2 Corinthians 7:6-9

In 2 Corinthians 7:6-9 Paul talks about how God had helped lift their spirits with Titus. In spite of all his frustrations with the Corinthians and in the midst of all his afflictions in ministry, Paul had real confidence and hope because Titus brought him a good report of how things were going in Corinth. “But God, who comforts the downcast, comforted us by the coming of Titus, and not only by his coming but also by the comfort with which he was comforted by you, as he told us of your longing, your mourning, your zeal for me, so that I rejoiced still more.” This was Paul’s life in ministry. It was a life of great blessing but also a life of many conflicts and fears.

Here is the reality of Paul’s life. On the outside, Paul was constantly in conflict with enemies of the gospel and worldly minded Christians. On the inside, Paul daily battled with the stress and anxiety of ministry. He wrestled with the need to rebuke the Corinthian church, and struggled with whether that would work. But he chose to do it and while done with some fear and stress, he went ahead and did it. “For even if I made you grieve with my letter, I do not regret it – though I did regret it, for I see that that letter grieved you, though only for a while.” Paul knew his letter would make them feel some pain and shame, but he knew it had to happen.

Guzik wrote “It helps if we remember the sequence of events. Things were going badly among the Christians in Corinth, and in an attempt to get them on track, Paul made a quick, unplanned visit that only seemed to make things worse (the “sorrowful visit” mentioned in 2 Corinthians 2:1). After the failure of this visit, Paul decided not to visit Corinth again in person at the time but instead sent Titus to them with a strong letter of rebuke. Paul was very worried about how the Corinthians would receive the letter and whether it would turn them to Jesus or just make them angry. When Titus came back with good news from the Corinthian Christians, Paul was greatly relieved.”

Paul’s motive with the Corinthian church was not to make them feel bad. He wasn’t trying to put them down and make them subservient to him. He had one motive in the letter he sent to the church via Titus. He wanted repentance of their sinful ways. “As it is, I rejoice, not because you were grieved, but because you were grieved into repenting. For you felt a godly grief, so that you suffered no loss through us.” Paul makes a clear separation between sorrow and repentance. They are not the same things! One can be sorry for their sin without repenting from their sin. Sorrow describes a feeling, but repentance describes a change in both the mind and in the life. Paul wanted the Corinthians to repent!

One response to this post.

  1. Reblogged this on The Searchlight.

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