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2 Corinthians 7:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— Having therefore these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— Having therefore these promises, beloved, let us purify ourselves from every pollution of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in God's fear.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— Having therefore, these, promises, beloved, let us purify ourselves from all pollution of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in fear of God.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— Having, then, these promises, beloved, may we cleanse ourselves from every pollution of flesh and spirit, perfecting sanctification in the fear of God;
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of the flesh and of the spirit, perfecting sanctification in the fear of God.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— Hauing therefore these promises (dearely beloued) let vs cleanse our selues from all filthines of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holinesse in the feare of God.
John Etheridge Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1849)
— Because then we have these promises, my beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all impurity of the flesh and of the spirit, and accomplish sanctification in the fear of Aloha.
James Murdock Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1852)
— Seeing, therefore, we have these promises, my beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of the flesh and of the spirit; and let us work righteousness, in the fear of God.

Strong's Numbers & Red-LettersGreek New TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
Having 2192
{2192} Prime
A primary verb (including an alternate form σχέω [[scheo]], {skheh'-o}; used in certain tenses only); to hold (used in very various applications, literally or figuratively, direct or remote; such as possession, ability, contiguity, relation or condition).
<5723> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Participle (See G5796)
Count - 2549
therefore 3767
{3767} Prime
Apparently a primary word; (adverbially) certainly, or (conjugationally) accordingly.
these 5025
{5025} Prime
Dative and accusative feminine plural respectively of G3778; (to or with or by, etc.) these.
promises, 1860
{1860} Prime
From G1861; an announcement (for information, assent or pledge; especially a divine assurance of good).
dearly beloved, 27
{0027} Prime
From G0025; beloved.
let us cleanse 2511
{2511} Prime
From G2513; to cleanse (literally or figuratively).
<5661> Grammar
Tense - Aorist (See G5777)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Subjunctive (See G5792)
Count - 512
ourselves 1438
{1438} Prime
(Including all the other cases); from a reflexive pronoun otherwise obsolete and the genitive (dative or accusative) of G0846; him (her, it, them, also [in conjunction with the personal pronoun of the other persons] my, thy, our, your) -self (-selves), etc.
from 575
{0575} Prime
A primary particle; 'off', that is, away (from something near), in various senses (of place, time, or relation; literally or figuratively).
all 3956
{3956} Prime
Including all the forms of declension; apparently a primary word; all, any, every, the whole.
filthiness 3436
{3436} Prime
From G3435; a stain, that is, (figuratively) immorality.
of the flesh 4561
{4561} Prime
Probably from the base of G4563; flesh (as stripped of the skin), that is, (strictly) the meat of an animal (as food), or (by extension) the body (as opposed to the soul (or spirit), or as the symbol of what is external, or as the means of kindred, or (by implication) human nature (with its frailties (physically or morally) and passions), or (specifically) a human being (as such).
and 2532
{2532} Prime
Apparently a primary particle, having a copulative and sometimes also a cumulative force; and, also, even, so, then, too, etc.; often used in connection (or composition) with other particles or small words.
spirit, 4151
{4151} Prime
From G4154; a current of air, that is, breath (blast) or a breeze; by analogy or figuratively a spirit, that is, (human) the rational soul, (by implication) vital principle, mental disposition, etc., or (superhuman) an angel, daemon, or (divine) God, Christ's spirit, the Holy spirit.
perfecting 2005
{2005} Prime
From G1909 and G5055; to fulfill further (or completely), that is, execute; by implication to terminate, undergo.
<5723> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Participle (See G5796)
Count - 2549
holiness 42
{0042} Prime
From G0040; sacredness (that is, properly the quality).
in 1722
{1722} Prime
A primary preposition denoting (fixed) position (in place, time or state), and (by implication) instrumentality (medially or constructively), that is, a relation of rest (intermediate between G1519 and G1537); 'in', at, (up-) on, by, etc.
the fear 5401
{5401} Prime
From a primary φέβομαι [[phebomai]] (to be put in fear); alarm or fright.
of God. 2316
{2316} Prime
Of uncertain affinity; a deity, especially (with G3588) the supreme Divinity; figuratively a magistrate; by Hebraism very.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

2 Corinthians 7:1

_ _ 2 Corinthians 7:1-16. Self-purification their duty resulting from the foregoing. His love to them, and joy at the good effects on them of his former epistle, as reported by Titus.

_ _ cleanse ourselves — This is the conclusion of the exhortation (2 Corinthians 6:1, 2 Corinthians 6:14; 1 John 3:3; Revelation 22:11).

_ _ filthiness — “the unclean thing” (2 Corinthians 6:17).

_ _ of the flesh — for instance, fornication, prevalent at Corinth (1 Corinthians 6:15-18).

_ _ and spirit — for instance, idolatry, direct or indirect (1 Corinthians 6:9; 1 Corinthians 8:1, 1 Corinthians 8:7; 1 Corinthians 10:7, 1 Corinthians 10:21, 1 Corinthians 10:22). The spirit (Psalms 32:2) receives pollution through the flesh, the instrument of uncleanness.

_ _ perfecting holiness — The cleansing away impurity is a positive step towards holiness (2 Corinthians 6:17). It is not enough to begin; the end crowns the work (Galatians 3:3; Galatians 5:7; Philippians 1:6).

_ _ fear of God — often conjoined with the consideration of the most glorious promises (2 Corinthians 5:11; Hebrews 4:1). Privilege and promise go hand in hand.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

2 Corinthians 7:1-4

_ _ These verses contain a double exhortation: —

_ _ I. To make a progress in holiness, or to perfect holiness in the fear of God, 2 Corinthians 7:1. This exhortation is given with most tender affection to those who were dearly beloved, and enforced by strong arguments, even the consideration of those exceedingly great and precious promises which were mentioned in the former chapter, and which the Corinthians had an interest in and a title to. The promises of God are strong inducements to sanctification, in both the branches thereof; namely, 1. The dying unto sin, or mortifying our lusts and corruptions: we must cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of flesh and spirit. Sin is filthiness, and there are defilements of body and mind. There are sins of the flesh, that are committed with the body, and sins of the spirit, spiritual wickednesses; and we must cleanse ourselves from the filthiness of both, for God is to be glorified both with body and soul. 2. The living unto righteousness and holiness. If we hope God is our Father, we must endeavour to be partakers of his holiness, to be holy as he is holy, and perfect as our Father in heaven is perfect. We must be still perfecting holiness, and not be contented with sincerity (which is our gospel perfection), without aiming at sinless perfection, though we shall always come short of it while we are in this world; and this we must do in the fear of God, which is the root and principle of all religion, and there is no holiness without it. Note, Faith and hope in the promises of God must not destroy our fear of God, who taketh pleasure in those that fear him and hope in his mercy.

_ _ II. To show a due regard to the ministers of the gospel: Receive us, 2 Corinthians 7:2. Those who labour in the word and doctrine should be had in reputation, and be highly esteemed for their work's sake: and this would be a help to making progress in holiness. If the ministers of the gospel are thought contemptible because of their office, there is danger lest the gospel itself be contemned also. The apostle did not think it any disparagement to court the favour of the Corinthians; and, though we must flatter none, yet we must be gentle towards all. He tells them, 1. He had done nothing to forfeit their esteem and good-will, but was cautious not to do any thing to deserve their ill-will (2 Corinthians 7:2): “We have wronged no man: we have done you no harm, but always designed your good.” I have coveted no man's silver, nor gold, nor apparel, said he to the elders of Ephesus, Acts 20:33. “We have corrupted no man, by false doctrines or flattering speeches. We have defrauded no man; we have not sought ourselves, nor to promote our own secular interests by crafty and greedy measures, to the damage of any persons.” This is an appeal like that of Samuel, 1 Sa. 12. Note, Then may ministers the more confidently expect esteem and favour from the people when they can safely appeal to them that they are guilty of nothing that deserves disesteem or displeasure. 2. He did not herein reflect upon them for want of affection to him, 2 Corinthians 7:3, 2 Corinthians 7:4. So tenderly and cautiously did the apostle deal with the Corinthians, among whom there were some who would be glad of any occasion to reproach him, and prejudice the minds of others against him. To prevent any insinuations against him on account of what he had said, as if he intended to charge them with wronging him, or unjust accusations of him for having wronged them, he assures them again of his great affection to them, insomuch that he could spend his last breath at Corinth, and live and die with them, if his business with other churches, and his work as an apostle (which was not to be confined to one place only), would permit him to do so. An he adds it was his great affection to them that made him use such boldness or freedom of speech towards them, and caused him to glory, or make his boast of them, in all places, and upon all occasions, being filled with comfort, and exceedingly joyful in all their tribulations.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

2 Corinthians 7:1

Let us cleanse ourselves — This is the latter part of the exhortation, which was proposed, 2 Corinthians 6:1, and resumed, 2 Corinthians 6:14. From all pollution of the flesh — All outward sin. And of the spirit — All inward. Yet let us not rest in negative religion, but perfect holiness — Carrying it to the height in all its branches, and enduring to the end in the loving fear of God, the sure foundation of all holiness.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

2 Corinthians 7:1

Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the (a) flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

(a) Both of body and soul, that by this means the sanctification may be perfect, consisting in both the parts of the flesh.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance

2 Corinthians 1:20 For all the promises of God in him [are] yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.
2 Corinthians 6:17-18 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean [thing]; and I will receive you, ... And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.
Romans 5:20-21 Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: ... That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.
Romans 6:1-11 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? ... Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Hebrews 4:1 Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left [us] of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.
2 Peter 1:4-8 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. ... For if these things be in you, and abound, they make [you that ye shall] neither [be] barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.


Psalms 51:10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.
Psalms 119:9 BETH. Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed [thereto] according to thy word.
Proverbs 20:9 Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin?
Proverbs 30:12 [There is] a generation [that are] pure in their own eyes, and [yet] is not washed from their filthiness.
Isaiah 1:16 Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;
Jeremiah 13:27 I have seen thine adulteries, and thy neighings, the lewdness of thy whoredom, [and] thine abominations on the hills in the fields. Woe unto thee, O Jerusalem! wilt thou not be made clean? when [shall it] once [be]?
Ezekiel 18:30-32 Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord GOD. Repent, and turn [yourselves] from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. ... For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn [yourselves], and live ye.
Ezekiel 36:25-26 Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. ... A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.
Matthew 5:8 Blessed [are] the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
Matthew 12:33 Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by [his] fruit.
Matthew 23:25-26 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. ... [Thou] blind Pharisee, cleanse first that [which is] within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.
Luke 11:39-40 And the Lord said unto him, Now do ye Pharisees make clean the outside of the cup and the platter; but your inward part is full of ravening and wickedness. ... [Ye] fools, did not he that made that which is without make that which is within also?
Titus 2:11-14 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, ... Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
James 4:8 Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse [your] hands, [ye] sinners; and purify [your] hearts, [ye] double minded.
1 Peter 1:22 Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, [see that ye] love one another with a pure heart fervently:
1 Peter 2:11 Dearly beloved, I beseech [you] as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;
1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
1 John 3:3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.


Isaiah 55:7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
Jeremiah 4:14 O Jerusalem, wash thine heart from wickedness, that thou mayest be saved. How long shall thy vain thoughts lodge within thee?
1 Corinthians 6:20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.
Ephesians 2:3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
1 Thessalonians 5:23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and [I pray God] your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.


Matthew 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
Ephesians 4:12-13 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: ... Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
Philippians 3:12-15 Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. ... Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you.
1 Thessalonians 3:13 To the end he may stablish your hearts unblameable in holiness before God, even our Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.
1 Thessalonians 4:7 For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.
Hebrews 12:23 To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,
1 Peter 5:10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle [you].


2 Chronicles 19:9 And he charged them, saying, Thus shall ye do in the fear of the LORD, faithfully, and with a perfect heart.
Psalms 19:9 The fear of the LORD [is] clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD [are] true [and] righteous altogether.
Proverbs 8:13 The fear of the LORD [is] to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate.
Proverbs 16:6 By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD [men] depart from evil.
Acts 9:31 Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.
Hebrews 12:28 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:
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2Ch 19:9. Ps 19:9; 51:10; 119:9. Pv 8:13; 16:6; 20:9; 30:12. Is 1:16; 55:7. Jr 4:14; 13:27. Ezk 18:30; 36:25. Mt 5:8, 48; 12:33; 23:25. Lk 11:39. Ac 9:31. Ro 5:20; 6:1. 1Co 6:20. 2Co 1:20; 6:17. Ep 2:3; 4:12. Php 3:12. 1Th 3:13; 4:7; 5:23. Tit 2:11. He 4:1; 12:23, 28. Jm 4:8. 1P 1:22; 2:11; 5:10. 2P 1:4. 1Jn 1:7, 9; 3:3.

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