2 Corinthians 6

1 So, as we work together with God, we tell you to be careful. Remember that God has been very kind and he has forgiven you. Do not waste that! 2 In the Bible God says:

‘I listened to your prayer at the right time for me to help you.

I helped you on the right day for me to save you.’

6:2See Isaiah 49:8.

Listen! The right time is now! The day for God to save you is now!

3 We do not want anyone to think bad things about our work. So we do nothing that might cause trouble for anyone. 4 Instead, in everything that we do, we want to show that we are God's servants. When people want to hurt us, we are patient and brave. We have many troubles. We become sad and upset. 5 Sometimes people hit us. They put us in prison. They attack us. But we work hard. We cannot always sleep at night. We are often hungry. 6 We serve God honestly and with clean thoughts. We know what is true. We are patient and kind. God's Holy Spirit helps us. We love people in an honest way. 7 We speak a true message. God's power gives us strength. We do what is right, so we fight like soldiers on God's behalf. It is like we have God's weapons in both hands! 8 Sometimes people respect us as important. Sometimes they think that we are worth nothing. People may insult us, or they may praise us. We only say true things, but some people still think that we deceive others. 9 Some people do not want to know us. Other people accept us as God's servants. It seems like we are dying, but look! We are still alive! People punish us, but they do not kill us. 10 We seem to be sad, but really we are always happy. We seem to be poor, but we make many people rich. We seem to have nothing, but really we have everything.

11 Our friends at Corinth, we have spoken to you very honestly. We have shown you how much we love you. 12 We have done nothing to stop you from being our friends. But you have not really wanted to become our friends. 13 I am speaking to you as I would speak to my own children. Be fair to us! Accept us as your friends, just as we have accepted you.

Believers belong to God

14 Do not become united with people who do not believe in Christ. God has made you right with himself. Right and wrong cannot work together. Light and dark cannot join together. 15 Christ will never agree with the Devil. People who believe in Christ are completely different from people who do not believe. 16 Idols do not belong in God's house. Remember that we believers are the house of the God who lives for ever. This is what God has said:

‘I will make my home with them and I will live among them.

I will be their God and they will be my people.’

17 And so, the Lord says:

‘Come out from among them and be separate.

Do not touch anything that is disgusting.

Then I will accept you.’

18 He also says:

‘I will be a Father to you.

You will be my sons and my daughters.

That is what the Almighty Lord God says.’

6:18See 2 Samuel 7:14.