Archive for the ‘2 Corinthians’ Category

December 13th, 2015

Live in Peace

“Finally, brothers, rejoice. Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.” 2 Corinthians 13:11 (ESV)

In the concluding remarks of his last letter, at least that we have record of, to the Corinthian Church, Paul delivers an incredible recipe with four major ingredients for living in peace with your brothers and sisters in Christ. He begins by reminding the people of Corinth to rejoice. Part of living in peace with your fellow man is living in peace with God, remembering His incredible work displayed in the gospel. When you and I spend time rejoicing, we don’t have as much time to focus on the failure or differences of others. Living in peace, then, begins with praise.

The second element that Paul encourages in the people of Corinth is aiming for restoration. Part of being a part of a community of people is cultivating healthy relationships. People are imperfect and they mess up, likely offending others, but our responsibility is not to abandon them. Certainly not! We are to aim for restoration, seeking out whatever means necessary to bring this division to a peaceful resolution. This is what Christ did for us, so how could we do any less?

The last two ingredients of which Paul writes are encouragements to the Corinthians to both comfort one another and agree with one another, shepherding them to both empathize with their fellow man and support them. We are on the same team as members of the Church of Jesus Christ, meaning we are fighting the same battles, winning the same victories, and suffering the same losses. There should be no contention among us, then, as that outside of us is already so great. We should not allow momentary mishaps to distract us from the greater purposes of God.

Today, take these words from Paul to heart and apply them to your life as you seek to live in peace with your fellow redeemed sinners.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, December 13th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Corinthians, Peace, Restoration.
Interact No Comments
December 12th, 2015

A Generous God Deserves a Generous People

“…for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part.” 2 Corinthians 8:2 (ESV)

We are to be a generous people, reflecting the heart of our very generous God! The people of Macedonia knew this, demonstrating an unusual combination of joy in the midst of poverty. That coupling would for many of us lead to bitterness and doubt. For them, however, a different reaction was seen most certainly rooted in a proper gospel perspective. You see, the people of Macedonia knew that the same God who provided for their sins in the coming of Christ would most certainly provide for their earthly needs as well. They would give what they had, trusting that the Lord would do for them what He had done for His people in the time of the Exodus and countless other times as recorded in Scripture.

Do we have that same kind of trust in the Lord’s faithfulness today? We often equate blessing with monetary blessings, but the Lord often asks us to sacrifice that which we value most dearly to remind us of our great need for and dependence upon Him. Would you still be joyful in the midst of extreme poverty? Or would you be like the rich, young ruler who could not bring himself to part with his possessions in order to inherit the Kingdom of God?

May we care more about the spreading of the gospel than our personal wealth! Now, we should not ignore our responsibilities as spouses and parents, but we should consider it a privilege to give sacrificially as an act of worship to our God who has so richly blessed us in the giving of His only Begotten! May we heed the word of Paul and follow the example of the gospel in being a generous people.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, December 12th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Corinthians, Generosity, Gospel.
Interact No Comments
December 11th, 2015

Are You a Recommendation to the Gospel?

“You yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all. And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God.” 2 Corinthians 3:2-4 (ESV)

Paul takes a moment in the middle of his accounting of his triumph in Christ over various trials to explicitly state his intention for such writing. He writes to the Corinthian Church that His purpose is not to commend himself in his apostleship but rather to commend Christ for His glorious provision in the midst of any circumstance. As for Paul, he needs no further commendation, such as a letter, for his efficacious work is evidenced in the men and women who are living transformed lives as a result of the message Paul shared and the resulting favor of the Holy Spirit. They are his referent!

Would your life be able to be used by Paul as a reference to the power of the Holy Spirit? If Paul’s apostleship were being called into question today, could he point to you as evidence of the truth of the power of the gospel? We must be more than moral people; we must be more than people of good will. We must be a transformed people, acknowledging failures and our complete dependency upon the grace provided by the sacrifice of Christ. If we fail here, then we will fail to affirm the very message we say is unique. May we commit today to embody the truth of Christ’s completely satisfying nature, forsaking all other things for the gift of knowing  Him!

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, December 11th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Corinthians, Example, Gospel.
Interact No Comments
December 13th, 2012

Live in Peace!

“Finally, brothers, rejoice. Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.” 2 Corinthians 13:11 (ESV)

In the concluding remarks of his last letter, at least that we have record of, to the Corinthian Church, Paul delivers an incredible recipe with four major ingredients for living in peace with your brothers and sisters in Christ. He begins by reminding the people of Corinth to rejoice. Part of living in peace with your fellow man is living in peace with God, remembering His incredible work displayed in the gospel. When you and I spend time rejoicing, we don’t have as much time to focus on the failure or differences of others. Living in peace, then, begins with praise.

The second element that Paul encourages in the people of Corinth is aiming for restoration. Part of being a part of a community of people is cultivating healthy relationships. People are imperfect and they mess up, likely offending others, but our responsibility is not to abandon them. Certainly not! We are to aim for restoration, seeking out whatever means necessary to bring this division to a peaceful resolution. This is what Christ did for us, so how could we do any less?

The last two ingredients of which Paul writes are encouragements to the Corinthians to both comfort one another and agree with one another, shepherding them to both empathize with their fellow man and support them. We are on the same team as members of the Church of Jesus Christ, meaning we are fighting the same battles, winning the same victories, and suffering the same losses. There should be no contention among us, then, as that outside of us is already so great. We should not allow momentary mishaps to distract us from the greater purposes of God.

Today, take these words from Paul to heart and apply them to your life as you seek to live in peace with your fellow redeemed sinners.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 340:  2 Corinthians 10-13)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, December 13th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Corinthians, Peace, Restoration.
Interact No Comments
December 12th, 2012

A Generous God Deserves a Generous People!

“…for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part.” 2 Corinthians 8:2 (ESV)

We are to be a generous people, reflecting the heart of our very generous God! The people of Macedonia knew this, demonstrating an unusual combination of joy in the midst of poverty. That coupling would for many of us lead to bitterness and doubt. For them, however, a different reaction was seen most certainly rooted in a proper gospel perspective. You see, the people of Macedonia knew that the same God who provided for their sins in the coming of Christ would most certainly provide for their earthly needs as well. They would give what they had, trusting that the Lord would do for them what He had done for His people in the time of the Exodus and countless other times as recorded in Scripture.

Do we have that same kind of trust in the Lord’s faithfulness today? We often equate blessing with monetary blessings, but the Lord often asks us to sacrifice that which we value most dearly to remind us of our great need for and dependence upon Him. Would you still be joyful in the midst of extreme poverty? Or would you be like the rich, young ruler who could not bring himself to part with his possessions in order to inherit the Kingdom of God?

May we care more about the spreading of the gospel than our personal wealth! Now, we should not ignore our responsibilities as spouses and parents, but we should consider it a privilege to give sacrificially as an act of worship to our God who has so richly blessed us in the giving of His only Begotten! May we heed the word of Paul and follow the example of the gospel in being a generous people.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 339:  2 Corinthians 5-9)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, December 12th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Corinthians, Generosity, Gospel.
Interact No Comments
December 11th, 2012

Are You a Recommendation to the Gospel?

“You yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all. And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God.” 2 Corinthians 3:2-4 (ESV)

Paul takes a moment in the middle of his accounting of his triumph in Christ over various trials to explicitly state his intention for such writing. He writes to the Corinthian Church that His purpose is not to commend himself in his apostleship but rather to commend Christ for His glorious provision in the midst of any circumstance. As for Paul, he needs no further commendation, such as a letter, for his efficacious work is evidenced in the men and women who are living transformed lives as a result of the message Paul shared and the resulting favor of the Holy Spirit. They are his referent!

Would your life be able to be used by Paul as a reference to the power of the Holy Spirit? If Paul’s apostleship were being called into question today, could he point to you as evidence of the truth of the power of the gospel? We must be more than moral people; we must be more than people of good will. We must be a transformed people, acknowledging failures and our complete dependency upon the grace provided by the sacrifice of Christ. If we fail here, then we will fail to affirm the very message we say is unique. May we commit today to embody the truth of Christ’s completely satisfying nature, forsaking all other things for the gift of knowing  Him!

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 338:  2 Corinthians 1-4)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

 

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Tuesday, December 11th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category 2 Corinthians, Example, Gospel.
Interact No Comments