People's New Testament
But I determined this with myself, that I would not come again to you in heaviness.
2:1 The Two Covenants Compared
SUMMARY OF II CORINTHIANS 2:
Paul's Letter of Commendation. The New Covenant and the Covenant of the Letter; or the Law and. the Gospel. The First Written on Tables of Stone; Is a Ministration of. Death; Was Glorious, but Now Done Away With. That Which Remaineth, The New Covenant, Far More Glorious. The Veil Over the Face of Moses a Type of the Blindness of. Israel. The Transforming Power of the Gospel.
That I would not come again to you in heaviness. With sorrow (Revised Version). See 2Co 1:23. He desired not to come to rebuke, but to rejoice with them. This verse seems to point to a time when he had come in heaviness. It is generally admitted now by commentators that he did make such a visit, probably while preaching at Ephesus, running across the sea, a voyage of two or three days, for a short visit. This visit seems to be proved by 2Co 12:14,21 13:01 See Conybeare and Howson, Vol. II, p. 27.
For if I make you sorry, who is he then that maketh me glad, but the same which is made sorry by me?
2:2 For if I make you sorry, etc. The thought is, your sorrow, because rebuked, gladdens me on account of your repentance.
And I wrote this same unto you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow from them of whom I ought to rejoice; having confidence in you all, that my joy is the joy of you all.
2:3 I wrote this same unto you. What he had written concerning the delay of his coming (1Co 16:5).
Having confidence in you all. He delayed, having confidence that they would reform, so that all could rejoice together.
For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you with many tears; not that ye should be grieved, but that ye might know the love which I have more abundantly unto you.
2:4 For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you. The First Epistle, which rebuked their divisions and immorality. He wrote sharply, but in great sorrow, not to grieve them, but to demonstrate his love by his assiduous care of them and rebuke of their sins.
But if any have caused grief, he hath not grieved me, but in part: that I may not overcharge you all.
2:5 If any have caused grief. The reference in this indirect way is to the incestuous person named in 1Co 5:1.
He hath grieved me, but in part. It was not Paul, only in part, that this man had injured and grieved, but the whole church.
That I may not overcharge you all. Lay too heavy charges on you.
Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many.
2:6 Sufficient to such a man is this punishment. The excommunication of the offender (1Co 5:4,5).
Which was inflicted of the many. Literally, by the majority. This shows that the whole church took action, and implies that there were dissenters. The command of Paul was endorsed by the action of the church. So ought the decision of the officers of a congregation always be submitted for approval.
So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow.
2:7 Ye ought rather to forgive him. The Apostle sternly commands excommunication of the offender, but tenderly enjoins forgiveness of the penitent sinner.
Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him.
2:8 I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him. The object of the discipline was to save (1Co 5:5). Since it had had the desired effect, the offender should be restored.
For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient in all things.
2:9 For to this end also did I write. One object of his writing was to test their obedience.
Whether ye be obedient in all things. He commanded positively in 1Co 5:11,13.
To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ;
2:10 To whom ye forgive anything, I forgive also. As your excommunication of the man was my act, so also your restoration of him will be my act.
Forgave I it in the person of Christ. As Paul acted as the servant of Christ, under his direct orders, his official acts represented in the Master.
Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.
2:11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us. Satan would gladly have kept the sinful man in the church; since he has repented, Satan would gladly have the church keep him out.
Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ's gospel, and a door was opened unto me of the Lord,
2:12 When I came to Troas. See Ac 16:8 20:5-12 In Acts two visits to Troas are named, but the one alluded to here is omitted. Troas was then a large city, situated not far from the site of old Troy, and almost within sight of Europe. There is now a small village there and extensive ruins. See PNT Ac 16:8.
To preach Christ's gospel. Though he did not tarry now, a little later we find a church there (Ac 20:5).
A door was opened unto me of the Lord. An opportunity for the gospel.
I had no rest in my spirit, because I found not Titus my brother: but taking my leave of them, I went from thence into Macedonia.
2:13 I had no rest in my spirit. Because he had expected to meet Titus there and to get news concerning the state of affairs at Corinth. Hence he went on soon, hoping to meet him on the way to Macedonia.
Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.
2:14 Now thanks be to God. He did meet him there, and heard news that filled him with thankfulness.
To triumph in Christ. A Roman triumph was given because of victory; God always gave the victory, through Christ, in the end. He had feared that Corinth would be an exception.
Maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge. The figure is that of a sacrifice. A sweet-smelling savor was diffused by the offerings. So, through them everywhere, the knowledge of God was made known, and was grateful to the saved.
For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish:
2:15 A sweet savor of Christ. This fragrant odor of the gospel was diffused both among the saved and the unsaved.
To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things?
2:16 To the one we are the savour of death unto death. In the triumphal procession, alluded to in 2Co 2:14 the captives were led, and when it closed were put to death. The fragrant odors of the incense, flowers and sacrifices, were a savor to them of their approaching death. So the savor of the gospel is a savor, a sign, an intimation of death to those who reject it.
And to the other the savour of life. This savor to the saved is a sign of life, and leads to eternal life.
Who is sufficient for these things? He seems to exclaim in astonishment that such results should follow human preaching.
For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.
2:17 We are not as many, who corrupt the word of God. The Greek city figure is taken from the tavern-keepers who adulterate the wine they offer for sale. There were those at Corinth, Judaizing teachers, who adulterated the gospel with ingredients of Judaism. These are the false brethren (2Co 11:26) with whom his whole ministry was a struggle. See also Ga 2:4.
But as of sincerity, but as of God. On the contrary, he and his fellow-preachers spoke the words of genuine sincerity and with a sense of responsibility to God.