1 Corinthians 4:4
Parallel Verses
New International Version
My conscience is clear, but that does not make me innocent. It is the Lord who judges me.

New Living Translation
My conscience is clear, but that doesn't prove I'm right. It is the Lord himself who will examine me and decide.

English Standard Version
For I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not thereby acquitted. It is the Lord who judges me.

New American Standard Bible
For I am conscious of nothing against myself, yet I am not by this acquitted; but the one who examines me is the Lord.

King James Bible
For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For I am not conscious of anything against myself, but I am not justified by this. The One who evaluates me is the Lord.

International Standard Version
For my conscience is clear, but that does not vindicate me. It is the Lord who examines me.

NET Bible
For I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not acquitted because of this. The one who judges me is the Lord.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
For I am not troubled over anything in myself, but I am not justified by this, for my judge is THE LORD JEHOVAH.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I have a clear conscience, but that doesn't mean I have God's approval. It is the Lord who cross-examines me.

Jubilee Bible 2000
For although I have nothing on my conscience, yet am I not hereby justified, but he that judges me is the Lord.

King James 2000 Bible
For I know nothing against myself; yet am I not thereby justified: but he that judges me is the Lord.

American King James Version
For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judges me is the Lord.

American Standard Version
For I know nothing against myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For I am not conscious to myself of any thing, yet am I not hereby justified; but he that judgeth me, is the Lord.

Darby Bible Translation
For I am conscious of nothing in myself; but I am not justified by this: but he that examines me is the Lord.

English Revised Version
For I know nothing against myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord.

Webster's Bible Translation
For I know nothing against myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord.

Weymouth New Testament
Though I am not conscious of having been in any way unfaithful, yet I do not for that reason stand acquitted; but He whose scrutiny I must undergo is the Lord.

World English Bible
For I know nothing against myself. Yet I am not justified by this, but he who judges me is the Lord.

Young's Literal Translation
for of nothing to myself have I been conscious, but not in this have I been declared right -- and he who is discerning me is the Lord:
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

4:1-6 Apostles were no more than servants of Christ, but they were not to be undervalued. They had a great trust, and for that reason, had an honourable office. Paul had a just concern for his own reputation, but he knew that he who chiefly aimed to please men, would not prove himself a faithful servant of Christ. It is a comfort that men are not to be our final judges. And it is not judging well of ourselves, or justifying ourselves, that will prove us safe and happy. Our own judgment is not to be depended upon as to our faithfulness, any more than our own works for our justification. There is a day coming, that will bring men's secret sins into open day, and discover the secrets of their hearts. Then every slandered believer will be justified, and every faithful servant approved and rewarded. The word of God is the best rule by which to judge as to men. Pride commonly is at the bottom of quarrels. Self-conceit contributes to produce undue esteem of our teachers, as well as of ourselves. We shall not be puffed up for one against another, if we remember that all are instruments, employed by God, and endowed by him with various talents.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 4. - I know nothing by myself; rather, nothing against myself. The phrase of the Authorized Version originally meant this, but is now obsolete in this sense. "I am sorry that each fault can be proved by the queen," says Cranmer to Henry VIII. It is like the Latin Nil conscire sibi. The same phrase occurs in the LXX. of Job 27:6. St. Paul says, "The verdict of my own conscience acquits me of all intentional unfaithfulness;" but this is insufficient, because God sees with clearer eyes than ours. "Who can understand his errors?" asks the psalmist (Psalm 19:12); and the "secret faults" against which he prays are not hidden vices, but sins of which he was himself unconscious. It must be remembered that St. Paul is here only speaking with conscious integrity of his ministerial work. Nothing could have been further from the mind of one who elsewhere calls himself" the chief of sinners" than to claim an absolute immunity from every form of self reproach. They who claim immaculate holiness can as little quote the sanction of St. Paul (1 Corinthians 9:27; 1 Corinthians 15:9; Ephesians 3:8; Philippians 3:13, etc.) as of any other saint. The confessions of the holiest are ever the most humble. Yet am I not hereby justified. Because "every way of a man" is apt to be "right in his own eyes," but God pondereth the hearts, and therefore in God's sight "no man living is justified." St. Paul is here using the word in its legal rather than its theological sense. He that judgeth me is the Lord. This is a reason for serious awe and deep self searching of heart (Psalm 130:3; Job 9:2). Yet also for hope and confidence when a man can, like the modern statesman, "look from the storm without to the sunshine of an approving conscience within." For God, being "greater than our hearts" (1 John 3:21), may count "the long 'yes' of life" against the one "no," or the single faithless minute. Knowing whereof we are made, remembering that we are but dust, he looks on us

"With larger other eyes than ours,
To make allowance for us all."


Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

For I know nothing by myself,.... Which must be understood with a restriction to the subject he is upon, faithfulness in the ministry; otherwise he knew much by himself of indwelling sin, and the corruption of his nature, which he sometimes found very strong and prevalent in him, and of the daily infirmities of life; but as to his ministerial service, he was pure from the blood of all men; he honestly declared what he knew to be the mind of God, and concealed nothing that might be useful to men; in this he had a clear conscience, void of offence both towards God and men,

Yet am I not hereby justified; from all fault and blame, which might possibly escape his knowledge and observation; for in many things all offend, and no man can understand all his errors; and there might be some mistakes which the apostle was not privy to, or conscious of; and were he even free from all, he declares, that such an unstained integrity, in the discharge of his ministerial work, was not the matter of his justification before God, nor did he depend upon it:

but he that judgeth me is the Lord; either who adjudges me to eternal life, justifying me through the righteousness of his Son, in which alone I desire to be found, living and dying; or he that knows my heart, and all my ways, will be my judge at the last day; and to his judgment I appeal and submit, and sit easy in the mean while under all the censures and calumnies of men. The apostle did, as his Lord and Saviour had done before him, who, when he was reviled and reproached by men, conscious of his own innocence and integrity, committed himself to him that judgeth righteously.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

4. by myself—Translate, "I am conscious to myself of no (ministerial) unfaithfulness." Bengel explains the Greek compound, "to decide in judgments on one in relation to others," not simply to judge.

am I not hereby justified—Therefore conscience is not an infallible guide. Paul did not consider his so. This verse is directly against the judicial power claimed by the priests of Rome.

1 Corinthians 4:4 Additional Commentaries
Context
Servants of Christ
3But to me it is a very small thing that I may be examined by you, or by any human court; in fact, I do not even examine myself. 4For I am conscious of nothing against myself, yet I am not by this acquitted; but the one who examines me is the Lord. 5Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, but wait until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men's hearts; and then each man's praise will come to him from God.
Cross References
Psalm 143:2
Do not bring your servant into judgment, for no one living is righteous before you.

Proverbs 29:26
Many seek an audience with a ruler, but it is from the LORD that one gets justice.

Acts 23:1
Paul looked straight at the Sanhedrin and said, "My brothers, I have fulfilled my duty to God in all good conscience to this day."

Romans 2:13
For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God's sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.

1 Corinthians 4:3
I care very little if I am judged by you or by any human court; indeed, I do not even judge myself.

2 Corinthians 1:12
Now this is our boast: Our conscience testifies that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially in our relations with you, with integrity and godly sincerity. We have done so, relying not on worldly wisdom but on God's grace.
Treasury of Scripture

For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judges me is the Lord.

For. [Ouden gar emauto sunoida] 'For I am not conscious to myself of any guilt' or neglect of duty. Wetstien has shown, from the classics, that this is the proper signification of [suneidein.]

I know.

Job 27:6 My righteousness I hold fast, and will not let it go: my heart shall …

Psalm 7:3-5 O LORD my God, If I have done this; if there be iniquity in my hands…

John 21:17 He said to him the third time, Simon, son of Jonas, love you me? …

2 Corinthians 1:12 For our rejoicing is this, the testimony of our conscience, that …

1 John 3:20,21 For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knows …

yet.

Job 9:2,3,20 I know it is so of a truth: but how should man be just with God…

Job 15:14 What is man, that he should be clean? and he which is born of a woman, …

Job 25:4 How then can man be justified with God? or how can he be clean that …

Job 40:4 Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer you? I will lay my hand on my mouth.

Psalm 19:12 Who can understand his errors? cleanse you me from secret faults.

Psalm 130:3 If you, LORD, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?

Psalm 143:2 And enter not into judgment with your servant: for in your sight …

Proverbs 21:2 Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD ponders the hearts.

Romans 3:19,20 Now we know that what things soever the law said, it said to them …

Romans 4:2 For if Abraham were justified by works, he has whereof to glory; …

but.

1 Corinthians 4:5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who …

Psalm 26:12 My foot stands in an even place: in the congregations will I bless the LORD.

Psalm 50:6 And the heavens shall declare his righteousness: for God is judge …

2 Corinthians 5:10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every …

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