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2 Corinthians 4:1-6

Context
Paul’s Perseverance in Ministry

4:1 Therefore, since we have this ministry, just as God has shown us mercy, 1  we do not become discouraged. 2  4:2 But we have rejected 3  shameful hidden deeds, 4  not behaving 5  with deceptiveness 6  or distorting the word of God, but by open proclamation of the truth we commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience before God. 4:3 But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled only to those who are perishing, 4:4 among whom the god of this age has blinded the minds of those who do not believe 7  so they would not see the light of the glorious gospel 8  of Christ, 9  who is the image of God. 4:5 For we do not proclaim 10  ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your slaves 11  for Jesus’ sake. 4:6 For God, who said “Let light shine out of darkness,” 12  is the one who shined in our hearts to give us the light of the glorious knowledge 13  of God in the face of Christ. 14 

1 tn Grk “just as we have been shown mercy”; ἠλεήθημεν (hlehqhmen) has been translated as a “divine passive” which is a circumlocution for God as the active agent. For clarity this was converted to an active construction with God as subject in the translation.

2 tn Or “we do not lose heart.”

3 tn L&N 13.156; the word can also mean “to assert opposition to,” thus here “we have denounced” (L&N 33.220).

4 tn Grk “the hidden things [deeds] of shame”; here αἰσχύνης (aiscunh") has been translated as an attributive genitive.

5 tn Or “not conducting ourselves”; Grk “not walking” (a common NT idiom for conduct, way of life, or behavior).

6 tn Or “craftiness.”

7 tn Or “of unbelievers.”

8 tn Grk “the gospel of the glory”; δόξης (doxhs) has been translated as an attributive genitive.

9 tn Or “so that the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ would not be evident to them” (L&N 28.37).

10 tn Or “preach.”

11 tn Traditionally, “servants.” Though δοῦλος (doulos) is normally translated “servant,” the word does not bear the connotation of a free individual serving another. BDAG notes that “‘servant’ for ‘slave’ is largely confined to Biblical transl. and early American times…in normal usage at the present time the two words are carefully distinguished” (BDAG 260 s.v.). The most accurate translation is “bondservant” (sometimes found in the ASV for δοῦλος), in that it often indicates one who sells himself into slavery to another. But as this is archaic, few today understand its force.

12 sn An allusion to Gen 1:3; see also Isa 9:2.

13 tn Grk “the light of the knowledge of the glory”; δόξης (doxhs) has been translated as an attributive genitive.

14 tc ‡ Most witnesses, including several early and important ones (Ì46 א C H Ψ 0209 1739c Ï sy), read ᾿Ιησοῦ Χριστοῦ (Ihsou Cristou, “Jesus Christ”), while other important witnesses, especially of the Western text (D F G 0243 630 1739* 1881 lat Ambst), have Χριστοῦ ᾿Ιησοῦ. The reading with just Χριστοῦ is found in A B 33 {sa} Tert {Or Ath Chr}. Even though the witnesses for the shorter reading are not numerous, they are weighty. And in light of the natural scribal proclivity to fill out the text, particularly with reference to divine names, as well as the discrepancy among the witnesses as to the order of the names, the simple reading Χριστοῦ seems to be the best candidate for authenticity. NA27 reads ᾿Ιησοῦ Χριστοῦ with ᾿Ιησοῦ in brackets, indicating doubts as to its authenticity.



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