1-corinthians 2:3


King James Version (KJV)

And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

American King James Version (AKJV)

And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

American Standard Version (ASV)

And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

Basic English Translation (BBE)

And I was with you without strength, in fear and in doubt.

Webster's Revision

And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

World English Bible

I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.

English Revised Version (ERV)

And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

Clarke's 1-corinthians 2:3 Bible Commentary

I was with you in weakness - It is very likely that St. Paul had not only something in his speech very unfavourable to a ready and powerful elocution, but also some infirmity of body that was still more disadvantageous to him. A fine appearance and a fine voice cover many weaknesses and defects, and strongly and forcibly recommend what is spoken, though not remarkable for depth of thought or solidity of reasoning. Many popular orators have little besides their persons and their voice to recommend them. Louis XIV. styled Peter du Bosc le plus beau parleur de son royaume, the finest speaker in his kingdom; and among his own people he was styled l'orateur parfait, the perfect orator. Look at the works of this French protestant divine, and you find it difficult to subscribe to the above sayings. The difficulty is solved by the information that the person of M. du Bosc was noble and princely, and his voice full, harmonious, and majestic. Paul had none of these advantages, and yet idolatry and superstition fell before him. Thus God was seen in the work, and the man was forgotten.

In fear, and in much trembling - This was often the state of his mind; dreading lest he should at any time be unfaithful, and so grieve the Spirit of God; or that, after having preached to others, himself should be a castaway. See 1 Corinthians 9:27.

An eminent divine has said that it requires three things to make a good preacher; study, temptation, and prayer. The latter, no man that lives near to God can neglect; the former, no man who endeavors rightly to divide the word of truth will neglect; and with the second every man will be more or less exercised whose whole aim is to save souls. Those of a different cast the devil permits to pass quietly on in their own indolent and prayerless way.

Barnes's 1-corinthians 2:3 Bible Commentary

And I was with you - Paul continued there at least a year and six months. Acts 18:11.

In weakness - In conscious feebleness; diffident of my own powers, and not trusting to my own strength.

And in fear, and in much trembling - Paul was sensible that he had many enemies to encounter Acts 18:6.; and he was sensible of his own natural disadvantages as a public speaker, 2 Corinthians 10:10. He knew too, how much the Greeks valued a manly and elegant species of oratory; and he, therefore, delivered his message with deep and anxious solicitude as to the success. It was at this time, and in view of these circumstances, that the Lord spoke to him by night in a vision, and said, "be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace; for I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee; for I have much people in this city," Acts 18:9-10. If Paul was conscious of weakness, well may other ministers be; and if Paul sometimes trembled in deep solicitude about the result of his message, well may other ministers tremble also. It was in such circumstances, and with such feelings, that the Lord met him to encourage him - And it is when other ministers feel thus, that the promises of the gospel are inestimably precious. We may add, that it is then, and then only, that they are successful. Notwithstanding all Paul's fears, he was successful there. And it is commonly, perhaps always, when ministers go to their work conscious of their own weakness; burdened with the weight of their message; diffident of their own powers; and deeply solicitous about the result of their labors, that God sends down His Spirit, and converts sinners to God. The most successful ministers have been men who have evinced most of this feeling; and most of the revivals of religion have commenced, and continued, just as ministers have preached, conscious of their own feebleness, distrusting their own powers, and looking to God for aid and strength.

Wesley's 1-corinthians 2:3 Bible Commentary

2:3 And I was with you - At my first entrance. And in fear - Lest I should offend any. And in much trembling - The emotion of my mind affecting my very body.

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