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2 Corinthians Chapter 1
Greetings from Paul and Timothy
- Paul, an apostle of Jesus the Anointed through the will of God, and Timothy our brother: to the church of God living in Corinth, together with all the saints who are in the whole of Achaia.(1)“Achaia” was a province of Rome which included most of Greece.
- Grace(2)“Grace” The Greek word here is “χάρις” (charis), most often translated “grace” or “gift”. It was a technical term in the 1st century, referring to the Patronage system in place. The Patron (from “pater” = “father”) would give gifts or do favors (both called a charis). A charis was always given/done freely to anyone who would be grateful for it, and this person then became a “client” of the patron. The clients were expected to reciprocate by telling everyone what the patron had done, and offering their services to the patron whenever the patron needed them. This reciprocal act was also called “charis”, and the ones who reciprocated were “being faithful”. Both were done out of gratitude, not legal obligation. A client who wasn’t faithful and grateful probably wouldn’t receive any more charis from his patron, or any other patrons. The patron was responsible for taking care of all his clients, and making sure their needs were met. Christian Grace and Faith is well picture by this system. The Heavenly Patron (God the Father) freely gave a gift (Jesus’ blood), and the clients who accept it (Christians) are expected to “be faithful” out of gratitude. and peace to you from God our Father and the Anointed Lord Jesus.
- Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord, Jesus the Anointed, the Father of compassion(4)literally “compassions” as the Greek word here is plural. It could also be translated “mercies” and God of all comfort.
- He’s the One who comforts us in all our tribulation, so we can comfort the men in every tribulation, through the comfort which we ourselves are comforted by God,
- Because just as the sufferings of the Anointed overflow into us, likewise our comfort also overflows through the Anointed.
- But if we’re afflicted, it’s for your comfort and salvation. If we’re comforted, it’s for your comfort, which works in the endurance of the same sufferings that we also suffer.
- And our hope for you is unshakeable, having known – and knowing – that as you’re partakers in the suffering, so also you’re partakers in the comfort.
- For brothers, we don’t want you to be ignorant of our affliction which happened in Asia; that we were burdened so excessively beyond our strength that we despaired even of life.
- But we did – and do – have the sentence of death in ourselves. So we weren’t – and aren’t – trusting in ourselves but in God; the One who raises the dead,
- who rescued us from so great a death, (and will rescue us) in whom we also did – and do – still hope that He will rescue us.
- And you join in, helping us by prayer so thanks may be given for us by many people,(3)“people” is literally “faces” for the grace given to us through many.
- For our boast is this: the testimony of our conscience that in God’s purity and simplicity – not in the wisdom of the flesh but with the grace of God – we acted in the world; and more abundantly towards you.
- For we don’t write other things to you except what you already read and understand. But I hope that you will understand until the end,
- just as you also understood us in part. So we’re boasting of you, just as you also will boast of us in the day of our Lord Jesus.
A Change of Travel Plans
- And with this confidence, I previously decided to come to you so you might have grace a second time,
- and then to pass into Macedonia through you. And again from Macedonia to come to you, and be sent by you into Judea.
- Therefore, did I make light in deciding this? Or do I decide what I decide according to the flesh, so with me there’s both “definitely yes”(5)“definitely yes” is literally “Yes! Yes!” It’s a repetition of an affirmative that can have emphatic sense. It was here translated “definitely yes” to more accurately convey the parallelism with the follow statement (see following note). and “definitely no”?(6)“definitely no”. In Greek, this is a double negative (no, no) to add emphasis. Since English double negatives cancel each other out (instead of adding emphasis) the word “definitely” was added to keep the emphatic sense of the Greek.
- But God is faithful because our word to you wasn’t both “Yes” and “No”.
- For the Son of God, Jesus the Anointed, the One who was proclaimed among you through us – through me, and Silvanus, and Timothy – wasn’t both “Yes” and “No”. But in Him it did – and does – become “Yes.”
- For as many as God’s promises are, the “Yes” is in Him. Therefore, the “Amen” is also through Him for the glory of God through us.
- But the One who confirmed us with you in the Anointed (and anointed us) is God.
- He’s the One who set His seal on us and gave us the down payment(7)“down payment” is literal. The Greek word here is imported from Hebrew and refers to “earnest money” given as a surety that the rest of the payment will be given. of the Holy Spirit in our hearts.
- And I call upon my soul as a witness of God, that I haven’t come to Corinth yet to spare you.
- Not that we have authority over(8)“we have authority over” is one word in Greek. Often – and incorrectly – translated “lord it over”. It comes from “κύριος” (kurios), which is typically translated “Lord” (as in “the Lord Jesus”) and literally means “to be lord of” in the sense of “to have authority over”. There are Greek words which indicate oppressive authority which could be translated “lord it over”, but they aren’t used here. you in the faith, but we’re fellow workers for your joy. For you did – and do – stand firm in the faith.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 2
Not Coming in Grief
- For I decided this within myself: I won’t come to you in grief again.
- For if I grieve you again, who will make me glad(9)“who will make me glad” is literally “who is the man who makes me glad“, because the underlined portion is an article + participle phrase. except the man who was grieved by me?
- And I wrote this same thing, so in coming I won’t have grief from men who ought to rejoice with me. I was – and am – trusting in you all, that my joy is the joy of you all.
- For I wrote to you from much distress and anguish, through many tears. Not so you might be grieved, but so you might know the love I have so abundantly for you.
- But if someone did – or does – grieve anyone, he didn’t – and doesn’t – grieve me (so I’m not putting a burden on(10)“I’m… …putting a burden on” is one word in Greek with that exact meaning, though it can also mean “to be burdensome”. It can mean to “overload” someone in a figurative sense, and thus can mean to be “severe”. you), but in part he grieves all of you.
- This punishment by the many(11)“This punishment by the many” is likely a reference to Church discipline which Jesus set forth in Matthew 18:15-20. In Paul’s previous letter to the Corinthians, He mentioned an immoral man who was sleeping with his father’s wife. Paul told the Corinthians to put him out of the church and shun him (as Jesus directed). This certainly was a “punishment by the many” and Paul says that’s sufficient, probably recognizing that God Himself will deal with the man. is sufficient for such a man
- So on the contrary, it’s better for you to forgive and to comfort him; lest somehow such a man be swallowed by abundant grief.
- For this reason, I encourage(12)or “urge” you to reaffirm your love to him.
- I also wrote for this reason: so I might test you and know the result,(13)“test you and… …the result ” is one word in Greek. It properly refers to the process or result of a test/trial, and can include the evidence used to come to the result. whether you’re obedient to everything.
- And whoever you forgive for anything, I do also. For whatever I did – and do – forgive (if I did – and do – forgive anything) it’s for your sake in the sight of the Anointed,
- so we aren’t taken advantage of by The Adversary (Satan(14)“Adversary (Satan)” is one word in Greek, typically translated just “Satan”. While it’s used as a proper name, it’s actually a noun of Hebrew origin which means “adversary”. In the Old Testament, it’s used of any adversary. In the New Testament, it’s used exclusively of Satan.), for we aren’t ignorant of his schemes.
- And coming to Troas for the gospel of the Anointed, a door was – and is – opened for me by the Lord.
- But I didn’t – and don’t – have rest in my spirit because I didn’t find Titus my brother. But saying farewell, I departed into Macedonia.
- But grace be to God, the One who always leads us in triumph(15)“leads… …in triumph” is one word in Greek. It properly refers a victor parading around to celebrate their victory, and displaying the defeated enemy as part of the procession. in the Anointed. And the fragrance of the knowledge of Him is being made visible through us in every place.
- For we are a sweet fragrance of the Anointed to God in the men who are saved and in the men who are perishing.(16)“are perishing” is more literally “are perish”, though that’s terrible English grammar. Further, rendering it merely “perish” implies the future tense, which is even less correct. Thus, it has been rendered as the least incorrect option.
- Indeed, one is an odor from death leading into death; but another is an odor from life leading into life. And who is fit for these things?
- For we aren’t like the many who are peddling the word of God. But as from purity, but as from God, we speak before God in the Anointed.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 3
The New and Old Covenants
- Do we begin to commend ourselves again? Or do we need letters of commendation for you (or from you) as some do?
- You’re our letter, which was – and is – written in our hearts, being known and being read by all men,
- revealing that you’re a letter to the Anointed, being served by us, who were – and are – writing… yet not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God. Not on stone tablets, but on flesh tablets of the heart.
- And we have confidence like this toward God through the Anointed.
- Not that from ourselves we’re fit to conclude anything about(17)“about” is literally “as of”. However, it could also be translated “as from”, in the sense of them doing things in their own ability or their own “fitness” ourselves. But our fitness is from God,
- who also made us fit servants of a new covenant; not of the letter, but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit brings to life.
- But if the ministry of death (in letters that were – and are – engraved on stone) happened in such glory that the sons of Israel weren’t able to gaze into the face of Moses because of the glory on his face (which is nullified),
- won’t the ministry of the Spirit have much(18)“have much” is literally “be in how much” not merely asking if it has glory, but also asking “how much more” more glory?
- For if the ministry of condemnation had glory, the ministry of righteousness overflows much more in glory.
- For even what was – and is – glorified, wasn’t – and isn’t – glorified in this case because of the glory which surpasses it.
- For if what is nullified came through glory, what remains is much more in glory.
- And having such a hope, we therefore employ much boldness.(19)“boldness” The Greek word here can especially refer to boldness in speaking.
- And not like Moses, who was putting a veil on his face so the sons of Israel couldn’t gaze into the glory which was nullified at the end.
- But their minds were hardened.(20)“were hardened” could also be translated “were made calloused”. The Greek word refers to making something harder, which carries the connotation of being insensate; like a callous. For the same veil remains until this present day, not being unveiled by the reading of the old covenant because it’s being nullified in the Anointed.
- But whenever Moses is read until today, a veil lies over their hearts.
- And whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.
- Now the Lord is Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
- But with a face that was – and is – being unveiled, we’re all transformed from glory to glory into the same image, reflecting the glory of the Lord as from the Spirit of the Lord.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 4
Cost and Reward of the Gospel
- Because of this, we don’t lose heart (just as we received mercy in having this ministry).
- But we renounced the hidden things of shame; not walking in craftiness nor deceitfully corrupting(21)“deceitfully corrupting” is one word in Greek. It properly refers to using deceptive bait to ensnare, like concealing a fishhook with a worm, and the resulting corruption that results from being ensnared. the word of God, but by manifestation of truth are commending ourselves to every conscience of men in the sight of God.
- But even if our gospel was – and is – veiled, it was – and is – veiled to the men who are perishing
- by the god of this age, who blinded the unbeliever’s minds so they won’t clearly see the light of the gospel of the glory of the Anointed, who is the image of God.
- For we don’t preach about ourselves, but about the Anointed Lord Jesus. But we ourselves are your slaves for the sake of Jesus.
- For God is the One who said, “Out of darkness, light will shine”, who shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of God’s glory in the face of Jesus the Anointed.
- And we have this treasure in earthen vessels so the surpassing power is God’s and not from us.
- In everything we’re being pressed, but not being crushed; being perplexed, but not despairing;
- Being persecuted, but not being abandoned; being struck down, but not being destroyed;
- Always carrying the death of Jesus in our body, so the life of Jesus might also be apparent in our body.
- For we – the men who live – are continually delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, so the life of Jesus might also be apparent in our mortal flesh.
- So then death works in us, but life in you.
- But having the same Spirit of faith according to what was – and is – written, “I believed, therefore I spoke“(22)quotation/allusion to Psalm 116:10 we also believe, therefore we also speak,
- knowing that the One who raised the Lord Jesus will also raise us through Jesus and will present us with you.
- For all things are for your sake, so thanksgiving might overflow to the glory of God through the grace which overflowed to more men.
- Therefore, we don’t lose heart. But indeed, our outward man decays but our inner man is renewed day by day.
- For our momentary, light persecution is producing for us the weight of the glory of ages, which is abundantly beyond measure.
- We aren’t keeping our eyes on the things we see, but on the things we don’t see. For the things we see only last for a season; but the things we don’t see last for ages.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 5
Cost and Reward of the Gospel
- We did – and do – know that if our earthly house (the tent of our body(23)“tent of our body” is one word in Greek. It literally means “tent”, but figuratively means the body in which our spirit dwells.) is destroyed, we have a building from God; a house of ages in the heavens which is made without hands.
- For we also groan in this tent, longing to clothe ourselves in our dwelling from heaven.
- And if indeed we clothe ourselves, we won’t be found naked.
- For also, we groan as the men who are in the tent; being burdened since we don’t want to unclothe ourselves, but to clothe ourselves so the mortal might be swallowed by the life.
- But the One who prepared us for this same thing is God, who gave us the down payment(24)“down payment” is literal. The Greek word here is imported from Hebrew and refers to “earnest money” given as a surety that the rest of the payment will be given. of the Holy Spirit.
- Therefore, we’re always being courageous and knowing(25)literally “were – and are – knowing” as this verb is in the Greek perfect tense, which is (sort of) a combination of our past and present tenses. that being at home in the body, we’re away from our home with the Lord.
- For we walk by faith, not by sight.
- Yet we’re courageous, and think it better to be away from home in the body and to be at home with the Lord.
- Therefore, we’re also zealous to please(26)literally “be pleasing to” Him, whether being at home or being away from home.
- For all of us must be revealed before the judgement seat of the Anointed so each might receive back the things done through the body, whether good or evil; to each according to what he’s done,
- Therefore, knowing the reverent fear(27)“reverent fear” is one word in Greek. It’s primary meaning is “fear”, but it can also mean “awe” or “reverence” depending on the context. (The Hebrew word for “fear” has the same range of meaning) Since both fear and reverence are appropriate toward God, both definitions were included. Further, the word can mean both, and both were likely intended. of the Lord, we convince men. And we were – and are – made known to God, and I also hope your consciences were – and are – made known to Him.
Jesus’ death and Reconciliation
- We aren’t commending ourselves to you again; but giving you an opportunity to boast on our behalf, so you might have an answer to the men who boast in appearance, but not in the heart.
- For if we’re beside ourselves, it’s for God; if we’re of sound mind, it’s for you.
- For the love(28)The Greek word here “ἀγάπη” (agape), typically translated “love”. However, unlike our English word “love” – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agape centers on preference. In the verb form, it literally means “to prefer” or “show preference for”. In the New Testament, that usually means “moral preference”, or “actively preferring what God prefers” in what we do, not just in what we feel. It’s the “love” based on will, choice, decision, and action; not feelings. (Feelings-based love is the Greek word “φιλέω” (phileó), which properly means “brotherly love/affection”.) of the Anointed compels us, judging this: that One died for the sake of all, therefore all died.
- And He died for the sake of all, so the men who live might no longer live for themselves; but for the sake of the One who died and was raised for them.
- So then, from now on we did – and do – view no one according to the flesh. Even if we did – and do – know the Anointed according to the flesh, yet now we don’t know Him that way anymore.
- Therefore, if anyone is in the Anointed, he’s a new creation. The original things have passed away; behold, he did – and does – become new.
- And all things are from God, the One who reconciled us to Himself through the Anointed, and gave us the ministry of reconciliation.
- so that in the Anointed, God is reconciling the world to Himself, not taking their accidental sins(29)“accidental sins”. The Greek word used here doesn’t quite mean “sin”. It’s the word “παράπτωμα” (paraptóma) and is also used in Ephesians 2:1 in the phrase: “dead in your ‘paraptóma’ and sins”. It carries the connotation of a “slip-up” with the strong implication – but not certainty – that it was unintentional. into account against them, and putting in us the message of reconciliation.
- Therefore, we are ambassadors on behalf of the Anointed. As God is calling through us, we plead on behalf of the Anointed, “Be reconciled to God”
- He made the One who didn’t know sin into sin for our sake, so we might become God’s righteousness in Him.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 6
Grace Through Trials
- And working together with Him, we also encourage you not to receive the grace of God in vain.
- For He says, “I heard you in an ideal, acceptable season; and I rushed to your aid in a day of salvation.“(30)quotation/allusion to Isaiah 49:8 Behold; now is the ideal season of favor. Behold; now is the day of salvation.
- We’re putting nothing offensive in anyone’s(31)“nothing offensive in anyone’s” is literally “nothing offensive in no one’s“, with “nothing” and “no one” being the same Greek word. However, “no one’s” was changed to “anyone’s” because English double negatives cancel each other out. Therefore, keeping it a double negative would make it sound like someone was putting an offense in someone’s way. way, so the ministry won’t be discredited.
- But in everything we’re establishing ourselves as God’s servants by much endurance in afflictions, in distresses, in calamities,
- in beatings, in imprisonments, in chaos, in exhaustion, in sleepless nights, in fasts,
- in purity, in knowledge, in patience, in benevolence,(32)“benevolence” this Greek word refers to kindness that is both practical (meeting real needs) and morally upright. It also contains the idea of integrity. in the Holy Spirit, in sincere love,(33)The Greek word here “ἀγάπη” (agape), typically translated “love”. However, unlike our English word “love” – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agape centers on preference. In the verb form, it literally means “to prefer” or “show preference for”. In the New Testament, that usually means “moral preference”, or “actively preferring what God prefers” in what we do, not just in what we feel. It’s the “love” based on will, choice, decision, and action; not feelings. (Feelings-based love is the Greek word “φιλέω” (phileó), which properly means “brotherly love/affection”.)
- in the word of truth, in God’s power through the war equipment(34)“war equipment” is one word in Greek. It refers to the various tools, implements, and weapons used to wage war. The Greek word is “ὅπλον” (hoplon), which was one name for the large wooden shield from which the “Hoplites” in the ancient Grecian military got their name. of righteousness in the right hand and the left hand.
- Through glory and disgrace, through praise and slander, regarded as deceivers and yet true,
- Being unknown and yet being fully known, as dying and behold we live, being disciplined, and not being put to death.
- As being grieved, but always rejoicing; as poor, but making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.
- Our mouth did – and does – speak(35)“did – and does – speak openly” is more literally “was – and is – opened”. The phrase “mouth was opened” is an idiom meaning to speak freely. openly to you Corinthians; our heart did – and does – grow for you.
- You aren’t restrained by us, but you’re restrained in your feelings.
- And in return for the same, (I speak as to children) you must also be grown.
Don’t Become Unequally Yoked
- Don’t become unequally yoked(36)“unequally yoked” is literal. A “yoke” is a contoured wooden beam used to join two beast of burden (cows, oxen, etc.) together so they can pull a heavy load together. with unbelievers. For what alliance do righteousness and lawlessness have? Or what association does light have with darkness ?
- And what harmony does the Anointed have with Belial?(37)“Belial” is likely a reference to Satan. It likely comes from a Hebrew word which means “worthlessness”. This could also be a play on words with a double meaning, asking: “what does someone who’s anointed (to God) have in common with worthlessness?” Or what portion(38)“portion” this Greek word sometimes referred to the division of an inheritance, which is likely the sense here. Unbelievers and believers have a different “inheritance”, and thus can’t share it. can a believer share with an unbeliever?
- And what agreement does God’s temple have with idols? For we are the living God’s temple, just as God said, “I will live in them and will walk among them. And I will be their God and they will be My people.“(39)quotation/allusion to Leviticus 26:11-12, & Ezekiel 37:27
- Therefore, “come out from their midst and be separate“(40)quotation/allusion to Isaiah 52:11 says the Lord. “Don’t touch an impure thing“(41)continued quotation/allusion to Isaiah 52:11 and I will welcome you.
- And “I will be a Father to you, and you will be sons and daughters to Me says the Lord Almighty.”
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2 Corinthians Chapter 7
- Therefore, having these promises beloved, we should cleanse ourselves from every defilement of flesh and spirit, completing holiness in the reverent fear(42)“reverent fear” is one word in Greek. Its primary meaning is “fear”, but it can also mean “awe” or “reverence” depending on the context. (The Hebrew word for “fear” has the same range of meaning) Since both fear and reverence are appropriate toward God (and both were likely intended) both definitions were included. of God.
- Make room for us in your heart; we’ve wronged no one, we’ve corrupted no one, we’ve exploited no one.
- I don’t speak to condemn you(43)“to condemn you” is more literally “for your condemnation”. For I did – and do – predict that you’re in our hearts, to die with and to live with.
- My confidence in you is great; my boast on your behalf is great; I was – and am – filled with comforting encouragement;(44)“comforting encouragement” is on word in Greek. It typically translated one or the other based on context, but the context here is slightly ambiguous so both were included. I exceedingly overflow with joy at all our affliction.
- For also, at our coming into Macedonia no one did – or does – have rest for our flesh. But we’re being hard pressed in everything; conflicts are outside, fears are within.
- But God – the One who comforts the lowly – comforted us by the arrival of Titus.
- And not only by his arrival, but also by the comfort which he was comforted by you, reporting to us your longing, your mourning, and your zeal for me, for me to rejoice more.
- Because even if I grieved you in the letter, I don’t regret it (even if I was regretting it). For I see that the letter grieved you, even if only for a while.
- I rejoice now; not that you were grieved, but that you were grieved into changed minds, and thus changed deeds.(45)“Changed your minds, and thus changed deeds” is one word in Greek, typically translated “repentance”. However, it doesn’t speak of remorse or guilt for wrong actions. Rather, it literally means to “think differently after” or to “reconsider”, with an assumed change in behavior. To both the Hebrews and 1st century Greeks/Romans, a change in mind was synonymous with a change in behavior; you couldn’t have the first without the second. All that meaning is captured by a single Greek word here. For you were grieved according to God’s will, so that through us you might suffer loss in nothing.
- For the grief according to God’s will produces changed minds and thus deeds,(46)see previous note. leading into salvation without regret; but the world’s grief produces death.
- This same thing – to be grieved according to God’s will – produced much diligence in you, much verbal defense, much indignation, much fear, much longing, much zeal, and much vindication. In everything, you proved yourselves to be innocent in the matter.
- So even though I wrote to you, it wasn’t for the man who did wrong, nor for the man who suffered wrong; but for your diligence to be revealed to you on our behalf in the sight of God.
- Because of this, we were – and are – encouraged.(47)or “comforted” the Greek word here can mean either depending on the context. And by our encouragement, we rejoiced even more abundantly at the joy of Titus, because his spirit was – and is – refreshed by all of you.
- For if I did – and do – boast anything to him about you, I wasn’t put to shame. But just as we spoke everything to you in truth, so also our boast to Titus became truth.
- And his affection are toward you is abundant, remembering the obedience of you all, and how you welcomed him with fear and trembling.
- I rejoice that I’m confident of you in everything.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 8
- Now, we declare to you brothers, the grace of God which was – and is – given among the churches of Macedonia,
- That in much testing through affliction, the abundance of their joy and the depth of their poverty overflowed into the wealth of their generosity.
- For I testify that according to their ability – even beyond their ability – they gave voluntarily,
- imploring us with much supplication to let them join in the grace and partnership in the ministry of the saints.
- And not only as we hoped, but they gave of themselves, first to the Lord and then to us through God’s will.
- We encouraged Titus so just as he began before you, so also he might complete this grace in you.
- But just as you overflow in everything – in faith, and word, and knowledge, and all eager diligence, and the love from us to you – so you should overflow in this grace also.
- I don’t speak as a command, but because of the eager diligence of others and to prove your love is genuine.
- For you know the grace of our Anointed Lord Jesus. That while being rich, He became poor for your sakes, so through His poverty you might become rich.
- And I give an opinion on this matter; for this is beneficial for you, who since last year had already begun not only to work, but also to desire to work.
- Now then, also complete the work; so just as you had the eagerness to desire, so also you’ll have the eagerness to complete what you have.
- For if the eagerness is present, it’s acceptable according to what a man has; not according to what he doesn’t have.
- For this isn’t so others have ease but you have affliction, but so there is equality.
- At the present season, your overflow would go to those in need, so also their overflow might go into your need, so there might be equality.
- Just as it was – and is – written, “The man who gathered much didn’t have abundance; the man who gathered little didn’t lack.“(48)quotation/allusion to Exodus 16:18
- But grace be to God, the One who put the same eagerness for you into the heart of Titus.
- For he indeed welcomed our appeal; and being more eager, he went out to you of his own accord.
- And we sent with him the brother whose praise in the gospel is throughout all the churches.
- And not only that, but he was also elected(49)“he was… …elected” is one word in Greek. It literally means “to vote by stretching out the hand”, or to “elect by a show of hands”, sometimes with the idea of appointing someone to an office or position. by the churches as our fellow traveler in this act of grace, which is administered by us for our readiness and the Lord’s glory.
- We’re taking care of this gift, lest someone discredit us through this abundant gift which is administered by us.
- For we take care to be noble; not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men.
- And we sent with them our brother who we proved to be eagerly diligent many times, in many things, and now he’s more eagerly diligent because of his great trust in you.
- Whether concerning Titus – who’s my partner and a fellow worker to you – or our brothers who are messengers of the churches, they’re a glory to the Anointed
- Therefore, show them proof of your love and the reason for our boast about you in front of the churches.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 9
Arrangements for the Gift
- For indeed, it’s superfluous for me to write to you about service to the saints.
- For I did – and do – know your eagerness, which I boast about on your behalf to the Macedonians; that Achaia was – and is – prepared since last year, and your zeal has provoked more of them.
- But I sent the brothers so our boast about you won’t be empty in this matter, so you might be prepared; just as I was saying.
- Lest if the Macedonians come with me and find you unprepared, we – not to mention you – would be put to shame in this confidence.
- Therefore, I thought it was essential to urge the brothers so they might go to you and prepare beforehand this blessing from you which was – and is – already promised. Thus, it’s ready to be given as a blessing and not as from reluctant greed.(50)“greed” could also be translated “covetousness”. Paul seems to be saying the gift should freely given without a greedy wish they didn’t have to give what they’d promised.
- Yet remember this: the man who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the man who sows blessings will also reap blessings.
- just as each did – and does – decide in the heart; not from grief or from compulsion, for God shows preference(51)The Greek word used here is “ἀγαπάω” (agapao), which is the verb form of “ἀγάπη” (agape), typically translated “love”. However, unlike our English word “love” – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agape centers on preference. In the verb form, it literally means “to prefer” or “show preference for”. In the New Testament, that usually means “moral preference”, or “actively preferring what God prefers” in what we do, not just in what we feel. It’s the “love” based on will, choice, decision, and action; not feelings. (Feelings-based love is the Greek word “φιλέω” (phileó), which properly means “brotherly love/affection”.) to a joyful and voluntary(52)“joyful and voluntary” is one word in Greek, which properly means joyful and not under compulsion; i.e. voluntary and happy about it. giver.
- And God can make all grace overflow into you, so having all you need always in everything, you might overflow in every good work.
- Just as it was – and is – written, “He scattered abroad, He gave to the poor, His righteousness endures through the age.”(53)Quotation/allusion to Psalm 112:9. “Through the age” is typically translated “eternal” here. But the Greek word translated “age” here is “αἰών” (aion), which means a time span with a beginning and an end. It’s also used in Matthew 24:3 to talk about the “culmination (end) of the age.”
- And the One who supplies seed for the man who sows, and bread for food will abundantly provide, and will multiply your seed for sowing, and will grow the fruits of your righteousness,
- enriching you in everything; into all generosity which through us produces thanksgiving to God.
- For the ministry of this service is not only completely supplying needs of the saints, but also is overflowing through much thanksgiving(54)literally “many thanksgivings” to God.
- Because this service is proof of your genuineness,(55)“proof of your genuineness” is one word in Greek. It’s a noun, derived from the adjective “δόκιμος” (dokimos) which means something that has been tested to prove it’s genuine. It was used of testing coins to prove they weren’t counterfeit or mixed with lesser metals. they’re glorifying God at the submission of your confession to the gospel of the Anointed, and the generosity of your partnership to them and to all men.
- And their earnest prayer is on your behalf; longing for you because of the surpassing grace of God upon you.
- Grace(56)“Grace” The Greek word here is “χάρις” (charis), most often translated “grace” or “gift”. It was a technical term in the 1st century, referring to the Patronage system in place. The Patron (from “pater” = “father”) would give gifts or do favors (both called a charis) for someone. A charis was always given/done freely to anyone who would be grateful for it, and this person then became a “client” of the patron. The clients were expected to reciprocate by telling everyone what the patron had done, and offering their services to the patron whenever the patron needed them. This reciprocal act was also called “charis”, and the ones who reciprocated were “being faithful”. Both were done out of gratitude, not legal obligation. A client who wasn’t faithful and grateful probably wouldn’t receive any more charis from his patron, or any other patrons. The patron was responsible for taking care of all his clients, and making sure their needs were met. Christian Grace and Faith is well picture by this system. The Heavenly Patron (God the Father) freely gave a gift (Jesus’ blood), and the clients who accept it (Christians) are expected to “be faithful” out of gratitude. be to God for His indescribable gift!
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2 Corinthians Chapter 10
Paul Defends His Ministry
- And I myself urge you through gentle strength and kindness of the Anointed; I Paul whose face is indeed humble when I’m among you, but being absent I’m bold to you.
- Now I implore you while not being present to be bold in the confidence that I consider to be daring, to some of the men who consider us like men who are walking according to the flesh.
- For though we’re walking in the flesh, we don’t wage war according to the flesh.
- For the weapons(57)“weapons” this Greek word refers to the various tools, implements, and especially weapons used to wage war. The Greek word is “ὅπλον” (hoplon), which was one name for the large wooden shield from which the “Hoplites” in the ancient Grecian military got their name. of our warfare aren’t carnal, but powerful through God to tear down strongholds,
- tearing down arguments and every battlement rising up against the knowledge of God, and taking every thought captive to the obedience of the Anointed,
- and in being ready to avenge all disobedience when your obedience might be completed.
- You see things according to outward appearance. If someone did – and does – persuade himself to be of the Anointed, let him consider this about himself again; that just as he’s in Christ, so also are we.
- For even if I boast somewhat more abundantly about our authority – which the Lord gave to build up and not to tear you down – I won’t be ashamed,
- so I won’t seem like I desire to frighten you through the letters.
- For indeed they declare, “The letters are weighty and strong, but his bodily presence is weak and his words were – and are – worthless.”(58)“worthless” The Greek word here literally means to treat something as having no value, and thus to despise it or treat it with contempt.
- Let such a man consider this: That just as we are in word through letters while being absent, so also we are in action while being present.
- For we don’t dare to classify or to compare ourselves with some who are commending themselves. But they – measuring themselves by themselves and comparing themselves to themselves – they don’t understand.
- But we won’t boast about things beyond our measure, but only according to the measure of the region that God allotted to us; a measure which reaches as far as you.
- For we don’t overextend ourselves like we aren’t reaching to you. For as far as you came, we came before you in the gospel of the Anointed.
- We aren’t boasting in things beyond our measure (in labors which belong to another). But we’re hoping to be abundantly enlarged among you in your growing faith according to our region,
- to proclaim the gospel in the regions beyond you; not to boast in the readiness of another’s region.
- Yet “The man who boasts, let him boast in the Lord.“(59)quotation/allusion to Jeremiah 9:24
- For it’s not the man who commends himself who is proved genuine,(60)“proved genuine” this Greek word is an adjective. It was used of coins that had been tested to prove they were genuine coins, and not counterfeit or mixed with lesser metals (corrupted) but that man who the Lords commends.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 11
Paul’s Further Defense
- O, I wish you were bearing with me in a little foolishness; and yet you do bear with me.
- For I’m jealous over you with a Godly Jealousy. For I betrothed you to one husband, to present you as a pure virgin to the Anointed.
- But I fear that somehow – just as the serpent in his cunning thoroughly deceived Eve – your minds might be ruinously corrupted away from the simplicity and the purity in the Anointed.
- For indeed, if the man who comes preaches another Jesus who we didn’t preach; or you receive a different spirit which you hadn’t received; or a different gospel which you didn’t accept; you bear it well.
- For I think I did – and do – fall short in nothing compared to these ‘super apostles’.
- But even if I’m unskilled in speech, yet I’m not in knowledge. But we made this clear to you in every way in everything.
- Or did I sin in humbling myself so you might be exalted, because I preached the gospel of God to you freely.
- I robbed other churches by accepting provisions from them for my service to you.
- And while being present with you and being in need I didn’t burden anyone,(61)“I didn’t burden anyone” is more literally “I didn’t burden no one”. But since double negative cancel each other out in English (but not Greek) “no one” was change to “anyone” to retain the sense of the Greek. for my need was supplied by the brothers coming from Macedonia. And in everything I kept – and will keep – myself not burdensome to you.
- The truth of the Anointed is in me, so this boast of mine won’t be stopped in the regions of Achaia.
- Why? Because I don’t love(62)The Greek word used here is “ἀγαπάω” (agapao), which is the verb form of “ἀγάπη” (agape), typically translated “love”. However, unlike our English word “love” – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agape centers on preference. In the verb form, it literally means “to prefer” or “show preference for”. In the New Testament, that usually means “moral preference”, or “actively preferring what God prefers” in what we do, not just in what we feel. It’s the “love” based on will, choice, decision, and action; not feelings. (Feelings-based love is the Greek word “φιλέω” (phileó), which properly means “brotherly love/affection”.) you? God did – and does – know I do!
- But what I do – and will do – I do so I might cut off the opportunity of the men who desire an opportunity to be found just as we are in what they boast about.
- For such men are false apostles; treacherous workers disguising themselves as apostles of the Anointed.
- And no wonder, for Satan himself disguises himself as an angel of light.
- Therefore, it’s no great surprise if his servants disguise themselves as servants of righteousness; whose end will be according to their deeds.
Paul’s Sarcastic and “Foolish” Boasting
- Again I say: no one should think I’m(63)“I’m” is literally “me to be” foolish. But even if I’m otherwise, receive me like a foolish man so I also might boast a little.
- What I say in this confident boasting I don’t say according to the Lord, but like in foolishness.
- Since many boast according to the flesh, I also will boast.
- For being wise, you gladly tolerate foolish men.
- For you tolerate it if someone enslaves you, if someone devours you, if someone takes from you, if someone exults himself, if someone hits your face.
- I speak in shame because it’s like we were – and are – weak. But in whatever someone might dare (I speak in foolishness) I also dare.
- Are they Hebrews? I am too. Are they Israelites? I am too. Are they descendants of Abraham? I am too.
- Are they servants of the Anointed? I am more so. (I speak like I’m insane) In abundant labors, in abundant imprisonments, in wounds beyond measure, and often in danger of death.
- I received forty lashes minus one from the Jews five times.
- Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked; I spent a night and a day in the deep sea.
- I’m on frequent journeys, in danger of rivers, in danger of robbers, in danger from my kinsmen, in danger from the gentiles, in danger in the city, in danger in the wilderness, in danger at sea, in danger among false brothers,
- In hard labor and exhausting work, in frequent sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, in frequent fasting; and in the cold and nakedness.
- Apart from external things, there’s the pressure of my daily concern for all the churches.
- Who’s weak and I’m not weak? Who’s ensnared by sin and I don’t burn?
- If I must boast, I will boast of things showing my weakness.
- The God and Father of the Lord Jesus (the One who is blessed through the ages) did – and does – know that I’m not lying.
- In Damascus, the governor under king Aretas was guarding the Damascenes’ city to arrest me.
- And I was lowered in a basket through a window in the wall and escaped his hands.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 12
Paul’s Sarcastic Boasting Continues
- To boast is necessary, but indeed it’s not profitable. But I will go on to visions and revelations of the Lord.
- I did – and do – know a man in the Anointed fourteen years ago. (I don’t know whether in the body or out of the body; I don’t know, God knows)(64)All of the instances of the verb “know” in this parenthetical statement are in the Greek perfect tense, which is (sort of) a combination of our past and present tense. It would more accurately be “(I didn’t – and don’t – know whether in the body or out of the body, I didn’t – and don’t – know; God did – and does – know.)” Such a man was snatched up to the third heaven.
- And I did – and do – know such a man (whether in body or separate from the body I didn’t – and don’t – know; God knows)
- that he was snatched up into paradise and heard unspeakably holy(65)“unspeakably holy” is one word in Greek which refers to words which are so holy they either cannot or should not be spoken by man words which aren’t lawful for man to speak.
- I will boast about such a man, but I won’t boast about myself except in my weakness.
- For even if I wanted to boast, I wouldn’t be a fool for I would speak the truth. But I refrain, lest someone think of me more than what he sees in me or hears of me,
- and the exceeding greatness of my revelations. Therefore, a thorn in the flesh was given to me so I don’t exalt myself;(66)“exalt myself” could also be translated “be exalted” because the middle and passive endings for this Greek word are the same. a messenger of Satan so it might torment me so I don’t exalt myself.(67)“exalt myself” could also be translated “be exalted” because the middle and passive endings for this Greek word are the same.
- I begged the Lord about this three times so it might depart from me.
- And He did – and does – say to me, “My grace is enough for you, for My power is completed in weakness.” Therefore I would rather boast most gladly in my weakness so the power of the Anointed might encamp(68)“encamp” The Greek word here literally means to pitch a tent and live there. on me.
- Therefore I’m pleased in weaknesses, in injuries, in calamities, in persecutions, and in distresses for the sake of the Anointed; for when I’m weak I’m powerful.
- I did – and do – become like a foolish man; you compelled me to for I ought to be commended by you. For I fall short of the ‘super apostles’ in nothing, even if I am nothing.
- Indeed, the signs of the true apostles were performed among you in all endurance; in signs of both wonders and miracles.
- For in what were you inferior to the rest of the churches, except that I myself didn’t burden you? Forgive me for this ‘injustice’.
Paul’s Upcoming Visit
- Behold, this third time I’m ready to come to you and I won’t burden you. For I don’t seek what’s yours, but you. For the children aren’t obligated to save up for the parents, but the parents to save up for the children.
- But I will most gladly spend – and will be completely spent – for the sake of your souls. If I’m loving you abundantly, am I loved less?
- But so be it. I didn’t burden you, but – being cunning – I took you through trickery.
- I didn’t exploit you through any man who I did – and do – send to you, did I?
- I urged Titus to go and sent the brother with him. Titus didn’t exploit you, did he? Don’t we walk in the same spirit? Don’t we walk the same steps?
- Do you think we were defending ourselves to you all along? We speak in front of God in the Anointed. And beloved, everything is for the sake of building you up.
- For I fear, lest after coming I might not find you as I desire, and I might not be found as you desire. Lest perhaps there is quarreling, jealously, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, slander, covert slandering, arrogance, and disorder.
- Lest after coming again, my God might humble me before you and I might mourn many of the men who did – and do – sin beforehand and aren’t repenting of the impurity, and fornication, and wanton debauchery they have done.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 13
- This will be the third time I come to you. “By the mouth of two or three witnesses every word will stand.”(69)quotation/allusion to Deuteronomy 19:15
- I did – and do – warn you beforehand. And as I did while being present the second time and though being absent now, I warn the men who did – and do – sin beforehand and all the rest: that if I come to the same again, I won’t spare anyone,
- since you seek proof that the Anointed – who isn’t weak toward you but powerful among you – speaks in me.
- For also, He was crucified from weakness but He lives by God’s power. For also, we are weak in Him but we will live with Him by God’s power in you.
- Test yourselves to see if you’re in the faith; examine yourselves. Or don’t you yourselves know that Jesus the Anointed is in you, unless you’re tested and proved counterfeit.(70)“tested and proved counterfeit” is one word in Greek. The root word refers to the testing of coins to prove they were genuine and not counterfeit. It’s used here with a negative prefix, meaning they didn’t “pass the test” and thus were/are counterfeit.
- But I hope you know that we’re tested and proved not counterfeit.(71)“tested and proved… …counterfeit” is one word in Greek, here combined with a negative (not). See note on previous verse.
- And we pray to God that you do nothing wrong; not so we might appear tested and proved genuine,(72)“tested and prove genuine” is one word in Greek. It was used of coins that had been tested to prove they were genuine coins, and not counterfeit or mixed with lesser metals (corrupted) but so you might do what is right. (Even if we appear tested and proved counterfeit)
- For we don’t have any power against the truth, but for the truth.
- For we rejoice when we’re weak but you’re strong. And we pray for your completion in this.
- Because of this, I write these things while being absent so while being present I won’t treat you severely, according to the authority that the Lord gave me to build up and not to tear down.
- Finally brothers, rejoice! Be perfected, be encouraged, be of the same mind, be at peace; and the God of love(73)The Greek word here “ἀγάπη” (agape), typically translated “love”. However, unlike our English word “love” – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agape centers on preference. In the verb form, it literally means “to prefer” or “show preference for”. In the New Testament, that usually means “moral preference”, or “actively preferring what God prefers” in what we do, not just in what we feel. It’s the “love” based on will, choice, decision, and action; not feelings. (Feelings-based love is the Greek word “φιλέω” (phileó), which properly means “brotherly love/affection”.) and peace will be with you.
- Greet one another with a holy kiss.
- All the saints greet you.
- May the grace of the Anointed Lord Jesus, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. [Amen]
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