Apostleship Established by the Corinthians’ Own Salvation
2 Corinthians 12:14 – 13:10
2 Corinthians 12:14 – 13:10
Paul Had Not and Would Not Be a Burden (12:14-18)
14 Behold, this third time I am ready to come to you, and I will not be in laziness a charge; for I do not seek yours, but you; for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children. 15 Now “I” shall most gladly spend and be utterly spent for your souls, if even in abundantly loving you I should be less loved. 16 But be it so. “I” did not burden you, but being crafty I took you by guile. 17 Did I make gain of you by any of those whom I have sent to you? 18 I begged Titus, and sent the brother with him: did Titus at all make gain of you? have we not walked in the same spirit? have we not in the same steps?
Fears Concerning the Corinthians’ State upon Arrival (12:19-21)
19 Ye have long been supposing that we excuse ourselves to you: we speak before God in Christ; and all things, beloved, for your building up. 20 For I fear lest perhaps coming I find you not such as I wish, and that “I” be found by you such as ye do not wish: lest there might be strifes, jealousies, angers, contentions, evil speakings, whisperings, puffings up, disturbances; 21 lest my God should humble me as to you when I come again, and that I shall grieve over many of those who have sinned before, and have not repented as to the uncleanness and fornication and licentiousness which they have practised.
Paul would be Unsparing of Evil upon Arrival (13:1-2)
1 This third time I am coming to you. In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every matter be established. 2 I have declared beforehand, and I say beforehand as present the second time, and now absent, to those that have sinned before, and to all the rest, that if I come again I will not spare.
Self-Examination: The Final Proof of Paul’s Apostleship (13:3-5)
3 Since ye seek a proof of Christ speaking in me, (who is not weak towards you, but is powerful among you, 4 for if indeed he has been crucified in weakness, yet he lives by God’s power; for indeed “we” are weak in him, but we shall live with him by God’s power towards you,) 5 examine your own selves if ye be in the faith; prove your own selves: do ye not recognise yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you, unless indeed ye be reprobates?
Paul’s Desires Concerning His Arrival (13:6-10)
6 Now I hope that ye will know that “we” are not reprobates. 7 But we pray to God that ye may do nothing evil; not that “we” may appear approved, but that “ye” may do what is right, and “we” be as reprobates. 8 For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth. 9 For we rejoice when “we” may be weak and “ye” may be powerful. But this also we pray for, your perfecting. 10 On this account I write these things being absent, that being present I may not use severity according to the authority which the Lord has given me for building up, and not for overthrowing.