2 Corinthians 12–13; Psalm 107

Paul’s Visions and His Thorn

12 I must go on boasting. Though there is nothing to be gained by it, I will go on to visions and xrevelations of the Lord. I know a man yin Christ who fourteen years ago was zcaught up to athe third heavenwhether in the body or out of the body I do not know, bGod knows. And I know that this man was caught up into cparadisewhether in the body or out of the body I do not know, bGod knows and he heard things that cannot be told, which man may not utter. On behalf of this man I will boast, but on my own behalf I will not boast, dexcept of my weaknesses though if I should wish to boast, eI would not be a fool, for I would be speaking the truth; but I refrain from it, so that no one may think more of me than he sees in me or hears from me. So fto keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations,1 ga thorn was given me in the flesh, ha messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. iThree times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, jMy grace is sufficient for you, for kmy power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that lthe power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 mFor the sake of Christ, then, nI am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For owhen I am weak, then I am strong.

Concern for the Corinthian Church

11 pI have been a fool! You forced me to it, for I ought to have been commended by you. For I was qnot at all inferior to these super-apostles, reven though I am nothing. 12 sThe signs of a true apostle were performed among you twith utmost patience, with signs and wonders and mighty works. 13 For in what were you less favored than the rest of the churches, except that uI myself did not burden you? Forgive me this wrong!

14 Here vfor the third time I am ready to come to you. And I will not be a burden, for wI seek not what is yours but you. For xchildren are not obligated to save up for their parents, but yparents for their children. 15 zI will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls. If aI love you more, am I to be loved less? 16 But granting that bI myself did not burden you, I was crafty, you say, and got the better of you by deceit. 17 Did I take advantage of you cthrough any of those whom I sent to you? 18 dI urged Titus to go, and sent ethe brother with him. Did Titus take advantage of you? Did we not act in the same spirit? Did we not take the same steps?

19 Have you been thinking all along that we have been defending ourselves to you? It is fin the sight of God that we have been speaking in Christ, and gall for your upbuilding, beloved. 20 For I fear that perhaps hwhen I come I may find you not as I wish, and that you may find me not as you wishthat perhaps there may be quarreling, jealousy, anger, hostility, slander, gossip, conceit, and disorder. 21 I fear that when I come again my God may humble me before you, and I may have to mourn over many of those iwho sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, jsexual immorality, and sensuality that they have practiced.

Final Warnings

13 kThis is the third time I am coming to you. Every charge must be established lby the evidence of two or three witnesses. mI warned nthose who sinned before and all the others, and I warn them now while absent, as I did when present on my second visit, that oif I come again I will not spare them since you seek proof that Christ pis speaking in me. He is not weak in dealing with you, but qis powerful among you. For rhe was crucified in weakness, but slives by the power of God. For twe also are weak in him, but in dealing with you uwe will live with him by the power of God.

Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. vTest yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that wJesus Christ is in you?unless indeed you fail to meet the test! I hope you will find out that we have not failed the test. But we pray to God that you may not do wrongnot that we may appear to have met the test, but that you may do what is right, though we may seem to have failed. For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth. For we are glad when xwe are weak and you are strong. Your yrestoration is what we pray for. 10 For this reason I write these things while I am away from you, that when I come zI may not have to be asevere in my use of bthe authority that the Lord has given me for building up and not for tearing down.

Final Greetings

11 Finally, brothers,2 rejoice. cAim for restoration, comfort one another,3 dagree with one another, elive in peace; and the God of love and fpeace will be with you. 12 gGreet one another with a holy kiss. 13 hAll the saints greet you.

14 iThe grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and jthe love of God and kthe fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.


Book Five

Let the Redeemed of the Lord Say So

107  gOh give thanks to the Lord, hfor he is good,

for his steadfast love endures forever!

Let ithe redeemed of the Lord say so,

whom he has jredeemed from trouble1

and kgathered in from the lands,

from the east and from the west,

from the north and from the south.

Some lwandered in desert wastes,

finding no way mto a city to dwell in;

hungry and thirsty,

their soul nfainted within them.

Then they ocried to the Lord in their trouble,

and he delivered them from their distress.

He led them by pa straight way

till they reached ma city to dwell in.

qLet them thank the Lord for his steadfast love,

for his wondrous works to the children of man!

For he rsatisfies the longing soul,

sand the hungry soul he fills with good things.

10  tSome sat in darkness and in uthe shadow of death,

prisoners in vaffliction and in irons,

11  for they whad rebelled against the words of God,

and xspurned the counsel of the Most High.

12  So he bowed their hearts down with hard labor;

they fell down, ywith none to help.

13  zThen they cried to the Lord in their trouble,

and he delivered them from their distress.

14  He brought them out of adarkness and the shadow of death,

and bburst their bonds apart.

15  cLet them thank the Lord for his steadfast love,

for his wondrous works to the children of man!

16  For he dshatters the doors of bronze

and cuts in two the bars of iron.

17  Some were efools through their sinful ways,

and because of their iniquities suffered affliction;

18  fthey loathed any kind of food,

and they gdrew near to hthe gates of death.

19  iThen they cried to the Lord in their trouble,

and he delivered them from their distress.

20  He jsent out his word and khealed them,

and ldelivered them from their destruction.

21  mLet them thank the Lord for his steadfast love,

for his wondrous works to the children of man!

22  And let them noffer sacrifices of thanksgiving,

and otell of his deeds in psongs of joy!

23  Some qwent down to the sea in ships,

doing business on the great waters;

24  they saw the deeds of the Lord,

his wondrous works in the deep.

25  For he rcommanded and sraised the stormy wind,

which lifted up the waves of the sea.

26  They mounted up to heaven; they went down to the depths;

their courage tmelted away in their evil plight;

27  they reeled and ustaggered like drunken men

and vwere at their wits’ end.2

28  wThen they cried to the Lord in their trouble,

and he delivered them from their distress.

29  He xmade the storm be still,

and the waves of the sea were hushed.

30  Then they were glad that the waters3 were quiet,

and he brought them to their desired haven.

31  yLet them thank the Lord for his steadfast love,

for his wondrous works to the children of man!

32  Let them zextol him in athe congregation of the people,

and praise him in the assembly of the elders.

33  He bturns rivers into a desert,

springs of water into thirsty ground,

34  ca fruitful land into a salty waste,

because of the evil of its inhabitants.

35  He dturns a desert into pools of water,

ea parched land into springs of water.

36  And there he lets the hungry dwell,

and they establish fa city to live in;

37  they sow fields and plant vineyards

and get a fruitful yield.

38  gBy his blessing they multiply greatly,

and he does not let their livestock diminish.

39  When they are diminished and brought low

through oppression, evil, and sorrow,

40  hhe pours contempt on princes

and imakes them wander jin trackless wastes;

41  but khe raises up the needy out of affliction

and lmakes their families like flocks.

42  mThe upright see it and are glad,

and nall wickedness shuts its mouth.

43  oWhoever is wise, let him attend to these things;

let them consider the steadfast love of the Lord.