1 And I myself, Paul, beseech you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ; I, who indeed to look upon am lowly among you, but being absent am bold toward you. 2 But I ask, not being present, that I may be bold with the confidence which I think to be daring against some, who thought of us as walking according to flesh. 3 For though walking about in flesh, we do not war according to flesh. 4 For the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, 5 pulling down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought into the obedience of Christ; 6 and having readiness to avenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.
7 Do you look at things according to appearance? If anyone has persuaded himself that he is Christ's, let him think this again as to himself, that as he is Christ's, even so we are Christ's. 8 For even if I also should boast somewhat more fully of our authority (which the Lord has given us for building up, and not for pulling you down) I will not be put to shame; 9 so that I might not seem to terrify you by letters. 10 For indeed they say, the letters are weighty and powerful, but the bodily presence is weak, and his speech is contemptible. 11 Let such a one think this, that, such as we are in word by letters, being absent, such we will be also in deed when we are present.
12 For we do not dare to rank or compare ourselves with some of the ones commending themselves. But they, measuring themselves among themselves, and comparing themselves to themselves, are not perceptive. 13 But we will not boast beyond measure, but according to the measure of the rule which the God of measure distributed to us, to reach even to you. 14 For we do not overstretch ourselves as though not reaching to you. For we also came to you in the gospel of Christ; 15 not boasting beyond measure in the labors of others, but having hope that the growing faith among you will be increased according to our rule, to overflowing; 16 to preach the gospel in that beyond you, and not to boast in another's rule in things made ready. 17 But he who glories, let him glory in the Lord. 18 For not he who commends himself is approved, but he whom the Lord commends.