We know what it means to fear the Lord, and so we try to persuade others.
God knows us completely, and I hope that in your hearts you know me as well.
We are not trying again to recommend ourselves to you; rather, we are trying to give you a good reason to be proud of us, so that you will be able to answer those who boast about people’s appearance and not about their character.
Are we really insane? It is for God’s sake.
Or are we sane? Then it is for your sake.
We are ruled by the love of Christ, now that we recognize that one man died for everyone, which means that they all share in his death.
He died for all, so that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but only for him who died and was raised to life for their sake.
No longer, then, do we judge anyone by human standards.
Even if at one time we judged Christ according to human standards, we no longer do so.
Anyone who is joined to Christ is a new being; the old is gone, the new has come.
All this is done by God, who through Christ changed us from enemies into his friends and gave us the task of making others his friends also.
Our message is that God was making all human beings his friends through Christ.
God did not keep an account of their sins, and he has given us the message which tells how he makes them his friends.
Here we are, then, speaking for Christ, as though God himself were making his appeal through us.
We plead on Christ’s behalf: let God change you from enemies into his friends!
Christ was without sin, but for our sake God made him share our sin in order that in union with him we might share the righteousness of God.
GNT … It was of small importance in Paul’s eyes what his critics thought of him.
He desired only to please his supreme Lord, whether he lived or died, was considered cold and staid or hot and impassioned.
He was overmastered by his love of Christ.
This may have been the sense of Christ’s love to his unworthy self, or the emotion that burned in his soul toward Christ, or the very love of Christ received into his heart, as a tiny creek on the shore receives the pulse of the ocean tide.
The Apostle had arrived at the deliberate conclusion and judgment that “all” who realized what Christ had done for them (and he among them) must live with as much devotion toward Him as others toward themselves.
A new world had been opened by Christ’s resurrection.
All things had become new.
Let us live in daily touch with that world of faith and glory, refusing to be judged by the old standards.
It is clear that the reconciliation of the world is as complete as God can make it, but it is for us to urge men to fall in Love with Christ and accept God’s proposals.