On Sunday, January 13th, 2019, Pastor Chris introduced us to the book of 2 Corinthians, which we anticipate the preaching of over the course of the next few months.
He provided 19 points regarding areas of a gospel-saturated vision that are on display in 2 Corinthians. “If we embrace the message of 2 Corinthians, we will see this letter through Paul’s own radical, gospel-saturated vision, and when we do:
- Suffering will be viewed as the normal rule for the Christian and not the remarkable exception; it is the privilege of Christians to “share in Christ’s sufferings” (1:5, 7).
- Far from being something to be avoided, we will embrace sufferings and weakness as a means of grace and a conduit of His power! (1;12)
- Afflictions lead to being comfort by God, which becomes a vehicle of comfort for others (1:3-5)
- 1:3-4: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God”
- We will rejoice when we receive grace! Even when it is “sustaining grace” instead of “liberating grace” (12:9)
- Learning to “rely not on ourselves but only on God who raises the dead” always follows feeling that you have received God’s “sentence of death” (1:9).
- See all of life as purposeful: “light and momentary afflictions” are always producing in an “eternal weight of glory beyond comparison” (4:17).
- We will be utterly liberated from the fear of God’s Providence. That is, we will no longer be afraid of what God may choose to do with us in order to bring glory to His name!
- “Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me of my anxiety for all the churches…” (11:24–28.)
- We will rejoice that “our sufficiency is NOT in ourselves, but is from God, who has made us sufficient to be ministers of the new covenant” (3:5-6).
- Our view of Christ will be constantly growing: Christ as glorious and desirable–and by seeing we shall be transformed into His likeness (3:18)!
- We will be “controlled” by the love of God–not by people and not by a need for more stuff—when we embrace the radical exchange taught in the gospel of God; “One died for all so that those who live might not live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and rose!” (5:14-15).
- The call to death-for-life! is the calling of every Christian (4:11).
- “For we who live are always being over to death for Jesus; sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.”
- Take great hope when we see that our outward self is wasting away because at the same time our inner self is being renewed day by day (4:16).
- That even if this earthly tent is destroyed, we have a more permanent building from God….eternal in the heavens (5:1).
- We can have nothing in this world and still believe that we possess everything! (6:10).
- We will cherish and seek to emulate the generosity of Christ: “though he was rich, yet for your sake, He became poor, so that you by His poverty might become rich!” (8:9)
- Our giving will be for the joy of the one who receives it! (9:12)
- We will experience divine power to take every thought captive to obey Christ! (10:5).
- We will view all authority as the means of “building others up, not for destroying them” (1:24; 10:8; 12:9; 13:10)
- We will no longer fear when our weakness is exposed to others—we will view those weaknesses as doorways of His grace that He has chosen for us, so that His power will work through us!
- We will accept as a model for this life what was true of the Lord Jesus: “He was crucified in weakness but lives by the power of God!” (13:4).”
Listen to the sermon here.