This letter is a followup to the earlier letter. It is believed to have been written the same year, but from Macedonia, prior to Paul's visit to the Corinthians (2 Cor 2:13). In this letter, he responds to certain attacks made about him personally, and he defends his own authority while at the same time revealing his sufferings. He regrets the scolding he gave them in his first letter, and says it was meant for their good:
For I wrote you out of great distress and anguish of heart and with many tears, not to grieve you but to let you know the depth of my love for you (2 Cor 2:4).
He yearns for reconciliation within the fellowship, and between them and himself. Tangential to these topics is some signficant teaching on racial themes.