2 Corinthians 10
When Paul is with the church in Corinth, he strives to be like Jesus, meek and gentle. He saves the boldness for those who wait for him to be away from Corinth to accuse him of living “in the world”. Paul counters that with “of course we walk ‘in the flesh’ because we are human”; however, we don’t fight spiritual battles armed with just our “fleshly” human might. Rather, these spiritual battles are fought in the heavenly realms with God-powered weapons designed to destroy Satan’s strongholds. The targets can be anything, even something as nebulous as a thought, which is raised up in opposition to Christ. We are not to judge each other; if you say you are a follower of Jesus, accept it when Paul says he too is a follower of Jesus. God’s kingdom is big enough to accept everyone who trusts in Jesus for their salvation. Paul has been given authority from God over the church in Corinth, but he does not want to use that authority to terrify them. While he acknowledges he may not be strong and mighty in looks, Paul writes a strong and mighty letter! Whatever, the words and the writer are the same: strong and mighty in the Lord! Paul doesn’t boast about himself, or compare himself to other men; rather, he boasts in God and how He has equipped and enabled Paul (of all people) to bring the Gospel to Corinth. And as the Corinthian church grows in faith and numbers, they too can be ambassadors of God through Paul to spread the Gospel even further. If anyone is going to boast in anything, let them boast in God, and let God honor who He will.
People then, people now; human nature does not change. We attack others when they are weak. We criticize those in positions of authority, saying they are not worthy of holding that authority. We accuse others of not being as spiritual or as Godly as we are. We still “judge a book by its cover”, trying to be just like the celebrities.
Really?!? Here Paul is encouraging us to follow Jesus, not the latest celebrity; to be meek like Him, not trying to elevate ourselves above others. Jesus came to serve, not be a servant; we are to follow His example.
As part of the meekness that Jesus modeled for us, we need to remember our place; God is God, and we are His children. Just as we don’t send our children off to war, but rather send adults, God is the one equipped to fight Satan; we are not.
Now if we want to boast, let us not boast in ourselves, or each other, but let us boast of GOD and what He has done. Sometimes God chooses to work through us. Sometimes He chooses to work in us. And often He chooses to work independent of us. God does not need us to accomplish His purposes; we need Him for everything. The proper reaction to it all is that glory and honor is due GOD, not us.
Father God, we thank you that you are GOD, and not us. Thank you for sending your Son Jesus to save us from our sins. Thank you that He perfectly modeled for us how to live as humans in this imperfect world. Equip us to be good imitators of Jesus, meek, humble, serving others, glorifying you.
Please forgive us when we fail at this, when we criticize you, when we criticize leaders you have established in positions of authority, and when we criticize each other. By doing so we dare to propose that we could run things better! What foolishness! Thank you, God, that in your might and power you, not us, are equipped to battle with Satan. Help us to remember to call on you and your power for spiritual battle and not to attempt it on our own.
We love you and praise you for who you are and what you do. Thank you for the special times you invite us to be used by you, to be instruments of your blessing in this world; what a privilege!! You are an amazing and almighty God!
Posted on Thu, April 30, 2015
by joel king