Paul and the False Apostles

2 Corinthians 11

1 I wish you would bear with me in a little foolishness. Do bear with me! 2 For I feel a divine jealousy for you, since n I betrothed you to one husband, o to present you p as a pure virgin to Christ. 3 But I am afraid that q as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts r will be led astray from a s sincere and t pure devotion to Christ. 4 For if someone comes and u proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept v a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily enough. 5 Indeed, I consider that w I am not in the least inferior to these super-apostles. 6 x Even if I am unskilled in speaking, y I am not so in knowledge; indeed, in every way z we have made this plain to you in all things.

7 Or a did I commit a sin in humbling myself so that you might be exalted, because b I preached God's gospel to you free of charge? 8 I robbed other churches by accepting support from them in order to serve you. 9 And when I was with you and was c in need, d I did not burden anyone, for the brothers who came from Macedonia e supplied my need. So I refrained and will refrain f from burdening you in any way. 10 g As the truth of Christ is in me, this boasting of mine h will not be silenced in the regions of Achaia. 11 And why? i Because I do not love you? j God knows I do!

12 And what I do I will continue to do, k in order to undermine the claim of those who would like to claim that in their boasted mission they work on the same terms as we do. 13 For such men are l false apostles, m deceitful workmen, n disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as o an angel of light. 15 So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as p servants of righteousness. q Their end will correspond to their deeds.

  1. Cross References
    Hosea 2:19 - 20
    And I will betroth you to me forever. I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice, in steadfast love and in mercy.
  2. Cross References
    Colossians 1:22
    He has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him.
    Colossians 1:28
    Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ.
  3. Cross References
    Ephesians 5:27
    So that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.
    Revelation 14:4
    It is these who have not defiled themselves with women, for they are virgins. It is these who follow the Lamb wherever he goes. These have been redeemed from mankind as firstfruits for God and the Lamb.
  4. Cross References
    Genesis 3:4
    But the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die.
    1 Timothy 2:14
    And Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor.
    John 8:44
    You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father's desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
    1 Thessalonians 3:5
    For this reason, when I could bear it no longer, I sent to learn about your faith, for fear that somehow the tempter had tempted you and our labor would be in vain.
  5. Cross References
    Colossians 2:4
    I say this in order that no one may delude you with plausible arguments.
    Colossians 2:8
    See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.
  6. Cross References
    Ephesians 6:5
    Slaves, obey your earthly masters with fear and trembling, with a sincere heart, as you would Christ.
  7. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 6:6
    By purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, the Holy Spirit, genuine love.
  8. Cross References
    1 Corinthians 3:11
    For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
  9. Cross References
    Galatians 1:6
    I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel -
  10. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 12:11
    I have been a fool! You forced me to it, for I ought to have been commended by you. For I was not at all inferior to these super-apostles, even though I am nothing.
    Galatians 2:6
    And from those who seemed to be influential (what they were makes no difference to me; God shows no partiality) - those, I say, who seemed influential added nothing to me.
  11. Cross References
    1 Corinthians 1:17
    For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.
  12. Cross References
    Ephesians 3:4
    When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ.
  13. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 4:2
    But we have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God's word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone's conscience in the sight of God.
    2 Corinthians 5:11
    Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others. But what we are is known to God, and I hope it is known also to your conscience.
    2 Corinthians 12:12
    The signs of a true apostle were performed among you with utmost patience, with signs and wonders and mighty works.
  14. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 12:13
    For in what were you less favored than the rest of the churches, except that I myself did not burden you? Forgive me this wrong!
  15. Cross References
    Acts 18:3
    And because he was of the same trade he stayed with them and worked, for they were tentmakers by trade.
  16. Cross References
    Philippians 4:12
    I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.
  17. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 12:13 - 14
    For in what were you less favored than the rest of the churches, except that I myself did not burden you? Forgive me this wrong!
  18. Cross References
    1 Corinthians 16:17
    I rejoice at the coming of Stephanas and Fortunatus and Achaicus, because they have made up for your absence.
    Philippians 4:15 - 16
    And you Philippians yourselves know that in the beginning of the gospel, when I left Macedonia, no church entered into partnership with me in giving and receiving, except you only.
  19. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 12:16
    But granting that I myself did not burden you, I was crafty, you say, and got the better of you by deceit.
    1 Thessalonians 2:6
    Nor did we seek glory from people, whether from you or from others, though we could have made demands as apostles of Christ.
  20. Cross References
    Romans 1:9
    For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I mention you
    Romans 9:1
    I am speaking the truth in Christ - I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit -
  21. Cross References
    1 Corinthians 9:15
    But I have made no use of any of these rights, nor am I writing these things to secure any such provision. For I would rather die than have anyone deprive me of my ground for boasting.
  22. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 6:11
    We have spoken freely to you, Corinthians; our heart is wide open.
  23. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 11:31
    The God and Father of the Lord Jesus, he who is blessed forever, knows that I am not lying.
    2 Corinthians 12:2 - 3
    I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven - whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows.
  24. Cross References
    1 Corinthians 9:12
    If others share this rightful claim on you, do not we even more? Nevertheless, we have not made use of this right, but we endure anything rather than put an obstacle in the way of the gospel of Christ.
  25. Cross References
    Revelation 2:2
    'I know your works, your toil and your patient ...
    Galatians 1:7
    Not that there is another one, but there are so...
    Galatians 2:4
    Yet because of false brothers secretly brought ...
    Galatians 6:12
    It is those who want to make a good showing in ...
    Philippians 1:15
    Some indeed preach Christ from envy and rivalry...
    Philippians 3:18
    For many, of whom I have often told you and now...
    Titus 1:10
    For there are many who are insubordinate, empty...
    Titus 1:12
    One of the Cretans, a prophet of their own, sai...
    2 Peter 2:1
    But false prophets also arose among the people,...
    1 John 4:1
    Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test ...
  26. Cross References
    Philippians 3:2
    Look out for the dogs, look out for the evildoers, look out for those who mutilate the flesh.
  27. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 11:14 - 15
    And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.
  28. Cross References
    Galatians 1:8
    But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.
  29. Cross References
    2 Corinthians 3:9
    For if there was glory in the ministry of condemnation, the ministry of righteousness must far exceed it in glory.
  30. Cross References
    Philippians 3:19
    Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.
English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.
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