(Tap footnote to read it. Old Testament quotations are underlined. "Love" with a caret ("^love") is agapé.1"agapé" The Greek words ἀγάπη (agapé, noun), and ἀγαπάω (agapaó; verb) are typically translated "love". However, unlike our English word "love" – which primarily speaks of affection and feelings – agapé centers on choice and behavior. It’s the "love" based on will, choice, behavior, and action; not feelings. (Feelings-based love is the Greek word φιλέω (phileó), which properly means "brotherly love/affection".) Thus, you could hate someone passionately and still treat him with "agapé". Agapé "love" is best understood as the pursuit of what is most beneficial to someone or something, regardless of the cost to yourself or the type of response received from the person or thing. It can also indicate a preference for someone or something over other things. )
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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.
- Grace2“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. to you and peace from God our Father and the Anointed Lord Jesus.
- Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord, Jesus the Anointed; the Father of all compassions3“compassions” 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 that 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, *knowing that since you’re partakers in the sufferings, 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 *have the sentence of death in ourselves. So we 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 still *hope that He will rescue us.
- And you’re joining in helping for our sake through prayer so thanks may be given for our sake by many people4“people” is literally “faces” for the grace given to us through many prayers.
- 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 or even understand, and 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 was previously intending 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 in resolving this, I didn’t then make light of it, did I? Or do I resolve what I resolve 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 isn’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 has 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 confirming us with you in the Anointed (and having anointed us) is God.
- He’s also the One who set His seal on us and gave us the down payment7“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 God as a witness upon my soul that I didn’t come to Corinth yet in order to spare you.
- Not that we have authority over8“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. your faith, but we’re fellow workers for your joy, for you *stand firm in the faith.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 2
Not Coming in Grief
- For I decided this within myself that I wouldn’t come to you in grief again.
- For if I grieve you again, who will make me glad1“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 being grieved by me?
- And I wrote this same thing so that having come, I wouldn’t have grief from men who ought to rejoice with me, *trusting in you all that my joy is the joy of you all.
- For I wrote to you from much distress and anguish of heart, through many tears. Not so you might be grieved, but so you might know the ^love that I have so abundantly for you.
- But if someone has grieved anyone, he hasn’t grieved me (so I’m not putting a burden on2“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 many3“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 urge you to reaffirm your ^love to him.
- For I also wrote for this reason: so I might test you and know the result,4“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 in all things.
- And whoever you forgive for anything, I do also. And for whatever I have forgiven (if I have forgiven anything) it’s for your sake in the sight of the Anointed,
- so we aren’t taken advantage of by Satan, for we aren’t ignorant of his schemes.
- And having come to Troas for the gospel of the Anointed, a door has also been opened for me by the Lord.
- But I don’t *have rest in my spirit because of me not finding Titus my brother. But having bid them farewell, I departed into Macedonia.
- But grace be to God, the One who always leads us in triumph5“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 manifesting 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 perish,
- to whom an odor from death indeed leads into death, and to whom an odor from life leads 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 are our letter, which is *written in our hearts, being known and being read by all men,
- revealing that you’re a letter of the Anointed, served by us, *written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God. Not on stone tablets, but on fleshly tablets of the heart.
- And we have confidence like this toward God through the Anointed.
- Not that from ourselves we’re fit to consider anything as coming from 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 have been engraved on stones) 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),
- how will the ministry of the Spirit not be in more glory?
- For if the ministry of condemnation had glory, the ministry of righteousness overflows in much more glory.
- For even what was *glorified, now isn’t *glorified in this respect 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.
- And not like Moses, who was putting a veil on his face so the sons of Israel couldn’t gaze into the end of what was nullified.
- But their minds were hardened.1“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 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 we all with an *unveiled face reflecting like a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, as it’s 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 corrupting1“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 the manifestation of the truth are commending ourselves to every conscience of men in the sight of God.
- But even if our gospel is *veiled, it’s *veiled to the men who perish
- by the god of this age, who blinded the minds of the unbelieving 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 hard-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 is *written, “I believed, therefore I spoke“2quotation/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 with 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. And also, if our outward man decays, yet 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
- For we *know that if our earthly house (the tent of our body1“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 internally in this tent, longing to clothe ourselves in our dwelling from heaven.
- And indeed, if we clothe ourselves we won’t be found naked.
- For we also groan internally 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 up by life.
- But the One who prepared us for this same thing is God, who gave us the down payment2“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, *knowing that while 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 our home in the body and to be at home with the Lord.
- Therefore, we’re also zealous to 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 did,
- Therefore, *knowing the reverent fear3“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 have been obvious to God, and I also hope to have been obvious in your consciences too.
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 and not in the heart.
- For if we were beside ourselves, it’s for God; if we’re of sound mind, it’s for you.
- For the ^love of the Anointed compels us, having judged 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 *view no one according to the flesh. Even if we have known 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 passed away; behold, the new things have come.
- 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 was reconciling the world to Himself, not taking their missteps4“missteps”. 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 having put the message of reconciliation in us.
- 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.“1quotation/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 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,2“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,
- in the word of truth, in God’s power through the war equipment3“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 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,
- as being unknown and yet being fully known, as dying and behold we live, as 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 has opened freely to you Corinthians; our heart has grown 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 yoked4“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?5“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 portion6“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.“7quotation/allusion to Leviticus 26:11-12, & Ezekiel 37:27
- Therefore, “come out from their midst and be separate“8quotation/allusion to Isaiah 52:11 says the Lord. “And don’t touch an impure thing“9continued 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 fear1“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 hearts; we wronged no one, we corrupted no one, we exploited no one.
- I don’t speak for your condemnation, for I have previously said that you’re in our hearts, for us to die together and to live together.
- My confidence in you is great; my boast on your behalf is great; I have been filled with comforting encouragement;2“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, no one *had rest for our flesh at our coming into Macedonia. 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 with which he was comforted by you, reporting to us your longing, your mourning, and your zeal for me, in order 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 that letter grieved you, even if only for a while.
- I rejoice now; not that you were grieved, but that you were grieved into repentance.3“repentance” this Greek word doesn’t primarily 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 repentance leading into salvation without regret; but the world’s grief produces death.
- For behold, 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 have been encouraged.4or “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 has been refreshed by all of you.
- For if I have boasted anything to him about you, I wasn’t put to shame. But just as we spoke all things to you in truth, so also our boast to Titus became truth.
- And his affections toward you are abundant, remembering the obedience of you all, and how you welcomed him with fear and trembling.
- I rejoice that I’m confident in you in everything.
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2 Corinthians Chapter 8
- And we declare to you brothers, the grace of God which has been 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 the 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.
- For we encouraged Titus so that just as he began before you, so also he might complete this grace in you too.
- 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 Lord Jesus the Anointed . 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 it from 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 that others have ease and you have affliction, but so there’s 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 is *written, “The man who gathered much didn’t have abundance; the man who gathered little didn’t lack.“1quotation/allusion to Exodus 16:18
- But grace be to God, the One putting the same eagerness for you in 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 elected2“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 glory of the Lord Himself.
- 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, whom we proved to be eagerly diligent many times, in many things, and now he’s much 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 *know your eagerness, which I boast about on your behalf to the Macedonians; that Achaia has been prepared since last year, and your zeal provoked more of them.
- But I sent the brothers so our boast about you wouldn’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 – might 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 has been already promised. Thus, it’s ready to be given as a blessing and not as from reluctant greed.1“greed” could also be translated “covetousness”. Paul seems to be saying the gift should freely given without a greedy wish that they wouldn’t have to give what they’d promised.
- Yet remember this: the man sowing sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the man sowing on blessings will also reap on blessings,
- just as each has decided in the heart; not from grief or from compulsion, for God ^loves a joyfully voluntary2“joyfully 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 is *written, “He scattered abroad, He gave to the poor, His righteousness endures into the age.”3Quotation/allusion to Psalm 112:9. “into 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 supplying seed for the man sowing will also abundantly provide bread for food, 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 the needs of the saints, but is also overflowing through much thanksgiving4literally “many thanksgivings” to God.
- Because this service is proof of your genuineness,5“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.
- Grace6“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, Paul, myself urge you through the gentle strength and kindness of the Anointed, whose face is indeed humble when I’m among you, but while being absent I’m bold to you.
- And while not being present, I implore you to be bold in the confidence that I consider to be daring, to some of the men considering us like men walking according to the flesh.
- For though walking in the flesh, we don’t wage war according to the flesh.
- For the weapons1“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 has persuaded himself to be of the Anointed, let him consider this about himself again; that just as he’s in the Anointed, 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 wouldn’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 word is *worthless.”2“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 also, 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.“3quotation/allusion to Jeremiah 9:24
- For it’s not the man commending himself who is proved genuine,4“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 whom the Lord 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, lest somehow – 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 a man coming preaches another Jesus whom we didn’t preach; or you receive a different spirit which you didn’t receive, or a different gospel which you didn’t accept; you bear with it well.
- For I think to have fallen 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 all things.
- Or did I commit a sin in humbling myself so you might be exalted? (Because I preached the gospel of God to you freely.)
- I robbed other churches, having accepted provisions from them for my service to you.
- And while being present with you and being in need I didn’t burden anyone, for the brothers who came from Macedonia supplied my need. 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 you? God *knows I do!
- But what I do – and will do – I do so I might cut off the opportunity of the men desiring an opportunity to be found just as we also 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 also 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 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 exalts himself, if someone hits your face.
- I speak in shame because it’s like we have been 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 Abraham’s seed? 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 various deaths.
- 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 shipwrecked; I have 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 nation, 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 fasts; 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’m not burned?
- 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) *knows 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, yet I will go on to visions and revelations of the Lord.
- I have known a man in the Anointed fourteen years ago. (I haven’t known whether in the body or out of the body, I don’t *know; God *knows) Such a man was snatched up to the third heaven.
- And I have known such a man, (whether in the body or separate from the body, I haven’t known; God has known)
- that he was snatched up into paradise and heard unspeakably holy1“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 weaknesses.
- 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;2“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 to torment me so I don’t exalt myself.3“I don’t exalt myself” could also be translated “won’t be exalted” because the middle and passive endings for this Greek word “exalt” are the same.
- I begged the Lord about this three times so it might depart from me.
- And He has said 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 encamp4“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, then I’m strong.
- I have become like a foolish man; you compelled me to for I ought to be commended by you. For I fell short of the ‘super apostles’ in nothing, even if I am nothing.
- Indeed, the signs of a true apostle 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.
- Of any man whom I have sent to you, I didn’t exploit you through him, did I?
- I urged Titus to go and sent the brother with him. Titus didn’t exploit you, did he? Didn’t we walk in the same spirit? Didn’t we walk in the same steps?
- Do you think that we are defending ourselves to you all along? We speak in front of God in the Anointed. And beloved, all things are for the sake of building you up.
- For I fear, lest having come to you, I perhaps might not find you as I desire, and I might not be found by you as you desire. Lest perhaps there is quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambitions, slanders, covert slanders, arrogance, and disorder.
- Lest having come again, my God might humble me before you and I might mourn many of the men who have sinned beforehand and didn’t repent of the impurity, and fornication, and wanton debauchery that they did.
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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 be confirmed.”1quotation/allusion to Deuteronomy 19:15
- I have warned you beforehand. And as I did while being present the second time, and though being absent now, I warn the men who have sinned beforehand and all the rest: that if I come to the same behavior 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.2“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 that you will know that we’re tested and proved not counterfeit.3“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,4“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 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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