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  • PARALLEL BIBLE - 2 Corinthians 3:6

    CHAPTERS: 2 Corinthians 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13     

    VERSES: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18




    King James Bible - 2 Corinthians 3:6

    Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.

    World English Bible

    who also made us sufficient as servants of a new covenant; not of the letter, but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives

    Douay-Rheims - 2 Corinthians 3:6

    Who also hath made us fit ministers of the new testament, not in the letter, but in the spirit. For the letter killeth, but the spirit quickeneth.

    Webster's Bible Translation

    Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth

    Greek Textus Receptus

    3739 R-NSM και 2532 CONJ ικανωσεν 2427 5656 V-AAI-3S ημας 2248 P-1AP διακονους 1249 N-APM καινης 2537 A-GSF διαθηκης 1242 N-GSF ου 3756 PRT-N γραμματος 1121 N-GSN αλλα 235 CONJ πνευματος 4151 N-GSN το 3588 T-NSN γαρ 1063 CONJ γραμμα 1121 N-NSN αποκτεινει 615 5719 V-PAI-3S το 3588 T-NSN δε 1161 CONJ πνευμα 4151 N-NSN ζωοποιει 2227 5719 V-PAI-3S

    Treasury of Scriptural Knowledge

    VERSE (6) -
    2Co 5:18-20 Mt 13:52 Ro 1:5 1Co 3:5,10; 12:28 Eph 3:7; 4:11,12

    SEV Biblia, Chapter 3:6

    ¶ el cual aun nos hizo que fusemos ministros suficientes del Nuevo Testamento, no de la letra, sino del Espíritu; porque la letra mata, mas el Espíritu vivifica.

    Clarke's Bible Commentary - 2 Corinthians 3:6

    Verse 6. Who hath made us able
    ministers] This is a more formal answer to the question, Who is sufficient for these things? prov tauta tiv ikanov; 1 Cor. ii. 16. God, says the apostle, has made us able ministers; ikanwsen hmav diakonouv, he has made us sufficient for these things; for the reader will observe that he uses the same word in both places. We apostles execute, under the Divine influence, what God himself has devised. We are ministers of the new covenant; of this new dispensation of truth, light, and life, by Christ Jesus; a system which not only proves itself to have come from God, but necessarily implies that God himself by his own Spirit is a continual agent in it, ever bringing its mighty purposes to pass. On the words kainh diaqhkh, new covenant, see the PREFACE to the gospel of St. Matthew.

    Not of the letter, but of the Spirit] The apostle does not mean here, as some have imagined, that he states himself to be a minister of the New Testament, in opposition to the Old; and that it is the Old Testament that kills, and the New that gives life; but that the New Testament gives the proper meaning of the Old; for the old covenant had its letter and its spirit, its literal and its spiritual meaning. The law was founded on the very supposition of the Gospel; and all its sacrifices, types, and ceremonies refer to the Gospel. The Jews rested in the letter, which not only afforded no means of life, but killed, by condemning every transgressor to death.

    They did not look at the spirit; did not endeavour to find out the spiritual meaning; and therefore they rejected Christ, who was the end of the law for justification; and so for redemption from death to every one that believes. The new covenant set all these spiritual things at once before their eyes, and showed them the end, object, and design of the law; and thus the apostles who preached it were ministers of that Spirit which gives life.

    Every institution has its letter as well as its spirit, as every word must refer to something of which it is the sign or significator. The Gospel has both its letter and its spirit; and multitudes of professing Christians, by resting in the LETTER, receive not the life which it is calculated to impart.

    Water, in baptism, is the letter that points out the purification of the soul; they who rest in this letter are without this purification; and dying in that state they die eternally. Bread and wine in the sacrament of the Lord's Supper, are the letter; the atoning efficacy of the death of Jesus, and the grace communicated by this to the soul of a believer, are the spirit.

    Multitudes rest in this letter, simply receiving these symbols, without reference to the atonement, or to their guilt; and thus lose the benefit of the atonement and the salvation of their souls. The whole Christian life is comprehended by our Lord under the letter, Follow me. Does not any one see that a man, taking up this letter only, and following Christ through Judea, Galilee, Samaria, &c., to the city, temple, villages, seacoast, mountains, &c., fulfilled no part of the spirit; and might, with all this following, lose his soul? Whereas the SPIRIT, viz. receive my doctrine, believe my sayings, look by faith for the fulfillment of my promises, imitate my example, would necessarily lead him to life eternal. It may be safely asserted that the Jews, in no period of their history, ever rested more in the letter of their law than the vast majority of Christians are doing in the letter of the Gospel. Unto multitudes of Christians Christ may truly say: Ye will not come unto me that ye may have life.

    John Gill's Bible Commentary

    Ver. 6. Who also hath made us able ministers , etc..] This is an answer to the question in ( 2 Corinthians 2:16) who is sufficient for these things? no man is of himself; we are indeed sufficient for them, but not of ourselves; our sufficiency is of God, he hath made us able, or sufficient ministers: such ministers as are not of men's, but God's making, are sufficient ones; and none are sufficient but whom God makes so; and those he makes able and sufficient, by giving them spiritual gifts, fitting them for the ministry: and these are ministers of the New Testament , or covenant; the covenant of grace, of which Christ is the Mediator and surety; called new, not because newly made, for it was made with Christ from everlasting; nor newly revealed, for it was made known to Adam after his fall, and to all the Old Testament patriarchs, and was exhibited under the legal dispensation, though but darkly, in types, shadows, sacrifices, etc.. which therefore waxing old is vanished away; and the covenant of grace is now more clearly revealed under the Gospel dispensation, free from all the obscurity it before laboured under; and therefore is called new, as well as because it will always continue so, and never give way to another covenant: now the Gospel, and the ministry of it, is nothing else but an exhibition of the covenant of grace, its blessings and promises; and the work and business of those who are ministers of it is not to insist upon the covenant of works, the terms, conditions, obligations, promises, and threatenings of that covenant; but to open and explain the nature, promises, and blessings of the covenant of grace: for such who are fit and proper ministers, are ministers not of the letter, but of the spirit ; which is to be understood, not of any difference between the books of the Old and the New Testament, for a faithful minister of the word may and will bring forth things new and old, out of the one as well as the other; nor of the literal and allegorical, or mystical sense of the Scriptures, as if the latter and not the former was only to be attended to; nor of the difference of communicating the Gospel by letters, and preaching it by word of mouth; since both methods may be used for the spread of it, as were by the apostles themselves; but of the difference there is between the law and the Gospel. The law is the letter, not merely because written in letters, for so likewise is the Gospel; but because it is a mere letter, hereby showing what is to be done or avoided, without any efficacy in it, or communicating any to enable persons to obey its commands, to give life to its observers, or either to sanctify or justify any who are under it, or of the works of it; it is a mere letter, as observed by an unregenerate man, who only regards the externals of it, being unacquainted with its spirituality. The Gospel is the spirit; (see John 6:63) it contains spiritual things, and not things merely natural, moral, and civil, as does the law, but spiritual blessings and promises; it penetrates into the spirit and soul of man, and comes from, and is attended with the Spirit of God. The law is the letter that killeth , by irritating and provoking to sin, the cause of death, which though not the design and natural tendency of the law, and therefore not to be blamed, yet so it is, through the corruption of human nature; and by convincing of sin when the sinner is killed, and it dead in his own apprehension; and by not only threatening with death, but by cursing, condemning, and punishing with it: but the Gospel is the spirit , which giveth life ; it is a means in the hand of the Spirit of God, of quickening dead sinners, of healing the deadly wounds of sin, of showing the way of life by Christ, and of working faith in the soul, to look to him, and live upon him; it affords food for the support of the spiritual life, and revives souls under the most drooping circumstances. The apostle may allude to a distinction among the Jews, between the body and sou] of the law; the words, they say, are hrwt apwg , the body of the law; and the book of the law is the clothing; and besides these, there is atyrwad atmn , the soul of the law; which wise men look into f21 .

    Matthew Henry Commentary

    Verses 1-11 - Even the
    appearance of self-praise and courting human applause, is painful to the humble and spiritual mind. Nothing is more delightful to faithful ministers, or more to their praise, than the success of their ministry, as shown in the spirits and lives of those among whom the labour. The law of Christ was written in their hearts, and the love of Christ shed abroad there. Nor was it written in tables of stone, as the law of God given to Moses, but on the fleshy (not fleshly, a fleshliness denotes sensuality) tables of the heart, Eze 36:26. Their hearts were humbled and softened to receive this impression, by the new-creating power of the Holy Spirit. He ascribes all the glory to God. And remember, as our whole dependence is upon the Lord, so the whole glory belongs to him alone. The letter killeth: the letter of the law is the ministration of death; and if we rest only in the letter of the gospel, we shall not be the better for so doing: but the Holy Spirit gives life spiritual, and life eternal. The Old Testamen dispensation was the ministration of death, but the New Testament of life. The law made known sin, and the wrath and curse of God; it showe us a God above us, and a God against us; but the gospel makes know grace, and Emmanuel, God with us. Therein the righteousness of God by faith is revealed; and this shows us that the just shall live by his faith; this makes known the grace and mercy of God through Jesu Christ, for obtaining the forgiveness of sins and eternal life. The gospel so much exceeds the law in glory, that it eclipses the glory of the legal dispensation. But even the New Testament will be a killin letter, if shown as a mere system or form, and without dependence of God the Holy Spirit, to give it a quickening power.

    Greek Textus Receptus

    3739 R-NSM και 2532 CONJ ικανωσεν 2427 5656 V-AAI-3S ημας 2248 P-1AP διακονους 1249 N-APM καινης 2537 A-GSF διαθηκης 1242 N-GSF ου 3756 PRT-N γραμματος 1121 N-GSN αλλα 235 CONJ πνευματος 4151 N-GSN το 3588 T-NSN γαρ 1063 CONJ γραμμα 1121 N-NSN αποκτεινει 615 5719 V-PAI-3S το 3588 T-NSN δε 1161 CONJ πνευμα 4151 N-NSN ζωοποιει 2227 5719 V-PAI-3S

    Vincent's NT Word Studies

    6. Hath made us able
    ministers (ikanwsen hmav diakonouv). An unfortunate translation, especially in view of the conventional sense of able. The verb iJkanow from iJkanov sufficient (see on Rom. xv. 23), means to make sufficient or fit. It occurs only here and Col. i. 12. The correct sense is given by Rev., hath made us sufficient as ministers. Compare enabled (endunamwsanti), 1 Tim. i. 12.

    Of the new testament (kainhv diaqhkhv). See on Matt. xxvi. 28, 29. There is no article. Render, as Rev., of a new covenant, in contrast with the Mosaic. See on Heb. ix. 15. Of course the term is never applied in the gospels or epistles to the collection of New-Testament writings.

    Of the letter (grammatov). Depending on ministers, not on covenant. For letter, see on writings, John v. 47. Here used of the mere formal, written ordinance as contrasted with the Gospel, which is "spirit and life." Compare Rom. ii. 29; vii. 6.

    Killeth. See on Rom. v. 12, 13; vii. 9; viii. 2. Compare 1 Cor. xv. 56. "The living testimony borne to his authority in the Corinthian Church suggests strongly the contrast of the dreary, death-like atmosphere which surrounded the old, graven characters on which his opponents rested their claims" (Stanley).

    Robertson's NT Word Studies

    3:6 {Who also made us sufficient for such confidence} (hos kai hikanwsen hemas). Late causative verb from hikanos (verse #5) first aorist active indicative, "who (God) rendered us fit." In N.T. only here and #Col 1:12. {As ministers of a new covenant} (diakonous kaines diaqekes). Predicate accusative with hikanwsen. For diaqeke see on Mt 26:28 and for diakonos on Mt 20:26 and for kaines (fresh and effective) on Lu 5:38. Only God can make us that.

    CHAPTERS: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13
    VERSES: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18


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