¶ Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy,
we faint not;
.2 But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.
3 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost:
.4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
| 1 -
This ministry Of the new testament which frees us from bondage to
the law, as mentioned in the previous chapter 2co0306,
1 - Faint From egkakeo, "to be weary." Paul felt unworthy and a great sinner 1ti0115 having received his call to ministry by grace 1co0725, ga0115, 1ti0112.
2 - Renounced "We have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways; we refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God's word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God." (RSV)
3 - Hid That is, "to those who are being lost" as described in the next verse.
|Paul immediately sets the tone for the first section of chapter 3  ... with a beautiful promise: "We have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us." verse 7. "... all that Paul writes in this portion of his letter must be subsumed under the truth that everything that has any meaning whatsoever is derived from the power of God." (W. Larry Richards in 2 Corinthians, from The Abundant Life Bible Amplifier. Pacific Press, 1998.|
| 5 For we
preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants
for Jesus' sake.
6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give 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 excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.
.8 ¶ We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;
9 Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;
.10 Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.
.11 For we which live are alway[s] delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.
5 - Preach not ourselves Any of us who share light with others must be careful that we are no the ones in the spotlight. Paul had been accused of this.
6 - God ... commanded During the process of creation ge0103. ps03306. He is the Father of light ja0117 and clothed Himself in light ps10402.
6 - In the face of Jesus Christ On the mountain, three disciples saw Christ in glory mt1702, lu0248, jn0114, 2pe0117.
7 - Treasure in earthen vessels That is, in ceramic jars or lamps. What is the treasure? Why do we have it?
11 - Delivered unto death ... mortal Only Christ has Immortality 1ti0616. The word, "mortal," means subject to death. Many today believe that the dead do not really die. This was the serpent's lie ge0304. Also study 1co1550.
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| 12 So then death worketh
in us, but life in you.
13 We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak;
14 Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you.
15 For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.
- Believed ... spoken From the Septuagint (Greek) version of Psalm
116:10. As we experience the goodness of God we may also speak out
in praise. Refusing to believe dries up the joy He intends for us to experience.
14 - Raise up us also See Paul's other comments on this great truth: 1th0414, 1co1551.
For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the
inward man is renewed day by day.
.17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;
18 While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
- Outward man perish Paul is comparing his temporal life to his
spiritual one. Perhaps his friends at Corinth were concerned that he was
17 - Affliction The reward is worth the endurance. Praise God! Paul had told his readers that affliction was temporary 1co1312.
18 - Unseen ... eternal In Hebrews, the unseen is understood to be reality. he1101, he1106, he1124.We are tempted to depend on our senses and our logic, not considering the supernatural.