2 Corinthians 7:10 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

2 Corinthians 7:10, NIV: Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.

2 Corinthians 7:10, ESV: For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.

2 Corinthians 7:10, KJV: For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.

2 Corinthians 7:10, NASB: For the sorrow that is according to the will of God produces a repentance without regret, leading to salvation, but the sorrow of the world produces death.

2 Corinthians 7:10, NLT: For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation. There's no regret for that kind of sorrow. But worldly sorrow, which lacks repentance, results in spiritual death.

2 Corinthians 7:10, CSB: For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, but worldly grief produces death.

What does 2 Corinthians 7:10 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul has written about the deep sorrow experienced by the Corinthians in response to his letter to them. They grieved deeply over their sinfulness. Paul has not dismissed that pain, but he has said he rejoices because it led to their repentance from sin. In the end, it was for their good and not their harm.

Now Paul generalizes this idea to every believer. "Godly grief" produces repentance: turning away from the sinful path to go in the right direction. That repentance leads to salvation and leaves no regret. Paul may not have in mind here salvation in the sense of a person's eternal destiny. Those in Christ are securely saved because God's forgiveness for sin is irreversible. He may have in mind salvation from sin's painful consequences.

Godly grief hurts. It hurts us to recognize our sinfulness and our responsibility for bringing pain to others with our sin. If that hurt leads to repentance, though, it is a pain that frees the believer from regret. In the end, a Christian is glad for the grief that brought them back to the path of life.

Worldly grief, on the other hand, leads only to death. Worldly grief is a pain over the consequences of sin that does not lead to repentance. It is only pain followed by more sin followed by more pain. The path of sin always leads to death and destruction and never to life and joyfulness.