THE SECOND EPISTLE OF PAVL TO THE CORINTHIANS.




CHAP. I.


1 He beginneth with the prayse of afflictions, 8 declaring what he hath suffered in Asia, 10 and howe happily God assisted him. 17 He sayth it was not vpon any lightnesse, that he came not, according to his promise.

1 Pavl [Note: [1] See the declaration of such salutations, in the former Epistles. ] an Apostle of Iesvs Christ, by the will of God, and our brother Timotheus, to the Church of God, which is at Corinthus with all the Saints, which are in all Achaia:

2 Grace be with you, and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Iesus Christ.

3 [Note: Ephes.1.3. 1.peter.1.3. ] [Note: [2] He beginneth after his maner with thankesgiuing, which notwithstanding (otherwise then he was wont) he applieth to him selfe: beginning his Epistle with the setting forth of the dignitie of his Apostleship, constrained (as it should seeme) by their importunitie, which tooke an occasion to despise him by reason of his miseries. But he answereth, that he is not so afflicted but that his comforts doe exceede his afflictions, shewing the grounde of them, euen the mercie of God the Father in Iesus Christ. ] [Note: [a] To him be praise and glorie giuen. ] Blessed be God, euen the Father of our Lord Iesus Christ, the Father of [Note: [b] Most mercifull. ] mercies, and the God of all comfort,

4 Which comforteth vs in all our tribulation, [Note: [3] The Lord doeth comfort vs to this ende and purpose, that wee may so much the more surely comfort others. ] that we may be able to comfort them which are in any affliction by the comfort wherewith we our selues are comforted of God.

5 For as the [Note: [c] The miseries which we suffer for Christ, or which Christ suffereth in vs. ] sufferings of Christ abounde in vs, so our consolation aboundeth through Christ.

6 [Note: [4] He denieth that either his afflictious wherewith he was often afflicted, or the consolations which he receiued of God, may iustly be despised, seeing that the Corinthians both might and ought take great occasion to be confirmed by either of them. ] And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and saluation, which is [Note: [d] Although saluation be giuen vs freely, yet because there is a way appointed vs whereby wee must come to it, which is the race of an innocent and vpright life, which wee must runne, therefore wee are saide to worke our saluation, Philippi.2.12. And because it is God onely that of his free good will worketh all thinges in vs, therefore is hee saide to worke the saluation in vs by those selfe same thinges by which we must passe to euerlasting life, after that we haue once ouercome all incombrances. ] wrought in the induring of the same sufferings, which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and saluation.

7 And our hope is stedfast concerning you, in as much as we know that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation.

8 [Note: [5] He witnesseth that he is not onely not ashamed of his afflictions, but that he desireth also to haue all men knowe the greatnesse of them, and also his deliuerie from them, although it be not yet perfite. ] For brethren, we woulde not haue you ignorant of our affliction, which came vnto vs in Asia, howe we were pressed out of measure passing strength, so that we altogether [Note: [e] I knewe not at all what to doe, neither did I see by mans helpe which way to saue my life. ] doubted, euen of life.

9 Yea, we receiued the sentence of death in [Note: [f] I was resolued within my selfe to die. ] our selues, because we shoulde not trust in our selues, but in God, which rayseth the dead.

10 Who deliuered vs from so [Note: [g] Iram these great drugers. ] great a death, and doeth deliuer vs: in whom we trust, that yet hereafter he will deliuer vs,

11 [Note: Rom.15.30. ] [Note: [6] That he may not seeme to boast himselfe, he attributeth all to God, and therewith also confesseth that he attributeth much to the prayers of the faithfull. ] So that ye labour together in prayer for vs, [Note: [7] The end of the afflictions of the Saints is the glory of God, and therefore they ought to be precious vnto vs. ] that for the gift bestowed vpon vs for many, thankes may be giuen by many persons for vs.

12 [Note: [8] Secondly he putteth away an other slaunder, to wit, that he was a light man, and such a one as was not lightly to be credited, seeing that he promised to come vnto them, and came not. And first he speaketh of the simplicitie of his minde, and synceritie, which they knew both by his voyce when he was present, & they ought to acknowledge it also in his letters, being absent: and moreouer he protesteth that he will neuer be otherwise. ] For our reioycing is this, the testimonie of our conscience, that in simplicitie and godly [Note: [h] With clearenes, and holy and true plainnesse of minde, as God himselfe can witnesse. ] purenesse, and not in fleshly wisedome, but by the [Note: [i] Trusting to that very wisedome, which God of his free goodnesse hath giuen me from heauen. ] grace of God wee haue had our conuersation in the worlde, and most of all to you wardes.

13 For wee write [Note: [k] He saith, he writeth barely and simplie: for he that writeth in coloured sort, is rightly said to write otherwise then we reade: and this he saith the Corinthians shall knowe and like of very well. ] none other thinges vnto you, then that ye reade or els that ye acknowledge, & I trust ye shal acknowledge vnto ye [Note: [l] Perfitly. ] end.

14 Euen as ye haue acknowledged vs partly, that we are your [Note: [m] Pauls reioycing in the Lord was, that he had wonne the Corinthians: and they themselues reioyced that such an Apostle was their instructour, and taught them so purely and syncerely. ] reioycing, euen as ye are ours, in the [Note: [n] When he shall sit as iudge. ] day of our Lord Iesus.

15 And in this confidence was I minded first to come vnto you, that ye might haue had a [Note: [o] Another benefite. ] double grace,

16 And to passe by you into Macedonia, and to come againe out of Macedonia vnto you, and to be led foorth towarde Iudea of you.

17 [Note: [9] He putteth away their slaunder and false report by denying it, and first of all in that that diuers went about to perswade the Corinthians, that in the preaching of the Gospel, Paul agreed not to himselfe: for this was the matter and the case. ] When I therefore was thus minded, did I vse lightnesse? or minde I those thinges which I minde, according to the [Note: [p] As men doe, which will rashly promise any thing, and change their purpose at euery turning of an hand. ] flesh, that with me should be, [Note: [q] That I should say and vnsay a thing? ] Yea, yea, and Nay, nay?

18 [Note: [10] He calleth God to witnes and for iudge, of his constancie in preaching and teaching one selfe same Gospel. ] Yea, God is [Note: [r] True, and of whose faithfulnes it were horrible wickednes to doubt. ] faithfull, that our worde towarde you was not Yea, and Nay.

19 [Note: [11] He ioyneth also with himself, his fellowes as witnesses, with whom he fully consented in teaching one selfe same thing, to wit, one selfe same Christ. ] For the Sonne of God Iesus Christ, who was preached among you by vs, that is, by me, and Siluanus, and Timotheus, [Note: [s] Was not diuers and wauering. ] was not Yea, & Nay: but in [Note: [t] That is, in God. ] him it was Yea.

20 [Note: [12] Last of all he declareth the summe of his doctrine, to wit, that all the promises of saluation are sure and ratified in Christ. ] For all the promises of God in him are Yea, and are in [Note: [u] Christ is set foorth to exhibite and fulfill them all, most assuredly, and without all doubt. ] him Amen, vnto the glorie of God through [Note: [x] Through our ministerie. ] vs.


[Page 78]

[The earnest of the Spirit.]




21 [Note: [13] Hee attributeth the praise of this constancie, onely to the grace of GOD through the holy Ghost, and therewithall concludeth, that they can not doubt of his faith and his fellowes, without doing iniurie to the Spirite of God, seeing that they themselues doe knowe all this to be true. ] And it is God which stablisheth vs with you in Christ, and hath anoynted vs.

22 Who hath also sealed vs, and hath giuen the [Note: [y] An earnest, is whatsoeuer is giuen to confirme a promise. ] earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.

23 [Note: [14] Nowe comming to the matter, hee sweareth, that hee did not onely, not lightly alter his purpose of comming to them, but rather that hee came not vnto them for this cause, that hee might not be constrained to deale more sharpely with them being present, then hee woulde. ] Nowe, I call God for a recorde vnto my [Note: [z] Against my selfe, and to the daunger of mine owne life. ] soule, that to spare you, I came not as yet vnto Corinthus.

24 [Note: [15] Hee remooueth all suspicion of arrogancie, declaring that hee speaketh not as a Lorde vnto them, but as a seruaunt, appointed of God to comfort them. ] Not that wee haue dominion ouer your faith, but wee are helpers of your [Note: [a] Hee setteth the ioy and peace of conscience, which God is authour of, against tyrannous feare, and therewithall sheweth the ende of the Gospell. ] ioy: for by faith yee stande.


CHAP. II.


1 Hee excuseth his not comming vnto them, 2 and priuilie reprehendeth them: 4 Hee sheweth that such is his affection towardes them, 5 that hee neuer reioyceth but when they are merie. 6 Perceiuing the adulterer (whom hee commaunded to bee deliuered vp to Satan) to repent, hee requesteth that they forgiue him. 31 He mentioneth his going into Macedonia.

1 Bvt I determined thus in my selfe, that I would not come againe to you in [Note: [a] Causing griefe amongst you, which hee shoulde haue done, if he had come to them before they had repented them. ] heauinesse.

2 For if I make you sorie, who is he then that shoulde make me glad, but ye same which is made sorie by me?

3 And I wrote this same thing vnto you, lest when I came, I should take heauines of them, of whom I ought to reioyce: this [Note: [b] For I trusted that you woulde take that out of the way foorthwith, which you knewe I was discontented with, considering howe you are persuaded that my ioye is your ioye. ] confidence haue I in you all, that my ioye is the ioye of you all.

4 For in great affliction, & anguish of heart I wrote vnto you with many teares: not that yee should be made sorie, but that ye might perceiue the loue which I haue, specially vnto you.

5 [Note: [1] Hee passeth to another part of this Epistle: which notwithstanding is put amongst the first, whereunto hee returneth afterward: and hee handleth the releasing and vnloosing of the incestuous person, because he seemed to haue giuen sufficient testimonie of his repentance: shewing the true vse of excommunication, to witte, that it proceede not of hatred, but of loue & so ende, lest if we keepe no measure, wee serue Satan the deuill. ] And if any hath caused sorowe, the same hath not made [Note: [c] As if he sayde. All that sorowe is so cleane wiped away, as though hee had neuer felt it. ] mee sorie, but [Note: [d] As for me (sayeth Paul) I haue no more to doe with him. ] partly (lest I should more [Note: [e] Lest I should ouercharge him, who is burdened ynough of himselfe, which I woulde be glad were taken from him. ] charge him) you all.

6 It is sufficient vnto the same man, that hee was rebuked of many.

7 So that nowe contrariwise yee ought rather to [Note: [f] That whereas before you punished him sharpely, you would nowe forgiue him. ] forgiue him, and comfort him, lest the same shoulde bee swalowed vp with ouermuch heauinesse.

8 Wherefore, I pray you, that you woulde [Note: [g] That at my entreatie, you would declare by the consent of the whole Church, that you take him againe for a brother. ] confirme your loue towards him.

9 For this cause also did I write, that I might knowe the proofe of you, whether yee would be obedient in all things.

10 To whome yee forgiue any thing, I forgiue also: for verely if I forgaue any thing, to whome I forgaue it, for your sakes forgaue I it in the [Note: [h] Truely and from the heart. ] sight of Christ,

11 Lest Satan should circumuent vs: for we are not ignorant of his [Note: [i] Of his mischieuous counsell and deuilish will. ] enterprises.

12 [Note: [2] He returneth to the confirmation of his Apostleship, and bringeth foorth the testimonies, both of his labour, and also of Gods blessing. ] Furthermore, when I came to Troas to

[Marchants of the worde.]



preach
Christs Gospell, and a doore was opened vnto me of the Lord,

13 I had no rest in my spirit, because I founde not Titus my brother, but tooke my leaue of them, and went away into Macedonia.

14 Now thankes be vnto God, which alwaies maketh vs to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the [Note: [k] He alludeth to the oynting of the Priests, and the incense of the sacrifices. ] sauour of his knowledge by vs in euery place.

15 [Note: [3] He denieth that ought shoulde be taken away from the dignitie of his Apostleship, because they sawe euidently that it was not receiued with like successe in euery place, nay rather very many reiected and detested him, seeing that he preacheth Christ, not onely as a Sauiour of them that beleeue, but also as a iudge of them that contemne him. ] For wee are vnto God the sweete sauour of Christ, in them that are saued, and in them which perish.

16 To the one we are the sauour of death, vnto death, and to the other the sauour of life, vnto life: [Note: [4] Againe, he putteth away al suspicion of arrogancie, attributing all things that he did, to the vertue of God, whom he serueth sincerely, & without all dishonest affection: whereof he maketh them witnesses, euen to the 6. verse of the next chapter. ] and who is sufficient for these things?

17 [Note: Chap.4.2. ] For wee are not as many, which make [Note: [l] We do not handle it craftily and couetously, or lesse sincerely then we ought: & he vseth a metaphore which is taken from bucksters, which vse to play the false harlottes with whatsoeuer commeth into their handes. ] marchandise of the woorde of God: but as of sinceritie, but as of God in ye sight of God speake we in Christ.


CHAP. III.


1 He desireth no other commendation, 3 then their continuing in the faith. 6 He is a minister not of the letter, but of the Spirit. 8 He sheweth the difference of the Lawe and the Gospel, 13 that the brightnesse of the Lawe doeth rather dimme the sight then lighten it: 18 But the Gospell doeth make manifest Gods countenance vnto vs.

1 Doe we begin to praise our selues againe? or neede we as some other, epistles of recommendation vnto you, or letters of recommendation from you?

2 Yee are our epistle, written in our hearts, which is vnderstand, and read of all men,

3 In that yee are [Note: [a] The Apostle frameth his speach wisely, that by litle and litle, hee may come from the commendation of the person, to the matter it selfe. ] manifest, to be the Epistle of Christ, [Note: [b] Which I tooke paines to write as it were. ] ministred by vs, and written, not with yncke, but with the Spirite of the [Note: [c] By the way, hee setteth the vertue of God, against the yncke wherewith epistles are commonly written, to shewe that it was wrought by God. ] liuing God, [Note: [1] Hee alludeth by the way, to the comparison of the outward ministerie of the priesthoode of Leui, with the ministery of the Gospell and the Apostolicall ministerie, which he handleth afterward more fullie. ] not in tables of stone, but in fleshly tables of the heart.

4 And such [Note: [d] This boldneße we shewe, and thus gloriously may we boast of the worthinesse and fruite of our ministerie. ] trust haue we through Christ to God:

5 Not that we are sufficient of our selues, to thinke any thing, as of our selues: but our [Note: [e] In that we are fit and meete to make other men partakers of so great a grace. ] sufficiencie is of God,

6 [Note: [2] Hee amplifieth his ministerie and his fellowes: that is to say, the ministerie of the Gospell, comparing it with the ministerie of the Lawe, which hee considereth in the person of Moses, by whome the lawe was giuen: against whome hee setteth Christ the Authour of the Gospell. Nowe this comparison is taken from the very substance of the ministerie. The Lawe is as it were a writing, of it selfe deade, and without efficacie: but the Gospell, or newe Couenant, is as it were the verie vertue of God it selfe, in renewing, iustifying, and sauing of men. The lawe propoundeth death, accusing all men of vnrighteousnesse: The Gospel offereth and giueth righteousnesse and life. The gouernance of the Lawe serued for a time to the promise: The Gospell remaineth to the ende of the worlde. Therefore what is the glorie of that in comparison of the maiestie of this? ] Who also hath made vs able ministers of the Newe testament, not of the [Note: [f] Not of the Lawe, but the Gospell. ] letter, but of the Spirite: for the letter killeth, but the Spirite giueth life.

7 If then the ministration of death written with letters [Note: [g] Imprinted and ingrauen: so that by this place we may plainely perceiue, that the Apostle speaketh not of the ceremonies of the Lawe, but euen of the tenne commaundements. ] and ingrauen in stones, was [Note: [h] This woorde, Glorie, betokeneth a brightnesse, and a maiestie which was bodily in Moses, but spiritually in Christ. ] glorious, so that the children of Israel coulde not beholde the face of Moses, for the glorie of his [Page]

[The vaile. Libertie.]



countenance (which glorie is done away.)

8 Howe shall not the [Note: [i] Whereby God offereth, yea and giueth the Spirite, not as a dead thing, but a quickening Spirite, woorking life. ] ministration of the Spirite be more glorious?

9 For if the ministerie of condemnation was glorious, much more doeth the ministration of [Note: [k] To wit, of Christ, which being imputed to vs as our owne, we are not onely not condemned, but also we are crowned as righteous. ] righteousnesse exceede in glorie.

10 For euen that which was glorified, was not glorified in this point, that is, as touching the exceeding glorie.

11 For if that which should be [Note: [l] The Lawe, yea, and the ten commandements themselues, together with Moses, is abolished, if we consider the ministerie of Moses apart by it selfe. ] abolished, was glorious, much more shall that which remaineth, be glorious.

12 [Note: [3] Hee sheweth wherein standeth this glorie of the preaching of the Gospell, to wit, in that that it setteth foorth plainly and euidently, that which the Lawe shewed darkely, for it sent them that heard it to be healed of Christ, which was to come, after it had wounded them. ] Seeing then that we haue such trust, we vse great boldnesse of speach.

13 [Note: Exod 34.34. ] [Note: [4] He expoundeth by the way the allegorie of Moses his couering, which was a token of the darkenesse and weakenesse that is in men, which were rather dulled by the bright shining of the Law, then lightened: which couering was take away by the comming of Christ, who lighteneth the hearts, and turneth them to the Lorde, that we may be brought from the slauerie of this blindnesse, and set in the libertie of the light, by the vertue of Christes spirite. ] And we are not as Moses, which put a vaile vpon his face, that the children of Israel should not looke vnto the [Note: [m] Into the verie bottome of Moses his ministerie. ] ende of that which should be abolished.

14 Therefore their mindes are hardened: for vntill this day remaineth the same couering vntaken away in the reading of the olde Testament, which vaile in Christ is put away.

15 But euen vnto this day, whe Moses is read, the vaile is laid ouer their hearts.

16 Neuertheles when their heart shall be turned to the Lord, the vaile shalbe taken away.

17 Nowe the [Note: [n] Christ is that Spirit, which taketh away that couering, by woorking in our hearts, whereunto also the Lawe it selfe called vs, though in vaine, because it speaketh to dead men, vntill this Spirite quickeneth vs. ] Lorde is the [Note: Iohn 4.14. ] Spirite, and where the Spirite of the Lorde is, there is libertie.

18 [Note: [5] Going forwardes in the allegorie of the couering, he compareth the Gospel to a glasse, which although it be most bright and sparkeling, yet doeth it not onely not dasell their eyes, which looke in it, as the law doeth, but also transformeth them with it beames, so that they also be partakers of the glorie & shining of it, to lighten others: as Christ saide vnto his, You are ye light of the world, whereas he himselfe was the onely light. Wee are also commaunded in another place, to shine as candles before the worlde, because we are partakers of Gods Spirit. But Paul speaketh here properly, of the ministers of the Gospell, as it appeareth both by that that goeth before, and that that commeth after, and that, setting them his owne example and his fellowes. ] But we al behold as in a mirrour the glory of the Lorde with open face, and are changed into the same image, from glorie to glorie, as by the Spirit of the Lord.


CHAP. IIII.


1 Hee sheweth that he hath so laboured in preaching the Gospel, 4 that such are euen blinded of Satan, who doe not perceiue the brightnesse thereof, 7 that the same is caried in earthen vessels, 10 who are subiect to many miseries, 16 and therefore hee exhorteth them by his owne example to bee courageous, 17 and contemne this present life.

1 Therefore, [Note: [1] Now he plainly witnesseth that both he & his fellowes (through ye mercie of God) do their vocation and duety vprightly & sincerely, neglecting all dangers. ] seeing that we haue this ministerie, as we haue receiued mercy, we [Note: [a] Though we are broken in pieces with miseries and calamities, yet we yelde not. ] faint not:

2 But haue cast from vs ye [Note: [b] Subtiltie, and all kinde of deceit, which men hunt after, as it were dennes and lurking holes, to couer their shamelesse dealings withall. ] clokes of shame, and walke not in craftines, neither handle we the worde of God [Note: [c] This is it that in the former Chap. he called, making marchadise of the word of God. ] deceitfully: but in declaration of the trueth we approue our selues to euery mans conscience in the sight of God.

3 [Note: [2] An obiection: Many heare the Gospel, & yet are no more lightened thereby then by the preaching of the Lawe. He answereth, The fault is in the men themselues, whose eyes Satan plucketh out, who ruleth in this world. And yet notwithstanding doeth he & his fellowes set forth the most cleare light of the Gospell to be seene and beholden, seeing that Christ whome onely they preache, is he in whome onely God will be knowen, and as it were seene. ] If our Gospell bee then hid, it is hid to

[The image of God.]



them that are lost.

4 In whom the God of this world hath blinded the mindes, that is, of the infidels, that the [Note: [d] The light of plaine & lightsome preaching, which telleth foorth the glorie of Christ. ] light of the glorious Gospell of Christ, which is the [Note: [e] In whom the Father setteth foorth himselfe to be seene and beholden. ] image of God, should not shine vnto them.

5 [Note: [3] He remooueth according to his accustomed maner, al suspicion of ambition, aduowching that he teacheth faithfully, but as a seruant, & witnessing that all this light which he & his felowes giue to other, proceedeth from the Lorde. ] For we preach not our selues, but Christ Iesus the Lorde, and our selues your seruaunts for [Note: [f] To preach this selfe same Iesus to you. ] Iesus sake.

6 For God [Note: Gen.1.3. ] [Note: [g] Which made only with his worde. ] that commanded the light to shine out of darknesse, is he which hath shined in our hearts, to giue the [Note: [h] That being lightened of God, we should in like sort giue that light to others. ] light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Iesus Christ.

7 [Note: [4] Hee taketh away a stumbling blocke, by which was darkened amongest some the bright shining of the ministerie of the Gospell, to witte, because the Apostles were the most miserable of all men. Paul answereth, that hee and his fellowes, are as it were, earthen vessels, but yet there is in them a most pretious treasure. ] But we haue this treasure in earthen vessels, [Note: [5] He bringeth marueilous reasons, why the Lord doeth so afflict his chiefest seruaunts, to the end saith he, that all men may perceiue that they stande not by any mans vertue, but by the singular vertue of God, in that they die a thousand times, but neuer perish. ] that the excellencie of that power might be of God, and not of vs.

8 Wee are afflicted on euery side, yet are we not in distresse: we are in doubt, but yet wee despaire not.

9 We are persecuted, but not forsaken: cast downe, but we perish not.

10 [Note: [6] An amplification of the former sentence, wherein hee compareth his afflictions to a daily death, and ye vertue of the Spirit of God in Christ, to life, which oppresseth that death. ] Euery where we beare about in our bodie the [Note: [i] So Paul calleth that miserable estate and condition, that the faithfull, but especially the ministers are in. ] dying of the Lorde Iesus, that the life of Iesus might also be made manifest in our bodies.

11 For we which [Note: [k] Which liue that life, to wit, by the Spirit of Christ, amongest so many and so great miseries. ] liue, are alwaies deliuered vnto death for Iesus sake, that the life also of Iesus might be made manifest in our [Note: [l] Subiect to that miserable condition. ] mortal flesh.

12 [Note: [7] A very cunning conclusion: as if he would say, Therefore to be short, we die, that you may liue by our death, for that they ventured into all those dangers for the building of the Churches sake, and they ceased not to confirme all the faithfull with the examples of their patience. ] So then death worketh in vs, & life in you.

13 [Note: [8] Hee declareth the former sentece, shewing that he & his fellowes die in a sort, to purchase life to others, but yet notwithstanding they are partakers of the same life with them: because they them selues doe first beleeue that, which they propounde to other to beleeue, to wit, that they also shalbe saued together with them, in Christ. ] And because we haue the same [Note: [m] The same faith, by the inspiration of the same Spirit. ] spirite of faith, according as it is written, [Note: Psal.116.10. ] I beleeued, and therefore haue I spoken, we also beleeue, and therefore speake,

14 Knowing that he which hath raised vp the Lord Iesus, shall raise vs vp also by Iesus, and shall set vs with you.

15 [Note: [9] He sheweth how this constancie is preserued in them, to wit, because they respect Gods glory, and the saluation of the Churches committed vnto them. ] For all thinges are for your sakes, [Note: [n] When it shall please God to deliuer me, and restore me to you, that exceeding benefite which shall be powred vpon me, shall in like for: redounde to the glory of God, by the thankesgiuing of many. ] that that most plenteous grace by the thankesgiuing of many, may redound to the praise of God.

16 Therefore we faint not, [Note: [10] He addeth as it were a triumphant song, how that he is outwardly afflicted, but inwardly he profiteth daily: & passeth not at all for all the miseries that may bee susteined in this life, in comparison of that most constant and eternall glory. ] but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is [Note: [o] Gathereth new strength, that the outward ma be not ouercome with the miseries which come freshly one vpon the necke of another, being mainteined & vpholden with the strength of the inward man. ] renewed daily.

17 For our [Note: [p] Afflictions are not called light, as though they were light of them selues, but because they passe away quickely, when as in deede our whole life is of no great long continuance. ] light affliction which is but for a moment, causeth vnto vs a farre most excellent and an eternall waight of [Note: [q] Which remaineth for euer firme and stable, and can neuer be shaken. ] glorie:

18 While we looke not on the thinges which are seene, but on the things which are not seene: for the things which are seene, are temporall: but the things which are not seene, are eternall.


[Page 79]

[The earnest of the spirit.]





CHAP. V.


1 He continueth in the same argument, 6 touching the certaine hope of saluation 8 through faith, 12 not to prayse himselfe, 14 seeing he hath God and his Church before his eyes, 17 and esteemeth nothing, but newnes of life in Christ.

1 For [Note: [1] Taking occasion by the former comparison, he compareth this miserable body as it is in this life, to a fraile and brickle tabernacle, against which he setteth the heauenly tabernacle, so terming that sure and euerlasting condition of this same body glorified in heauen, in so much saith he, that we are not onely not addicted to this tabernacle, but also doe with sobbes and sighes desire rather that tabernacle. And so this place also concerning the glorie to come, is put within the treatise of the dignitie of the ministerie, as the other was, whereof we spake in the beginning of the second chapter. ] we knowe that if our earthly house of this tabernacle be destroyed, we haue a building giuen of God, that is, an house not made with handes, but eternall in the heauens.

2 For therefore we sighe, desiring to be [Note: [a] He calleth the glorie of immortalitie, which we shalbe as it were clothed with, a garment. ] clothed with our house, which is from [Note: [b] Heauenly, not that the substance of it is heauenly, but for the glorie of it. ] heauen.

3 [Note: [2] An exposition of the former saying: We doe not without cause, desire to be clad with the heauenly house, that is, with that euerlasting and immortall glorie, as with a garment: for when we depart hence, we shall not remaine naked, hauing once cast off the couering of this body, but we shall take our bodies againe, which shall put on as it were an other garment besides: and therefore we sighe not for the wearinesse of this life, but for the desire of a better life: Neither is this desire in vaine, for we are made to that life, the pledge whereof we haue, euen the Spirit of adoption. ] Because that if we be clothed, we shal not be found [Note: Reuel.16.15. ] naked.

4 For in deede we that are in this tabernacle, sigh and are burdened, because we would not be vnclothed, but would be clothed vpon, that mortalitie might be swalowed vp of life.

5 And he that hath [Note: [c] He meaneth that first creation, to giue vs to vnderstand, that our bodies were made to this end, that they shoulde be clothed with heauenly immortalitie. ] created vs for this thing, is God, who also hath giuen vnto vs the earnest of the Spirit.

6 [Note: [3] He inferreth vpon that sentence which went next before, thus, Therefore, seeing that we know by the Spirit, that we are strangers so long as we are here, we patiently suffer this tarlance (for we are nowe so with God, that we beholde him but by faith, and are therefore nowe absent from him) but so, that we aspire and haue a longing alwayes to him: therefore also we behaue our selues so, that we may be acceptable to him, both while we liue here, and when we goe from hence to him. ] Therefore we are alway [Note: [d] He calleth them (bold) which are alwayes resolued with a quiet and setled mind to suffer what dangers so euer, nothing doubting but their ende shalbe happie. ] bolde, though we knowe that whiles we are at home in the bodie, we are absent from the Lord.

7 (For we walke by [Note: [e] Faith, of those things which we hope for, and not hauing God presently in our viewe. ] faith, and not by sight.)

8 Neuerthelesse, we are [Note: [f] And yet we are in such sort bolde, and doe so passe on our pilgrimage with a valiant and quiet minde, that yet notwithstanding wee had rather depart hence to the Lorde. ] bolde, and loue rather to remoue out of the body, and to dwell with the Lord.

9 Wherefore also we [Note: [g] And seeing it is so, we striue to liue so, that both in this our pilgrimage here we may please him, and that at length wee may be receiued home to him. ] couet, that both dwelling at home, and remouing from home, we may be acceptable to him.

10 [Note: Rom.14.10. ] [Note: [4] That no man might thinke it to pertaine to all, which he spake of that heauenly glorie, he addeth that euery one shall first render an accompt of his pilgrimage, after that he is departed from hence. ] For we must all [Note: [h] We must all appeare personally, and enquirie shall be made of vs, that all may see, howe we haue liued. ] appeare before the iudgement seate of Christ, that euery man may receiue the things which are done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or euill.

11 [Note: [5] Nowe he passeth ouer, and taking occasion of the former sentence, returneth to the former chap. verse 16. confirming his owne synceritie and his felowes. ] Knowing therefore that [Note: [i] That terrible iudgement. ] terrour of the Lord, we persuade men, and we are made manifest vnto God, and I trust also that we are made manifest in your consciences.

12 [Note: [6] He remoueth all suspition of pride, by a newe reason, because it is behoueable, not for his part but for theirs, that his Apostleship be counted syncere against the vaine ostentation of a fewe others. ] For we prayse not our selues againe vnto you, but giue you an occasion to reioyce of vs, that ye may haue to answere against them, which reioyce in the [Note: [k] In outwarde disguisings, and that coloured shewe of mans wisedome and eloquence, and not in true godlinesse, which is sealed in the heart. ] face, and not in the heart.

[The worde of reconciliation.]




13 [Note: [7] The meaning is: Euen when I am mad (as some men thinke of me whilest I seeme as a foole to boast my selfe, I doe it for your profite, no lesse then when I preache the Gospel simplie vnto you. ] For whether we be out of our wit, we are it to God: or whether we be in our right minde, we are it vnto you.

14 [Note: [8] He goeth forwarde in putting away all suspicion of desire of estimation and boasting for the loue of Christ, saith he, compelleth vs hereunto, that seeing he died for vs all, which were dead when as we liued to ourselues, (that is, while we were yet giuen to these earthly affections) wee in like sort should consecrate our whole life which we haue receiued of him, to him (to wit) being indued with the holy Ghost, to this end and purpose, that we should meditate vpon nothing but that which is heauenly. ] For that loue of Christ [Note: [l] Poßesseth vs wholy. ] constraineth vs,

15 Because we thus iudge, that if [Note: [m] He speaketh here of sanctification, whereby it commeth to passe that Christ liueth in vs. ] one be dead for all, then were all dead, and he died for all, that they which liue, shoulde not henceforth [Note: [n] Looke Rom. chap. 6 and 7. ] liue vnto themselues, but vnto him which died for them, and rose againe.

16 [Note: [9] He sheweth what it is, not to liue to our selues but to Christ, to wit, to knowe no man according to the flesh, that is to say, to be so conuersant amongst men as not to care for those worldly and carnall thinges, as they doe which respect a mans stocke, his countrey, forme, glorie, riches, and such like, wherein men commonly dote and weary themselues. ] Wherefore, henceforth know we no man after the flesh, [Note: [10] An amplification: This is, saith he, so true, that we do not now thinke carnally of Christ himselfe, who hath nowe left the worlde, and therefore must be considered of vs, spiritually. ] yea though wee had knowen Christ after the flesh, yet nowe henceforth know we him no more.

17 [Note: [11] An exhortation for euery man which is renued with the spirite of Christ, to meditate heauenly things, and not earthly. ] Therefore if any man be in Christ, let him be a [Note: [o] As a thing made anewe of God, for though a man be not newely created when God giueth him the spirite of regeneration, but onely his qualities are changed, yet notwithstanding it pleased the holy Ghost to speake so, to teache vs, that we must attribute all things to the glorie of God: not that we are stockes and blockes, but because God createth in vs, both the will to will well, and the power to doe well. ] newe creature. [Note: Esa.43.19. reuelati.21.5. ] Olde things are passed away: beholde, all things are become newe.

18 [Note: [12] He commendeth the excellencie of the ministerie of the Gospel, both by the authoritie of God himselfe, who is the authour of that ministerie, and also by the excellencie of the doctrine of it: for it announceth atonement with God, by free forgiuenesse of our sinnes, and iustification offered vnto vs in Christ, and that so louingly and liberally, that God himselfe doeth after a sort pray men by the mouth of his ministers to haue consideration of themselues, and not to despise so great a benefite. And when he so sayth, he plainely reprehendeth them which falsely chalenged to themselues the name of pastours. ] And all things are of God, which hath reconciled vs vnto himselfe by Iesus Christ, and hath giuen vnto vs the ministerie of reconciliation.

19 For God was in Christ, and reconciled the world to himselfe, not imputing their sinnes vnto them, and hath [Note: [p] Vsed our labour and trauaile. ] committed to vs the word of reconciliation.

20 Now then are we ambassadours for Christ: as though God did beseeche you through vs, we pray you in Christes steade, that ye be reconciled to God.

21 For he hath made him to be [Note: [q] A sinner, not in himselfe, but by imputation of the guilt of all our sinnes to him. ] sinne for vs, which [Note: [r] Who was cleane voide of sinne. ] knewe no sinne, that we should be made the [Note: [s] Righteous before God, and that with righteousnesse which is not essentiall to vs, but being essentiall in Christ, God imputeth it to vs through faith. ] righteousnesse of God in him.


CHAP. VI.


1 He exhorteth them to leade their liues as it becommeth Christians, 5 neither to be dismayed in tribulations, 9 nor puffed vp with glorie: 14 to auoyde all vncleannesse, 16 considering that they are the temples of the liuing God.

1 So [Note: [1] Men doe not onely neede the ministerie of the Gospel, before they haue receiued grace, that they may be partakers of it, but also after they haue receiued grace, that they may continue in it. ] we therefore as workers together beseech you, that ye receiue not the grace of God in vaine.

2 [Note: [2] In that that grace is offered, it is of the grace of God, who hath appointed times and seasons to all thinges, that we may take occasion when it is offered. ] For he sayth, [Note: Esai.49.8. ] I haue heard thee in a time [Note: [a] Which I of my free mercie and loue towardes thee liked of and appointed: at which time God powred out that his marueilous loue vpon vs. ] accepted, and in the day of saluation haue I [Page]

[Trouble and ioy.]



succoured thee: beholde nowe the accepted time, beholde nowe the day of saluation.

3 [Note: [3] He sheweth the Corinthians a paterne of a true minister, in his owne example and Timothies and Syluanus, to the ende, that (as he purposed from the beginning) he might procure authoritie to himselfe and his like. ] We giue no occasion of offence in any thing, that our ministerie shoulde not be reprehended.

4 But in all things we [Note: [b] Declare and shewe in deede. ] approue our selues as [Note: 1.Cor.4.1. ] the ministers of God, [Note: [4] He first of all reckoneth vp those things, which are neither alwaies in the ministers, nor without exception, vnlesse it be according to the affection of the mind, patience onely except, which also is one of the vertues which ought to be alwayes in a good minister. ] in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses,

5 In stripes, in prisons, in [Note: [c] In tossing to and fro, finding no place of rest and quietnesse. ] tumults, in labours,

6 [Note: [5] Secondly he reckoneth vp such vertues as are necessarie, and ought alwayes be in them, and whereby as by good armour, all lettes and hinderances may be ouercome. ] By watchings, by fastings, by puritie, by knowledge, by long suffering, by kindnesse, by the holy Ghost, by loue vnfained,

7 By the [Note: [d] Preaching of the Gospel. ] worde of trueth, by the [Note: [e] Power to worke miracles, and to bring vnder the wicked. ] power of God, by the [Note: [f] Vprightnesse. ] armour of righteousnesse on the right hand, and on the left,

8 By honour, and dishonour, by euill report, and good report, as deceiuers, and yet true:

9 As vnknowen, and yet knowen: as dying, and beholde, we liue: as chastened, and yet not killed:

10 As sorowing, and yet alway reioycing: as poore, and yet make many riche: as hauing nothing, and yet possessing all things.

11 [Note: [6] Going about to rebuke them, he sayth first, that he dealeth with them sincerely and with an open and plaine heart, and therewithall complaineth that they doe not the like in louing againe their Father. ] O Corinthians, our mouth is [Note: [g] The opening of the mouth and heart, betokeneth a most earnest affection in him that speaketh, as it fareth commonly with them that are in some great ioye. ] open vnto you: our heart is made large.

12 Ye are not [Note: [h] You are in my heart, as in an house, and that no narrowe or strait house, for I haue opened my whole heart to you, but you are inwardly strait laced to me warde. ] kept strait in vs, but ye are kept strait in your owne [Note: [i] After the manner of the Hebrewes, he calleth those tender affections which rest in the heart, bowels. ] bowels.

13 Nowe for the same recompence, I speake as to my children, Be you also inlarged.

14 [Note: [7] Nowe he rebuketh them boldely, for that they became felowes with infidels in outwarde Idolatrie, as though it were a thing indifferent. And this is the fourth part of this Epistle, the conclusion whereof is, that such as the Lord hath vouchsafed the name of his children, must keepe themselues pure not onely in minde but also in body, that they may wholy be holy vnto the Lord. ] Be not vnequally yoked with the infidels: for [Note: Eccles.13.18. ] what felowship hath righteousnesse with vnrighteousnesse? and what communion hath light with darkenesse?

15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what [Note: [k] What can there be betweene them? ] part hath the beleeuer with the infidell?

16 And what agreement hath the Temple of God with idols? [Note: 1.Cor.3.16. and 6.19. ] for ye are the Temple of the [Note: [l] He setteth the liuing God against Idols. ] liuing God: as God hath said, [Note: Leuit.26. 11. ] I will [Note: [m] God dwelleth with vs, because Christ is become God with vs. ] dwell among them, and walke there: and I will be their God, and they shalbe my people.

17 [Note: Isai. 32.11. ] Wherefore come out from among them, and separate your selues, saith the Lord, and touch none vncleane thing, and I wil receiue you.

18 [Note: Iere.31.1. ] And I will be a Father vnto you, and ye shalbe my sonnes and daughters, saith the Lord almightie.


CHAP. VII.


1 Lest by ouermuch vrging them he shoulde dismay their tender mindes, 2 he proueth that all that he said, 4 proceeded of the great good will he bare vnto them: 8 and therefore they should not be offended, that he made them sorie, 10 and brought them to repentance not to be repented of.

1 Seing then we haue these promises, dearely beloued, let vs clense our selues from all filthinesse of the [Note: [a] Both of body and soule, that by this meanes the sanctification may be perfit consisting in both the partes thereof. ] flesh and spirit, and finish our sanctification in the feare of God.

[Godly sorowe.]




2 [Note: [1] He returneth againe from that admonition, to his owne person, opposing the testimonies both of his faithfulnes, and also of his continuall good will towardes them. ] [Note: [b] Let me haue some place amongst you, that I may teache you. ] Receiue vs: we haue done wrong to no man: we haue corrupted no man: we haue defrauded no man.

3 I speake it not to your [Note: [c] To condemne you of vnkindnesse or trecherie. ] condemnation: for I haue said before, that ye are in our hearts, to die and liue together.

4 I vse great boldnesse of speach toward you: I reioyce greatly in you: I am filled with comfort, and am exceeding ioyous in all our tribulation.

5 For when we were come into Macedonia, our flesh had no rest, but we were troubled on euery side, fightings without, and terrours within.

6 But God, that comforteth the [Note: [d] Whose hearts are cast downe, and are very far spent. ] abiect, comforted vs at the [Note: [e] With those things which Titus tolde me of you at his comming, to wit, howe fruitfully you reade ouer my letters, moreouer and besides that I am exceedingly refreshed with his presence. ] comming of Titus:

7 And not by his comming onely, but also by the consolation wherewith he was comforted of you, when he tolde vs your great desire, your mourning, your feruent minde to me warde, so that I reioyced much more.

8 [Note: [2] An obiection: But thou hast handled vs roughly: The Apostle answereth that he vsed not this roughnes without griefe. And he addeth moreouer, that he is also glad nowe, that hee draue them to that sorowe, although it was against his will, since it was so profitable vnto them: for there is a sorowe not only prayse worthy, but also necessarie, to wit, whereby repentance groweth by certaine degrees, for the which repentance he prayseth them highly. And this is the fifth part of this Epistle. ] For though I made you sorie with a letter, I repent not, though I did repent: for I perceiue that the same epistle made you sorie, though it were but for a season.

9 I nowe reioyce, not that ye were sorie, but that ye sorowed to [Note: [f] In so much that that sorow did you much good towards the amending of your leudnesse and sinnes. ] repentance: for ye sorowed godly, so that in nothing ye were hurt by vs.

10 For [Note: [g] Godly sorowe is when we are not terrified with the feare of punishment, but because we feele we haue offended God our most mercifull Father: Contrarie to this there is an other sorowe, that onely feareth punishment, or when a man is vexed for the losse of some worldly goods: the fruite of the first, is repentance, the fruite of the second is desperation, vnlesse the Lord helpe speedily. ] godly sorowe causeth repentance vnto saluation, not to be repented of: but the worldly sorowe causeth death.

11 For beholde, this thing that ye haue bene godly sory, what great care it hath wrought in you: yea, what clearing of yourselues: yea, what indignation: yea, what feare: yea, howe great desire: yea, what a zeale: yea, what reuenge: in all things ye haue shewed your selues, that ye are pure in this matter.

12 Wherefore, though I wrote vnto you, I did not it for his cause that had done the wrong, neither for his cause that had the iniurie, but that our care toward you in the [Note: [h] It was not coloured nor counterfet, but such as I dare stand to before God. ] sight of God might appeare vnto you.

13 Therefore we were comforted, because ye were comforted: but rather we reioyced much more for the ioye of Titus, because his spirit was refreshed by you all.

14 For if that I haue boasted any thing to him of you, I haue not bene ashamed: but as I haue spoken vnto you all things in trueth, euen so our boasting vnto Titus was true.

15 And his inwarde affection is more aboundant toward you, when he remembreth the obedience of you all, and howe with feare and trembling ye receiued him.

16 I reioyce therefore that I may put my confidence in you in all things.


CHAP. VIII.


1 He exhorteth them, by the example of the Macedonians, 9 and also euen of Christ himselfe, 14 to be liberall towardes the Saintes: 16 For which purpose, he sheweth that Titus, 18 and an other brother came vnto them.

1 We [Note: [1] The fixt part of this Epistle conteining diuers exhortations to stirre vp the Corinthians to liberalitie, wherewith the pouertie of the Church of Hierusalem might be holpen in time conuenient. And first of all he setteth out before them the example of the Churches of Macedonia which otherwise were brought by great miserie to extreme pouertie, to the ende that they should follow them. ] doe you also to wit, brethren, of the [Note: [a] The benefite that God bestowed vpon the Churches. ] grace of God bestowed vpon the Churches

[Page 80]

[Christes pouertie.]



of Macedonia,
2 Because in [Note: [b] For those manifolde afflictions wherewith the Lorde tried them, did not onely not quaile their ioyfull readinesse, but also made it much more excellent and famous. ] great triall of affliction their ioy abounded, and their most extreeme pouertie abounded vnto their rich liberalitie.

3 For to their power (I beare record) yea, and beyonde their power, they were [Note: [c] Of their owne accorde they were liberall. ] willing,

4 And praied vs with great instance that we woulde receiue the [Note: [d] Hee calleth that, Grace, that other men woulde haue called a burden. And this verse is to be expounded by the sixt verse. ] grace, and felowship of the ministring which is toward the Saints.

5 [Note: [2] He amplifieth the forwardnes of the Macedonians, in this, that they also desired Paul to stirre vp the Corinthians to accomplish the giuing of almes, by sending againe of Titus vnto them. ] And this they did, not as we looked for: but gaue their owne selues, first to the Lorde, and after vnto vs by the will of God,

6 That we should exhort Titus, that as hee had begon, so he would also accomplish the same grace among you also.

7 Therefore, as yee abound in euery thing, in faith and woorde, and knowledge, and in all diligence, and in your loue towardes vs, euen so see that yee abound in this grace also.

8 [Note: [3] Thirdly, he warneth them yt they deceiue not their expectation which they haue conceiued of them. ] This say I not by commaundement, but because of the [Note: [e] At the request of the Macedonians. ] diligence of others: therefore prooue I the [Note: [f] Then appeareth the naturalnesse of our loue, when as in deede, & that frakly & freely, we help our brethren, euen for Christ his sake. ] naturalnesse of your loue.

9 [Note: [4] The fourth argument taken fro the example of Christ. ] For ye knowe the grace of our Lord Iesus Christ, that hee being rich, for your sakes became poore, that yee through his pouertie might be made rich.

10 [Note: [5] He taketh good heede yt he seeme not to wrest it out of them by constraint, for vnlesse it bee voluntarie, God doeth not accept it. ] And I shewe my minde herein: for this is expedient for you, which haue begun not to doe onely, but also to [Note: [g] Not only to doe, but also to doe willingly: for hee noteth out a readie willingnes, without any inforcement by anie other men, much lesse came it of ambition and vaine glorie. ] will, a yeare agoe.

11 Nowe therefore performe to doe it also, that as there was a readinesse to will, euen so yee may performe it of that which yee haue.

12 [Note: [6] Against such as vse to excuse them selues, because they are not rich, as though it were onely proper to rich men to helpe the poore. ] For if there be first a willing minde, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath not.

13 [Note: [7] Christian liberalitie is mutuall that proportion may be obserued. ] Neither is it that other men should be eased and you grieued: But vpon [Note: [h] That like as now in your abundance you helpe others, which are poore, with some part of your goods, so shoulde others in like sort bestowe some of theirs vpon you. ] like condition, at this time your abundance supplieth their lacke:

14 That also their aboundance may bee for your lacke, that there may be equalitie:

15 As it is written, [Note: Exod.16.18. ] Hee that gathered much, had nothing ouer, and hee that gathered litle, had not the lesse.

16 [Note: [8] He commendeth Titus and his two companions for many causes, both that their credite might not be suspected, as though he had sent them slilie to spoile the Churches, and also that they might bee so much the readier to contribute. ] And thanks be vnto God, which hath put in the heart of Titus the same care for you.

17 Because hee accepted the exhortation, yea, hee was so carefull that of his owne accorde hee went vnto you.

18 And wee haue sent also with him the brother, whose praise is [Note: [i] In the preaching of the Gospell. ] in the Gospel throughout al the Churches.

19 (And not so onely, but is also chosen of the Churches to be a fellowe in our iourney, concerning this [Note: [k] These almes which are bestowed for the reliefe of the Church of Hierusalem. ] grace that is ministred by vs vnto the glorie of the same Lorde, and declaration of your prompt minde)

20 Auoiding this, that no man shoulde blame vs in this [Note: [l] In this plentifull liberalitie of the Churches, which is committed to our trust. ] aboundance that is ministred by vs,

21 [Note: Rom.12.17. ] Prouiding for honest thinges, not onely before the Lord, but also before men.

22 And we haue sent with them our brother, whom we haue oft times prooued to be diligent

[Gathering for the Churches.]



in many thinges, but nowe much more diligent, for the great confidence, which I haue in you.

23 Whether any doe inquire of Titus, he is my fellowe and helper to you ward: or of our [Note: [m] Titus his two companions. ] brethren, they are messengers of the Churches, and the [Note: [n] By whome the glorie of Christ is set foorth. ] glorie of Christ.

24 Wherefore shew toward them, and before the [Note: [o] All Churches shalbe witnesses of this your godly dealing, in whose presence you are, for so much as you see the messengers whome they haue chosen by all their consents, and sent them vnto you. ] Churches the proofe of your loue, and of the reioycing that we haue of you.



CHAP. IX.


1 Why, albeit he thinke well of their readie willes, 3 yet earnestly exhorteth them, 4 hee yeeldeth a reason: 6 Hee compareth almes to seede sowing, 10 which God doeth repaie with great gaines.

1 For [Note: [1] Hee wisely meeteth with the suspition which the Corinthians might conceiue, as though ye Apostle in vrging them so carefully shoulde doute of their good will. Therefore he witnesseth that hee doeth it not to teache them, that they ought to helpe the Saintes, seeing that hee had become suertie for them to the Macedonians, but onely to stirre them vp which were running of them selues, to the ende that all thinges might both be in a better readines, and also be more plentifull. ] as touching the ministring to the Saints, it is superfluous for me to write vnto you.

2 For I knowe your readinesse of minde, whereof I boast my selfe of you vnto them of Macedonia, and say, that Achaia was prepared a yeere agoe, and your zeale hath prouoked many.

3 Nowe haue I sent the brethren, lest our reioycing ouer you shoulde bee in vaine in this behalfe, that yee (as I haue sayde) be readie:

4 Lest if they of Macedonia come with me, and finde you vnprepared, we (that wee may not say, you) should be ashamed in this my [Note: [a] The woorde which hee vseth, signifieth such a staiednesse and setlednesse of minde, as cannot be mooued with any terrour or feare. ] constant boasting.

5 Wherefore, I thought it necessarie to exhort the brethren to come before vnto you, and to finish your beneuolence appointed afore, that it might be readie, and come as of beneuolence, and not as of [Note: [b] As from couetous men. ] niggardlinesse.

6 [Note: [2] Almes must be giuen neither niggardly, nor with a lothfull minde, or hardly: But a franke and free almes is compared to a sowing which hath a most plentifull haruest of most aboundant blessing following it. ] This yet remember, that he which soweth sparingly, shall reape also sparingly, and hee that soweth liberally, shall reape also liberally.

7 As euery man [Note: [c] Determineth and appointeth freely with himselfe. ] wisheth in his heart, so let him giue, not [Note: Roman.12.8. ] [Note: [d] With a sparing and nigardly heart. ] grudgingly, or of [Note: [e] Against his will, as loth to bee euill reported of. ] necessitie: [Note: Eccles.35.10. ] for God loueth a cheerefull giuer.

8 And God is able to make [Note: [f] All God his bountifull liberalitie. ] all grace to abound towarde you, that yee alwayes hauing all sufficiencie in all thinges, may abounde in [Note: [g] To helpe others by all meanes possible, in doing them good in their necessities. ] euery good worke,

9 ( [Note: Psal. 112.9. ] As it is written, He hath sparsed abroad and hath giuen to the poore: his beneuolence remayneth for [Note: [h] Is euerlasting: Nowe Dauid speaketh of a man that feareth God, and loueth his neighbour, who shall neuer want (sayeth hee) to giue to others. ] euer.

10 Also hee that findeth seede to the sower, will minister likewise bread for foode, and multiplie your seede, and increase the [Note: [i] There is none so good an inheritance to the godly, as bountifulnesse is. ] fruites of your beneuolence,)

11 That on all partes yee may bee made rich vnto all liberalitie, which causeth through vs thanksgiuing vnto God.

12 [Note: [3] An other excellent and double fruite of liberalitie towardes the Saintes, is this: that it giueth occasion to praise God, and that our faith also is thereby made manifest. ] For the ministration of this seruice not onely supplieth the necessities of the Saintes, but also aboundantly causeth many to giue thankes to God,

13 (Which by the [Note: [k] By this proofe of your liberalitie in this helping and succouring of them. ] experiment of this ministration praise God for your [Note: [l] In shewing with one consent, that you acknowledge that onely Gospell, which you haue willingly submitted your selues vnto, declaring thereby, that you agree with the Church of Hierusalem. ] voluntarie submission [Page]

[The ministers weapons.]



to the Gospell of Christ, and for your liberall distribution to them, and to all men)

14 And in their praier for you, to log after you greatly, for the aboundant grace of God in you.

15 [Note: [m] Lest by this great commendation & praise, the Corinthians should be puffed vp, hee shutteth vp this exhortation, with this exclamation. ] Thankes therefore bee vnto God for his vnspeakeable gift.


CHAP. X.


2 Hee sheweth with what confidence, 4 with what weapons, 6 and with what reuenge hee is armed against the cauillations of the wicked, 7 and that, when hee is present, his deedes haue no lesse power, 11 then his woordes haue force, when he is absent.

1 Nowe [Note: [1] Hee returneth to the defence of his Apostleshippe, but so that hee vseth his authoritie therein: for hee warneth them earnestly and grauely, vsing also terrible threatnings to shewe them selues such as are apt to be instructed. And hee refelleth certaine proude men which made no better accompt of him, then of a bragging Thraso, in that hee vsed to be sharpe against them when hee was absent, because they sawe no great maiestie in him after the maner of men, and besides, had prooued his lenitie, notwithstanding that in his absence, he had written to them sharply. Therefore first of all hee professeth that hee was gentle and moderate, but after the example of Christ: but if they continue still to despise his gentlenesse, hee protesteth vnto them that he will shew in deede howe farre they are deceiued, which make yt accompt of the office of an Apostle, that they doe of worldly offices, that is, according to the outward appearance. ] I Paul my selfe beseech you by the meekenes, and [Note: [a] That nature which is inclined to mercy, rather then to rigour of iustice. ] gentlenes of Christ, which when I am present among you am base, but am bolde toward you being absent:

2 And this I require you, that I neede not to be bolde when I am present, with that same confidence, wherewith I thinke to bee bolde against some, which esteeme vs as though wee walked [Note: [b] As though I had no other aid and helpe then that which outwarldly I seeme to haue: and therefore Paul setteth his flesh, that is, his weake condition and state, against his spirituall and Apostolique dignitie. ] according to the flesh.

3 [Note: [2] Secondly hee witnesseth, that although hee be like vnto other men, yet hee commeth furnished wt that strength, which no holdes of man can match, whether they resist by craft and deceit, or by force and might, because hee warfareth with diuine weapons. ] Neuerthelesse, though wee walke in the flesh, yet we doe not warre after the flesh.

4 (For the weapons of our warrefare are not [Note: [c] Are not such as men get them authority withall one of another, & do great acts. ] carnall, but mightie through [Note: [d] Stande vpon that infinite power of God. ] God, to cast downe holdes)

5 Casting downe the imaginations, and euery high thing that is exalted against the knowledge of God, [Note: [3] An amplification of this spirituall vertue, which in such sort conquereth the enemies be they neuer so craftie, and mightie, that it bringeth some of them by repentance vnto Christ, and iustly reuengeth others, that are stubburnely obstinate, separating them from the other which suffer themselues to be ruled. ] and bringing into captiuitie euery thought to the obedience of Christ,

6 And hauing ready the vengeance against all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

7 [Note: [4] He beateth into their heads that same matter, with great waight of wordes and sentences. ] Looke yee on things after the [Note: [e] Do ye iudge of things according to the outwarde shewe? ] appearance? If any man trust in himselfe that hee is Christes, let him consider this againe of [Note: [f] Not being tolde of it by me. ] himself, that as he is Christes, euen so are we Christes.

8 For though I shoulde boast somewhat more of our authoritie, which the Lorde hath giuen vs for edification, and not for your destruction, I should haue no shame.

9 This I say, that I may not seeme as it were to feare you with letters.

10 For the letters, sayeth [Note: [g] Hee noteth out some one that was the seede, man of this speache. ] hee, are sore and strong, but his bodily presence is weake, and his speache is of no value.

11 Let such one thinke this, that such as wee are in woorde by letters, when we are absent, such wil we be also in deede, when we are present.

12 [Note: [5] Being constrained to refell the foolish brags of certaine ambitious men, hee witnesseth, that they are able to bring nothing, but that they falsely persuade themselues of themselues: and as for himself, although he brag of excellent things, yet he wil not passe the bounds which God hath measured him out, according whereunto hee came euen vnto them in preaching the Gospel of Christ, & trusteth that he shal goe further, when they haue so profited that he shall not neede to tarie any longer amongst them to instruct them. And hereunto is added an amplification, in that that hee neuer succeeded other men in their labours. ] For wee [Note: [h] This is spoken after a taunting sort. ] dare not make our selues of the nomber, or to compare our selues to them,

[To reioyce in the Lord.]



which praise themselues: but they vnderstand not that they measure themselues with [Note: [i] Vpon a vaine persuasion that they haue of themselues, they take vpon them they care not what. ] themselues, and [Note: [k] They contemne all other, and measure all their doings onely by themselues. ] compare themselues with themselues.

13 But we wil not reioyce of things, which are not within our [Note: [l] Of those things which God hath not measured to me. ] measure, [Note: Ephes.4.7. ] but according to the measure of the line, whereof God hath distributed vnto vs a measure to attaine euen vnto you.

14 For we stretche not our selues beyonde our measure, as though wee had not attained vnto you: for euen to you also haue we come in preaching the Gospel of Christ,

15 Not boasting of things which are [Note: [m] As though God had deuided the whole worlde among the Apostles, to be husbanded. ] without our measure: that is, of other mens labours: and we hope, when your faith shall increase, to bee magnified by you according to our line aboundantly,

16 And to preache the Gospel in those regions which are beyonde you: not to reioyce in [Note: [n] In countreis which other men haue prepared and husbanded with the preaching of the Gospell. ] another mans line, that is, in the thinges that are prepared alreadie.

17 [Note: Iere.9.24. 1.cor.1.31. ] [Note: [6] Hee somewhat mitigateth that which hee spake of himselfe, and therewith also prepareth the Corinthians to heare other things, witnessing that he seeketh nothing els but to approue himselfe to God, whose glory he onely seeketh. ] But let him that reioyceth, reioyce in the Lorde.

18 For hee that praiseth himselfe, is not alowed, but he whome the Lorde praiseth.


CHAP. XI.


2 Hee testifieth, that for the great loues sake hee beareth to the Corinthians, hee is compelled 5 to vtter his owne praises: 9 And that he bestowed his labour on them without any reward, 13 that the false apostles shoulde not surpasse him in any thing, 22 whome hee farre excelled in those thinges which are praise worthie in deede.

1 Woulde [Note: [1] He graunteth yt after a sort he plaieth ye foole in this vanting of things, but he addeth yt he doth it against his will for their profite, because he seeth them deceiued by certaine vaine & crafty me, through the craft and subtiltie of Satan. ] to God, yee coulde suffer a litle my foolishnes, & in deede, ye suffer me.

2 For I am ielous ouer you, with [Note: [a] He speaketh as a wooer, but yet as one yt seeketh them not for himselfe, but for God. ] godly ielousie: for I haue prepared you for one husband, to [Note: [b] To marie you together. ] present you as a pure virgine to Christ:

3 But I feare least as the [Note: Gen.3.4. ] serpent beguiled Eue through his subtiltie, so your mindes shoulde be [Note: [c] This place is to be marked against them, which lothe that plaine & pure simplicicie of the Scriptures, in coparison of the colours and paintings of mans eloquence. ] corrupt fro the simplicitie that is in [Note: [d] Which is meete for them that are in Christ. ] Christ.

4 [Note: [2] He sheweth that they deceiue them selues, if they loke to receiue of any other man, either a more excellent Gospell, or more excellent gifts of the holy Ghost. ] For if he that commeth, preacheth [Note: [e] A more perfect doctrine of Iesus Christ. ] another Iesus whome we haue not preached: or if yee receiue another spirite whome ye haue not receiued: either another Gospell, which yee haue not receiued, ye might well haue suffered him.

5 Verely I suppose that I was not inferior to the very chiefe Apostles.

6 [Note: [3] He refuteth the slanders of those Thrasoes. I graunt, sayth he, that I am not so eloquet an Orator, but yet they cannot take away the knowledge of the Gospell from me, whereof you haue had good proofe, and that euery maner of way. ] And though I be [Note: [f] Paul lacked not that kinde of eloquence which is meete for a man, and fit for the Gospell, but hee willingly wanted that painted kinde of speach which too many nowe a daies hunt after and followe. ] rude in speaking, yet I am not so in knowledge, but among you wee haue beene made manifest to the vttermost, in all things.

7 [Note: [4] An other slaunder, to wit, that he was a raskall, and liued by the labour of his owne handes. But herein saith the Apostle, what can you lay against me, but that I was content to take any paines for your sakes, and when I lacked, to trauaile for my liuing with mine owne hands in part, & partly also when pouertie constrained mee, I chose rather otherwise to seeke my sustenace, then to be any burden to you, although I preached ye Gospel vnto you? ] Haue I committed an offence, because I abased my selfe, that ye might be exalted, and because I preached to you ye Gospell of God freely?

8 I robbed other Churches, and tooke wages of them to doe you seruice.

9 And when I was present with you, and had neede, [Note: Chap.12.13. ] I was not slouthfull to the hinderance of any man: for that which was lacking vnto me, the brethre which came from Macedonia,

[Page 81]

[Satan transformed.]



supplied, and in all thinges I kept [Note: [5] An amplification: So farre is hee from being ashamed of this Acte, that he hath also resolued with himselfe to doe no otherwise hereafter amongst them, to the intent that it may alwayes bee truely said, that he taught in Achaia for nothing: not that he disdaineth the Corinthians, but that these Thrasoes may neuer finde the occasion which they haue already sought for, and he in the meane season, may set some thing before them to folow, that at length they may truely say, that they are like to Paul. ] and will keepe my selfe, that I should not be grieuous to you.
10 The [Note: [g] This is a forme of an othe, as if he said, Let mee not be thought to haue any trueth in me. ] trueth of Christ is in me, that this reioycing shall not be [Note: [h] Shalbe alwayes open to me. ] shut vp against me in the regions of Achaia.

11 Wherefore? because I loue you not? God knoweth.

12 But what I doe, that will I doe: that I may cut away occasion from them which desire occasion, that they might be found like vnto vs in that wherein they [Note: [i] Pauls aduersaries sought all occasions they could, to be equall to him. And therefore seeing they had rather eate vp the Corinthians, then preach to them for nothing, they sought another occasion, to wit, to make Paul to take some thing: which thing if hee had done, then hoped they by that meanes to be equall to him: for they made such a shew of zeale and knowledge, and set it forth with such a glosing kinde of eloquence, that some of them euen despised Paul: but he sheweth that all this is nothing but colours and painting. ] reioyce.

13 [Note: [6] Nowe at length he painteth out these felowes in their colours, forewarning, that it wil come to passe, that they wil at length betray themselues, what countenance soeuer they make of zeale that they haue to Gods glory. ] For such false apostles are deceitfull workers, and transforme themselues into the Apostles of Christ.

14 And no marueile: for Satan himselfe is transformed into an Angel of [Note: [k] By light is ment the heauenly glory, whereof the Angels are partakers. ] light.

15 Therefore it is no great thing, though his ministers transforme themselues, as though they were the ministers of righteousnes, whose end shall be according to their workes.

16 [Note: [7] He goeth forward boldly and vsing a vehement Ironie or kinde of taunting, desireth the Corinthians to pardo him, if for a time he cotend as a foole before them being wise, with those ioly fellowes touching those externall things, to wit, touching his stocke, his ancesters, & valiant actes. ] I say againe, Let no man thinke that I am foolish, or els take mee euen as a foole, that I also may boast my selfe a litle.

17 That I speake, I speake it not after the Lord: but as it were foolishly, in this my great boasting.

18 Seeing that many reioyce after the flesh, I will reioyce also.

19 For ye suffer fooles gladly, because that yee are wise.

20 [Note: [8] Before he cometh to the matter, he toucheth the Corinthians, who perswading theselues to be very wise men, did not marke in the meane season, that those false apostles abused their simplicitie for aduantage. ] For ye suffer, euen if a man bring you into bondage, if a man deuoure you, if a man take your goods, if a man exalt himselfe, if a man smite you on the face.

21 I speake as concerning the [Note: [l] As if he said, In respect of that reproch which they doe vnto you (I speake it) which surely is as euill, as if they did beate you. ] reproche: as though that we had bene [Note: [m] Paul is called weake, in that he seemeth to the Corinthians a vile & abiect man, a beggerly artificer, a most wretched & miserable idiot, whereas notwithstading, therein Gods mightie power was made manifest. ] weake: but wherein any ma is bold (I speake foolishly) I am bold also.

22 They are Hebrues, [Note: Phil.3.5. ] so am I: they are Israelites, so am I: they are the seede of Abraham, so am I:

23 They are the ministers of Christ (I speake as a foole) I am [Note: [n] Paul being honourable in deed, defendeth his ministery openly, not for his owne sake, but because he sawe his doctrine come into hazarde. ] more: in labours more aboundant: in stripes aboue measure: in prison more plenteously: in [Note: [o] In danger of present death. ] death oft.

24 Of the Iewes [Note: [p] He alludeth to that that is written, Deu.25.3. and moreouer this place sheweth vs, that Paul suffered many things which Luke paßed ouer. ] fiue times receiued I fourtie stripes saue one.

25 I was [Note: [q] Of the Romane Magistrates. ] thrise [Note: Acts.10.23. ] beaten with roddes: I was [Note: Act.14.19. ] once stoned: I suffered thrise [Note: Acts.27.14. ] shipwracke: night and day haue I bene in the deepe sea.

26 In iourneying I was often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of mine owne nation, in perils among the Gentiles, in perils in the citie, in perils in wildernes, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren,

27 In wearinesse and [Note: [r] Painefulnes is a troublesome sicknes, as whe a man is weary & would rest, he is costrained to fal to new labour. ] painefulnesse, in watching

[Pauls ioy.]



often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in colde and in nakednesse.

28 [Note: [9] He addeth this in conclusion further, that the Corinthians might be ashamed to despise him, vpon whose care, almost all Churches depended, as it was plainly seene by experience. ] Beside the thinges which are outwarde, I am combred dayly, and haue the care of all the Churches.

29 Who is weake, and I am not weake? who is offended, and I burne not?

30 [Note: [10] Hee turneth that against the aduersities, which they obiected against him: as if he should say: They alleadge my calamities, to take away my authoritie from mee: but if I would boast my selfe, I woulde take no better argument: and God himselfe is my witnes that I deuise and forge nothing. ] If I must needes reioyce, I will reioyce of mine infirmities.

31 The God, euen the Father of our Lorde Iesus Christ, which is blessed for euermore, knoweth that I lie not.

32 In [Note: Acts.9.14. ] Damascus the gouernour of the people vnder King Aretas, layde watch in the citie of the Damascens, and would haue caught me.

33 But at a windowe was I let downe in a basket through the wall, and escaped his handes.



CHAP. XII.


1 He doeth euen vnwillingly make rehearsall 3 of the heauenly visions, 4 that were reueiled vnto him: 6 for which though he might in deede glory, yet he will not, 10 being priuie of his owne infirmities: 11 but they driue him to this kinde of folly, 20 in that they giue eare to certaine vaineglorious persons, who drawe them from Christ.

1 It [Note: [1] He goeth forward in his purpose, and because those bragging mates boasted of reuelations, hee reckoneth vp those things which lift him vp aboue the common capacitie of men: but he vseth a preface, and excuseth himselfe aduisedly. ] is not expedient for me no doubt to reioyce: for I will come to visions and reuelations of the Lorde.

2 I know a man [Note: [a] I speake this in Christ, that is, be it spoken without vaine glorie, for I seeke nothing but Christ Iesus onely. ] in Christ aboue fourteene yeeres agone, (whether he were in the body, I can not tell, or out of the body, I can not tell: God knoweth) which was taken vp into the [Note: [b] Into the highest heauen: for wee neede not to dispute subtilly vpon the word (Thirde) but yet this place is to be marked against them, which would make heauen to be euery where. ] thirde heauen.

3 And I knowe such a man (whether in the body, or out of the body, I can not tell: God knoweth)

4 How that he was taken vp into [Note: [c] So the Grecians name that which we call a parke, that is to say, a place where trees are planted, and wilde beastes kept. By which name they that translated the olde Testament out of Hebrewe into Greeke, called the garden Eden, whereinto Adam was put straight after his creation, as a most delicate and pleasant place. And hereupon grew it, that that bleßed seate of the glory of God is called by that name. ] Paradise, and heard words which [Note: [d] Which no man is able to vtter. ] cannot be spoken, which are not [Note: [e] Which the Saintes themselues are not by any meanes able to expreße, because it is God himselfe. Thus doeth Clemens Alexandrinus expound this place. Strom.5. ] possible for man to vtter.

5 [Note: [2] To remoue al suspition of ambition, he witnesseth that he braggeth not of those things as of his owne, but as out of himselfe, and yet notwithstanding fayneth nothing, lest by this occasion other men should attribute more vnto him then in deede he is: and therefore he had rather glory in his miseries. ] Of such a man will I reioyce: of my selfe will I not reioyce, except it bee of mine infirmities.

6 For though I woulde reioyce, I should not be a foole, for I will say the trueth: but I refraine, lest any man should thinke of me aboue that hee seeth in me, or that he heareth of me.

7 [Note: [3] An excellent doctrine: why God will haue euen his best seruants to be vexed of Satan, and by all kinde of temptations: to wit, lest they should be too much puffed vp, and also that they may bee made perfite by that continuall exercise. ] And lest I should be exalted out of measure through the aboundance of reuelations, there was giuen vnto me [Note: [f] Hee meaneth concupiscence, that sticketh fast in vs, as it were a pricke, in so much as it constrained Paul himselfe being regenerate, to crye out, I doe not that good that I woulde, &c. And hee calleth it a pricke, by a borowed kinde of speache taken from thornes, or stumpes, which are very dangerous and hurtfull for the feete, if a man walke through woodes that are cut downe. ] a pricke in the flesh, the messenger of [Note: [g] Which setteth those lustes on fire. ] Satan to buffet mee, because I should not be exalted out of measure.

8 For this thing I besought the Lord [Note: [h] Oft. ] thrise, that it might depart from me.

9 And he said vnto me, My grace is sufficient [Page]

[Pauls care for the Church.]



for thee: for my power is made perfect through weakenesse. [Note: [4] Hee concludeth, that hee will onely set his miseries against the vaine bragges of the false apostles, and therewith also excuseth himselfe, for that by their importunitie, he was constrained to speake so much of these things as he did: to wit, because that if his Apostleship were subuerted, his doctrine must needes fall. ] Very gladly therefore will I reioyce rather in mine infirmities, that the power of Christ may [Note: [i] That I might feele the vertue of Christ more and more: For the weaker that our tabernacles are, the more doeth Christes vertue appeare in them. ] dwell in me.

10 Therefore I take [Note: [k] I doe not onely take them patiently and with a good heart, but also I take great pleasure in them. ] pleasure in infirmities, in reproches, in necessities, in persecutions, in anguish for Christes sake: for when I am weake, then am I strong.

11 I was a foole to boast my selfe: yee haue compelled mee: [Note: [5] Againe he maketh the Corinthians witnesses of those things whereby God had sealed his Apostleshippe amongest them, and againe hee declareth by certaine arguments, howe farre hee is from all couetousnesse, and also how he is affectioned towards them. ] for I ought to haue bene commended of you: for in nothing was I inferiour vnto the very chiefe Apostles, though I bee nothing.

12 The [Note: [l] The arguments whereby it may well appeare, that I am in deede an Apostle of Iesus Christ. ] signes of an Apostle were wrought among you with all patience, with signes, and wonders, and great workes.

13 For what is it, wherein yee were inferiours vnto other Churches, [Note: Chap.11.9. ] except that I haue not bene [Note: [m] I was not slouthfull in getting my liuing with mine owne handes, that I might not bee burdensome to you. ] slouthfull to your hinderance? forgiue me this wrong.

14 Behold, the thirde time I am ready to come vnto you, and yet will I not be slouthfull to your hinderance: for I seeke not yours, but you: for the children ought not to laye vp for the fathers, but the fathers for the children.

15 And I will most gladly bestow, and will be bestowed for your soules: though the more I loue you, the lesse I am loued.

16 [Note: [6] Hee putteth away another most grieuous slaunder, to wit, that hee did subtilly and by others, make his gaine and profite of them. ] But bee it that I charged you not: yet for as much as I was craftie, I tooke you with guile.

17 Did I pill you by any of them whom I sent vnto you?

18 I haue desired Titus, and with him I haue sent a brother: did Titus pill you of any thing? walked we not in the selfe same spirit? walked we not in the same steppes?

19 [Note: [7] Hee concludeth, that hee writeth not these thinges vnto them, as though hee needed to defende himselfe, for he is guiltie of nothing: but because it is behoueable for them to doubt nothing of his fidelitie who instructed them. ] Againe, thinke yee that wee excuse our selues vnto you? we speake before God in [Note: [n] As it becommeth him to speake truely and sincerely, that profeßeth himselfe to bee in Christ, that is to say, to be a Christian ] Christ. But wee doe all thinges, dearely beloued, for your edifying.

20 [Note: [8] Hauing confirmed his authoritie vnto them, he rebuketh them sharply, and threatneth them also like an Apostle, shewing that he will not spare them hereafter, vnlesse they repent, seeing that this is the thirde time that hee hath warned them. ] For I feare least when I come, I shall not finde you such as I would: and that I shalbe found vnto you such as ye woulde not, and least there be strife, enuying, wrath, contentions, backebitings, whisperings, swellings and discord.

21 I feare least when I come againe, my God abase me among you, and I shall bewaile many of them which haue sinned already, and haue not repented of the vncleannesse, and fornication, and wantonnesse which they haue committed.


[Page 79]

[Christ is in you.]





CHAP. XIII.


1 Comming the thirde time, 2 he denounceth the sharper vengeance towardes them, 5 who haue a perfect triall of the power of Christ in his Apostleship: 10 At length he prayeth for their repentance, 11 and wisheth them prosperitie.

1 Lo this is the thirde time that I come vnto you. [Note: Deut.19.15. matth.18.16. iohn 8.17. hebr.10.28. ] In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall euery worde stand

2 I tolde you before, and tell you before: as though I had bene present the seconde time, so write I nowe being absent to them which heretofore haue sinned and to all others, that if I come againe, I will not spare,

3 [Note: [1] A most sharpe reprehension, for that, while they despise the Apostles admonitions, they tempt Christes owne patience: and also while they contemne him as wretched and miserable, they lay nothing herein against him, which is not common to him with Christ. ] Seeing that ye seeke experience of Christ, that speaketh in mee, which towarde you is not weake, but is [Note: [a] And will bee most mightie to be reuenged of you, when neede shalbe. ] mightie in you.

4 For though hee was crucified concerning [Note: [b] As touching that base forme of a seruant which he tooke vpon him when hee abased himselfe. ] his infirmitie, yet liueth hee through the power of God. And wee no doubt are weake in him, but we shall liue with him, through the power of God towarde you.

5 [Note: 1.Cor.11.28. ] [Note: [2] Hee confirmeth that which hee spake of the vertue of God appearing in his ministerie, and hee gathereth by the mutuall relation betweene the peoples faith, and the ministers preaching, that they must either reuerence his Apostleship, vpon whose doctrine their faith is grounded, or they must condemne themselues of infidelitie, and must confesse themselues not to be of Christes body. ] Proue your selues whether ye are in the faith: examine your selues: knowe yee not your owne selues, howe that Iesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?

6 [Note: [3] Hee mitigateth that sharpenesse, trusting that they will shewe themselues towards their faithfull Apostle, apt and willing to be taught: adding this moreouer, that hee passeth not for his owne fame and estimation, so that he may serue to their saluation, which is the only marke that he shooteth at. ] But I trust that ye shall knowe that wee are not reprobates.

7 Nowe I pray vnto God that yee doe none euill, not that we should seeme approued, but that ye should doe that which is honest: though we be as [Note: [c] In mens iudgement. ] reprobates.

8 For wee can not doe any thing against the trueth, but for the trueth.

9 For we are glad when wee are weake, and that ye are strong: this also we wish for, euen your [Note: [d] That all thinges may bee in good order amongest you, and the members of the Church restored into their place, which haue bene shaken and out of place. ] perfection.

10 Therefore write I these thinges being absent, least when I am present, I should vse sharpenesse, according to the power which the Lorde hath giuen mee, to edification, and not to destruction.

11 [Note: [4] A briefe exhortation, but yet such an one as comprehendeth all the parts of a Christian mans life. ] Finally brethren, fare ye wel: be perfect: be of good comfort: be of one minde: liue in peace, and the God of loue and peace shalbe with you.

12 [Note: [5] He saluteth them familiarly, and in conclusion wisheth wel vnto them. ] Greete one another with an [Note: 1.Corin.16.20. ] holy kisse. All the Saintes salute you.

13 The grace of our Lord Iesus Christ, and the loue of God, and the communion of the holy Ghost be with you all, Amen.

The seconde Epistle to the Corinthians, written from Philippi, a citie in Macedonia, and sent by Titus and Lucas.