for those many having failed before and not repenting after the uncleanness and fornication and licentiousness which they have practiced?
XIII 1 This is the third time I am coming to you. “In the mouth of two witnesses, even three, shall every matter be established.” 2 I have said beforehand and I forewarn, while being present the second time and being absent now, (to those who have failed before and to all the rest,) that if I come perhaps in that I will not again be sparing. 3 Since you seek a proof of Christ speaking in me, (who to you is not a weakness, but is power among you, 4 although He had been crucified by weakness, yet He lives by the power of Yahweh; and we are weak with Him, but we shall live with Him by the power of Yahweh in you,) 5 you yourselves must make trial, whether you are in the faith. You must examine yourselves. Truly, do you not yourselves observe that Yahshua Christ is among you, unless somehow you are spurious? 6 Now I expect that you will perceive that we are not spurious. 7 And we pray to Yahweh that you will do nothing evil; not in order that we appear approved, but that you may do what is good, and we may be as if spurious. 8 For we have not any power against the truth, but in defense of truth. 9 We are delighted whenever we would be weak, but you would be powerful. And this we also pray for: your restoration. 10 Therefore being absent I write these things, in order that being present I would not make use of severity, in accordance with the authority which the Prince has given to me for building, and not for destroying.
11 Furthermore, brethren, be delighted, be restored, be encouraged, be like-minded, be at peace, and Yahweh shall be of love and of peace with you. 12 Greet one another with a holy kiss. All of the saints greet you. 13 The favor of Prince Yahshua Christ, and the love of Yahweh, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit is with all of you.