We rejoice (2 Cor. 6:10)

“We remain

Sorrowful,

Yet always rejoicing.

We are poor,

Yet making many rich.

We have nothing,

Yet possessing everything.”

ὡς λυπούμενοι ἀεὶ δὲ χαίροντες, ὡς πτωχοὶ πολλοὺς δὲ πλουτίζοντες, ὡς μηδὲν ἔχοντες καὶ πάντα κατέχοντες.

Paul said we remain sorrowful (ὡς λυπούμενοι), yet always rejoicing (ἀεὶ δὲ χαίροντες).  We are poor (ὡς πτωχοὶ), yet making many rich (πολλοὺς δὲ πλουτίζοντες).  We have nothing (ὡς μηδὲν ἔχοντες), yet possessing everything (καὶ πάντα κατέχοντες).  Only these Corinthian letters used this word πλουτίζοντες, that means to make rich or enrich. Paul continued with these contrasting complaints.  Although he was sorrowful at times, he always rejoiced.  Although he was poor, he was making other people rich.  Although he had nothing, he owned everything.  His looks were deceiving.  He looked sorrowful as a poor person with nothing.  In reality, he was always happy making other people have a rich life with all that that he needed in this life.  He did not need riches or fame to be happy.  He possessed Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.  What else could anyone want?  What do you want out of life?

We live on (2 Cor. 6:9)

“As unknown,

And yet well known,

As dying,

See!

We live.

We are punished,

And yet not killed.”

ὡς ἀγνοούμενοι καὶ ἐπιγινωσκόμενοι, ὡς ἀποθνήσκοντες καὶ ἰδοὺ ζῶμεν, ὡς παιδευόμενοι καὶ μὴ θανατούμενοι,

Paul said that as unknown (ὡς ἀγνοούμενοι), and yet well known (καὶ ἐπιγινωσκόμενοι), as dying (ὡς ἀποθνήσκοντες), and see we live (καὶ ἰδοὺ ζῶμεν), we are punished (ὡς παιδευόμενοι), and yet not killed (καὶ μὴ θανατούμενοι).  Paul did not care whether he was unknown or well-known.  Although like everyone else he was dying, he was still alive kicking.  He was punished but he was certainly not dead.  No matter what they did to him or how they treated him, Paul kept going.  He used contrasting words to get his point across.  He was a little like a Stoic.  No matter what they did to him, he was not bothered by it.  Are you bothered by what other people say and do to you?

Treated as impostors (2 Cor. 6:8)

“In glory

And dishonor,

In ill repute

And good repute,

We are treated

As impostors,

And yet are true.”

διὰ δόξης καὶ ἀτιμίας, διὰ δυσφημίας καὶ εὐφημίας· ὡς πλάνοι καὶ ἀληθεῖς,

Paul said that in glory (διὰ δόξης) and dishonor (καὶ ἀτιμίας), in ill repute (διὰ δυσφημίας) and good repute (καὶ εὐφημίας), he was treated as an impostor (ὡς πλάνοι), yet he was true (καὶ ἀληθεῖς).  Only the Pauline letters used this word ἀτιμίας, that means dishonor or disgrace.  Only these Corinthians letters used this word δυσφημίας that means to use evil words, to speak ill of, evil report, or defamation, and the word εὐφημίας, that means good report, commendation, or praise.  Paul indicated that many people had criticized him.  He did not care.  He could be called glorious or dishonorable, but he would keep on telling the truth.  Whether he had a good reputation or not, he remained true to Jesus Christ.  These were false charges hurled at Paul as if he was some kind of impostor or pretending to be a Christian.  Paul would remain true to God, no matter what.  Are you true to God no matter what happens in your life?

Weapons of righteousness (2 Cor. 6:7)

“We have

Truthful speech

And the power of God.

We have

The weapons of righteousness

For the right hand

And for the left hand.”

ἐν λόγῳ ἀληθείας, ἐν δυνάμει Θεοῦ· διὰ τῶν ὅπλων τῆς δικαιοσύνης τῶν δεξιῶν καὶ ἀριστερῶν,

Paul said that we have truthful speech (ἐν λόγῳ ἀληθείας) and the power of God (ἐν δυνάμει Θεοῦ).  We have the weapons (διὰ τῶν ὅπλων) of righteousness (τῆς δικαιοσύνης) for the right hand (τῶν δεξιῶν) and for the left hand (καὶ ἀριστερῶν).  Paul was ready for anything.  He spoke the truth because of the power of God.  He had the weapons of righteousness.  For his right hand he had a sword to go on the offensive, while his left hand had the defensive shield like any soldier in a good fight.  However, his weapons were righteousness, not weapons of destruction.  Do you use the weapons of righteousness in your life?

The Holy Spirit (2 Cor. 6:6)

“We have continued

With purity,

Knowledge,

Forbearance,

And kindness,

With the Holy Spirit

And genuine love.”

ἐν ἁγνότητι, ἐν γνώσει, ἐν μακροθυμίᾳ, ἐν χρηστότητι, ἐν Πνεύματι Ἁγίῳ, ἐν ἀγάπῃ ἀνυποκρίτῳ,

Paul said that we have continued with purity (ἐν ἁγνότητι), knowledge (ἐν γνώσει), forbearance or patience (ἐν μακροθυμίᾳ), kindness (ἐν χρηστότητι), with the Holy Spirit (ἐν Πνεύματι Ἁγίῳ) and genuine love (ἐν ἀγάπῃ ἀνυποκρίτῳ).  Only this Corinthian letter used this word ἁγνότητι, that means purity or chastity.  Only the Pauline letters used this word χρηστότητι, that means goodness, excellence, uprightness, or gentleness.  In the face of all these difficulties, Paul stood strong with purity, knowledge, patience, and gentle kindness.  He was full of the Holy Spirit and had a genuine love for others.  Paul was aided by the Holy Spirit in all the difficult adventures that he endured.  Do you appreciate the Holy Spirit?

Difficulties (2 Cor. 6:5)

“We have endured

Beatings,

Imprisonments,

Tumults,

Labors,

Watching,

And hunger.”

ἐν πληγαῖς, ἐν φυλακαῖς, ἐν ἀκαταστασίαις, ἐν κόποις, ἐν ἀγρυπνίαις, ἐν νηστείαις,

Paul said that we have endured beatings (ἐν πληγαῖς), imprisonments (ἐν φυλακαῖς), tumults or riots (ἐν ἀκαταστασίαις), labor (ἐν κόποις), watching or sleepless nights (ἐν ἀγρυπνίαις), and hunger (ἐν νηστείαις).  Only this Corinthian letter used this word ἀγρυπνίαις, that means sleeplessness or watching.  Paul listed all the bad things that had happened to him in his missionary work for Jesus Christ.  He had been beat up, put in prison, and been involved with riots.  Paul had labored and spent many a sleepless night while at the same fasting and hungry.  Paul had suffered just like Jesus to get the message of the Lord across.  Are you willing to endure a little suffering for Jesus Christ?

Great endurance (2 Cor. 6:4)

“But as servants of God

We commend ourselves

In every way.

We have gone through

In great endurance,

In afflictions,

In hardships,

And in calamities.”

ἀλλ’ ἐν παντὶ συνιστάνοντες ἑαυτοὺς ὡς Θεοῦ διάκονοι, ἐν ὑπομονῇ πολλῇ, ἐν θλίψεσιν, ἐν ἀνάγκαις, ἐν στενοχωρίαις,

Paul said that as servants or ministers of God (ὡς Θεοῦ διάκονοι), we commend ourselves (συνιστάνοντες ἑαυτοὺς) in every way (ἀλλ’ ἐν παντὶ).  We have gone through in great endurance (ἐν ὑπομονῇ πολλῇ), in afflictions (ἐν θλίψεσιν), in hardships (ἐν ἀνάγκαις), and in calamities (ἐν στενοχωρίαις).  Only the Pauline letters used this word στενοχωρίαις, that means narrowness of space, difficulty, great distress, or anguish.  Paul listed all the problems that he ran into as a missionary of God for Jesus Christ.  Thus, he was like Jesus Christ himself who also suffered.  Paul said that he had to endure quite a lot of difficulties with afflictions, hardships, anguish, distress, and calamities.  Life as a Christian missionary was not an easy life.  Do you think that being a Christian missionary is easy?

No fault ministry (2 Cor. 6:3)

“We put no obstacle

In any one’s way,

So that no fault

May be found

With our ministry.”

μηδεμίαν ἐν μηδενὶ διδόντες προσκοπήν, ἵνα μὴ μωμηθῇ ἡ διακονία,

Paul said that we put (διδόντες) no (μηδεμίαν) obstacle (προσκοπήν) in any one’s way (ἐν μηδενὶ), so that no fault may be found (ἵνα μὴ μωμηθῇ) with his ministry (ἡ διακονία).  Only this Corinthian letter used this word προσκοπήν, that means an occasion of stumbling, a cause of stumbling, an offense, or a shock, and the word μωμηθῇ, that means to find fault with, blame, or slander.  Paul maintained that he always practiced what he preached.  He was not going to put any obstacle in any one’s way.  They would not find anything wrong with his ministry to Jesus Christ.  He was faultless in his ministry.  Are you careful with your ministry of Jesus Christ?

The day of salvation (2 Cor. 6:2)

“God says.

‘At the acceptable time

I have listened to you.

I have helped you

On the day of salvation.’

See!

Now is the acceptable time!

See!

Now is the day of salvation!”

 λέγει γάρ Καιρῷ δεκτῷ ἐπήκουσά σου καὶ ἐν ἡμέρᾳ σωτηρίας ἐβοήθησά σοι· ἰδοὺ νῦν καιρὸς εὐπρόσδεκτος, ἰδοὺ νῦν ἡμέρα σωτηρίας·

Paul indicated that God said (λέγει) in Isaiah that at the acceptable time (γάρ Καιρῷ δεκτῷ), he had listened to them (ἐπήκουσά σου).  He had helped them on the day of salvation (καὶ ἐν ἡμέρᾳ σωτηρίας).  Then Paul reminded the Corinthians that see (ἰδοὺ)! Now was the acceptable time (νῦν καιρὸς εὐπρόσδεκτος).  See (ἰδοὺ)!  Now was the day of salvation (νῦν ἡμέρα σωτηρίας)!  Only this Corinthian letter used this word ἐπήκουσά, that means to listen to, to hearken to, or hear favorably.  Paul used this citation from Isaiah chapter 49:8 that the acceptable time was at hand.  Second Isaiah had Yahweh explain that he had listened and answered the Israelites with favors.  He had helped them to salvation.  He had kept his covenant with his people.  However, this passage was talking about the end of the exile and the return to the promise land.  Paul used this passage to say that now the acceptable time of salvation had come for the Christians at Corinth.  The end times or the day of judgment, the day of salvation, was close.  Do you think that your day of salvation is close?

The grace of God (2 Cor. 6:1)

“As we are working together

With Christ,

We urge you

To accept

The grace of God,

But not in vain.”

Συνεργοῦντες δὲ καὶ παρακαλοῦμεν μὴ εἰς κενὸν τὴν χάριν τοῦ Θεοῦ δέξασθαι ὑμᾶς·

Paul said as we are working together (Συνεργοῦντες) with Christ, we urge you (δὲ καὶ παρακαλοῦμεν) to accept (δέξασθαι ὑμᾶς) the grace of God (τὴν χάριν τοῦ Θεοῦ), but not in vain (μὴ εἰς κενὸν).  Paul was encouraging the disciples in Corinth to accept the grace of God.  He was working with Christ and them.  He hoped that this would not be in vain or useless.  They could lose or fall from the grace of God if they sinned.  Other people might lead them to a spiritual ruin.  Their work would be useless.  Do you worry that your work is useless?