Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered outside the gate. Therefore, let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach. For we have no continuing city here, but we seek one to come.
Select a book to read:Complete Translation
¶1. Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and brother Timothy. To the Assembly of God that is in Corinth, with all the saints throughout Achaia:
2. Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassions and God of all comfort,
4.who comforts us in all our trouble so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.
5. For just as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so also our comfort through Christ abounds.
6. Whether we suffer hardship, it is for your comfort and salvation, which is made effectual by the enduring of the same sufferings that we ourselves also suffer (and our hope in you is firm), or whether we are comforted, it is for your comfort and salvation,
7.knowing that as you are partakers of the sufferings, so will you also be of the comfort.
8. Brothers, we would not have you to be ignorant as to our trouble which befell us in Asia, that we were extremely pressed, beyond our strength, so that we despaired even of life.
9. Nevertheless, we had the sentence of death within ourselves, that we should not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises up the dead,
10.who delivered us from so great a death, and does deliver, in whom we hope that He will yet deliver,
11.you also laboring together for us in prayer, so that by many people, He might be thanked on your behalf for the grace given to us for many.
¶12. For our boast is this: the testimony of our conscience, that with simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom, but by the grace of God, we have conducted ourselves in the world, and all the more toward you.
13. And we are writing no other things to you but what you either read or acknowledge, and I hope that you will always acknowledge them even to the end,
14.even as you have acknowledged us, to an extent, because we are your boasting, as you are ours, in the day of the Lord Jesus.
¶15. And in this confidence, I intended to come to you first, so that you might have a second blessing;
16.that is, to pass from you into Macedonia, and from Macedonia to come to you again, and then by you to be sent on to Judea.
17. In planning this, was I vacillating? Or the things that I plan, do I plan them after the flesh, so that with me there is “Yes, yes” and “No, no”?
18. God is a faithful witness, that our message to you was not “Yes and no”.
19. For Jesus Christ, the Son of God who was preached among you by us – by me, and Silvanus, and Timothy – was not “Yes” and then “No”. Not at all! In him is “Yes”!
20. For however many God’s promises are, in him they are “Yes”, and in him the “Amen” is given to God through us for His glory.
21. Now He who establishes us with you in Christ, and anointed us, is God,
22.who also sealed us and put the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.
¶23. I call on God as witness upon my soul that the reason I have not yet come to Corinth is to spare you.
24. Not that we lord it over your faith; we are only helpers of your joy, for by faith you stand.
¶1. For I determined this within myself, not to come to you again in heaviness.
2. But if I do make you sorrowful, then who is he who makes me glad, except the one made sorrowful by me?
3. And having confidence in you all, I wrote this very thing to you so that at my coming, I might not have sorrow from those who ought to give me joy, because my joy comes from all of you.
4. I wrote to you through many tears, out of great distress and anguish of heart, not that you should be grieved but that you might know the abundant love I have for you.
¶5. Now if anyone has caused sorrow, he has not caused me sorrow, but in part, lest I lay a burden on you all.
6. Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, inflicted by most of you,
7.so that you ought rather to forgive and comfort him, lest such a man be swallowed up by excessive sorrow.
8. So now, I urge you to reaffirm your love for him.
9. It was also for this reason that I wrote, that I might know your character, whether you are obedient in all things.
10. Now, to whom you forgive anything, I do as well. For if I have forgiven anything, whatever I have forgiven, it was forgiven for your sakes in the sight of Christ,
11.lest we be outwitted by Satan, for we are not ignorant of his devices.
¶12. After I had come to Troas for the gospel of Christ, although a door was opened to me by the Lord,
13.I had no rest in my spirit, being unable to find my brother Titus. And so, bidding them farewell, I departed for Macedonia.
14. But thanks be to God who, in Christ, always leads us in Triumph, and manifests through us the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.
15. For in God, we are the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are being lost;
16.to these, an odor of death leading to death, but to those, a fragrance of life leading to life. And yet, who is sufficient for these things?
17. We are not as the many, peddling the word of God, but we speak sincerely in Christ in the sight of God, as from God.
¶1. Are we, in turn, beginning to recommend ourselves? Or is it that we need, as some do, letters of recommendation to you, or recommendations from you?
2. You yourselves are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men,
3.opened because you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.
4. Through Christ, we have such confidence toward God
5.because we are not competent in ourselves to determine anything by ourselves; on the contrary, our sufficiency is of God,
6.who also has made us capable ministers of a new covenant, not of letter but of spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
7. Now, if the ministry of death by letters engraved on stones came with glory, so that the children of Israel were not able to gaze at Moses’ face because of the glory on his face (which ministry is being brought to an end),
8.how shall the ministry of the Spirit not be more glorious?
9. For if the ministry of condemnation be glory, much more does the ministry of righteousness overflow with glory.
10. Indeed, that which was once made glorious has been made not glorious in this regard, on account of the surpassing glory.
11. And certainly, if that which is being done away with was glorious, much more glorious is that which lasts.
¶12. Therefore, having such hope, we use great plainness of speech,
13.not the way Moses put a veil over his face to keep the children of Israel from gazing at the end of that which is passing away,
14.but their minds were blinded, and even until this very day, in the reading of the Old Testament, the same veil remains, not taken away – which thing is removed in Christ.
15. Yea, to this day, whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart.
16. But if ever their heart turns to the Lord, the veil will be lifted off.
17. Now, the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
18. And all of us, with unveiled face contemplating as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed, even as by the Lord – the Spirit – from glory to glory, into the same image.
¶1. Therefore, having this ministry, as we have received mercy, we are not discouraged.
2. Moreover, we have renounced shameful, secret things, not walking in craftiness nor adulterating the word of God, but by manifestation of the truth, commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God.
3. And if it be that our gospel is veiled, it is veiled by those who are being lost,
4.through whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unfaithful, so that they cannot behold the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God.
5. For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your slaves for Jesus’ sake.
6. For the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness has shone in our hearts, to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
¶7. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the extraordinary power may be of God and not of us.
8. We are pressed on every side, but not crushed; confused, but not confounded;
9.persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;
10.always carrying around the death of the Lord Jesus in the body, that the life of Jesus might also be manifested in our body.
11. For we who live are constantly turned over to death because of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus might also be manifested in our mortal flesh.
12. So, while death is working in us, life works in you.
13. And having the same spirit of faith, as it is written, “I believed; therefore I spoke,” we also believe; therefore, we also speak,
14.knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus shall also raise us up through Jesus, and shall bring us with you into His presence.
15. All things are for you, so that grace, multiplied, might cause thanksgiving to abound through many to the glory of God.
¶16. Wherefore, we are not discouraged, for even if our outer man is wasting away, still our inner man is renewed day by day.
17. For our momentary, light affliction is producing for us a weight of eternal glory that is beyond all comprehension,
18.while we do not look at things that are seen, but at things that are not seen, for things that are seen are temporal, but things that are not seen are eternal.
¶1. For we know that if our earthly home, a tent, be taken down, we have a building from God, a house not made by hand, eternal in the heavens.
2. And in this house we groan, longing to be clothed with our home that is from heaven,
3.if indeed, once we are clothed, we shall not be found naked.
4. To be sure, we do groan, burdened while we are in this tent, not because we desire to be unclothed, but to be clothed upon, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.
5. Now the One who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who indeed has given us the earnest of the Spirit.
6. Therefore, we are always confident, knowing certainly that while we are at home in the body, we are away from home and the Lord.
7. For we walk by faith, not by sight;
8.nevertheless, we are confident, and we prefer rather to leave this home of the body and to be at home with the Lord.
9. Wherefore, we very much value, whether at home or away from home, the honor of being well-pleasing to him.
10. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each may receive recompense for the things done in the body, according to what he did, whether good or bad.
¶11. Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men, and we are made well known by God; and I hope to be made well known also to your consciences.
12. Again, we certainly are not commending ourselves to you; rather, we are giving you opportunity to boast of us, so that you might have an answer for those who boast in appearance and not in heart.
13. If we be out of our mind, it is to God, or if we be in our right mind, it is to you.
14. The love of Christ compels us, having concluded this, that inasmuch as one man died for all, all were as good as dead.
15. And he died for all so that those who are living might no longer live for themselves but for the one who died for them, and was raised up.
16. Therefore, from now on, we know no one after the flesh. Though we have known even Christ after the flesh, yet now, we no longer know him that way.
17. Therefore, if anyone be in Christ, he is a new creature. Old things are gone; behold, all things are new.
18. And all things are from God who reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation;
19.to wit, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not reckoning to them their trespasses, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.
¶20. So then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us. We beseech you in Christ’s stead: be reconciled to God!
21. Him who knew no sin, God made sin for us, so that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
¶1. And working together with him, we too entreat you not to receive the grace of God in vain;
2.for it says, “At an acceptable time, I heard you, and in a day of salvation, I helped you.” Behold, now is “an acceptable time”! Behold, now is “a day of salvation”!
3. We give no cause for stumbling in any thing so that the ministry is not discredited.
4. On the contrary, in everything, we commend ourselves as ministers of God; with much perseverance in persecutions, in hardships, in distresses,
5.in beatings, in imprisonments, in riots, in labors, in sleepless nights, in times of hunger,
6.with purity, with knowledge, with patience, with kindness, with a holy spirit, with genuine love,
7.by the word of truth, by power from God, with offensive and defensive weapons of righteousness,
8.through honor and dishonor, through evil report and good report; as deceivers, and yet true;
9.as unknown, and yet well-known; as dying, and yet here we are, alive; as chastened, and yet not put to death;
10.as sorrowful, but always rejoicing; as poor, but making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.
¶11. O Corinthians, our mouth is opened to you, our heart is enlarged.
12. You are not restricted by us; you are restricted by your own feelings.
13. Return the same love (I speak as to children); you be enlarged, too.
¶14. Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers, for what is there in common between righteousness and lawlessness? What fellowship has light with darkness?
15. What harmony exists between Christ and Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever?
16. What compact does the temple of God make with idols? For you yourselves are the temple of the living God, as God said: “I will live and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.”
17. Wherefore, “Come out from their midst and be separate, says the
Lord, and do not touch the unclean thing, and I will receive you;
18.and I will be your Father, and you shall be my sons and daughters, says the
¶1. Therefore, beloved people, having these promises, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
¶2. Receive us! We have wronged no one; we have corrupted no one; we have taken advantage of no one.
3. I am not saying this to condemn you, for I have already said that you are in our hearts, to die or to live with you.
4. Great is my openness with you; great is my boasting of you; I am filled with encouragement; I overflow with joy in all our trouble.
¶5. When we came into Macedonia, our flesh had no rest; on the contrary, we were pressed on every side – conflicts without, fears within.
6. But God, who comforts the downcast, comforted us by the arrival of Titus,
7.and not only by his coming but also by the comfort with which he was comforted concerning you, as he related to us your longing, your mourning, and your zeal for me, so that I rejoiced all the more.
8. For even if I caused you sorrow with the letter, I do not regret it (though I did have second thoughts), for I see that the letter grieved you only for a time.
9. I rejoice now, not that you were made sorrowful but that you sorrowed to repentance, for you were made sorrowful in a godly manner so that you were not harmed in any way by us.
10. For godly sorrow produces repentance unto an irrevocable salvation, but worldly sorrow produces death.
11. Behold, how much earnestness this very thing, your feeling godly sorrow, has produced in you! What a vindication of yourselves! What indignation! What fear! What fervent desire! What zeal! What punishment! In every respect, you have proved yourselves to be innocent in this matter.
12. You see, even though I wrote to you, it was not for the sake of the one who did the wrong, nor even for the one who was wronged, but to have your earnestness for us manifested among you in the sight of God.
13. We are comforted by this.
¶Besides comfort from you, we rejoiced even more because of Titus’ joy, for his spirit was refreshed by you all.
14. For whatever boast I made to him concerning you, I was not put to shame. To the contrary, as all things we have spoken to you are true, so our boasting of you before Titus has been proved true as well.
15. And his affection for you increases all the more as he remembers the obedient response of you all, how you received him with fear and trembling.
16. I am glad that in everything, I can depend on you.
¶1. Moreover, brothers, we would have you know about the grace of God that has been bestowed on the assemblies of Macedonia,
2.how that during a great ordeal of suffering, the abundance of their joy, though in the depths of poverty, overflowed unto a wealth of generosity on their part.
3. I bear witness that according to their means, and beyond their means, of their own free will,
4.with much entreaty, they besought of us the favor and fellowship in this ministry for the saints,
5.and not just as we expected, but they entrusted their own selves to the Lord first, and then to us by the will of God.
6. So, we urged Titus that as he had previously begun, so he also might complete this grace among you.
7. And just as you abound in everything – in faith, and in speech, and in knowledge, and in all diligence, and in the love that comes from you to us – then abound in this grace also.
8. I am saying this not as a commandment, but as measuring the sincerity of your love by the earnestness of others.
9. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that for your sakes he, although rich, became poor so that you, through his poverty, might become rich.
10. Now, I give my opinion about this matter: it is profitable for you, who began more than a year ago not only to do this, but also to want to do it.
11. So, finish doing it now, so that just as there was a readiness to will, there may also be a completion, out of what you have.
12. For if there exists the willingness, it is acceptable according to what a man has, not according to what he does not have.
13. For it is not that others should be relieved and you burdened, but as a matter of equality; for the time being, your abundance meeting their need,
14.that those people’s abundance might meet your need, thus making an equality.
15. As it is written, “He who gathered much had no extra, and he who gathered little had no lack.”
¶16. Thanks be to God, who put the same deep concern for you into the heart of Titus.
17. For he welcomed my exhortation; indeed, being more than eager, of his own will he went to you.
18. Now we sent along with him the brother whose praise in the gospel is throughout the Assemblies,
19.and not only that, but he has also been hand-picked by the Assemblies as our traveling companion with this gift that is ministered by us for the glory of the Lord himself, and as proof of our goodwill,
20.avoiding this, that anyone should find fault with us regarding this liberal gift which is being delivered by us,
21.taking into consideration what is honorable, not only before the Lord but also before men.
22. And with them, we have sent our brother, whom we have often proved zealous in many situations and is now much more zealous, with great confidence in you.
23. If any ask of Titus, he is my partner and my fellow-worker for you; if any ask of our brothers, they are apostles of the Assemblies, the glory of Christ.
24. Therefore, in the sight of God’s Assemblies, give them the proof of your love, and of our boasting about you.
¶1. Now, it is superfluous for me to write to you about the ministry for the saints,
2.for I know your eagerness, which is the reason for my boasting about you to the Macedonians, “Achaia has been ready for over a year.” And your zeal stirred up many of them.
3. But I sent the brothers so that our boasting of you in this matter would not prove to be empty so that you might be prepared, as I have been saying.
4. Otherwise, if some of the Macedonians come with me and find you unprepared, we (not to mention you) might be embarrassed for boasting in this situation.
5. Consequently, I considered it expedient to exhort the brothers to go on ahead to you and prepare in advance your generous gift spoken of before, that it might be ready, and so, be as a gift given generously, and not grudgingly.
¶6. But remember this: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows generously will also reap generously.
7. Let each one give as he has determined in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
8. God is able to make every grace abound to you, so that in every way, all the time, having every needed thing, you might have a surplus for every good work.
9. As it is written, “He scattered abroad; he has given to the needy; his righteousness remains forever.”
10. May He who furnishes seed to the sower provide bread for your food, and multiply your seed, and increase the yield of your righteousness,
11.in every way enriched for all generosity, which is, through us, producing thanksgiving to God.
12. For the ministry of this holy service does not merely satisfy the needs of the saints but overflows, through many, with thanksgivings to God besides,
13.and through the approved character of this ministry, they will glorify God because of your professed submission to the gospel of Christ and for the simple goodness of your contribution to them, and to all men,
14.and in their prayer for you, feeling deep affection for you because of the extraordinary grace of God that is upon you.
15. But thanks be to God for His inexpressible gift!
¶1. Now I myself, Paul, entreat you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ, I who am lowly when present among you but bold toward you when absent.
2. I pray that, when I am present, I need not be bold with the confidence with which I intend to show boldness to certain ones who regard us as if we walk after the flesh.
3. For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh,
4.for the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly but powerful through God for the tearing down of strongholds,
5.demolishing sophistries and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and taking every thought into captivity for obedience to Christ,
6.being ready also to avenge all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.
7. Do you look at things by the appearance? If anyone is convinced within himself that he is of Christ, he should remind himself of this, that just as he is of Christ, so also are we of Christ.
8. And even if I do boast somewhat excessively concerning our authority (which the Lord gave us for edification and not for your destruction), I will not be put to shame –
9.so that you might not feel that you are being terrorized by letters.
10. “The letters”, he says, “are indeed weighty and powerful, but his physical presence is weak, and his speech contemptible.”
11. Such a man may count on this, that just as we are in word by letters while absent, so also shall we be in deed when present.
12. For we dare not contrast or compare ourselves with certain people who commend themselves; but they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, do not understand.
13. As for us, we will not boast without limits, but only within the limits of the purview which God has measured out for us – a measure that reaches even as far as you.
14. It is not as though, in coming to you, we are overreaching ourselves, for we preceded all men in coming to you with the gospel of Christ,
15.not vaunting ourselves beyond our limits in the labors of others, but hoping that as your faith grows, we may be magnified all the more by you who are within our purview,
16.to proclaim the gospel in regions beyond you, rather than boast in things already laid out for us within another man’s purview.
17. But, “He who boasts, let him boast in the
18. For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but he whom the Lord commends.
¶1. I want you to put up with foolishness from me for a moment, but then, you really are putting up with me.
2. I am jealous over you with a godly jealousy, for I betrothed you to one husband, to present a chaste virgin to Christ.
3. But I fear, lest, as the serpent led Eve astray by his craftiness, so your thoughts likewise be led astray from the simplicity that is in Christ.
4. For if a man comes preaching another Jesus, whom we did not preach, or you receive a different spirit, which you did not receive, or a different gospel, which you did not accept, you put up with him very easily.
5. I consider myself to be in no way inferior to those super-apostles.
6. And even if I am unskilled in speech, I am not in knowledge; on the contrary, always, in every way, we have been made known to you.
7. Did I commit a sin in humbling myself so that you might be exalted, in that I preached the gospel of God to you without charge?
8. I robbed other Assemblies, taking wages from them in order to serve you.
9. And when I was there with you, and in need, I was not a burden to anyone, for when the brothers from Macedonia came, they fully supplied my need, and I kept myself, and I will keep myself in every way, from being burdensome to you.
10. As the truth of Christ is in me, this boasting of mine shall not be silenced in the regions of Achaia.
11. Why is this? Because I do not love you? God knows.
12. What I am doing, I will keep doing so that I might cut off the pretext from those who want a pretext, in order that in the thing in which they boast, they may be found just like us.
13. For such men are false-apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ.
14. And no wonder, for Satan transforms himself into a messenger of light.
15. So, it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves to be like ministers of righteousness, whose end shall be according to their works.
¶16. On the other hand, I say, let no one consider me foolish; and yet, if so, then receive me as foolish, so that I may boast a little more.
17. What I am saying with this grandiose boasting, I am not saying as from the Lord, but as foolishly.
18. Since many are boasting according to the flesh, I, too, will boast.
19. After all, you, being sagacious, cheerfully tolerate those who are foolish.
20. For you put up with it if someone reduces you to slavery, if someone devours you, if someone takes from you, if someone exalts himself, if someone strikes you in the face.
21. In shame, I say that we behaved timidly. But now, in whatever someone else is bold (I speak foolishly), I am bold, too.
22. Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they seed of Abraham? So am I.
23. Are they ministers of Christ? (I am talking like a madman.) I am more. In labors more abundant, in stripes more numerous, in prisons more frequently, in many deaths.
24. Five times, I received forty lashes, minus one, at the hands of the Jews;
25.three times, I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have spent in the deep;
26.on many journeys, in dangers on rivers, in dangers from bandits, in dangers from my own race, in dangers from the Gentiles, in dangers in the city, in dangers in the wilderness, in dangers on the sea, in dangers among false brothers,
27.through toil and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and nakedness.
28. Apart from these external things, there is daily insurrection against me, the concern for all the Assemblies.
29. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is offended, and I am not indignant?
30. If I must boast, I will boast about things that show my weakness.
31. The God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, He who is praised forever, knows that I am not lying.
32. In Damascus, the ethnarch under Aretas the king, secured the city of the Damascenes, ready to arrest me,
33.and I was lowered through a window along the city wall in a braided basket, and escaped his hands.
¶1. Of course, to boast does me no good, so I will move on to visions and revelations of the Lord.
2. I know a man in Christ, over fourteen years ago – if in the body, I do not know, or if out of the body, I do not know; God knows. Such a man was caught up to the third heaven.
3. And I know such a man – whether in the body or out of the body, I do not know; God knows,
4.how that he was snatched up into Paradise and heard inexpressible things which are unlawful for a man to speak.
5. Of such a man will I boast, but of myself I will not boast, other than boasting of my weaknesses.
6. If I should want to boast, I will not be foolish, for I will tell the truth; but I restrain myself, lest someone should hold me in higher regard than what he sees in me or what he hears from me.
7. And because of the extraordinary nature of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me so that I would not become exalted, a messenger of Satan sent to torment me, lest I exalt myself.
8. Three times, I besought the Lord concerning this, that it might depart from me.
9. Then he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, then, will I rather boast in my weaknesses, in order that the power of Christ might dwell in me.
10. So then, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in distresses, in persecutions, in troubles for the sake of Christ; for when I am weak, then I am strong.
¶11. I have done foolishly in boasting, but you compelled me. For my recommendation ought to have come from you, for in nothing am I inferior to these super-apostles, although I am nothing.
12. With all patience, the signs of a true apostle were performed among you, with miracles, wonders, and works of power.
13. In what way, then, were you less privileged than the rest of the Assemblies, except that I was not burdensome to you? Forgive me this wrong.
¶14. Behold, I am ready to come to you a third time, and I will not be a burden to you, for I do not seek yours, but you. Besides, children ought not to lay up treasure for the parents, but the parents for the children.
15. And I most gladly will spend and be spent for your souls, although the more I love you, the less I am loved.
16. Well, so be it; I have not been a burden to you. On the contrary, being a deceitful fellow, I caught you with guile.
17. Did I take advantage of you by any of them that I sent to you?
18. I urged Titus, and with him I sent the brother. Titus did not take advantage of you, did he? Did we not walk in the same Spirit? Did we not take the same steps?
¶19. Do you think that we are defending ourselves to you again? We are speaking before God in Christ. All things, dearly beloved, are for the sake of building you up.
20. I fear lest, when I arrive, I will find you such as I would not, and I will be found by you such as you would not; lest there be quarrels, envyings, angry outbursts, bickerings, back-bitings, gossipy whisperings, self-exaltations, tumults,
21.lest when I come again, my God humbles me before you, and I mourn over many who have already sinned and not repented of the uncleanness, immorality, and self-abandonment they have practiced.
¶1. This is the third time I am coming to you. “By the mouth of two witnesses, or three, every matter is to be established.”
2. I said before, while present the second time, and now I say beforehand, though absent (I am writing to those who have already sinned, as well as to all the rest): if I come again, I will not spare,
3.since you desire proof of Christ speaking in me (he is not weak in you, but is mighty in you).
4. For though he was crucified in weakness, he lives by the power of God. And we also are weak with him; nevertheless, we shall live with him by the power of God that is on its way to you.
5. Put yourselves to the test, whether you are in the faith; prove your own selves! Or do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you – unless you are reprobates?
6. I expect that you will find that we are not reprobates.
7. Now, I pray to God that you do nothing wrong, not that we might appear to be approved, but just so that you might do good, even if we ourselves are reprobates.
8. For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.
9. So, we rejoice whenever we are weak and you are strong; and for this we pray, even your perfection.
10. This is why I am writing these things while absent, so that when I am present, I might not have to use with severity the power which the Lord gave me for building up, not for tearing down.
¶11. Finally, brothers, be happy; get yourselves in order; encourage one another; be like-minded; live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.
12. Greet one another with a holy kiss.
¶13. All the saints greet you.
¶14. The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the communion of the holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.
 Or, “the greatest apostles”, if Paul is referring to legitimate apostles.