2 Corinthians 13

2 Corinthians 13:1-14

1  This will be the third time I am coming to you. “BY THE MOUTH OF TWO OR THREE WITNESSES EVERY WORD SHALL BE ESTABLISHED.”

2  I have told you before, and foretell as if I were present the second time, and now being absent I write to those who have sinned before, and to all the rest, that if I come again I will not spare—

3  since you seek a proof of Christ speaking in me, who is not weak toward you, but mighty in you.

4  For though He was crucified in weakness, yet He lives by the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, but we shall live with Him by the power of God toward you.

5  Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you are disqualified.

6  But I trust that you will know that we are not disqualified.

7  Now I pray to God that you do no evil, not that we should appear approved, but that you should do what is honorable, though we may seem disqualified.

8  For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.

9  For we are glad when we are weak and you are strong. And this also we pray, that you may be made complete.

10  Therefore I write these things being absent, lest being present I should use sharpness, according to the authority which the Lord has given me for edification and not for destruction.

11  Finally, brethren, farewell. Become complete. Be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.

12  Greet one another with a holy kiss.

13  All the saints greet you.

14  The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.

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9 months ago

In any area of discipline, to qualify as a legitimate representative of that field, there will need to be much more than putting a claim on a plank or wearing a descriptive placard. Just swinging a club, wielding a scalpel, or buying a Porsche doesn’t turn you into a golfer, doctor, or racecar driver. An initial commitment will take the ongoing dedication of discipline to a lifestyle change for validation from any of those who know and appreciate what it takes to truly be that role. When Paul talks about new life in Christ, where Jesus Himself has come to dwell, he means total transformation from the nature of the world to heavenly righteousness. Baptism is much more than an event. It is the unending immersion in the presence of the Spirit that affects every moment with holiness and purity. There is a necessity for testing in any discipline, not so much with the purpose of disqualifying as locating areas of needed attention or adjustment. For actions to qualify a discipline, they will always need to be growing in the honing of those skills, with a heart for perfecting things yet to come rather than sitting back on the comforts of past merits.
While the heart of Christ should always be represented in gentleness and mercy, it is also important to observe His powerful repulsion of corruption and the error of sin. There is no compromise in Him, and to take on His name, to qualify as His ambassador, will require more than just knowledge of how things should be. There must be a demonstration of this. The same grace that names us as His own will qualify us as such, causing us to look, smell, act, and communicate just like Him. While this is a great responsibility, it is really just the fruit of choosing to love Him instead of the world. Excelling in a discipline is simply the demonstration of where passions lie. There can be no faking of this. Life’s exams will inevitably commence. It is better to preempt them with self-testing and grace-empowered adjustments that will ensure qualification.

Last edited 9 months ago by ps
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