1 Now I Paul myself entreat you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ, I who in your presence am lowly among you, but being absent am of good courage toward you.
2 I ask that when I am present I need not be bold with the confidence with which I propose to be courageous against some, who regard us as if we walked according to the flesh.
3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh.
4 The weapons we use in our fight are not of the flesh but God's powerful weapons, which we use to destroy strongholds. We destroy false arguments.
5 We cast down imaginations, and every high thing that is exalted against the knowledge of God. We bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.
6 We are ready to punish all disobedience, when your obedience is complete.
7 You look at the things that are before you. If any man trusts in himself that he is Christ's, let him consider this again within himself that, even as he is Christ's, so also are we.
8 I should boast a great deal concerning the authority the Lord gave us to build you up, and not to tear you down, I would not be put to shame.
9 I may not seem as if I would terrify you by my letters.
10 For, His letters, they say, are weighty and strong. But his bodily presence is weak and his speech of no account.
11 Let a person like this take this into account: what we are in word by letters when we are absent, such we will also be in deed when we are present.
12 For we are not bold to number or compare ourselves with certain of them that commend themselves. But they measure themselves by themselves, and compare themselves with themselves. They are without understanding.
13 But we will not boast beyond our measure, but according to the measure of the province that God apportioned to us as a measure, to reach even to you.
14 For we are not overstretching ourselves though we did not reach to you. We reached out to you with the good news of Christ.
15 We did not boast beyond our assignment in other men's labors. Having hope that, as your faith grows, we shall be made great among you according to our territory for further abundance.
16 Let us preach the good news to the parts beyond you. Let us not boast in someone elses territory in concerning things ready for our hand.
17 But he who boasts let him boast in Jehovah! (Jeremiah 9:24)
18 It is not he that commends himself that is approved. It is the one whom Jehovah commends. (Proverbs 29:26)