Concern for Their Faithfulness
1Oh, that you would bear with me in a little #Matt. 17:17; 2 Cor. 11:4, 16, 19folly—and indeed you do bear with me. 2For I am #Gal. 4:17jealous for you with godly jealousy. For #Hos. 2:19; (Eph. 5:26)I have betrothed you to one husband, #Col. 1:28that I may present you #Lev. 21:13as a chaste virgin to Christ. 3But I fear, lest somehow, as #Gen. 3:4, 13; John 8:44; 1 Thess. 3:5; 1 Tim. 2:14; (Rev. 12:9, 15)the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds #Eph. 6:24may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. 4For if he who comes preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or if you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a #Gal. 1:6–8different gospel which you have not accepted—you may well put up with it!
Paul and False Apostles
5For I consider that #(1 Cor. 15:10); 2 Cor. 12:11; Gal. 2:6I am not at all inferior to the most eminent apostles. 6Even though #(1 Cor. 1:17)I am untrained in speech, yet I am not #(1 Cor. 12:8; Eph. 3:4)in knowledge. But #(2 Cor. 12:12)we have been thoroughly manifested among you in all things.
7Did I commit sin in humbling myself that you might be exalted, because I preached the gospel of God to you #Acts 18:3; 1 Cor. 9:18; 2 Cor. 12:13free of charge? 8I robbed other churches, taking wages from them to minister to you. 9And when I was present with you, and in need, #Acts 20:33I was a burden to no one, for what I lacked #Phil. 4:10the brethren who came from Macedonia supplied. And in everything I kept myself from being burdensome to you, and so I will keep myself. 10#Rom. 1:9; 9:1; 2 Cor. 1:23; (Gal. 2:20)As the truth of Christ is in me, #1 Cor. 9:15no one shall stop me from this boasting in the regions of Achaia. 11Why? #2 Cor. 6:11; 12:15Because I do not love you? God knows!
12But what I do, I will also continue to do, #1 Cor. 9:12that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things of which they boast. 13For such #Acts 15:24; Rom. 16:18; Gal. 1:7; Phil. 1:15; 2 Pet. 2:1; Rev. 2:2are false apostles, #Phil. 3:2; Titus 1:10deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. 14And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into #Gal. 1:8an angel of light. 15Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, #(Phil. 3:19)whose end will be according to their works.
Reluctant Boasting
16I say again, let no one think me a fool. If otherwise, at least receive me as a fool, that I also may boast a little. 17What I speak, #1 Cor. 7:6I speak not according to the Lord, but as it were, foolishly, in this confidence of boasting. 18Seeing that many boast according to the flesh, I also will boast. 19For you put up with fools gladly, #1 Cor. 4:10since you yourselves are wise! 20For you put up with it #2 Cor. 1:24; (Gal. 2:4; 4:3, 9; 5:1)if one brings you into bondage, if one devours you, if one takes from you, if one exalts himself, if one strikes you on the face. 21To our shame #2 Cor. 10:10I say that we were too weak for that! But #Phil. 3:4in whatever anyone is bold—I speak foolishly—I am bold also.
Suffering for Christ
22Are they #Acts 22:3; Rom. 11:1; Phil. 3:4–6Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they the seed of Abraham? So am I. 23Are they ministers of Christ?—I speak as a fool—I am more: #1 Cor. 15:10in labors more abundant, #Acts 9:16in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, #1 Cor. 15:30in deaths often. 24From the Jews five times I received #Deut. 25:3forty #2 Cor. 6:5stripes minus one. 25Three times I was #Acts 16:22, 23; 21:32beaten with rods; #Acts 14:5, 19once I was stoned; three times I #Acts 27:1–44was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; 26in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, #Acts 9:23, 24; 13:45, 50; 17:5, 13; 1 Thess. 2:15in perils of my own countrymen, #Acts 14:5, 19; 19:23; 27:42in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; 27in weariness and toil, #Acts 20:31in sleeplessness often, #1 Cor. 4:11; Phil. 4:12in hunger and thirst, in #Acts 9:9; 13:2, 3; 14:23fastings often, in cold and nakedness— 28besides the other things, what comes upon me daily: #Acts 20:18; (Rom. 1:14); 2 Cor. 7:12; 12:20; Gal. 4:11; 1 Thess. 3:10my deep concern for all the churches. 29#(1 Cor. 8:9, 13; 9:22)Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to stumble, and I do not burn with indignation?
30If I must boast, #(2 Cor. 12:5, 9, 10)I will boast in the things which concern my infirmity. 31#Rom. 1:9; Gal. 1:20; 1 Thess. 2:5The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, #Rom. 9:5who is blessed forever, knows that I am not lying. 32#Acts 9:19–25In Damascus the governor, under Aretas the king, was guarding the city of the Damascenes with a garrison, desiring to arrest me; 33but I was let down in a basket through a window in the wall, and escaped from his hands.