As we start off this look at the book of 2 Corinthians, we encounter in our passage today, a defense from Paul at some complaints that he has either been hearing or anticipating are arising in the church at Corinth. We can clearly interpret his defense not arising out of anger or fear, but rather to establish his credibility as a spiritual influencer in this church. He is defending a perceived notion that he neglected coming to them because he is indecisive:
“I wanted to visit you on my way to Macedonia, and to come back to you from Macedonia and have you send me on my way to Judea. Was I vacillating when I wanted to do this? Do I make my plans according to the flesh, ready to say “Yes, yes” and “No, no” at the same time? As surely as God is faithful, our word to you has not been Yes and No. For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, whom we proclaimed among you, Silvanus and Timothy and I, was not Yes and No, but in him it is always Yes.” (16-19)
His defense is that he did not come to the church because of his indecisiveness, but because of God’s will.
“For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory. And it is God who establishes us with you in Christ, and has anointed us, and who has also put his seal on us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.” (20-22)
We see that ultimately Paul’s concern is for the joy of the church (24). The reality is that what Paul is going to say to the Corinthians will be painful for the church to hear. This is a good lesson for us to walk away with today: in the pain of rebuke, God is still concerned for our joy. And our joy is made complete when we treasure God more than anything else, and live our lives in accordance to His Word.
What stood out to you from the passage? Respond in the comments!
By: Graham Withers — Pastoral Ministry Apprentice