He threatens the impenitent, to provoke them to penance.
1 Behold, this is the third time I am coming to you: *In the mouth of two
or three witnesses shall every word be established.
2 I have told you before, and foretell, as present, and now absent, to
them that sinned before, and to all the rest, that if I come again, I will not spare.
3 Do you seek a proof of Christ, who speaketh in me, who towards you is
not weak, but is mighty in you?
4 For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power
of God. For we also are weak in him: but we shall live with him by the power of God towards you.
5 Try your ownselves if you be in the faith: prove ye yourselves. Know
you not your ownselves, that Christ Jesus is in you? unless perhaps you be reprobates.
6 But I trust that you shall know that we are not reprobates.
7 Now we pray God, that you may do no evil, not that we may appear approved,
but that you may do that which is good, and that we may be as reprobates.
8 For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.
9 For we rejoice, that we are weak, and you are strong. This also we pray
for, your perfection.
10 Therefore I write these things being absent, that being present, I may
not deal more severely, according to the power which the Lord hath given me to edification, and not to destruction.
11 For the rest, brethren, rejoice, be perfect, take exhortation, be of
one mind, have peace: and the God of peace and of love will be with you.
12 Salute one another with a holy kiss. All the saints salute you.
13 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the charity of God, and the
communication of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.
1: Deuteronomy xix. 15.; Matthew xviii. 16.; John viii. 17.; Hebrews x.