αὐτοῦ, πεπληρωμένοις χάριτος θεοῦ ἀδιακρίτως, καὶ ἀποδιϋλισμένοις ἀπὸ παντὸς ἀλλοτρίου χρώματος, πλεῖστα ἐν Ἰησοῦ Χριστῷ, τῷ θεῷ ἡμῶν, ἀμώμως χαίρειν.
Ἐπεὶ εὐξάμενος θεῷ ἐπέτυχον ἰδεῖν ὑμῶν τὰ ἀξιόθεα πρόσωπα, ὡς καὶ πλέον ᾐτούμην λαβεῖν· δεδεμένος γὰρ ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ ἐλπίζω ὑμᾶς ἀσπάσασθαι, ἐάνπερ θέλημα ᾖ τοῦ ἀξιωθῆναί με εἰς τέλος εἶναι.
2. ἡ μὲν γὰρ ἀρχὴ εὐοικονόμητός ἐστιν, ἐάνπερ χάριτος60 ἐπιτύχω εἰς τὸ τὸν κλῆρόν μου ἀνεμποδίστως ἀπολαβεῖν. φοβοῦμαι γὰρ τὴν ὑμῶν ἀγάπην, μὴ αὐτή με ἀδικήσῃ. ὑμῖν γὰρ εὐχερές ἐστιν, ὃ θέλετε ποιῆσαι· ἐμοὶ δὲ δύσκολόν ἐστιν τοῦ θεοῦ ἐπιτυχεῖν, ἐάνπερ ὑμεῖς μὴ61 φείσησθέ μου.
Οὐ γὰρ θέλω ὑμᾶς ἀνθρωπαρεσκῆσαι, ἀλλὰ θεῷ ἀρέσαι, ὥσπερ καὶ ἀρέσκετε. οὔτε γὰρ ἐγώ ποτε ἕξω καιρὸν τοιοῦτον θεοῦ ἐπιτυχεῖν, οὔτε ὑμεῖς, ἐὰν σιωπήσητε, κρείττονι ἔργῳ ἔχετε ἐπιγραφῆναι. ἐὰν γὰρ σιωπήσητε ἀπ᾿ ἐμοῦ, ἐγὼ λόγος θεοῦ· ἐὰν δὲ
- 60ἐάνπερ χάριτος z L g (M): ἐὰν πέρατος S A: si finem etiam gratiae (per gratiam C)assequar Am C (Sm)
- 61μὴ L S (A) g: om. G H K Sm Am (C) M
Jesus Christ, our God, to those who are united in both flesh and spirit in his every commandment, filled with the gracious gift of God without wavering, and filtered from every unsuitable taint.
Since by my prayer to God I have managed to see your faces, which are worthy of God—as indeed I have asked to receive even more, for I hope to greet you while in chains in Christ Jesus, if indeed it be the will of the one who has made me worthy to endure until the end.
2. For the beginning is auspicious, if I can indeed obtain the gracious gift I need to receive my lot without any impediment. For I am afraid of your love, that it may do me harm. For it is easy for you to do what you want, but it is difficult for me to attain to God, if you do not spare me.
For I do not want you to please people but to please God,17 as indeed you are doing. For I will have no other such opportunity to attain to God, nor can you be enlisted for a better work—if, that is, you keep silent. For if you keep silent about me, I will be a word of God; but if you desire
- 17Cf. 2 Thess 2:4.