When they set out, a terror from God came over the cities around them, and they did not pursue Jacob's sons.
Surely the arrows of the Almighty have pierced me; my spirit drinks their poison. God's terrors are arrayed against me.
Terrors frighten him on every side and harass him at every step.
For disaster from God terrifies me, and because of His majesty I could not do [these things].
How suddenly they become a desolation! They come to an end, swept away by terrors.
And You-- You are to be feared. When You are angry, who can stand before You?
From my youth, I have been afflicted and near death. I suffer Your horrors; I am desperate.
Your wrath sweeps over me; Your terrors destroy me.
Who understands the power of Your anger? Your wrath matches the fear that is due You.
The sinners in Zion are afraid; trembling seizes the ungodly: "Who among us can dwell with a consuming fire? Who among us can dwell with ever-burning flames?"
Who can withstand His indignation? Who can endure His burning anger? His wrath is poured out like fire, even rocks are shattered before Him.
Don't fear those who kill the body but are not able to kill the soul; rather, fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
"And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."
For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me and the gospel will save it.
For what does it benefit a man to gain the whole world yet lose his life?
What can a man give in exchange for his life?
For whoever is ashamed of Me and of My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels."
And if your hand causes your downfall, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than to have two hands and go to hell-- the unquenchable fire,
[[where Their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.]]
And if your foot causes your downfall, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life lame than to have two feet and be thrown into hell-- [[the unquenchable fire,
where Their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.]]
And if your eye causes your downfall, gouge it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell,
where Their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.
For everyone will be salted with fire.
Salt is good, but if the salt should lose its flavor, how can you make it salty? Have salt among yourselves and be at peace with one another."
But I will show you the One to fear: Fear Him who has authority to throw [people] into hell after death. Yes, I say to you, this is the One to fear!
It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God!
save others by snatching [them] from the fire; on others have mercy in fear, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.
And anyone not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.
Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ; certain that God is appealing through us, we plead on Christ's behalf, "Be reconciled to God."
Working together with Him, we also appeal to you: "Don't receive God's grace in vain."
"But he told him, 'If they don't listen to Moses and the prophets, they will not be persuaded if someone rises from the dead.'"
After the synagogue had been dismissed, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who were speaking with them and persuading them to continue in the grace of God.
He reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath and tried to persuade both Jews and Greeks.
"This man," they said, "persuades people to worship God contrary to the law!"
You both see and hear that not only in Ephesus, but in almost the whole province of Asia, this man Paul has persuaded and misled a considerable number of people by saying that gods made by hand are not gods!
And when they came to him, he said to them: "You know, from the first day I set foot in Asia, how I was with you the whole time--
serving the Lord with all humility, with tears, and with the trials that came to me through the plots of the Jews--
and that I did not shrink back from proclaiming to you anything that was profitable, or from teaching it to you in public and from house to house.
I testified to both Jews and Greeks about repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus.
"And now I am on my way to Jerusalem, bound in my spirit, not knowing what I will encounter there,
except that in town after town the Holy Spirit testifies to me that chains and afflictions are waiting for me.
But I count my life of no value to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of God's grace.
"And now I know that none of you, among whom I went about preaching the kingdom, will ever see my face again.
Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of everyone's blood,
for I did not shrink back from declaring to you the whole plan of God.
For the king knows about these matters. It is to him I am actually speaking boldly. For I'm not convinced that any of these things escapes his notice, since this was not done in a corner!
After arranging a day with him, many came to him at his lodging. From dawn to dusk he expounded and witnessed about the kingdom of God. He persuaded them concerning Jesus from both the Law of Moses and the Prophets.
For am I now trying to win the favor of people, or God? Or am I striving to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a slave of Christ.
We proclaim Him, warning and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone mature in Christ.
I labor for this, striving with His strength that works powerfully in me.
The Lord's slave must not quarrel, but must be gentle to everyone, able to teach, and patient,
instructing his opponents with gentleness. Perhaps God will grant them repentance to know the truth.
Then they may come to their senses and escape the Devil's trap, having been captured by him to do his will.
For our boast is this: the testimony of our conscience that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially toward you, with God-given sincerity and purity, not by fleshly wisdom but by God's grace.
Now we are writing you nothing other than what you can read and also understand. I hope you will understand completely--
as you have partially understood us-- that we are your reason for pride, as you are ours, in the day of our Lord Jesus.
For we are not like the many who make a trade in God's message [for profit], but as those with sincerity, we speak in Christ, as from God and before God.
Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not give up.
Instead, we have renounced shameful secret things, not walking in deceit or distorting God's message, but in God's sight we commend ourselves to every person's conscience by an open display of the truth.
For I am not conscious of anything against myself, but I am not justified by this. The One who evaluates me is the Lord.
Therefore don't judge anything prematurely, before the Lord comes, who will both bring to light what is hidden in darkness and reveal the intentions of the hearts. And then praise will come to each one from God.
For our exhortation didn't come from error or impurity or an intent to deceive.
Instead, just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please men, but rather God, who examines our hearts.
For we never used flattering speech, as you know, or had greedy motives-- God is our witness--
and we didn't seek glory from people, either from you or from others.
Although we could have been a burden as Christ's apostles, instead we were gentle among you, as a nursing mother nurtures her own children.
We cared so much for you that we were pleased to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own lives, because you had become dear to us.
For you remember our labor and hardship, brothers. Working night and day so that we would not burden any of you, we preached God's gospel to you.
You are witnesses, and so is God, of how devoutly, righteously, and blamelessly we conducted ourselves with you believers.
As you know, like a father with his own children,
we encouraged, comforted, and implored each one of you to walk worthy of God, who calls you into His own kingdom and glory.