Saturday, June 21, 2008

Good Advise

1I hope you will put up with a little of my foolishness; but you are already doing that. 2I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him. 3But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent's cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. 4For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough. 5But I do not think I am in the least inferior to those "super-apostles." 6I may not be a trained speaker, but I do have knowledge. We have made this perfectly clear to you in every way.
7Was it a sin for me to lower myself in order to elevate you by preaching the gospel of God to you free of charge? 8I robbed other churches by receiving support from them so as to serve you. 9And when I was with you and needed something, I was not a burden to anyone, for the brothers who came from Macedonia supplied what I needed. I have kept myself from being a burden to you in any way, and will continue to do so. 10As surely as the truth of Christ is in me, nobody in the regions of Achaia will stop this boasting of mine. 11Why? Because I do not love you? God knows I do! 12And I will keep on doing what I am doing in order to cut the ground from under those who want an opportunity to be considered equal with us in the things they boast about. 13For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ. 14And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. 15It is not surprising, then, if his servants masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve.

Paul went to the people in Corinth as a very simple, humble man who spoke very plainly. His first letter was thought of as "weighty and forceful". However, when he came to them in person, the Corinthian people described Paul as being "unimpressive". (2 Cor. 10:10).

Paul appealed to the reality of their concerns. These people were receiving the "newest trends" in salvation from anyone who sounded as if he knew what he was talking about.

I imagin the "weightiness" of Paul's letters is a tact; a sales pitch Paul developed to attract the attention of those who were present at the reading of his letters. I understand the affectiveness of well used words, ( I wish I were better at using them ). Well used words are Paul's goal in his letters, as he is not present. And as anyone would, he wants to drive his point home and not be misunderstood. He does not want to visit a third time to Corinth and be forced to excercise his authority by The Spirit and risk offending the Corinthians. So, he chooses to write words of exhortation and encouragement.

Here, in chapter 11, Paul addresses the consciences of the Corinthians. Knowing to boast is 'folly', Paul actually says in vs. one, ἀνείχεσθέ (permit) - ἀφροσύνης (boastful folly). In other words, "Please allow me to boast".

In those words, Paul stakes his convictions and weighs them against the Corinthian's consciences to compare any teaching they've heard with what Paul is teaching about Jesus. (IICor. 11:4). Paul literally says to the Corinthians "If it is foolishness, then Paul is going to die a fool."

Naturally, we all want to be certain of our investments. So did the people of Corinth.

By Paul's tactful use of words, the Corinthians would once again ask themselves, "Why does this man who at one time persecuted the Christian's for their convictions, choose to subject himself to the very same persecution?"

Paul tells them in Ch. 10:12, "Those who compare themselves by their own successes are not wise". In verse 18, he says they need only to be boasting of what God has approved.

In 11:6, having knowledge, (a personal experience with God) is something that the "Super Apostles" (False Prophets) can not claim.

Summary: (Because I am so bad at making my point clearly)
Paul wrote to the Corinthians a second time to say "I know you are being sold all kinds of false promises and teachings. These are not the Gospel I first wrote to you about. So, please, allow me to boast, even thogh I have told you that boasting is wrong. I will boast in the Lord. For my experiences, I share with you. I hope that you will have experiences of your own. And in these, you will learn that our experiences in the Lord are the one thing that these false prophets can not boast. Let this be your evidence of what you have hoped for."

1 comment:

thekingpin68 said...

Paul wrote to the Corinthians a second time to say "I know you are being sold all kinds of false
promises and teachings. These are not the Gospel I first wrote to you about.

So many cultists, and even some Christians need to strongly consider what is stated here. Christ directed Paul to write the gospel because it was Christ’s gospel. To deviate in a minor way from this gospel leads to spiritual error, to deviate in a major way is to be outside of the Biblical Christ and God.