New Defender's Study Bible Notes
6:2 For he saith. Cited from Isaiah 49:8. This application stresses the urgency of accepting God’s grace and salvation in Christ (II Corinthians 5:20-21) without delay. Note also Proverbs 27:1; James 4:13,14.
6:4 all things. The “all things” which Paul enumerates in these verses as characteristic of true ministers (that is, “servants”) of Christ comprise a remarkable complex of three nine-fold descriptors. First (II Corinthians 6:4-5) are listed nine “negative” experiences which the servant must be willing to endure graciously. Then there are nine “positive” attributes which he should exhibit (II Corinthians 6:6-7). Finally, there are nine paradoxes that characterize such a minister (II Corinthians 6:8-10), displaying simultaneously the joys of life in Christ and the exigencies of living in the world as His servant.
6:8 honor and dishonor. Compare this list in II Corinthians 6:8-10 to that in II Corinthians 4:8-10.
6:12 bowels. Paul assured the Corinthians that their failings had not lessened his love for them or concern for their spiritual welfare. He was concerned, however, that there still existed internal divisions and strained “affections” (the connotation intended by the reference to “bowels”) among them.
6:13 enlarged. As their spiritual father, Paul urged the Corinthians to respond with appropriate filial love, which should be exhibited by the same largeness of heart which he himself showed for them. This was all he asked by way of recompense.
6:14 yoked together. Paul is using a metaphor here based on Deuteronomy 22:10 and Leviticus 19:19, which forbade plowing with an ox and ass yoked together, or attempting to interbreed animals of different kinds. The clear inference is that believers and unbelievers are so different in character and interests (as well as ultimate destiny) that they should never be “yoked” together in situations requiring strong agreement of attitudes and goals (e.g., marriage, churches, business partnerships, lodges or other organizations with religious overtones). The prohibition is not intended to require complete repudiation of all secular or charitable organizations (note I Corinthians 5:10) or friendships. When one’s Christian faith is in jeopardy, or his Christian conduct and influence is endangered, then such connections should be severed. One can witness to unbelievers without partaking of their beliefs or sinful behavior.
6:15 concord. The Greek word for “concord” (sumphonesis) is the word from which we get “symphony.”
6:16 God hath said. See Leviticus 26:11-12 and Ezekiel 37:26-27.
6:17 saith the Lord. See Isaiah 52:11. Note also the command to come out of “Babylon” Jeremiah 51:45; Revelation 18:4).
6:18 my sons and daughters. This promise is not quoted explicitly from any Old Testament passage, though the sense of it can often be detected. There are also many explicit New Testament passages that do assert that those who receive Christ become children of God (e.g., John 1:12; Romans 8:16). By direct inspiration, if nothing else, Paul could assure his readers that being separated unto God from the world, through receiving Christ, would indeed assure them that He would receive them as His sons and daughters.