Bible (Early Wycliffe)/II. Corinþis
Prolog to Þe ſecunde piſtle to CorinÞijsEdit
Aftir penaunce don, a comfortable piſtle he wrytiþ to hem fro Troade, by Tite; and preiſynge hem he counceiliþ to betre, ſchewynge hem y ſorowid, but ſoþli amendid.
Ende of þe prolog; bigynnynge þe ſecunde piſtle.
Poul, apoſtle of Jheſu Criſt, bi þe wille of God, and Tymoþe, broþir, to þe chirche of God þat is at Corinþi, wiþ alle ſeyntis þat ben in al Acaye, grace to ȝou, and pees of God oure fadir, and of þe Lord Jheſu Criſt. Bleſſid be God and fadir of oure Lord Jheſu Criſt, fadir of mercies, and God of al comfort, or ſolace, þat comfortiþ vs in al oure tribulacioun, þat and we mown comforte hem, þat ben in al preſſure, or ouerleyinge, by þe exortacioun, or moneſtynge, by which and we ben moneſtid of God. For as þe paſſiouns of Criſt ben plenteuous in vs, ſo and by Criſt oure coumfort is plenteuous. Forſoþ wher we ben trowblid, or purſuwed, for ȝoure techinge and helþe, eþir we ben comfortid, for ȝoure comfort, eþir we ben moneſtid, for ȝoure moneſtinge and heelþe. Þe which worchiþ in ȝou þe ſuffryng of þe ſame paſſiouns, þe whiche and we ſuffren, þat oure hope be ſadd for ȝou; witynge for as ȝe ben felowis of paſſiouns, ſo ȝe ſchulen be and of comfort. Forſoþe, briþeren, we wolen not ȝou for to vnwite of oure tribulacioun, þat is don in Aſye; for ouer maner we ben greuyd aboue vertu, or myȝte, ſo þat it anoyȝede vs, ȝhe, for to lyue. But we ſilf in vs ſilf hadden anſwere of deeþ, þat we be not triſtinge in vs ſilf, but in God þat reyſiþ deede men. Þe which delyuerede vs, and delyuereþ fro ſo greet perelis, in to whom we hopen, for and ȝit he ſchal delyuere, helpynge and ȝou in prayere for vs; þat of þe perſoones of manye faces of þat ȝyuynge þat is in ȝou, by manye parceneris, graces, or þankyngis, ben don to God for vs. Forwhi oure glorie is þis, þe witneſſinge of oure conſcience, þat in ſympleneſſe and clenneſſe of God, and not in fleiſchly wyſdom, but in þe grace of God, we lyuen in þis world, forſoþ more plenteuouſly to ȝou. Soþli we wryten not oþere þingis, þan þo þat ȝe han rad and knowen, forſoþ I hope þat til to þe ende ȝe ſchulen knowe, as and ȝe han knowen vs of party; for we ben ȝoure glorie, and ȝe oure in þe day of oure Lord Jheſu Criſt. And in þis triſtnynge I wolde firſte come to ȝou, þat ȝe hadden þe ſecunde grace, and þat I ſchulde by ȝou paſſe in to Macedonye, and eft fro Macedonye I ſchulde come to ȝou, and of ȝou be ledd in to Judee. Forſoþ whanne I wolde þis þing, wher I vſide liȝtneſſe, or þo þingis þat I þenke, I þenke aftir þe fleiſch, þat at me be, is and not, or ȝhe and nay? Forſoþ God is trewe, for oure word þe which was at ȝou, þer is not in it is and nay, but in it is is, þat is, treuþe. Soþeli Jheſus Criſt, þe ſone of God, þe which is prechid in ȝou by vs, by me, and Syluan, and Tymoþe, þer was not in him is and nay, but in hym is was, þat is, ſtedefaſt treuþe. Forſoþ how many euere ben biheeſtis of God, in him is, þat is, ben fulfillid. Þerefore and by him we ſeyn amen to God, to oure ioye. Þe which ſoþli confermeþ vs wiþ ȝou in Criſt, and þe which God anoyntide vs, and þat markide vs, and ȝaf a wed, or eernes, of þe ſpirit in oure hertis. Forſoþ I inclepe God witneſſe in to my ſoule, þat I ſparinge ȝou cam not ouer Corinþe; not for we ben lordis of ȝoure feiþ, but we ben helperis of ȝoure ioye; forwhi þorw bileue ȝe ſtonden.
Forſoþ I ordeynede þis ilke þing at me, þat I ſchulde not come eftſoone in to ſorwe to ȝou. Soþli if I make ȝou ſori, or heuy, and who is he þat gladdiþ me, no but he þat is ſorowful of me? And þis ſame þing I wroot to ȝou, þat whanne I ſchal come, I haue not ſorwe vp ſorwe, of hem of þe whiche it bihofte me for to ioye. Triſtynge in ȝou alle, for my ioye is of ȝou alle. For whi of moche tribulacioun and angwiſche of herte I wroot to ȝou by manye teeris, þat ȝe be not ſori, but þat ȝe wite what charite I haue more plenteuouſly in ȝou. Forſoþ if ony man haþ maad me ſorwful, he haþ not maad me ſorwful but in party, þat I charge, or diſeeſe, not ȝou alle. Þis blamynge þat is maad of many, ſufficiþ to him, þat is ſuch maner man; ſo þat aȝenward ȝe ȝyue more and comforte, leſt perauenture he þat is ſuch maner man, be ſopun vp, or diſpeire, by more greet heuyneſſe. For which þing I biſeche ȝou, þat ȝe conferme charite in to him. Forſoþ þerfore and I wroot, þat I knowe ȝoure aſayinge, wher in alle þingis ȝe ben obedyent. Forſoþ to whom ȝe han ony þing ȝouen, and I haue forȝeuen. Forwhi and I þat I ȝaf, if I ony þing ȝaf, haue ȝouun for ȝou in þe perſoone of Criſt, þat we be not diſſeyued of Saþanas; ſoþli we vnknowen not his þouȝtis. Forſoþ whanne I hadde comen to Trowade for þe goſpel of Criſt, and a dore was openyd to me in þe Lord, I hadde not reſte to my ſpirit, for þat I fond not my broþir Tite, but I ſeyinge to hem far wel, paſſide into Macedonye. Þerfor þankingis to God, þat euermore makiþ vs to haue victorie in Criſt Jheſu, and ſchewiþ by vs þe odour of his knowynge in ech place; for we ben þe good odour, or ſauour, of Criſt to God, in þes þat ben maad ſaaf, and in þes þat periſchen. To oþere ſoþli odour of deeþ in to deeþ, to oþere forſoþ odour of lyf into lyf. And to þes þingis who ſo able? Soþli we ben not as ful manye, auoutrynge þe word of God, but of clenneſſe, but as of God, bifore God in Criſt we ſpeken.
Bigynne we eftſoone for to comende, or preiſe, vs ſilf? or wher we neden, as ſumme, preiſynge lettris to ȝou, or of ȝou? Ȝe ben oure piſtle, writun in ȝoure hertis, þe which is kowd and radd of alle men; ȝe maad opyn, for ȝe ben þe piſtle of Criſt myniſtrid of vs, and writun, not wiþ enke, but by þe ſpirit of quyk God; not in ſtoony tablis, but in fleiſchly tablis of herte. Forſoþ we han ſuch triſt by Criſt to God; not þat we ben ſufficient for to þenke ony þing of vs, as of vs, but oure ſufficience is of God. Þe which and made vs able myniſtris of þe newe teſtament, not bi lettre, but by ſpirit; for þe lettre ſleiþ, forſoþ þe ſpirit quykeneþ. For if þe myniſtracioun of deeþ defformyd by lettris in ſtoones was in glorie, ſo þat þe children of Iſrael myȝten not biholde in to þe face of Moyſes, for þe glorie of his cheere, þe which glorie is auoydid, hou not more þe myniſtracioun of ſpirit ſchal be in glorie? Forwhi if þe myniſtracioun of dampnacioun is in glorie, moche more þe myniſterie, or ſeruynge, of riȝtwyſneſſe is plenteuous in glorie. Forwhi neþer þat þat was cleer in þis part, was glorified for excellent glorie; ſoþly if þat þat is auoydid, is bi glorie, moche more þat þat dwelliþ is in glorie. Þerfore we hauynge ſuch hope, vſen moche triſt; and not as Moyſes puttide a veyl on his face, þat þe children of Iſrael ſchulde not byholde in to his face, þe which veyl is auoydid. But þe wittis of hem ben aſtoneyed; ſoþli til in to þis day þe ſame veyl in redinge of þe oolde teſtament dwelliþ not ſchewid, for in Criſt it is auoydid, but til in to þis day, whanne Moyſes is radd, þe veyl is putt vpon her hertis. Forſoþ whanne Iſrael ſchal be conuertid to God, þe veyl ſchal be don awey. Forſoþ þe Lord is ſpirit; forſoþ where is þe ſpirit of God, þere is liberte. Forſoþ alle we wiþ ſchewid face biholdinge þe glorie of þe Lord, ben transformyd into þe ſame ymage, fro clereneſſe into clereneſſe, as of þe ſpirit of þe Lord.
Therfore we hauynge þis adminiſtracioun, or office, vp which we han getun mercy, faylen not, but don a wey þe priuey þingis of ſchame, not walkynge in ſutil gyle, neþer auoutrynge þe word of God, but in ſchewinge of treuþe comendinge vs ſilf to ech conſcience of men bifore God. For if alſo oure goſpel is keuerid, or hid, in þeſe þat periſchen it is keuerid; in whiche þe god of þis world haþ blyndid þe ſoules of men out of þe bileue, or vnfeiþful men, þat þe liȝtnynge of þe goſpel of þe glorie of Criſt, þat is þe ymage of God inuyſible, ſchyne not. Soþli we prechen not vs ſilf, but Jheſu Criſt oure Lord; forſoþe vs ȝoure ſeruauntis by Jheſu. For God, þat ſeide þe lyȝt for to ſchyne of derkneſſis, he haþ ynliȝtid in oure hertis, to þe illumynynge of þe ſcience of þe cleerneſſe of God, into þe face of Jheſu Criſt. Forſoþe we han þis treſour in brotil veſſelis, þat þe hiȝneſſe be of Goddis vertu, and not of vs. In alle þingis we ſuffren tribulacioun, but we ben not maad ſtreit; we ben maad pore, but we ben not diſtroyed; we ſuffren perſecucioun, but we ben not forſaken; we ben maad lowe, but we ben not confoundid; we ben caſt down, but we periſchen not; euermore beringe aboute þe mortifyinge of Jheſu Criſt in oure body, þat and þe lyf of Jheſu be ſchewid in oure bodies. Soþli euermore we þat lyuen, ben takun in to deeþ for Jheſu, þat and þe lyf of Jheſu be ſchewid in oure deedly fleiſch. Þerfore deeþ worchiþ in vs, lyf ſoþli in ȝou. Forſoþ hauynge þe ſame ſpirit of feiþ, as it is writun, I haue bileued, for which þing I ſpak; and we bileuen, for which þing and we ſpeken; witynge for he þat reiſide Jheſu, ſchal reiſe and vs wiþ Jheſu, and ſchal ordeyne vs wiþ ȝou. Soþli alle þingis for ȝou, þat grace beynge plenteuous by manye in doynge of þankingis be plenteuous into glorie of God. For which þing we faylen not, but þouȝ þe ilke þat is wiþouteforþ, oure man be coruptid; neþelees þat man þat is wiþinne forþ, is renewid, or maad newe aȝen, fro day into day. Forſoþ þat þat is in preſent, or now, a litil moment laſtynge, and liȝt, or eſy, þing of oure tribulacioun, worchiþ ouer manere, or meſure, into hiȝneſſe þe euerelaſting weiȝte of glorie in vs, vs not biholdynge þo þingis þat ben ſeyn, but þo þat ben not ſeyn. Soþli þo þingis þat ben ſeyn, ben temperal, or durynge by ſhort tyme; forſoþe þo þingis þat ben not ſeyn, ben euerlaſtinge, or wiþouten ende.
Soþeli we witen, for if oure erþely hous of þis dwellyng be diſſolued, þat we han a bildyng of God, an hous not maad by hondis, euerlaſtinge in heuenes. Forwhi and in þis þing we mornen, coueitynge for to be cloþid aboue oure dwellinge of heuene; if neþeles we ben founden cloþid, and not nakid. Forwhi and we þat ben in þis tabernacle, ſorwen wiþ inneforþ greuyd, for þat we wolen not be diſpoylid, but be cloþid aboue; þat þe ilke þing þat is deedli, be ſopun vp of lyf. Forſoþe he þat makiþ vs into þis þing, is God, þat ȝaf to vs a wedd, or eernes, of ſpirit. Þerfore we beynge hardy alle gatis, and witinge for þe whyle we ben in þis body, we gon in pilgrymage fro þe Lord; forſoþ we walken by feiþ, and not by cleer ſiȝte. Forſoþ we ben hardy, and han good wille, more for to be in pilgrymage fro þe body, and for to be preſent to God. And þerfore we ſtryuen, wheþer abſent, wheþir preſent, for to pleſe hym. Forſoþe it byhoueþ vs alle for to be ſchewid bifore þe trone of Criſt, þat euery man reſceyue, or telle aȝen, þe propre þingis of body, as he haþ don, eþer good, eþir yuel. Þerfore we witynge þe drede of þe Lord, ſoftly mouen, or counceilen, to men, forſoþ to God we ben opyn; ſoþly I hope, and in ȝoure conſciencis vs for to be knowun. We comenden not vs ſilf eftſoone to ȝou, but we ȝyuen to ȝou occacioun for to glorie for vs, þat ȝe haue to hem þat glorien in þe face, and not in þe herte. Soþli wher we by mynde, or reſoun, paſſen to God, wher we ben ſobre to ȝou? Soþli þe charite of Criſt dryueþ vs; geſſinge, or demynge, þis þing, for if oon is deed for alle, þerfore alle ben deede. And Criſt deyde for alle, þat and þei þat lyuen, lyue not now to hem ſilf, but to him þat deyede for hem, and roos aȝen. And ſo we fro þis tyme han knowe no man vp þe fleiſch; and if we knowen Criſt vp þe fleiſch, but riȝt now we han not knowen. Þerfore if ony newe creature is in Criſt, oolde þingis han paſſid, and lo! alle þingis ben maad newe. Forſoþe alle þingis of God, þe which reconcilede, or acordide, vs to him by Criſt, and ȝaf to vs þe myniſterie, or ſeruyſe, of reconcilinge. Soþli for God was in Criſt, reconcilynge to him þe world, not rettinge to hem her giltis, and puttide in vs þe word of reconcilinge. Þerfore we ben ſett in legacie, or meſſage, for Criſt, as God moneſtinge by vs; we biſechen ȝou for Criſt, be ȝe reconcilid to God. God þe fadir made him þe ſynne for vs, þat is, redempcioun, or ſacrifice for ſynne, þe which knew not ſynne, þat we ſchulde be maad riȝtwyſneſſe of God in hym.
Forſoþe we helpinge moneſtyn, þat ȝe reſceyuen not þe grace of God in veyn. Soþli he ſeiþ, In tyme accept, or wel pleſynge, I haue herd þee, and in þe day of helþe I haue helpid þee. Lo! now a tyme acceptable, lo! now a day of heelþe. To no man ȝyuynge ony offencioun, or hurtynge, þat oure myniſterie, or ſeruyſe, be not reprouyd; but in alle þingis ȝyue we vs ſilf as myniſtris of God, in moche pacience, in tribulaciouns, and in nedis, in angwiſchis, in betyngis, or ſcorgingis, in priſouns, in diſſenciouns wiþ ynne forþ, in trauelis, in wakyngis, in faſtingis, in chaſtite, in ſcience, or kunnynge, in long abydinge, in ſwetneſſe, in þe Hooly Gooſt, in charite not feyned, in þe word of treuþe, in þe vertu of God; by armers of riȝtwyſneſſe on þe riȝt half and left half; by glorie and vnnobley; by yuel fame and good fame; as diſſeyueris, and trewe men; as þei þat ben vnknowen, and knowun; as men deyinge, and lo! we lyuen; as chaſtiſid, and not maad deed; as ſorowful, forſoþ euermore ioyinge; as hauynge nede, or as nedy men, ſoþly makynge manye riche; as no þing hauynge, and weldinge alle þingis. A! ȝe Corynþis, oure mouþ is opyn to ȝou, oure herte is alargid; be ȝe not maad ſtreit in vs, but be ȝe maad ſtreit in ȝoure entrailis. Forſoþe we hauynge þe ſame reward, I ſeye as to ſones, and be ȝe alargid. Nyle ȝe lede ȝok wiþ vnfeiþful men. Soþli what partynge, or comunynge, of riȝtwyſneſſe wiþ wickidneſſe? or what felowſchip of liȝt to derkneſſis? ſoþli what acordinge of Criſt to Belial? or what part of a feiþful, or criſten man, wiþ vnfeiþful, or heþene? but what conſent to þe temple of God wiþ ydols? Forſoþ ȝe ben þe temple of quyk God, as þe Lord ſeiþ, For I ſchal dwelle in hem, and I ſchal walken in; and I ſchal be þe God of hem, and þei ſchulen be to me a peple. For which þing go ȝe out of þe myddel of hem, and be ȝe departid, ſeiþ þe Lord, and touche ȝe not vnclene þing; and I ſchal reſceyue ȝou, and I ſchal be to ȝou in to a fadir, and ȝe ſchulen be to me into ſones and douȝtris, ſeiþ þe Lord almyȝti.
Therfore, mooſt dereworþe briþeren, we hauynge þes ȝiftis, clenſe vs fro alle filþe of fleiſch and ſpirit, perfytli makynge halowynge in þe drede of þe Lord. Take ȝe vs; we han hurt no man, we han corupt no man, we han bigylid no man. I ſeye not for ȝoure condempnynge; forſoþ I ſeide bifore, þat ȝe ben in oure hertis, for to deie to gidere, and lyue to gidere. Moche triſt is to me anentis ȝou, moche gloriynge is to me for ȝou. I am fulfillid wiþ comfort, I abounde, or am plenteuous, in ioye in al oure tribulacioun. Forwhi and whanne we hadden comen to Macedonye, oure fleiſch hadde no reſte, but we ſuffriden al tribulacioun; forſoþ wiþouteforþ, fiȝtingis, wiþ ynneforþ, dredis. But he þat comfortiþ meeke men, God comfortide vs in þe comynge of Tyte. Forſoþ not oonli in þe comynge of him, but alſo in þe comfort by which he comfortide me in ȝou, tellinge to vs ȝoure deſyr, ȝoure wepinge, ȝoure loue for me, ſo þat I ioyede more. For and if I made ȝou ſori in a piſtle, now it rewiþ me not; and if it rewide, I ſeynge þat þouȝ I made ȝou ſory in þat piſtle at an hour, now haue I ioye; not for ȝe weren maad ſorowful, but for ȝe weren maad ſorowful to penaunce. Soþli ȝe ben maad ſory aftir God, þat in no þing ȝe ſuffre peirement of vs. Forſoþ þat ſorwe þat is aftir God, worchiþ penaunce in to ſtedefaſt heelþe; forſoþ ſorwe of þe world worchiþ deeþ. Lo! ſoþeli þis ſame þing, ȝou for to be ſorowful aftir God, how moche biſyneſſe it worchiþ in ȝou; but defending, but indignacioun, but drede, but deſyr, but loue, but veniaunce. In alle þingis ȝe han ȝouun ȝou ſilf for to be vndefoulid in cauſe, or nede. Þerfore and if I wroot to ȝou, not for him þat dide iniurie, neþer for him þat ſuffride, but for to ſchewe oure byſyneſſe, þe which we han for ȝou bifore God. Þerfore we ben comfortid, forſoþe in oure comfort more plenteuouſly we ioyeden more on þe ioye of Tyte, for his ſpirit is fulfillid of alle ȝou. And if I gloriede ony þing anentis him of ȝou, I am not confoundid, or ſchamyd; but as we han ſpokun to ȝou alle þingis in treuþe, ſo and oure glorie þat was at Tyte, is maad treuþe. And þe entraylis of him ben more plenteuouſly in ȝou, of him hauynge in mynde þe obedience of ȝou alle, how wiþ drede and tremblinge ȝe reſſeyueden him. I haue ioye, þat in alle þingis I triſte in ȝou.
Briþeren, forſoþe we maken knowe to ȝou þe grace of God, þat is ȝouun in þe chirchis of Macedonye, and þat in moche aſayinge of tribulacioun, þe haboundaunce, or plente, of þe ioye of hem was, and þe hiȝeſte pouert of hem was plenteuous into þe richeſſis of þe ſympleneſſe of hem. For I bere witneſſinge and to hem, vp vertu, or power, and aboue vertu þei weren wilful, wiþ moche moneſtynge biſechinge vs þe grace and comenynge of mynyſterie, þat is maad in to hooly men. And not as we hopiden, but þei ȝauen hem ſilf firſt to þe Lord, aftirward to vs by þe wille of God. So þat we preieden Tyte, þat as he bigan, ſo and he perfoorme in ȝou alſo þis grace. But as ȝe abounden in alle þingis, in feiþ, word, and ſcience, or kunnynge, and al biſyneſſe, moreouer and in ȝoure charite in to vs, þat and in þis grace ȝe habounde. I ſeie not as comaundinge, but by þe biſyneſſe of oþere men alſo prouynge to gidere þe good wit of ȝoure charite. Soþli ȝe witen þe grace of oure Lord Jheſu Chriſt, forwhi he was made nedy for vs, whanne he was ryche, þat ȝe ſchulden be maad ryche by his myſeſte, or nedyneſſe. And I ȝyue counceil in þis þing; ſoþli þis is profitable to ȝou, þat not oonly bigynnen for to do, but and for to wilne fro þe formere ȝeer. Now forſoþe and in dede performe ȝe, þat as þe ynwitt of wil is redy, ſo be it and of performynge of þat þing þat ȝe han. Soþli if þe wille be redy, it is acceptid vp þat þat it haþ, not vp þat þat it haþ not. Forſoþ not þat it be remyſſioun, or ſlouþe, to oþere, forſoþ to ȝou tribulacioun; but of eueneſſe, in þe preſent tyme ȝoure haboundaunce fulfille þe myſeſte of hem, þat and þe haboundaunce of hem be ſupplement, or fulfillinge, of ȝoure myſeſte, þat eueneſſe be maad; as it is writun, He þat haþ moche, haboundide not, and he þat litil, hadde not laſſe. Forſoþ I do þankyngis to God, þat ȝaf þe ſame byſyneſſe for ȝou in þe herte of Tyte, for ſoþeli he reſceyuede exortacioun, or moneſtynge; but whanne he was biſyere, wiþ his wille he wente forþ to ȝou. Forſoþ we ſenten wiþ hym oure broþer, whos preiſynge is in þe goſpel by alle chirchis. Forſoþ not oonly, but and he is ordeyned of chirchis þe felowe of oure pilgrymage into þis grace, þat is mynyſtrid of vs to þe glorie of þe Lord, and to oure ordeyned wille; eſchewinge þis þing, þat no man blame, or diſpiſe, vs in þis plente, þat is mynyſtrid of vs to þe glorie of þe Lord. Soþli we purueyen goode þingis, not oonly bifore God, but alſo bifore alle men. Forſoþ we ſenten wiþ hem and oure broþer, whom we han prouyd in manye þingis ofte, for to be biſy, now forſoþ moche biſyer, in moche triſt in ȝou, eþir for Tyte, þat is my felowe, and in ȝou helpere, eþer oure briþeren, apoſtlis of chirchis of þe glorie of Criſt. Þerfor ſchewe ȝe in to þe faces of chirchis, þe ſchewynge þat is of ȝoure charite and of oure glorie for ȝou into hem.
Forwhi of þe mynyſterie þat is maad into hooly men, it is to me of haboundaunt, or plente, for to wryte to ȝou. Forſoþ I woot ȝoure ynwitt redy, for þe which I haue glorie of ȝou anentis Macedonyes, for and Acaye is redi fro a ȝeer paſſid, and ȝoure loue haþ ſtirid ful manye. Forſoþ we han ſent briþeren, þat þat þing þat we glorien in ȝou, be not auoydid in þis partie, þat as I ſeyde, ȝe be redy. Leſt when Macedonyes ſchulen come wiþ me, and ſchulen fynde ȝou vnredy, we ſchamen, þat we ſeye ȝou not, in þis ſubſtaunce. Þerfore I geſſide neceſſarie for to praye briþeren, þat þei come bifore to ȝou, and make redy þis bihiȝt bleſſynge for to be redy, ſo as bleſſinge, not as auarice. Þis þing forſoþe I ſeye, for he þat ſowiþ ſcarſly, ſchal and ſcarſly repe; and he þat ſowiþ in bleſſingis, ſchal repe and of bleſſyngis. Ech man as he caſtide in his herte, not of heuyneſſe, or of nede; forſoþ God loueþ a glad ȝyuere. Forſoþe God is myȝty for to make al grace abounde in ȝou, þat ȝe in alle þingis euermore hauynge al ſufficience, abounde in to al good work; as it is writun, He delide a brood, he ȝaf to pore men, his riȝtwiſneſſe dwelliþ into wiþouten ende. Forſoþ he þat myniſtriþ ſeed to þe man ſowynge, and ſchal ȝyue breed for to ete, and he ſchal multiplie ȝoure ſeed, and make moche þe encreſyngis of fruytis of ȝoure riȝtwyſneſſe; þat in alle þingis ȝe maad ryche habounde in to alle ſympleneſſe, þe which worchiþ by vs doynge of þankyngis to God. For þe myniſterie of þis office not oonly filliþ þo þingis þat faylen to hooly men, but alſo aboundiþ by manye in doynge of þankingis to þe Lord, by prouynge of þis mynyſterie, glorifiynge God in þe obedience of ȝoure knowleching in þe goſpel of Criſt, and in ſympleneſſe of comynycacioun into hem and into alle, and in þe biſechinge of hem for ȝou, deſyringe ȝou for þe clere grace in ȝou. I do þankingis to God vpon þe vnenarrable, or þat may not be told, ȝifte of hym.
Forſoþ I Poul biſeche ȝou, by þe homlyneſſe, or myldeneſſe, and ſofteneſſe, or pacience, of Criſt, þe which ſoþely in þe face am meek among ȝou, forſoþ I abſent triſte in ȝou. Forſoþe, briþeren, I preie ȝou, þat I preſent be not hardy by þe ilke triſt, in which I am geſſid for to be hardy in to ſumme, þe whiche deme vs, as we wandren vp þe fleiſch. Forſoþ we walkynge in fleiſch, fiȝten not, or holden not knyȝþod, vp þe fleiſch. Forwhi þe armers of oure knyȝþod ben not fleiſchly, but myȝty to God to þe deſtruccioun of wardingis, or ſtrengþis; we diſtroyinge counceils, and al hiȝneſſe reyſinge him aȝens þe ſcience of God, and dryuynge into caytifte al vndirſtondinge into þe ſeruyſe of Criſt; alſo hauynge in redyneſſe for to venge al vnobedience, whanne ȝoure obedience ſchal be fulfillid. Se ȝe þe þingis þat ben vpon þe face. If ony man triſtiþ to him ſilf, him for to be of Criſt, þenke he þis þing eft anentis himſilf, for as he is Criſtis, ſo and we. Forwhi and if I ſchal glorie ony þing more of oure power, þe which þe Lord ȝaf to vs into edifyinge, and not into ȝoure diſtruccioun, I ſchal not ſchame. Forſoþe þat I be not geſſid as for to feere ȝou by epiſtlis, forwhi þei ſeyn, Þe epiſtlis ben heuye, or greuouſe, and ſtrong, but þe preſence of body ſijk, and þe word contemptible, or worþi for to be diſpyſid. He þat is ſuch maner man, þenke þis, for what maner men we ben abſent by epiſtlis, ſuche maner men vs preſent in dede. Soþli we doren not putte vs among, or compariſowne vs to ſumme, þat comenden hem ſilf; but we metinge, or meſuringe, vs in vs ſilf, and compariſownynge vs ſilf to vs, ſoþli we ſchulden not glorie into ful moche, but vp þe meſure of reule, bi which God meſuride to vs, þe meſure of ſtrecchinge til to ȝou. Forſoþ not as we not ſtrecchinge to ȝou, ouerholden vs. Forſoþ til to ȝou we camen in þe goſpel of Criſt, not gloryinge into ful moche in oþere mennis trauelis. Soþly we hauynge hope of ȝoure feiþ waxynge in ȝou for to be magnyfied vp oure reule in haboundaunce, alſo for to preche into þo þingis þat ben byȝondes ȝou, not for to glorie in oþir mennis reule, in þes þingis þat ben maad redy. Forſoþe he þat glorieþ, glorie in þe Lord. Forſoþ not he þat comendiþ him ſilf is proued, but whom God comendiþ, or preiſiþ.
I wolde ȝe ſchulden ſuſteyne a litil þing of myn vnwyſdom, but and ſupporte me, or bere vp me. Soþly I loue ȝou by þe loue of God; ſoþli I haue bihiȝt, or bicome borwe, for to ȝyue ȝou a chaſt virgyne to a man, Criſt. Forſoþ I drede, leſt as þe ſerpent diſceyuede Eue wiþ his ſutil wordis, ſo ȝoure wittis ben corupt, and falle doun fro þe ſympleneſſe þat is in Criſt. Forwhi if he þat comeþ, prechiþ anoþir Criſt, whom we prechen not, or if ȝe taken anoþir ſpirit, whom ȝe reſſeyueden not, or anoþir goſpel, þe which ȝe reſceyueden not, riȝtly ȝe ſchulden ſuffre. Soþli I wene for to haue don no þing laſſe fro þe greete apoſtlis. Forwhi þouȝ I be vnlerned in ſermoun, or word, but not in ſcience, or kunnyng. Forſoþ in alle þingis I am ſchewid, or maad knowe, to ȝou. Or wheþir I haue do ſynne, mekynge, or makinge lowȝ, my ſilf, þat ȝe ben enhaunſid, for freely I euangeliſide to ȝou þe euangelie of God? I ſpoilide, or made nakide, or took ȝiftis, of oþir chirchis, takynge ſoude to ȝoure ſeruyſe. And whenne I was anentis ȝou, and nedide, I was chargeous to no man; forwhi briþeren þat camen fro Macedonye, ſupplieden, or fulfilden, þat þat failide to me. And in alle þingis I haue kept, and ſchal kepe me wiþoute charge to ȝou. Þe treuþe of Criſt is in me; for þis glorie ſchal not be brokun in me, in þe regiouns, or kuntrees, of Achaye. Whi? for I loue not ȝou? God woot. For þat þat I do, and I ſchal do, þat I kitte awey þe occaſioun of hem, þat wolen occaſioun, or plente, or power, þat in þe þing, in which þei glorien, þei be founde ſuche as and we. Forwhi ſuche falſe apoſtlis ben trecherous, or gylous, work men, transfiguringe hem into apoſtlis. And not wondir; ſoþli he Saþanas transfyguriþ him into an aungel of lyȝt. Þerfor it is not greet, if his myniſtris ben transfigurid as þe myniſtris of riȝtwyſneſſe, whos ende ſchal be aftir hir workis. Eft I ſeye, leſt ony man deme me vnwyſe; ellis take ȝe me vnwyſe, þat and I haue glorie a litil what. Þat þat I ſpeke, I ſpeke not vp God, but as into vnwyſdom, in þis ſubſtaunce of glorie. Forwhi many men glorien vp þe fleiſch, and I ſchal glorie. Forſoþ ȝe ſuffren gladly vnwyſe men, whanne ȝe ſilf ben wyſe. Soþli ȝe ſuſteynen, if ony man dryue ȝou into ſeruage, if ony man deuouriþ, if ony man takiþ, if ony man is enhaunſid bi pride, if ony man ſmytiþ ȝou into face. Vp vnnobley, I ſeye, as we weren ſyke in þis partye. In what þing ony man dar, in vnwyſdom I ſeie, and I dar. Þei ben Ebrewis, and I; þei ben Yſraelitis, and I; þei ben þe ſeed of Abraham, and I; þei ben þe myniſtris of Criſt, and I. As laſſe wys I ſeye, I more; in ful manye trauels, in priſouns more plenteuouſly, in woundis aboue manere, or ouer meſure, in deeþis ofte tymes. I reſceyuede of þe Jewis fyue ſyþis fourty ſtrokis oon leſſe; þries I was betun wiþ ȝerdis, onys I was ſtoonyd, þryes Y maad periſching in ſchip, nyȝt and day I was in depneſſe of þe ſee; in weies ofte, in perelis of flodis, in perels of þeues, in perelis of kyn, in perels of heþen men, in perels in cite, in perels in deſert, in perels in ſee, in perels in falſe briþeren, in traueil and myſeſte, in many wakyngis, in hungir and þirſt, in many faſtingis, in cold and in nakidneſſe. Wiþoute þo þingis þat ben wiþouteforþ; myn eche dayes wakynge, or ſtudyinge, þe biſyneſſe of alle chirchis. Who is ſyk, and I am not ſyk? who is ſclaundrid, and I am not brend? If it bihoueþ for to glorie, I ſchal glorie in þo þingis þat ben of myn infirmyte, or freelte. God and þe fadir of oure Lord Jheſu Criſt, þat is bleſſid into þe worldis, woot, þat I gabbe not, or lyie not. Þe prouoſt, or kepere, of Damaſke, of þe king of þe folk Areþe, kepte þe cite of Damaſcenys for to take me; and by a wyndow in a leep I was latun down by þe wal, and ſo I ſcapide his hondis.
If it bihoueþ for to glorie, ſoþli it ſpediþ not; forſoþ I ſchal come to þe viſyouns and reuelaciouns of þe Lord. I woot a man in Criſt bifore fourtene ȝeer; wher in body, wher out of body, I woot not, God woot; ſich a man rauyſchid til to þe þridde heuene. And I woot ſuch a man; wher in body, or out of body, I noot, God woot; for he was rauyſchid into paradys, and herde priuey wordes, þe whiche it is not leefful to a man for to ſpeke. For ſich maner þing I ſchal glorie; forſoþe for me no þing, no but in myn infirmitees. Forwhi and if I ſchal wilne for to glorie, I ſchal not be vnwys; ſoþli I ſchal ſeye treuþe; forſoþ I ſpare, leſt ony man geſſe me ouer þat þing þat he ſeeþ in me, or heeriþ ony þing of me. And leſt þe greetneſſe of reuelaciouns enhaunce me in pride, þe pricke of fleiſch, an aungel of Saþanas, is ȝouun to me, þe which boffatiþ me. For which þing þries I preide þe Lord, þat it ſchuld go awey fro me. And he ſeide to me, My grace ſufficiþ to þee; forwhi vertu is perfitly maad in infirmite. Þerfore gladly I ſchal glorie in myn infirmytees, þat þe vertu of Criſt dwelle in me. For which þing I pleſe to me in myn infirmitees, in wrong diſpiſyngis, or reprouyngis, in nedis, in perſecuciouns, in angwyſchis, for Criſt; ſoþli whanne I am ſyk, þanne I am myȝty. I am maad vnwitty, ȝe conſtreyneden me. Forſoþ I ſchulde, or owȝte, for to be comendid of ȝou; ſoþli I dide no þing leſſe fro hem þat ben apoſtlis aboue manere. Forwhi þouȝ I be nouȝt, neþelees þe ſygnes of myn apoſtilhed ben maad on ȝou, in al pacience, and ſingnes, or miraclis, and grete wondris, and vertues. Soþli what is it, þat ȝe hadden laſſe bifore oþere chirchis, no but þat I my ſilf greuyde ȝou not? Forȝyue ȝe to me þis wrong. Loo! þis þridde tyme I am redy for to come to ȝou, and I ſchal not be greuous to ȝou; forſoþe I ſeke not þo þingis þat ben ȝoure, but ȝou. Forſoþ neþir ſones owen to treſoure, or make treſour, to fadir and modir, but þe fadir and modir to þe ſones. Forſoþ I mooſt wilfully ſchal ȝyue, and I my ſilf ſchal be ouerȝouun for ȝoure ſoulis; þouȝ I more louynge, be leſſe loued. But be it; I greuyd not ȝou, but whanne I was ſutil wyſe, I took ȝou wiþ gyle. Wher I diſceyuede ȝou by ony of hem, þe whiche I ſente to ȝou? I preiede Tyte, and I ſente wiþ him a broþir. Wher Tyte bigylide ȝou? wher we gon not in þe ſame ſpiryt? wher not in þe ſame ſteppis? Sum tyme ȝe wenen, þat we ſchulen excuſe vs anentis ȝou. Bifore God in Criſt we ſpeken; forſoþe, mooſt dere briþeren, alle þingis for ȝoure edyfyinge. Soþeli I drede, leſt perauenture whanne I ſchal come, I ſchal fynde ȝou not which manere I wole, and I ſchal be founde of ȝow which maner ȝe wolen not; leſt perauenture ſtryuyngis, enuyes, ſturdyneſſis, diſſenciouns and detracciouns, priuey ſpechis of diſcord, bolnynges bi pride, debatis be among ȝou; leſt eftſoone whanne I ſchal come, God make me louȝ anentis ȝou, and I weyle manye of hem, þat bifore ſynneden, and diden not penaunce of þe vnclenneſſe, and fornycacioun, and vnchaſtite, þat þei han don.
Lo! þis þridde tyme I come to ȝou, and in þe mouþ of tweyne or þre witneſſis euery word ſchal ſtonde. I ſeide bifore, and ſeye bifore, as preſent twyes, and now abſent, to hem þat bifore han ſynned, and to alle oþere; for if I ſchal come eftſoone, I ſchal not ſpare. Wher ȝe ſeken aſayinge of him þat ſpekiþ in me, Criſt, þe which is not ſyk in ȝou, but is myȝty in vs? Forwhi þouȝ he was crucified of infirmyte, but he lyueþ of þe vertu of God. Forwhi and we ben ſyke in hym, but we ſchulen lyue wiþ him of þe vertu of God in vs. Aſaye ȝou ſilf, if ȝe ben in þe feiþ; ȝe ȝou ſilf proue. Wher ȝe knowen not ȝou ſilf, for Criſt Jheſu is in ȝou? no but ȝe ben repreuable. Forſoþ I hope, þat ȝe knowen for we ben not repreuable. Soþely we preien þe Lord, þat ȝe don no þing of yuel; not þat we ſeme prouyd, but þat ȝe do þat þat is good, forſoþ þat we be repreuable. Forſoþe we mowen no þing aȝens treuþe, but for treuþe. Forſoþ we ioyen, for we ben ſyke, forſoþ ȝe ben myȝty; and we preien þis þing, ȝoure endinge. Soþli þerfore I abſent write þis þing, þat I preſent do not hardere, vp þe power, þe which þe Lord ȝaf to me into edificacioun, and not into diſtruccioun. Briþeren, hennis forward ioye ȝe, be ȝe perfyt, and teche ȝe; vndirſtonde ȝe þe ſame þing; haue ȝe pees, and God of pees and loue ſchal be wiþ ȝou. Greete ȝe wel to gidere in hooly coſſ. Alle hooly men greeten ȝou wel. Þe grace of oure Lord Jheſu Criſt, and þe charite of God, and þe comunynge of þe Hooly Goſt, be wiþ ȝou alle. Amen.
Heere endiþ þe ſecounde piſtle to Corynþys, and heere bigynneþ epiſtle to Galaþies.