1 Do we begin again to commend ourselves? or need we, as some others, epistles of commendation to you, or letters of commendation from you?
1 Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some, letters of recommendation to you or from you?
1 Are we beginning to recommend ourselves again? Unlike some people, we do not need letters of recommendation to you or from you, do we?
1 Are we starting to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some [false teachers], letters of recommendation to you or from you? [No!]
2 Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men:
2 You are our letter, written in our hearts and known and read by everyone.
2 You are our letter [of recommendation], written in our hearts, recognized and read by everyone.
3 Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.
3 being manifested that you are a letter of Christ, (a)(D)cared for by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of (E)the living God, not on (F)tablets of stone but on (G)tablets of (b)(H)human hearts.
3 You are demonstrating that you are the Messiah's letter, produced by our service, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.
4 And such trust have we through Christ to God-ward:
4 We have this kind of confidence toward God through Christ.
4 Such is the confidence that we have in God through the Messiah.
4 Such is the confidence and steadfast reliance and absolute trust that we have through Christ toward God.
5 Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God;
5 By ourselves we are not qualified to claim that anything comes from us. Rather, our credentials come from God,
5 Not that we are sufficiently qualified in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency and qualifications come from God.
6 Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.
6 who has also qualified us to be ministers of a new covenant, which is not written but spiritual, because the written text brings death, but the Spirit gives life.
7 But if the ministration of death, written and engraven in stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance; which glory was to be done away:
7 But if the (O)ministry of death, (P)in letters engraved on stones, came (c)with glory, (Q)so that the sons of Israel could not look intently at the face of Moses because of the glory of his face, fading as it was,
7 Now if the ministry of death, chiseled in letters on stones, came with glory,(I) so that the Israelites were not able to look directly at Moses’ face because of the glory from his face—a fading glory—
7 Now if the ministry of death that was inscribed in letters of stone came with such glory that the people of Israel could not gaze on Moses' face (because the glory was fading away from it),
8 How shall not the ministration of the spirit be rather glorious?
8 how will the ministry of the Spirit fail to be even more with glory?
8 how will the ministry of the Spirit not be more glorious?
8 will not the Spirit's ministry have even more glory?
8 how will the ministry of the Spirit [the new covenant which allows us to be Spirit-filled] fail to be even more glorious and splendid?
9 For if the ministration of condemnation be glory, much more doth the ministration of righteousness exceed in glory.
9 For if the ministry of condemnation had glory, the ministry of righteousness overflows with even more glory.
9 For if the ministry of condemnation has glory, then the ministry of justification has an overwhelming glory.
9 For if the ministry that brings condemnation [the old covenant, the Law] has glory, how much more does glory overflow in the ministry that brings righteousness [the new covenant which declares believers free of guilt and sets them apart for God’s special purpose]!
10 For even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason of the glory that excelleth.
10 For indeed what had glory, in this case has no glory because of the glory that surpasses it.
10 In fact, what had been glorious is not glorious now by comparison because of the glory that surpasses it.
10 In fact, that which once had glory lost its glory, because the other glory surpassed it.
10 Indeed, what had glory [the Law], in this case no longer has glory because of the glory that surpasses it [the gospel].
11 For if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious.
11 For if that which fades away came through glory, how much more does that which is permanent have glory?
11 For if that [Law] which fades away came with glory, how much more must that [gospel] which remains and is permanent abide in glory and splendor!
12 Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech:
12 Therefore, since we have such a hope, we speak very boldly,
12 Since we have such a [glorious] hope and confident expectation, we speak with great courage,
13 And not as Moses, which put a vail over his face, that the children of Israel could not stedfastly look to the end of that which is abolished:
13 not like Moses, who kept covering his face with a veil to keep the people of Israel from gazing at the end of what was fading away.
13 and we are not like Moses, who used to put a veil over his face so that the Israelites would not gaze at the end of the glory which was fading away.
14 But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which vail is done away in Christ.
14 However, their minds were hardened, for to this day the same veil is still there when they read the old covenant. Only in union with the Messiah is that veil removed.
14 But [in fact] their minds were hardened [for they had lost the ability to understand]; for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains unlifted, because it is removed [only] in Christ.
15 But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart.
15 But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart;
15 Even to this day, whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their hearts,
15 Yet even to this day, when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts.
15 But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil [of blindness] lies over their heart;
16 Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away.
16 But whenever a person turns to the Lord, the veil is removed.
16 but whenever a person turns [in repentance and faith] to the Lord, the veil is taken away.
17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Lord's Spirit is, there is freedom.
18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.
18 We all, with unveiled faces, are looking as in a mirror at(d)(R) the glory of the Lord(S) and are being transformed(T) into the same image(U) from glory to glory;(e) this is from the Lord who is the Spirit.(f)
18 As all of us reflect the glory of the Lord with unveiled faces, we are becoming more like him with ever-increasing glory by the Lord's Spirit.
18 And we all, with unveiled face, continually seeing as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are progressively being transformed into His image from [one degree of] glory to [even more] glory, which comes from the Lord, [who is] the Spirit. Cross references: 2 Corinthians 3:3 : Ex 24:12; 31:18; 32:15, 16; Jer 31:33 2 Corinthians 3:6 : Jer 31:31 2 Corinthians 3:7 : Ex 34:29-35 2 Corinthians 3:17 : Is 61:1, 2 end of crossrefs
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