2 Corinthians 2

Although usually δέ (de, “now”; found in א A C D1 F G Ψ 0285 Maj. lat) should take precedent over γάρ (gar) in textually disputed places in the corpus Paulinum, the credentials for γάρ here are not easily dismissed (Ƥ46 B 0223 0243 33 1739 1881 al); here it is the preferred reading, albeit slightly.
I made up my own mind
Or “I decided this for myself.”
not to pay you another painful visit.
Grk “not to come to you again in sorrow.”
Paul was not speaking absolutely about not making another visit, but meant he did not want to come to the Corinthians again until the conflict he mentioned in 2 Cor 2:4–11 was settled.
2For if I make you sad, who would be left to make me glad
Or “to cheer me up.” L&N 25.131 translates this “For if I were to make you sad, who would be left to cheer me up?”
but the one I caused to be sad?
3And I wrote this very thing to you,
The words “to you” are not in the Greek text but are implied.
so that when I came
So that when I came. Regarding this still future visit by Paul, see 2 Cor 12:14; 13:1.
I would not have sadness from those who ought to make me rejoice, since I am confident in you all that my joy would be yours.
4For out of great distress and anguish of heart I wrote to you with many tears, not to make you sad, but to let you know the love that I have especially for you.
Or “the love that I have in great measure for you.”
5But if anyone has caused sadness, he has not saddened me alone, but to some extent (not to exaggerate)
Or “(not to say too much)”; Grk “(not to burden you [with words]).”
he has saddened all of you as well.
6This punishment on such an individual by the majority is enough for him, 7so that now instead
Grk “so that on the other hand.”
you should rather forgive and comfort him.
The word “him” is not in the Greek text but is supplied. Direct objects in Greek were often omitted and must be supplied from the context.
This will keep him from being overwhelmed by excessive grief to the point of despair.
Grk “comfort him, lest somehow such a person be swallowed up by excessive grief,” an idiom for a person being so overcome with grief as to despair or give up completely (L&N 25.285). In this context of excessive grief or regret for past sins, “overwhelmed” is a good translation since contemporary English idiom speaks of someone “overwhelmed by grief.” Because of the length of the Greek sentence and the difficulty of expressing a negative purpose/result clause in English, a new sentence was started here in the translation.
8Therefore I urge you to reaffirm your love for him.
Or “I urge you to show that your love for him is real.”
9For this reason also I wrote you:
The word “you” is not in the Greek text, but is implied (as an understood direct object).
to test you to see
Grk “to know the proof of you,” that is, to know if the Corinthians’ obedience to Paul as an apostle was genuine (L&N 72.7).
if you are obedient in everything.
10If you forgive anyone for anything, I also forgive him – for indeed what I have forgiven (if I have forgiven anything) I did so for you in the presence of Christ, 11so that we may not be exploited
Or “be taken advantage of.”
by Satan (for we are not ignorant of his schemes).
12Now when I arrived in Troas
Troas was a city and region in the northwest corner of Asia Minor.
to proclaim the gospel of Christ, even though the Lord had opened
This has been translated as a concessive participle (“even though”). The passive construction (“a door of opportunity had been opened for me by the Lord”) has been converted to an active one in the translation for clarity.
a door of opportunity
Grk “a door”; the phrase ἀνοίγω θύραν (anoigō quran, “to open a door”) is an idiom meaning “to make possible some opportunity” (L&N 71.9).
for me,
13I had no relief in my spirit,
Or “I had no peace of mind.”
because I did not find my brother Titus there. So I said good-bye to them
Or “I took my leave of them.”
and set out
Since this refers to the outset of a journey, the aorist ἐξῆλθον (exēlqon) is taken ingressively.
for Macedonia.

Apostolic Ministry

14 But thanks be to God who always leads us in triumphal procession
Or “who always causes us to triumph.”
in Christ
Or “in the Messiah.”
and who makes known
Or “who reveals.”
through us the fragrance that consists of the knowledge of him in every place.
15For we are a sweet aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing – 16to the latter an odor
The same Greek word (ὀσμή, osmē) translated “odor” here (in relation to the stench of death) has been translated “fragrance” in 2:14 and in the next phrase of the present verse. The word itself can describe a smell or odor either agreeable or disagreeable depending on the context (L&N 79.45).
from death to death, but to the former a fragrance from life to life. And who is adequate for these things?
These things refer to the things Paul is doing in his apostolic ministry.
17For we are not like so many others, hucksters who peddle the word of God for profit,
The participle καπηλεύοντες (kapēleuontes) refers to those engaged in retail business, but with the negative connotations of deceptiveness and greed - “to peddle for profit,” “to huckster” (L&N 57.202). In the translation a noun form (“hucksters”) has been used in combination with the English verb “peddle…for profit” to convey the negative connotations of this term.
but we are speaking in Christ before
Or “in the presence of.”
God as persons of sincerity,
Or “persons of pure motives.”
as persons sent from God.

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