1 And you also we, as God's fellow workers, entreat not to be found to have received His grace to no purpose. 2 For He says, "At a time of welcome I have listened to you, and on a day of salvation I have succoured you." Now is the time of loving welcome! Now is the day of salvation!
3 We endeavour to give people no cause for stumbling in anything, lest the work we are doing should fall into discredit. 4 On the contrary, as God's servants, we seek their full approval--by unwearied endurance, by afflictions, by distress, by helplessness; 5 by floggings, by imprisonments; by facing riots, by toil, by sleepless watching, by hunger and thirst; 6 by purity of life, by knowledge, by patience, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love; 7 by the proclamation of the truth, by the power of God; by the weapons of righteousness, wielded in both hands; 8 through honour and ignominy, through calumny and praise. We are looked upon as impostors and yet are true men; 9 as obscure persons, and yet are well known; as on the point of death, and yet, strange to tell, we live; as under God's discipline, and yet we are not deprived of life; 10 as sad, but we are always joyful; as poor, but we bestow wealth on many; as having nothing, and yet we securely possess all things.
11 O Corinthians, our lips are unsealed to you: our heart is expanded. 12 There is no narrowness in our love to you: the narrowness is in your own feelings. 13 And in just requital--I speak as to my children--let your hearts expand also.
14 Do not come into close association with unbelievers, like oxen yoked with asses. For what is there in common between righteousness and lawlessness? Or what partnership has light with darkness? 15 Where can harmony between Christ and Belial be found? Or what participation has a believer with an unbeliever? 16 And what compact has the Temple of God with idols? For *we* are the Temple of the ever-living God; as God has said, "I will dwell among them, and walk about among them; and will be their God, and it is they who shall be My people." 17 Therefore, "'Come out from among them and separate yourselves,' says the Lord, 'and touch nothing impure; and I will receive you, and will be a Father to you, 18 and you shall be My sons and daughters,' says the Lord the Ruler of all."