2 Corinthians 4:1-18 NIV
Present Weakness and Resurrection Life
1Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart. 2Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the Word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. 3And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing.
4The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the Glory of Christ, Who is the image of God. 5For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.
6 For God, Who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,”a made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s Glory displayed in the face of Christ.
7But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 8We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 10 We always carry around in our body the Death of Jesus, so that the Life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. 11For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. 12So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.
13It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.”b Since we have that same spirit ofc faith, we also believe and therefore speak,14because we know that the One Who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to Himself. 15All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the Glory of God.
16Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
This chapter 2 Corinthians 4 is intimately connected with the preceding, and is indeed merely a statement of the consequences or results of the doctrine advanced there. In that chapter 3, Paul had stated the clearness and plainness of the gospel as contrasted with the institutions of Moses, and particularly that the Christian ministry was a ministration more glorious than that of Moses. It was clearer. It was a ministration of justification 2 Corinthians 3:9, and of the Spirit 2 Corinthians 3:8, and was a ministration where they were permitted to look upon the unveiled and unclouded glories of God, 2 Corinthians 3:18.
In this chapter he states some of the "consequences," or "results" of their being called to this ministry; and the design is, to magnify the office of the ministry; to show the sustaining power of the truths which they preached; the interest which the Corinthian Christians and all other Christians had in the ministry, and this to show what there was to comfort them in the various trials to which as ministers they were exposed.
Paul states therefore in this chapter: Therefore - Διὰ τοῦτο Dia touto. “On account of this”. That is, because the light of the gospel is so clear; because it reveals so glorious truths, and all obscurity is taken away, and we are permitted to behold as in a mirror the Glory of the Lord, 2 Corinthians 3:18. Since the glories of the gospel are so great, and its effects on the heart are so transforming and purifying. The object is, to show the "effect" of being entrusted with such a ministry, on the character of his preaching.