11
But now, because my opponents are saying that Christ sent them to you as his representatives and that he did not send me, please be patient with me, too, while I say a few things that may sound as if [IRO] I am praising myself, like a foolish person would do. You have beenputting up with/toleratingthose who teach what is false; now then, ◄put up with/tolerate► me too. I really do care about what happens to you, just as God cares about what happens to you. Just like a father wants his daughter to be sexually pure when he presents her to the man she will marry [MET], I want you to belong to Christ alone and to no other. I want to present you to him as people who remain faithful to him only, and who have not believed the deceitful message of those who are teaching what is false. However, just like Satan, when he cunningly appeared as a snake, deceived Eve and caused her to disobey the Lord God, I am concerned that those teachers will cause you to think wrongly so that you will no longer be faithful to Christ alone. I say that because some people have come among you who are teaching their own thoughts about Jesus. They are saying about him things that are entirely different from what I taught you. They are urging you to receive a powerful spirit who would come to live in you, but it is not the same Spirit that you received from God when you believed in Christ. They preach what they call a good message, and you accept their message, even though it is not the same as the good message about Christ that you heard from me. And you have gladly accepted them and their message! I consider that [LIT] none of those men, even though they think of themselves as being [IRO] extra-special apostles, are in any way greater than I am. I admit that I am not an eloquent speaker, but I do know God's message. I have made that clear to you by everything that I have done among you and by everything that I have taught you.
You are mistaken if you think that I do not love you because I refused to accept money from you for my teaching. I will go on doing that to prevent those false apostles among you from boasting that they work just as I do.
2 Corinthians 11:7-15
I refused to accept money from you as pay for teaching you God's message about Christ. ◄It is ridiculous for you to think that what I did was wrong!/Was that wrong?► [RHQ] I know that by teaching you without pay, I made myself seem [IRO] unimportant to you. But I did it to honor you. Some people might say that it was as though [IRO] I was robbing other congregations because I accepted money from them in order that I might work among you. Furthermore, when I was there with you and had no money to buy the things that I needed, I did not cause any of youto have difficulties by my depending on you/by asking you for money/support►, because our (inc) fellow believers who came from here in Macedonia province brought enough money for me to buy everything that I needed. So I have not caused you any difficulty at all by asking you for money, and I never will ask you for money [EUP]. 10  And as sure as you know that everything that Christ says is true, you can be sure that what I say to you now is true. Wherever I go there in Achaia province, I do not let you believers pay me for doing God's work among you. And no one will be able to prevent me from boasting about that. 11 No one should wrongly [RHQ] think that it is because I do not love you that I do not take pay from you. God knows that you truly/really are very dear to me.
12 There are some men there among you who would like to be able to say boastfully that they work among you just as I do. So, in order to make it impossible [IDM] for them to say that, I have refused to accept pay from you, and I will continue doing that. 13 Those men are lying when they say that they are apostles. They work deceitfully. Even though they say that they work for God, they are working only for themselves. They try to make people think that Christ sent them as his apostles, but they do not truly represent him. 14 I am not surprised that they act like that, because Satan himself causes people to think that he has come as a shining messenger from God. 15 So it should not surprise you if these men, who really serve Satan, do good things in order to make you think they serve God. Some day God will punish them according to what they deserve because of the evil things that they do.
You seem to listen to those who boast, so I too will boast. I will boast about being a Jew (as those others do), and I will boast about having suffered greatly for Christ, and about an extraordinary vision that God gave me. Although God caused me to suffer an affliction, he promised that he would help me and strengthen me.
2 Corinthians 11:16—12:10
16 I say again: I do not want any of you to think that my boasting about myself is like foolish people boast. But even if anyone thinks that I am boasting about myself like a foolish person boasts, listen to what I have to say anyway, just like you listen to those false apostles. They really speak foolishly! Listen to me while I also boast a little. 17 About the things that I am going to tell you, boasting confidently about myself, surely you know that they are not the kind of things that the Lord Jesus would say. Instead, I will speak as a foolish person would speak. 18 Because many among you are boasting about their own work, as unbelievers do, I will also boast about myself and my work [MTY, IRO]. 19  I am sure that you, who think that you are so wise, will accept what I say because you gladly accept the false teachers and the foolish things that they say. 20 When people treat you as if they were your bosses, you gladly submit to them. You think that it is all right when others force you to provide for their needs. You think that it is all right when people take control over you, when they boast about themselves, or when they insult you by slapping you in the face. 21 I agree that I was not bold enough to treat you in such ways. Ha! Do you think that [IRO] I should feel ashamed because I did not do that?
So now, talking like a person who does not have any sense, I will boldly tell you some things about myself, just like those false apostles tell you things about themselves. 22 Do they tell you that they are Hebrews and can speak the Hebrew language? Well, I can say the same thing about myself. Do they tell you that they belong to God's people, the nation of Israel? Well, I can say the same thing about myself. Do they tell you that they are descendants of our great ancestor Abraham? Well, he is my ancestor, too. 23  Do they tell you how much work they have done for Christ? Now I am talking like a crazy person talks [EUP]. Well, I work for Christ much more than they do. I have been in prison many more times than they have. Many times I have been beaten { people have beaten me} very severely because I believe in and obey Christ. Many times I almost died because of serving Christ. 24 On five occasions Jewish religious leaders beat me 39 times with a whip. 25 On three occasions I was beaten { Roman officials beat me} with wooden sticks. On one occasion a large crowd of people threw stones at me to kill me. On three occasions the ship that I was traveling on was wrecked and sank. On one of those occasions I was floating in the water a night and a day before I was rescued. 26 As I have often traveled to other places, I have often risked losing my life. For example, sometimes I have been in danger crossing rivers. I have been in danger traveling in places where there were bandits. At times I have been in danger among people of my own nation, the Jews, and at other times I been in danger among those who are not Jews. I have been in danger in cities, and I have been in dangerous situations in barren areas. I have been in dangerous situations when I was traveling in ships. I have been in danger among people who falsely claim to be fellow believers. 27 I have worked very hard [DOU] to earna living/what I need►, and often I did not sleep. At times I was hungry and thirsty, and at times I did not have enough time to eat. Sometimes I was cold because I did not have enough clothes to wear. 28 In addition to all that, I am constantly and deeply concerned about all the congregations that I have helped to begin. 29  Every time that I hear about fellow believers [RHQ] who are not strong spiritually, I sympathize with them and try to help them. Every time that I learn about a fellow believer [RHQ] who causes another believer to do something wrong, that makes me very angry.
30 Because it seems that it is necessary for me to continue boasting about myself, I will boast about things that caused some people to think of me as being weak. 31 God, who is the Father of our (inc) Lord Jesus, and who is the one whom we should praise forever, knows that I am not lying about this. 32  One time when I was in Damascus city, the governor whom King Aretas had appointed to rule part of his area, told his soldiers to guard the gates of the city so that they could seize me if I tried to leave the city. 33 But my friends helped me to escape by putting me in a large basket and lowering me to the ground by a rope through an opening in the city wall. That was really humiliating!