2 Corinthians 10:12
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.

New Living Translation
Oh, don't worry; we wouldn't dare say that we are as wonderful as these other men who tell you how important they are! But they are only comparing themselves with each other, using themselves as the standard of measurement. How ignorant!

English Standard Version
Not that we dare to classify or compare ourselves with some of those who are commending themselves. But when they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding.

Berean Study Bible
We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they show their ignorance.

Berean Literal Bible
For we dare not to classify or to compare ourselves with some commending themselves. But these, measuring themselves by themselves and comparing themselves with themselves, do not understand.

New American Standard Bible
For we are not bold to class or compare ourselves with some of those who commend themselves; but when they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are without understanding.

King James Bible
For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For we don't dare classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. But in measuring themselves by themselves and comparing themselves to themselves, they lack understanding.

International Standard Version
We would not dare put ourselves in the same class with, or compare ourselves to, those who recommend themselves. Whenever they measure themselves by their own standards or compare themselves among themselves, they show how foolish they are.

NET Bible
For we would not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some of those who recommend themselves. But when they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are without understanding.

New Heart English Bible
For we are not bold to number or compare ourselves with some of those who commend themselves. But they themselves, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves with themselves, are without understanding.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
For we dare not value or compare ourselves against those who flaunt themselves, for those among them who compare themselves are not wise.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
We wouldn't put ourselves in the same class with or compare ourselves to those who are bold enough to make their own recommendations. Certainly, when they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves to themselves, they show how foolish they are.

New American Standard 1977
For we are not bold to class or compare ourselves with some of those who commend themselves; but when they measure themselves by themselves, and compare themselves with themselves, they are without understanding.

Jubilee Bible 2000
For we dare not mix ourselves in with or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves, but they do not understand that they are measuring themselves by themselves and comparing themselves among themselves.

King James 2000 Bible
For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

American King James Version
For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

American Standard Version
For we are not bold to number or compare ourselves with certain of them that commend themselves: but they themselves, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves with themselves, are without understanding.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For we dare not match, or compare ourselves with some, that commend themselves; but we measure ourselves by ourselves, and compare ourselves with ourselves.

Darby Bible Translation
For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves; but these, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves with themselves, are not intelligent.

English Revised Version
For we are not bold to number or compare ourselves with certain of them that commend themselves: but they themselves, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves with themselves, are without understanding.

Webster's Bible Translation
For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

Weymouth New Testament
For we have not the 'courage' to rank ourselves among, or compare ourselves with, certain persons distinguished by their self-commendation. Yet they are not wise, measuring themselves, as they do, by one another and comparing themselves with one another.

World English Bible
For we are not bold to number or compare ourselves with some of those who commend themselves. But they themselves, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves with themselves, are without understanding.

Young's Literal Translation
For we do not make bold to rank or to compare ourselves with certain of those commending themselves, but they, among themselves measuring themselves, and comparing themselves with themselves, are not wise,
Study Bible
Paul's Apostolic Authority
11Such people should consider that what we are in our letters when absent, we will be in our actions when present. 12We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they show their ignorance. 13We, however, will not boast beyond our limits, but only within the field of influence that God has assigned to us—a field that reaches even to you.…
Cross References
Proverbs 27:2
Let another praise you, and not your own mouth; A stranger, and not your own lips.

2 Corinthians 3:1
Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, like some people, letters of recommendation to you or from you?

2 Corinthians 10:11
Such people should consider that what we are in our letters when absent, we will be in our actions when present.

2 Corinthians 10:18
For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends.
Treasury of Scripture

For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

we dare not.

2 Corinthians 3:1 Do we begin again to commend ourselves? or need we, as some others, …

2 Corinthians 5:12 For we commend not ourselves again to you, but give you occasion …

Job 12:2 No doubt but you are the people, and wisdom shall die with you.

Proverbs 25:27 It is not good to eat much honey: so for men to search their own …

Proverbs 27:2 Let another man praise you, and not your own mouth; a stranger, and …

Luke 18:11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank you, …

Romans 15:18 For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ …

are not wise. or, understand it not.

Proverbs 26:12 See you a man wise in his own conceit? there is more hope of a fool than of him.

(12) We dare not make ourselves of the number.--The last five words give the meaning of one Greek verb (enkrnai = to insert), the sound of which seems immediately to suggest the cognate verb (synkrnai = to compare). It is, of course, hard to convey the half-playful assonance in English. In "some that commend themselves" we note a reference to the charge of self-commending, which he has already noticed four times (2Corinthians 3:1; 2Corinthians 4:2; 2Corinthians 5:12; 2Corinthians 7:11). Before he had defended himself against the charge; now he retorts it on his opponents. In "we dare" we trace a reference to the charge of cowardice, as in 2Corinthians 10:2.

Measuring themselves by themselves.--The Greek MSS. present many various readings, some of the best MSS. omitting "are not wise, but," and some giving "not boasting" for "we will not boast;" and the Greek text, on any reading, presents a grammatical difficulty, arising from the fact that the last word may be either the third person plural of a verb in the indicative present, or a participle in the dative case, agreeing with "themselves." It is hardly necessary to discuss here the various possible constructions rising out of the combination of these phenomena. The English version gives, it is believed, substantially the meaning of the original. In the very act of saying, with a touch of irony, that he will not compare himself with the rival teachers, the Apostle virtually does compare himself. And the point he makes is that they instituted no such comparison. They were their own standards of excellence. Each was "amator sui sine rivali." Collectively, they formed what has been described in the language of modern literary history as a "Mutual Admiration Society." Of all such self-admiration--one might almost say, of all such autolatry--St. Paul declares, what the experience of all ages attests, that they who practise it "are not wise." They lose, as the Greek verb more definitely expresses it, all power of discernment.

Verse 12. - We dare not. They are in this respect of self-praise much bolder than I. Make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves; literally, judge ourselves among or judge ourselves with. There is a play on the words, like the Latin, inferre or conferre, or the German, zurechnen oder gleichrechnen. That commend themselves. The verb rendered "commend" is that from which is derived "the commendatory letters" (2 Corinthians 3:1) at the arrogant and intrusive use of which he had glanced already. St. Paul is once more rebutting the charge of self-commendation (2 Corinthians 4:2; 2 Corinthians 5:12; 2 Corinthians 6:11). But they measuring themselves...are not wise. The clause is difficult; for

(1) to compare ourselves with others in order to learn what we can and cannot do is usually accounted wise;

(2) some manuscripts and editions, omitting οὐ συνιοῦσιν ἡμεῖς δὲ, render, "But we ourselves (αὐτοὶ), measuring ourselves by ourselves, and comparing ourselves with ourselves, will not boast above measure;"

(3) some, for συνιοῦσιν (they are not wise) read συνίουσιν (with ourselves, who are not wise). The reading, however, of the Authorized Version is undoubtedly right, and most probably the rendering also. The meaning is that the little cliques of factious religionists, never looking outside their own narrow circles, became inflated with a sense of importance which would have been annihilated if they had looked at higher standards. Hence they thought themselves at liberty to intrude and lay down the law and usurp a claim to infallibility which there was nothing to justify. Such conduct is the reverse of wise. It is a mixture of selfishness, Pharisaism, and conceit, and there have been abundant examples of it among religious parties in all ages. St. Paul, on the other hand, keeps within his own measure, because he has learnt to adopt larger and loftier standards. For we dare not make ourselves of the number,.... Some understand this as spoken ironically, as if the apostle jeeringly should say, he would not pretend to join, or put himself upon a level, who was a poor, little, mean, despicable person, with such great men as the false apostles were, men of such large gifts, and of such great learning and eloquence; though they may be understood without an irony, that the modesty of the apostle and his fellow ministers would not suffer them to mingle with such persons, and act the vainglorious part they did: or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves; they were not so vain and foolish, as to give high encomiums of themselves, therefore would not boast even of the authority they had, and much less say that in letters, which they could not make good in fact:

but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise, or "understand not"; how foolish they are, how ridiculous they make themselves; they do not understand what they say, nor whereof they affirm; they do not understand themselves, what they really are; for to form a right judgment of themselves, they should have considered the gifts and abilities, the learning and knowledge of others, and thereby might have taken an estimate of their own; but instead of this, they only consulted themselves, and measured and compared themselves with themselves; which was acting just such a foolish part, as if a dwarf was to measure himself not with any kind of measure, or with another person, but with himself; only surveys himself, and his own dimensions, and fancies himself a giant. Just the reverse is this, to what is said in Philo the Jew (o),

"thn gar ouyeneian thn emautou metrein emayon, "I have learned to measure the nothingness of myself", and to contemplate thy exceeding great bounties; and moreover, perceive myself to be dust and ashes, or if there is any thing more abject.''

(o) Quis rer. divin. Haeres, p. 485. 12. "We do not presume (irony) to judge ourselves among, or in comparison with, some of them that commend themselves." The charge falsely brought against him of commending himself (2Co 3:1; 5:12), really holds good of the false teachers. The phrase, "judge ourselves of the number," is drawn from the testing of athletes and senators, the "approved" being set down on the roll [Wahl].

measuring themselves by themselves—"among themselves": to correspond to the previous verb, "judge ourselves among them." Instead of measuring themselves by the public standard, they measure themselves by one made by themselves: they do not compare themselves with others who excel them, but with those like themselves: hence their high self-esteem. The one-eyed is easily king among the blind.

are not wise—with all their boasted "wisdom" (1Co 1:19-26), they are anything but "wise."10:12-18 If we would compare ourselves with others who excel us, this would be a good method to keep us humble. The apostle fixes a good rule for his conduct; namely, not to boast of things without his measure, which was the measure God had distributed to him. There is not a more fruitful source of error, than to judge of persons and opinions by our own prejudices. How common is it for persons to judge of their own religious character, by the opinions and maxims of the world around them! But how different is the rule of God's word! And of all flattery, self-flattery is the worst. Therefore, instead of praising ourselves, we should strive to approve ourselves to God. In a word, let us glory in the Lord our salvation, and in all other things only as evidences of his love, or means of promoting his glory. Instead of praising ourselves, or seeking the praise of men, let us desire that honour which cometh from God only.
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NT Letters: 2 Corinthians 10:12 For we are not bold to number (2 Cor. 2C iiC 2Cor ii cor iicor) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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