The American Wisdom Series


Chapter 2

Caution to students of God's Word - Please remember two things when using our studies: #1. Our commentary is not God's Word. It is only our interpretation or understanding of "His Word" and even though we try our best to be accurate we may or may not be correct. #2. The King James translation, or any other translation, of the original Hebrew text has some words which were given different translations at different places probably because of the interpreters preconceived ideas of what they think God meant to say. For example: According to the notes in the "Dake's Annotated Reference Bible" the Hebrew word hayah in the KJV is Trans. (became) 67 times, (becamest or came to pass) 505 times, (become) 66 times, and (come to pass) 131 times, but for some reason in Genesis 1:2 it is translated (was)! That sure changes the way a person perceives the original creation of the earth, doesn't it?  Gen. 1:2 And the earth was (became) without form, ... Having said that, let us continue with our "Key Knowledge" lessons. These are pamphlets containing knowledge, we believe, you must have to fully and accurately unlock and understand the Word of God.

John 15:26
But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

John 16:13-14
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.

This Bible Study was originally written by Roger Christopherson,
published at 

and now edited by people at
The American Wisdom Series  

Without the leading by the Holy Spirit, there is no understanding of the truths, for all the truth of the Scriptures are revealed to us by God's Spirit.

 Now here is our revised study of:



Chapter 2

"Object of the Former Letter [3-11]."
"No Rest in Spirit, Thanksgiving [12-17]."

Paul is going to continue on with many of the things he had discussed in his first letter, as well as a response to the reactions of the Corinthians from his first letter. We will see another side of Paul in this chapter two.

II Corinthians 2:1 "But I determined this with myself, that I would not come again to you in heaviness."

"But I determined this with myself,..." would be like what we say today, "well, I said to myself;" Paul wrote that first letter so that when he came there to visit these Corinthians, he wanted things to be neat and orderly and the meeting to be a happy time while he was there. Paul is saying, "I wanted to enjoy the first fruits of my ministry."

II Corinthians 2:2 "For if I make you sorry, who is he then that maketh me glad, but the same which is made sorry by me?"

Paul is telling them, if I came and spent all the time correcting you, then who would be there to make me glad? I'm correcting you now so that in my visit to you, I will be blessed by your countenance. Paul is speaking from his heart here. Remember that this church in the beginning of it's forming blossomed for a time, and then it started to split into different divisions or denomination, and Paul had to set them in order that divisions within the body of Christ was not right. The body of Christ is no many parts, but one in whole, with many different members all working to the same end. That end was to bring the gospel of Christ to the lost so that souls will come to know the saving love and power of Christ. Paul wanted to enjoy these dear Christians that he brought into the establishing of this church at Corinth.

II Corinthians 2:3 "And I wrote this same unto you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow from them of whom I ought to rejoice; having confidence in you all, that my joy is the joy of you all."

Paul wanted them to straighten their own mess out for themselves. They allowed it to happen, and now when they have corrected their own problems, they would be the stronger for it. When the correction is finished, I will rejoice when I arrive, and have the confidence that you are strong in the Lord. I have confidence that you can take care of those things that aren't right. Then when I find joy in you, you also will have joy in each other.

II Corinthians 2:4 "For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you with many tears; not that ye should be grieved, but that you might know the love which I have more abundantly unto you."

Paul is saying that their problems really burdened him, even to the point of many tears to write that first letter. However, it was not to make you grieved and to fall on your back, but I wanted you to know that I loved you enough to be correcting you. We had to put a stop to all those things that had crept into your church, the fragmentations and divisions that were breaking up your church, as well as those acts that you were allowing to go on right in your midst. This included the act of incest of one man in their midst, that was having relations with his father's wife openly, and the church at large was accepting this act with no one doing anything about it.

II Corinthians 2:5 "But if any have caused grief, he hath not grieved me, but in part: that I may not over charge you all."

Though the grief that I brought on you all was directed to only a few in part, but it had to be said to you all, because you were allowing it to happen amongst and in front of the entire congregation. I directed it to you all so that you would straighten it out by yourselves.

II Corinthians 2:6 "Sufficient to such a man is this punishment, which was inflicted of many."

There are two avenues of thought on this verse. One says that Paul is saying; all should came together and united against this man in the incestuous affair, while the other view says that Paul is directing this comment toward one of the men that was causing the split in the church. In any case we will see that Paul has forgiven this person of the acts that he committed toward the church and the body of Christ, because or his repentance.

I think that Paul, after hearing from Titus who had just returned from visiting with this group in Corinth, heard that there had been a turn-around, and that this man had repented of his sin. This is why Paul is saying this and using it as an example here to the Corinthians, to illustrate the sin of sloppiness within the Church.

II Corinthians 2:7 "So that contrariwise ye ought rather to forgive him, and comfort him, lest perhaps such a one should be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow."

It seems like within the church community, when someone repents of their sins the rest of the congregation just does not like to allow that sin to be over. In the minds of the churchmen, though our Father has forgiven that person of the sin, the people of the church like to hang on to that sin, and blow it right back into the face of that repenting soul. So what is the answer according to God's Word here?

After one repents, God doesn't ever want to here about it again anymore. However it seems that church folks like to repeat over and over those things, and gain some sort of vain glory and self gratification over others afflictions. It is called rumors and out-right lies. "Did you hear what so-n-so did?" They find pleasure in other people's sorrow to the point of becoming swallowed up with it. Around the circle it goes, now you stop and think, they are talking about one of their own members. God has forgiven them, and they are as innocent as if it had never happen in the eyes of God. Yet each time it is brought up, it is going to be brought right back on the heads of those perpetuating the story. For if God has forgiven it, then that sin is as if it had never happened, and it becomes a lie to the Christian who is telling the story. It is of Satan, and very dangerous for any Christian to repeat a sin that has been repented.

This the next thing to blasphemy against the blood of Jesus Christ that was shed on the cross. It is that serious. If there is any one thing that you should guard against and that is repeating any sin of yours, or another's that has been repented to the Father in Jesus name. The saddest thing that you will see in any church is that when one of your own falls, all the rest of the Christians act like a bunch of heathen and vultures as they gather about to pick at the bones of those spiritually dead sins that are dead and gone. Watch out so you don't get caught up in such a thing.

The one thing that Christians posess is forgiveness. We understand that we are to forgive our Christian brothers and sisters just as God forgives our sins. This is one of the most beautiful gifts that we have that comes with our salvation, that the cross paid for, and that is the full forgiveness of our sins. To the True Christ, when someone repents, then those sins never existed. When you continue to talk about that person, you are talking about a new born babe, a innocent one, and that makes you an liar in the eyes of our Lord. You are the one doing the sin, not the one that you are accusing. So when the unbelievers see this going on in front of them in the community, it shows them that Christians do not practice true Christianity. But quite to the contrary, they act worse than the heathen that they are pointing a finger at.

This is the nature of a chicken, for when one chicken gets hurt and starts to bleed, the rest of the chickens in the barnyard tare into the injured chicken until it is dead. It seems that this is what is happening in Christianity today. Forgiveness has lost its joy to those that needs joy, and in fact without forgiveness there is no joy.

II Corinthians 2:8 "Wherefore I beseech you that ye would confirm your love toward him."

This is the real Christian way, and when unbelievers see Christians with this forgiving spirit, this causes them to want to enter into this joy that they have witnessed. Everybody knows that Christians are not perfect, and those that claim to be are liars and the world can see right through them. However, when a Christians falls on his face in sin, and in repentance confesses that sin and comes under the blood of Christ, then in Christ we are made perfect by Him. The Hypocrite pretends to be perfect, but when forgiveness is asked for and received, then love comes to the heart from that forgiveness. Without love you simply can't have forgiveness.

When a preacher slips and falls short, and then his congregation refuses to forgive him for his shortcomings that he has repented of, it makes a mockery out of Christianity. It makes a mockery out of all of God's gifts that we have through our salvation in the blood of Christ. God's gifts are without repentance, which means that once God has given those gifts to you, they are never taken back. If God made you a great singer, after your fall, your ability to sing is just as strong as it was when you received that gift. If your gift is preaching and teaching, that gift is also just as it was, without repentance or drawn back from you. That is why when you have sinned, then it is time to repent to the Father in Jesus name, and get right back on track. Those that would hinder your use of those gifts after you have repented, are acting not under the influence of God's Holy Spirit, but by some evil spirit.

Don't allow others to rob you of the gifts that God has given you, by their wicked tongues and their ignorance of what they say. Many men and woman have been destroyed because they have taken their eyes oof God and His Word, and they have listened to these misled congregations that have no forgiveness in their heart.

II Corinthians 2:9 "For to this end also did I write, that I might know the proof of you, whether ye be obedient in all things."

Paul is saying that it is for this reason that he knew that he could test these Corinthians a little bit. Paul knew that if they had strayed from the Word and that fault was drawn to their attention, that these Corinthian Christians would be obedient to correct that which was wrong in their midst.

II Corinthians 2:10 "To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ;"

Paul is saying that it is the loving Spirit that is within each of us that allows us to forgive. When we do not allow His Spirit to work in us, we make a mockery of both the Spirit that is within us, and Christ's blood that was shed on the Cross for us. When you fail to have that forgiveness in your heart toward some sinner that has sinned against you, then you rob that person when he repents and wants to come forward and make things right. Your actions of not forgiving hurts the entire body of Christ, for when you mouth the filth of repeating those sins that are repented, then the entire body of Christ is festered with the unforgiveness that comes from your mouth.

Know this my friend, that we all will be attending our judgment day, and when the books are opened, those sins that are repented of will not be recorded anywhere, that's right nowhere in the annuals of eternal record. However, every last word that you spoke toward that brother that sinned and repented will be there on your side of the ledger and you will answer for everything   that slipped from your mouth. Once you understand just how serious this is, I'm sure that you will do as the Corinthians did, and repent to God in Jesus' name, and get right with Him. Sure the Corinthians fell short, but when Paul called it to their correction, they repented of those sins, and sought to correct their ways, and made things right.

II Corinthians 2:11 "Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices."

Satan will use all those loosely spoken words to his advantage, for we know how Satan likes to use and take advantage of mistakes in his devices and trickery. Satan likes to work himself into a family and church and take little petty arguments and things spoken, and twist them into something that would cause you to withhold your forgiveness that you would offer to the one that has harmed you. In withholding your forgiveness, Satan has robbed you of joy and peace of mind that comes only when there is forgiveness.

If you withhold forgiveness because you know that that person will do it again to you, what a fake you are. You go out and sin the same sins over and over, and each time you ask our Father for forgiveness, you expect Him to forgive you. You know He will because He said He would. Friend, if you are going to be Christ like and one of the Body of Christ, then it is also expected of you, just as you expect forgiveness from Christ. Jesus Christ said to forgive four hundred and ninety [seven times seventy] times a day, if it is necessary. The point lies in the word "repentance". If that person does not repent than that is a different thing, but know that Satan will make every loose end that you allow him to have. It doesn't matter whether you are on the job, at home, in school or in Church, Satan will use your idol words no matter where you are. If you fail to forgive when you are required to, God's blessing will be withheld from you.

Forgiveness is the love of God paid on the cross, and don't allow that love and forgiveness to be lessened by your unwillingness to forgive others.

II Corinthians 2:12 "Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ's gospel, and a door was opened unto me of the Lord,"

II Corinthians 2:13 "I had no rest in my spirit, because I found not Titus my brother: but taking my leave of them, I went from thence into Macedonia."

Paul went to Macedonia to find his brother Titus because he was worried about him.

II Corinthians 2:14 "Now thanks be unto God, Which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of His knowledge by us in every place."

Paul found Titus and Titus gave Paul his first report of the church back in Corinth. The following verses are given concerning this affair that had happened. Paul was happy to see that when the congregation heard what Paul said of it, they tended to what needed to be done, and the man and the congregation were cleansed of it. However, what Paul was pleased most of was that the congregation brought that sinner back into the congregation after he went to God with his repenting heart and asked God for forgiveness. Paul could see and smell that sweet savor of the first fruits that was shown in these Corinthian church.

II Corinthians 2:15 "For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish:"

You have a choice, and we as a body of Christ also have a choice for you have to make your own mind up how you will treat the things that Christ taught. You can practice true Christianity, and be forgiving and follow the Word of God as He has instructed us, or you can refuse to forgive and turn yourself into a judge. However if you think you can take God's position of judging other souls, you will condemn you own soul to hell. That is how serious this is. It is truly a tragedy when we see what many of the churches are doing today, all in the name of God. Perish means to turn your soul to ashes. It doesn't matter much what happens to this flesh body, but it is your soul that shall either have eternal life, or be turned to ashes. That means done away with, and be as if it had never existed, even within the minds of your loved ones. It is a serious matter to play games with God's Word.

II Corinthians 2:16 "To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things?"

"Savour" is what smells in your nostrils. The stench of death can be very bad, and sin bring that foul smell to your spiritual senses; however, when we seek the way of life, of forgiveness and love to others, the odor is a breathe of freshness and sweet smelling savor both to our Heavenly Father and to those around you. When you love the Lord and practice the things that Jesus taught us through His Word, then you become sufficient or qualified to receive these things. It is you that does the choosing, and thereby at judgment you qualify yourself as to whether you are sweet fragrance, or the stench of death in the end.

For those that reject God's ways and seek to chase after Satan's pleasures, we are to let them go, turn them over to Satan and allow them to go all the way to the bottom of the pit. When they are there the turn around can come to where they can wise up and come to their senses. Then at a latter time when that person comes to his senses, he will see the beauty of Christ salvation and be drawn to it. Is the fragrance of forgiveness in Christ's love shown in your church body? Is it strong enough that this lost soul will be drawn to it, or do you have all sorts of odors coming forth that causes people to flee from you?

II Corinthians 2::17 "For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ."

Paul is saying, I didn't come to you peddling a bunch of false teaching to corrupt you in the Word of God; But I came to you in the purity of God's Word. This word for "sincerity" means that it is so pure that in sunlight it will shine, and no part of it needs to be hidden. Paul is telling them that the Words that he brought to them, was put to them in such a simple form that it could be judged by the sunlight itself.

You take a diamond to a jeweler, and when he puts it under the strong light and the scope, not one imperfection could get by him. Well that is how pure that Paul gave them the Word of God, so pure and simple that even the mysteries of the Word of God were crystal clear to them. The beautiful story of our Lord Jesus Christ, and His saving power on the cross can be examined, and that beauty will come forth. God's Word stands on its own and God's Spirit will write it on the heart of man, when it is put forth with understanding of the language that it was given in.



To study the Bible is the noblest of all pursuits; to understand it, the highest of all goals.
We pray that with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, you accomplish both.

The "American Wisdom Series"


Published by:

Rhine Publishing Co.
E-mail address -