1 Hence, as I hold this ministry by God's mercy to me, I never lose heart in it; 2 I disown those practices which very shame conceals from view; I do not go about it craftily; I do not falsify the word of God; I state the truth openly and so commend myself to every man's conscience before God. 3 Even if my gospel is veiled, it is only veiled in the case of the perishing; 4 there the god of this world has blinded the minds of unbelievers, to prevent them seeing the light thrown by the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the likeness of God. 5 (It is Christ Jesus as Lord, not myself, that I proclaim; I am simply a servant of yours for Jesus' sake.) 6 For God who said, "Light shall shine out of darkness," has shone within my heart to illuminate men with the knowledge of God's glory in the face of Christ.
7 But I possess this treasure in a frail vessel of earth, to show that the transcending power belongs to God, not to myself; 8 on every side I am harried but not hemmed in, perplexed but not despairing, 9 persecuted but not abandoned, struck down but not destroyed ??10 wherever I go, I am being killed in the body as Jesus was, so that the life of Jesus may come out in my body: 11 every day of my life I am being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus may come out within my mortal flesh. 12 In me then death is active, in you life. 13 But since our spirit of faith is the same, therefore ??as it is written I believed and so I spoke ??I too believe and so I speak, 14 sure that He who raised the Lord Jesus will raise me too with Jesus and set me at your side in his presence. 15 It is all in your interests, so that the more grace abounds, the more thanksgiving may rise and redound to the glory of God.
16 Hence I never lose heart; though my outward man decays, my inner man is renewed day after day. 17 The slight trouble of the passing hour results in a solid glory past all comparison, 18 for those of us whose eyes are on the unseen, not on the seen; for the seen is transient, the unseen eternal.