Remind your people to obey the government and its officers, and always to be obedient and ready for any honest work. They must not speak evil of anyone, nor quarrel, but be gentle and truly courteous to all.

Once we, too, were foolish and disobedient; we were misled by others and became slaves to many evil pleasures and wicked desires. Our lives were full of resentment and envy. We hated others and they hated us.

But when the time came for the kindness and love of God our Savior to appear, then he saved us—not because we were good enough to be saved but because of his kindness and pity—by washing away our sins and giving us the new joy of the indwelling Holy Spirit, whom he poured out upon us with wonderful fullness—and all because of what Jesus Christ our Savior did so that he could declare us good in God’s eyes—all because of his great kindness; and now we can share in the wealth of the eternal life he gives us, and we are eagerly looking forward to receiving it. These things I have told you are all true. Insist on them so that Christians will be careful to do good deeds all the time, for this is not only right, but it brings results.

Don’t get involved in arguing over unanswerable questions and controversial theological ideas; keep out of arguments and quarrels about obedience to Jewish laws, for this kind of thing isn’t worthwhile; it only does harm. 10 If anyone is causing divisions among you, he should be given a first and second warning. After that have nothing more to do with him, 11 for such a person has a wrong sense of values. He is sinning, and he knows it.

12 I am planning to send either Artemas or Tychicus to you. As soon as one of them arrives, please try to meet me at Nicopolis as quickly as you can, for I have decided to stay there for the winter. 13 Do everything you can to help Zenas the lawyer and Apollos with their trip; see that they are given everything they need. 14 For our people must learn to help all who need their assistance, that their lives will be fruitful.

15 Everybody here sends greetings. Please say hello to all of the Christian friends there. May God’s blessings be with you all.

Sincerely, Paul

Living Bible (TLB)

The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Saved in Order to Do Good

Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities,(A) to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good,(B) to slander no one,(C) to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone.

At one time(D) we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness(E) and love of God our Savior(F) appeared,(G) he saved us,(H) not because of righteous things we had done,(I) but because of his mercy.(J) He saved us through the washing(K) of rebirth and renewal(L) by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us(M) generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace,(N) we might become heirs(O) having the hope(P) of eternal life.(Q) This is a trustworthy saying.(R) And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good.(S) These things are excellent and profitable for everyone.

But avoid(T) foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels(U) about the law,(V) because these are unprofitable and useless.(W) 10 Warn a divisive person once, and then warn them a second time. After that, have nothing to do with them.(X) 11 You may be sure that such people are warped and sinful; they are self-condemned.

Final Remarks

12 As soon as I send Artemas or Tychicus(Y) to you, do your best to come to me at Nicopolis, because I have decided to winter there.(Z) 13 Do everything you can to help Zenas the lawyer and Apollos(AA) on their way and see that they have everything they need. 14 Our people must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good,(AB) in order to provide for urgent needs and not live unproductive lives.

15 Everyone with me sends you greetings. Greet those who love us in the faith.(AC)

Grace be with you all.(AD)

New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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