1This is the third time that I am visiting you. Every fact shall be sustained and confirmed by the testimony of two or three witnesses. 2 I have already warned those who have sinned in the past and all the rest as well, and I warn them now even though I am absent [from you] as I did when I was with you the second time, that if I come back I will not spare anyone, 3 since you seek [forensic] proof that Christ is speaking in and through me. He is not weak or ineffective in dealing with you, but powerful within you. 4 For even though He was crucified in weakness [yielding Himself], yet He lives [resurrected] by the power of God [His Father]. For we too are weak in Him [as He was humanly weak], yet we are alive and well [in fellowship] with Him because of the power of God directed toward you.
5 Test and evaluate yourselves to see whether you are in the faith and living your lives as [committed] believers. Examine yourselves [not me]! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves [by an ongoing experience] that Jesus Christ is in you—unless indeed you fail the test and are rejected as counterfeit? 6 But I hope you will acknowledge that we do not fail the test nor are we to be rejected. 7 But I pray to God that you may do nothing wrong. Not so that we [and our teaching] may appear to be approved, but that you may continue doing what is right, even though we [by comparison] may seem to have failed. 8 For we can do nothing against the truth, but only for the truth [and the gospel—the good news of salvation]. 9 We are glad when we are weak [since God’s power comes freely through us], but you [by comparison] are strong. We also pray for this, that you be made complete [fully restored, growing and maturing in godly character and spirit—pleasing your heavenly Father by the life you live]. 10 For this reason I am writing these things while absent from you, so that when I come, I will not need to deal severely [with you], in my use of the authority which the Lord has given me [to be used] for building you up and not for tearing you down.
11 Finally, believers, rejoice! Be made complete [be what you should be], be comforted, be like-minded, live in peace [enjoy the spiritual well-being experienced by believers who walk closely with God]; and the God of love and peace [the source of lovingkindness] will be with you. 12 Greet one another with a [a]holy kiss. 13 All [b]God’s people greet you.
14 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.