Reading For Tuesday 2 Corinthians 4:1-6:2
Paul understands his ministry in light of God's mercy, and he repudiates any notion that his practices are not above reproach. If the gospel is concealed in any way, it is because they have been blinded to the truth by the god of this world. Paul proclaims Christ because it is God who gives the light of the knowledge of the glory of God. The power of the gospel is God's power and the contrast between weakness and power was epitomized by Paul’s ministry. Paul sees his suffering as a reflection of the suffering of Jesus. Paul encourages the Corinthian believers by explaining suffering and glory. Paul's affliction has been the means by which the gospel came to the Corinthians and others as well. There is hope, and so he perseveres while suffering but enjoying an inner daily renewal. With eternity in mind, Paul sees this suffering as light and momentary in light of the eternal weight of glory yet to be revealed.
Paul awaits resurrection life in the midst of groaning and longing for the heavenly dwelling. The Holy Spirit is the guarantee of the life to come, and so they are of good courage. Whatever circumstances Paul finds himself in, his only aim is to please the Lord for one day everyone will appear before the judgment seat of Christ and receive what is due. In light of these truths, Paul seeks to persuade others, not by commending themselves, but because the love of Christ controls him. Christ died and was raised, and that changes everything. Paul does not see people the same way anymore. If anyone is in Christ, they are a new creation because they have been reconciled to God through Christ who has also given them the ministry of reconciliation and made them his ambassadors and the secondary means of God's appeal. Christ was made to be sin so that those who have been reconciled to God might become the righteousness of God. Paul wants to persuade them to receive the grace of God because today is the day of salvation.
Things To Consider:
- Why are people blind to the truth?
- What breaks through the darkness associated with spiritual blindness?
- How should we cope with suffering? Why?
- How does inner renewal take place when the outer self is wasting away?
- How can we keep an eternal perspective?
- What should the aim of the Christian be? Why?
- How do you feel about the judgment seat of Christ? Why?
- How can one be persuasive and winsome at the same time?
- Why must our pride be set aside in proclaiming the gospel?
- How can you be controlled by the love of Christ?
- How is one reconciled to God?
- How are you doing as an ambassador for Christ? Why?
- Why did Christ become sin?