Examine yourselves1 to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves.2 Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you3--unless, of course, you fail the test?
And I trust that you will discover that we have not failed the test.
Now we pray to God that you will not do anything wrong. Not that people will see that we have stood the test but that you will do what is right even though we may seem to have failed.
For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth.
We are glad whenever we are weak4 but you are strong;5 and our prayer is for your perfection.610
This is why I write these things when I am absent, that when I come I may not have to be harsh7 in my use of authority--the authority the Lord gave me for building you up, not for tearing you down.8
Finally, brothers,9 good-by. Aim for perfection, listen to my appeal, be of one mind, live in peace.10 And the God of love11 and peace12 will be with you.
Greet one another with a holy kiss.1313
All the saints send their greetings.1414
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ,15 and the love of God,16 and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit17 be with you all.