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LETS WORSHIP TOGETHER

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Sunday, October 29 2017

Contributor: Alex Alajiki

INTRODUCTION: Last week, from our study in the concluding part of 2 Corint.5:11-20, we saw the importance of the major ministry committed to every believer; the ministry of reconciliation.  2 Corint.5:20 “Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God”. This is the most important assignment of believers on earth. We must daily see ourselves as Christ ambassadors on earth with the sole assignment of preaching the gospel to every creature. 

This week, we are studying chapter 6 of the 2nd book of Paul to the Corinthian Church

 

  1.  Do not receive God’s grace in vain: 2 Cor.4:1-2

We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you not to receive the grace of God in vain. For He says: “In an acceptable time I have heard you, and in the day of salvation I have helped you.” Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.

 

We are co-workers on earth with God and He has given every one of us His abilities or grace to get the work done. Paul is appealing to the Corinthians not to receive the grace of God in vain. ‘In vain’ means without a proper purpose, or without a worthwhile result. In 1 Corinthians 15:10, Paul said that God’s grace towards him was not in vain. He explained this by reference to his special work for God, and the way that God’s grace worked through him.

 

In vs 2, Paul was referring to Isa.49:8-9 “Thus says the Lord: “In an acceptable time I have heard You, and in the day of salvation I have helped You; I will preserve You and give You as a covenant to the people, to restore the earth, to cause them to inherit the desolate heritages; 9 That You may say to the prisoners, ‘Go forth,’ to those who are in darkness, ‘Show yourselves.’

 

This is a prophetic scripture referring to this period that God offers to save people. That is, to rescue them from their real enemies: their sin (wrong and evil thoughts, words and deeds), the devil and hell. He has heard and helped us in this day of salvation, we are His messengers to deliver and restore the creature back to Him.

 

  1. The attitude of a true servant of God: 2 Cor.6:3-4a

We give no offense in anything, that our ministry may not be blamed. 4 But in all things, we commend ourselves as ministers of God.

 

This is the same as saying, do not even give the appearance of evil. Paul, a faithful ambassador of Christ does nothing to discredit his ministry, but did everything he can to protect his integrity, the gospel’s integrity, and God’s integrity.

In vs 4a, commend means “introduce,” with the connotation of proving oneself.

Paul could have chosen to live a more comfortable life. However, as God’s servant, he recognised the importance of his ministry, his work for God. He knew that God had given him an extremely important message to declare (2 Corinth. 5:18 to 6:1). Therefore, Paul accepted the most severe troubles as he carried out his work for God. Paul would not allow even the worst troubles to stop his work for God. Paul did not want any weakness of his own to be a reason why someone could not trust God.

  1.    How Paul served God: 2 Cor.6:4b-10

 

in much patience, in tribulations, in needs, in distresses, 5 in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in sleeplessness, in fastings; 6 by purity, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love, 7 by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the Armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, 8 by honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report; as deceivers, and yet true; 9 as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold we live; as chastened, and yet not killed; 10 as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

 

 

*In vs 4b, Paul served God in patience, in afflictions, in necessities and in distresses. Patience in the face of afflictions, necessities and distresses. Patience was an enduring character in the life of Paul. In time of troubles, we should allow the Spirit of God within us to take over and guild us through them.

 

*In vs 5, In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watching, in fastings. These are severe hardships and pains that brought pressures on the flesh. Paul faithfully endured hardship like he recommended in 2 Tim.2:3.

 

*In vs 6, By pureness, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost and by love unfeigned. This is the standard that we should endure these problems with. We should never stop loving, even the enemy. It is not how many problems we have that are important, but how we handle those problems. Heb.13:5.

 

*In vs7, By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the Armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left.

We know that every temptation Satan brought to Jesus, He answered "It is written". This is a guide to us. We must face each problem, or temptation, with "It is written". The answers to all of life's problems are found in the Bible

Paul never operated beyond the boundaries of the direction and guidance of divine revelation. Nor did he rely on his own strength when he ministered. He did not fight Satan’s kingdom with human resources, but with spiritual virtue such as the sword of the Spirit, and defensive tools, such as the shield of faith and the helmet of salvation. Eph.6:12

 

*In vs 8, By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and [yet] true. Paul is just saying, that it does not matter where the accusations are coming from. It really does not matter whether they are even true or not. They are still overcome by the Word of God and righteousness. 

 

*In vs 9, As unknown, and [yet] well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed. Wherever Paul went, people were trying to kill him. In some places, vast crowds gathered to oppose him. People were constantly demanding Paul’s death. In time, even Paul thought that he must die soon (2 Corinth. 1:8-9). It astonished him that he was still alive. ‘Look!’, he said to Corinth’s Christians in 2 Corinthians 6:9. ‘We live!’

 

*In vs 10, As sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and [yet] possessing all things. Circumstances around you may be sorrowful, yet unexplainable, joy in the face of these bad circumstances is in Jesus. Paul said that he had learned to be satisfied in times when he had plenty and in times of want. Whatever state he found himself in, he was content. The spiritual wealth Paul possessed and imparted did much to make his hearers spiritually wealthy Phil.4:11.

 

  1.      We should obey with willing hearts: 2 Cor.6:11-13

11 O Corinthians! We have spoken openly to you, our heart is wide open. 12 You are not restricted by us, but you are restricted by your own affections. 13 Now in return for the same (I speak as to children), you also be open.

 

The evidence of Paul’s genuine love for the Corinthians was that no matter how some of them had mistreated him, he still loved them and had room for them in his heart. Their limitation was their lack of love in response to his fatherly love 1 Corinth. 4:14-15. He only demand that they open their hearts to him in love.

 

CONCLUSION; Our Call to Holiness: 2 Cor.6:14-18

Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? 15 And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? 16 And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people." 17 Therefore "Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord. Do not touch what is unclean, And I will receive you." 18 "I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters, Says the Lord Almighty."

 

To be not unequally yoked together with unbelievers is for Christians not to be bound together with non-Christians in any spiritual enterprise or relationship that would be detrimental to the Christian’s testimony within the body of Christ. This command does not mean believers should end all associations with unbelievers; that would defy the purpose for which God saved believers and left them on earth. The implausibility of such religious alliances is made clear (in verses 14b-17)

God said to the believers, "Be ye holy, for I am holy". We are like an island surrounded by water. We are the island, and the world is the water. We have a hedge of the blood of Jesus which protects us from the world coming too close. We are separated unto God. In other words, we have come over to God's side. We have left the evil of the world behind. As a result of separating themselves from false doctrine and practice, believers will know the full richness of what it means to be children of God.

 

                                               Parts of this study was culled from bible-styds.org

Posted by: Isekhua Evborokhai AT 02:26 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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