My sermon notes for Sunday, Dec 30th as we continue our study through 2 Corinthians. Remember, these are my personal study notes and not a manuscript of the sermon. To see the sermon each week or subscribe to the weekly sermon podcast please visit http://www.fbcap.net
2 Cor. 1:15-2:4 – Our Life as a Living Testimony
Fending off accusations.
How would you defend your reputation as a servant of the Lord?
The accusers of Corinth were attacking Paul from within the church. They were utilizing his change of plans to attack his character and to destroy his reputation. Paul continues to defend his ministry and the reason his plans changed (1:12-14). In the end, Paul’s life was a wonderful picture of faithfulness to the Lord and His church. At times though, we must remember that accusations will come, but remember the testimony of our life….is our life.
In other situations we THINK we are living a God-fearing Christian life, but we have no true testimony to back it up. REMEMBER, our life is a picture of grace. Our life is a picture of the Gospel.
REMEMBER OUR LIFE a true testimony of who we REALLY are.
1:12-14 – Paul had a clear conscience before the Lord and the church, here he is allowing his life to demonstrate his standing before them both.
- A life of concern, certainty, conviction, and compassion.
Concern for the spiritual needs within the body of Christ – v. 15
I wanted to come to you.
- A desire to invest our life into others. Wherever we are. The idea is the spiritual needs of others.
Second work of grace
- Receiving the benefits is a two-way street. As we pour our life into others, then we too received the gifts of grace.
Certainty of God’s leadership within your life – vv. 16-18
Paul’s plans changed, but they changed because the Lord was leading his life.
- The means by which we know the leading of the Lord is through the Spirit and the Word. (BOTH TOGETHER)
- When we allow the Spirit and the Word to direct our life, we can be certain we are in the center of God’s will. (doing what He wants us to do, when we need to do it, and how we need to do it)
Conviction about the truth of the Gospel – vv. 19-21
One of the most important things to Paul was getting Jesus/the Gospel right
- Knew what he preached about Christ was true – v. 19
- Knew the promises about Christ were true – v. 20
- Knew what God has done in his life was true. The role of the Holy Spirit. – vv. 22-23
- Established – placed us in Christ. In a relationship with the Lord.
- Anointed – commissioned them for service. Chosen US for His service.
- Sealed – stamped a mark on us. We have been certified that we are His.
- A guarantee – The first installment of our future glory.
- Ephesians 1:13–14 –  In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,  who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. (ESV)
Compassion toward them (he loved them) – vv. 1:23-2:4
- Did not lord over them – v. 24
- Viewed them as fellow workers – v. 24
- Motivated by joy – v. 24, 2:3
- Demonstrated by love (our actions) – 2:4
Our love for others should be evident. Even as an apostle Paul knew they were ONE in Christ.