by Ken Allen, D.D.
"Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation" (2 Cor. 6:2)
Many people read into this verse more than is actually stated and also, many English translations add more than is actually in the original Greek. The first part of that verse is a quote from the first part of Isaiah 49:8 which reads in the KJV:
"Thus saith the LORD, In _AN_ acceptable time have I heard thee, and in _A_ day of salvation have I helped thee:"
For emphasis, underscores and caps have been added to two words ( _AN_ and _A_) in the above quote from Isaiah 49:8. Notice this verse reads "_AN_ acceptable time" and "_A_ day of salvation" and NOT "_the_ acceptable time" and NOT "_the_ day of salvation".
Now, again, the phrase in 2 Cor. 6:2 is:
"behold, now [is the] accepted time; behold, now [is the] day of salvation"
Notice that brackets have been put around two words ( [is the] ) above. These words are not in the original Greek. Some of our English translations such as the KJV and NASB, put some words in italics that are not in the original, but they also fail to do so in some instances. The KJV does put the "is" in italics but fails to also put the "the" in italics to show that it is not a word in the original Greek. This can be misleading. You can check this with a Greek version or most Greek-English interlinear translations. Also, below is the way 2 Cor. 6:2 is translated in Young's Literal Translation and by Darby's translation (notice the words in brackets [ ] denoting that those words are not in the original Greek):
"for He saith, `In an acceptable time I did hear thee, and in a day of salvation I did help thee, lo, now [is] a well-accepted time; lo, now, a day of salvation,'" -- (YLT)
"(for he says, I have listened to thee in an accepted time, and I have helped thee in a day of salvation: behold, now [is the] well-accepted time; behold, now [the] day of salvation:)" -- (Darby's Translation)
So, the thought given in this verse agrees with the Isaiah verse from which it is a quote that "an accepted time" and "a day of salvation, NOT "the accepted time" and NOT "the day of salvation". This means that now is an accepted time and now is a day of salvation but it IS NOT the ONLY accepted time and NOT the ONLY day of salvation. It is an accepted time and a day of salvation for that "special" salvation of the believer (1 Tim. 4:10).