Introduction

\\INTRODUCTION TO 2 CORTHINIANS 13\\

In this chapter the apostle continues his resolution to come to the
Corinthians, and to threaten with severity the incorrigible among
them, giving the reasons of it; prays to God that they might so
behave, that there might be no occasion for the exercise of it; and
concludes the epistle with very useful exhortations, and hearty
wishes of good things to them. He intimates to them again, that he
intended this third time to come unto them, when he would not spare
them, as they might expect he would not; partly because they had such
repeated warnings, reproofs, and admonitions from him, \\#2Co 13:1\\ and
partly because many of them had sinned before, and were stubborn and
obstinate, and had not repented, \\#2Co 13:2\\ as also because they had
tempted him, and demanded a proof of his power and authority, and of
Christ speaking in him, \\#2Co 13:3\\ and whereas this sprung from the
outward appearance of the apostle, whose bodily presence was weak, he
observes to them the instance of Christ himself in human nature, who
was crucified through weakness, and yet lives by the power of God; and
so he and his fellow ministers were weak like Christ, and for his sake,
and yet lived, and should live by the power of God; so that their
outward appearance was no proof of their want of the power of Christ in
them, \\#2Co 13:4\\ besides, he directs them to themselves for a proof
of it; who upon examination would find, that they were in the faith,
and Christ was in them; which was owing to the ministry of the apostle,
as a means and instrument; and so they had a proof in themselves of
Christ's speaking in the apostle, and being mighty in, and towards
them, or else they must be reprobate, injudicious, and disapproved
persons, \\#2Co 13:5\\ but whether they were such persons or not, he was
confident that he would not be found such; but would appear to be in
the faith, to have Christ in him, and to have power and authority from
him, \\#2Co 13:6\\ however, the apostle's hearty prayer for them was,
that they might be kept from evil; and that they might do that which is
good, and so be approved of God and men; and there be no occasion to
use any severity with them, when he should come among them, \\#2Co 13:7\\
otherwise he could do nothing against the truth, could not connive at
error and sin, but must use the power and authority he had to crush
everything of that kind, and defend truth, \\#2Co 13:8\\ and so far was
he from glorying in his power, and priding himself with it, that it was
a pleasure to him to have no occasion to make use of it, by which it
might seem as if he was without it; and it rejoiced him, when they
stood fast in the faith, and walked as became the Gospel, and so needed
not the rod of reproof and correction; nay, he could even wish, that
they were wholly perfect, and free from all blame, and every kind of
charge, \\#2Co 13:9\\ and the end he had in the writing in the manner he
did, being absent from them, was, lest when he should come among them,
he should be obliged to make use of his power he had from Christ for
edification, and not destruction; to prevent which, he wrote and
admonished them, in order to bring them to repentance, that so he might
have no occasion to use severity and sharpness, \\#2Co 13:10\\ and then
he takes his farewell of them, by giving them some exhortations to
harmony, unity, peace, and love among themselves, \\#2Co 13:11,12\\
gives the salutations of all the saints unto them, \\#2Co 13:13\\ and
then his own, with which he concludes the epistle, which is a wish of
all the blessings of grace from all the three persons, Father, Son, and
Spirit, \\#2Co 13:14\\.