Chapter 13: 2 Corinthians 13: 1-14, benediction
Heavenly Father, we praise You and thank You. You are worthy to be praised. You are the name above all names. We give You all glory, honour, praise, power, and authority, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
VV 1-4, 1 This will be the third time I am coming to you. “By the mouth of two or three witnesses every word shall be established.” 2 I have told you before, and foretell as if I were present the second time, and now being absent I write to those who have sinned before, and to all the rest, that if I come again I will not spare, 3 since you seek a proof of Christ speaking in me, who is not weak toward you, but mighty in you. 4 For though He was crucified in weakness, yet He lives by the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, but we shall live with Him by the power of God toward you.
Paul’s next visit to Corinth would be his third. Paul quoted Deut 19:15. Paul encouraged those who had sinned to repent. There is strength in weakness. Christ was crucified in weakness but lives by the power of God. Paul was weak in Christ but he lived with Him through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Deut 19:15, “One witness shall not rise against a man concerning any iniquity or any sin that he commits, by the mouth of two or three witnesses the matter shall be established.”
VV 5-6, 5 Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? unless indeed you are disqualified. 6 But I trust that you will know that we are not disqualified.
Paul asked 1 rhetorical question. The mark of a true Christian is possession of the Holy Spirit. A person who did not have the Holy Spirit is not a Christian. Romans 8:9.
Romans 8:9, “But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.”
VV 7-10, 7 Now I pray to God that you do no evil, not that we should appear approved, but that you should do what is honorable, though we may seem disqualified. 8 For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth. 9 For we are glad when we are weak and you are strong. And this also we pray, that you may be made complete. 10 Therefore, I write these things being absent, lest being present I should use sharpness, according to the authority which the Lord has given me for edification and not for destruction.
Paul encouraged his audience to be honourable, truthful, honest, and not to do evil deeds. If they were truthful and honest, they could not be faulted, but if they were dishonest and exposed, and they could be shamed.
VV 11-14, 11 Finally, brethren, farewell. Become complete. Be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you. 12 Greet one another with a holy kiss. 13 All the saints greet you. 14 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.
Finally, Paul encouraged his audience to cheer up, be unanimous, live in peace, love God, and love one another. Paul enocuraged them to greet one another with a holy kiss. The holy kiss of the first century world is equivalent to a handshake, a kiss on the cheek, or a hug today. Paul pronounced a greeting of grace, love, communion of the Holy Spirit, and ended his epistle with an Amen.
We should not do evil, be honourable, truthful, and honest. If we are truthful and honest, no one can find fault with us. If we are dishonest, the truth will be exposed and we will be shamed. Honesty is the best policy.
Heavenly Father, thank You for journeying with on this wonderful journey in 2 Corinthians through the writings of Paul. We pray that You will help us be truthful, honourable, honest, and above board. We pray for Your strength in our weakness, in Jesus’ name, Amen.