Paul and the False Apostles
1I wish you would put up with a little foolishness#Mk 7:22; 2Co 11:17,21 from me. Yes, do put up with me!#11:1 Or Yes, you are putting up with me 2For I am jealous#Jms 3:16 for you with a godly jealousy,#Nm 25:13; Gl 4:17 because I have promised you in marriage to one husband — to present a pure#Php 4:8 virgin to Christ. 3But I fear that, as the serpent#Gn 3:1; Lk 10:19 deceived#Rm 7:11; 16:18; 1Co 3:18; 2Th 2:3; 1Tm 2:14 Eve#Gn 3:20 by his cunning, your minds may be seduced from a sincere and pure#11:3 Other mss omit and pure devotion to Christ.#1Th 3:5 4For if a person comes and preaches another Jesus,#1Co 3:11 whom we did not preach, or you receive a different spirit,#1Jn 4:1 which you had not received, or a different gospel,#Gl 1:6 which you had not accepted, you put up with it splendidly!
5Now I consider myself in no way inferior to those “super-apostles.”#Jd 17 6Even if I am untrained in public speaking,#1Co 1:17 I am certainly not untrained in knowledge.#Php 3:8; 1Jn 4:8 Indeed, we have in every way made that clear to you in everything. 7Or did I commit a sin by humbling#Lk 14:11 myself so that you might be exalted,#Lk 1:52 because I preached the gospel of God to you free of charge?#Ac 18:3 8I robbed other churches by taking pay from them to minister to you. 9When I was present with you and in need, I did not burden anyone, since the brothers who came from Macedonia#Ac 16:9 supplied my needs.#Php 4:10 I have kept myself, and will keep myself, from burdening you in any way. 10As the truth of Christ is in me, this boasting of mine will not be stopped#11:10 Or silenced in the regions of Achaia.#Ac 18:12 11Why? Because I don’t love you? God knows I do!
12But I will continue to do what I am doing, in order to deny#11:12 Lit cut off an opportunity to those who want to be regarded as our equals in what they boast about. 13For such people are false apostles,#Rv 2:2 deceitful workers, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. 14And no wonder! For Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. 15So it is no great surprise if his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will be according to their works.#Gl 3:10
Paul’s Sufferings for Christ
16I repeat: Let no one consider me a fool. But if you do, at least accept me as a fool so that I can also boast a little. 17What I am saying in this matter#11:17 Or business, or confidence of boasting, I don’t speak as the Lord would, but as it were, foolishly. 18Since many boast according to the flesh, I will also boast. 19For you, being so wise, gladly put up with fools!#Pr 3:7 20In fact, you put up with it if someone enslaves you, if someone exploits#Gl 5:15 you, if someone takes advantage of you, if someone is arrogant toward you, if someone slaps#Mt 5:39 you in the face. 21I say this to our shame: We have been too weak for that!
But in whatever anyone dares to boast — I am talking foolishly — I also dare: 22Are they Hebrews?#Php 3:5 So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they the descendants of Abraham?#Gn 16:15; Gl 3:29 So am I. 23Are they servants of Christ? I’m talking like a madman — I’m a better one: with far more labors, many more imprisonments, far worse beatings, many times near death.
24Five times I received the forty lashes minus one from the Jews.#Dt 25:3 25Three times I was beaten with rods.#Ac 16:22 Once I received a stoning.#Ac 14:19 Three times I was shipwrecked.#Ac 27:1–44; 1Tm 1:19 I have spent a night and a day in the open sea. 26On frequent journeys, I faced dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers,#Mk 14:48 dangers from my own people,#Ac 9:23; 13:50; 14:5; 17:5; 18:12; 20:3,19; 21:27; 23:10–12; 25:3 dangers from Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers at sea, and dangers among false brothers; 27toil and hardship, many sleepless nights, hunger and thirst, often without food, cold, and without clothing.#Rm 8:35 28Not to mention#11:28 Lit Apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me: my concern for all the churches. 29Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to stumble,#Jn 16:1 and I do not burn with indignation?
30If boasting is necessary, I will boast about my weaknesses. 31The God and Father#Mt 5:16; 11:27; Lk 11:13; Jn 8:42; Eph 5:20 of the Lord Jesus, who is blessed forever, knows I am not lying. 32In Damascus,#2Sm 8:5 a ruler#11:32 Gk ethnarches; a leader of an ethnic community under King Aretas guarded the city of Damascus in order to arrest me. 33So I was let down in a basket through a window in the wall and escaped from his hands.#Ac 9:19–25