Chapter 13 verses 1 to 14

Chapter 13 verses 1 to 14Wednesday 17th May 2017

Posted by Neil Todman

Read 2 Corinthians 13:1-14

As Paul signs off his letter, he prepares the church for another personal visit.  But when the apostle arrives in Corinth for a third time, will he find the church full of repentance and faith, or rebellion and falsehood?

If the latter is true, then Paul says he will deal with those who are proven to have sinned (verses 1 and 2).  His critics accused him of being imposing in his writing but unimpressive in person (see chapter 10 verses 10 and 11).  Here, Paul further substantiates his claim that what he is in his writing, he will be in person. When he visits, Paul is confident Christ will speak powerfully through him to deal with any sin in the Corinthian church (verses 3 and 4). He is willing to serve the church by disciplining those who live in rebellion to the gospel of Christ.

But his hope for his third visit is quite different (verse 10).  Paul hopes that the believers will examine themselves for evidence that they belong to Christ (verses 5 and 6) and that if they do, they will repent of any wrongdoing and instead strive for perfection in Christ (verses 7 to 9).  Paul longed that the maturity, which had been lacking in this church ever since he had planted it about six years previously, would finally be their experience.  Every good parent wants their child to grow up to be a responsible adult.  Paul wants his spiritual children in Corinth to grow up to be like Christ.

So, as he briefly says, “cheerio”, verses 11 to 13 make a final appeal to their hearts.  Paul says, aim for Christlikeness in all things.  Respond to the warnings of Scripture.  Be unified in mind and daily living.  Experience, then share, the love and peace of God, which must characterise relationships within the local church and between true believers everywhere. 

How could a church as flawed as the one in Corinth do these things?  How can we?  Not in our own strength, but by drawing from the inexhaustible well of grace, love and power lavished on us by our triune God (verse 14).

 

Reflection

Pray verse 14 would be your own daily experience, as the life transforming grace of Jesus Christ continues its powerful, loving, work in you and in your church family.