verses for this week: Eccl
3:6 A time to get, and
a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
Introduction: Last week in Chapter 10, Paul defended his
apostleship, and warned the church there in Corinth to be careful to
judge themselves accurately. Not
comparing themselves one to the other in human judgment, but rather
in relation to Jesus Christ. Jesus
is the one we should look to and attempt to copy in our daily lives.
2 Corinthians 11:1 Would to God ye could bear with me a
little in my folly: and indeed bear with me.
2 For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have
espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste
virgin to Christ.
In the opening portion of this chapter, Paul begins
by showing that the false teachers there in Corinth were seeking to
undermine confidence in him and to lead the people away from the
simplicity of the true Gospel.
We talked last week that the false teacher seeks to tear down
while the true man of God seeks to build up Christians.
When trying to determine whether a person is teaching the
truth, always ask ďWhat is the purpose of what is being taught?Ē
and ďWhat is this personí motive in teaching this?Ē
If it is to hurt others or glorify self, be sure that this
person is not teaching Godís way. If a person is always finding fault with others and
never building you up, this is a false teacher.
Paul was one who taught in honesty and truth. Paul had just written how foolish it was to praise oneself.
Not out of necessity, he is forced to do this very thing in
his own defense. But
what he had taught is true. We
should always try to let words of praise come from anotherís lips,
not our own.
27:2 Let another man
praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own
The reason Paul had to indulge in this ďfollyĒ
was because he was jealous over these believers with
a godly jealously.
In other words, he did not want them to be deceived by these
false teachers. So many
hurt the cause of Christ by having jealousy in churches today that
is ungodly jealousy. Paulís jealousy was not build up self but to serve
the Lord. Paulís
desire is to see the church at Corinth remain loyal and devoted to
Christ. Paul had led to be ďespousedĒ or
engaged to Christ, and he wants them to remain faithful in this
3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the
serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be
corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. 4 For if he that
cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye
receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another
gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.
Paul was afraid that Satan might be able to beguile
the Corinthians, even as he did in the garden of Eden with Eve.
Satan is very subtle, and works to destroy each of us.
If you think about it, all Satan had to do was mix up a
little truth with a
little error and this led her astray. If we donít know the word of God, Satan can twist us
so many ways that we canít get loose.
But when you are grounded and know the truth, Satan canít
penetrate that barrier of the word of God.
Paul fears that these young Christians there in Corinth might
be led astray from the simple faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Verse 4 speaks of many preachers in pulpits all over the
world. They teach and preach a little of the truth, but add things
to the gospel that God never intended.
Many say if you have Jesus and enough works, then you can be
saved. Others teach
that if you have Jesus and some church ordinance (such as baptism),
then you can be saved. But
anytime someone adds to the simplicity of Jesus and Jesus alone for
salvation, that man is not teaching the truth.
The word of God teaches that if we hear the word of God, and
we recognize that we are sinners by the convicting power and drawing
of the Holy Spirit, and we repent of our sins and turn by faith to
Jesus for salvation, we will be saved.
It is that simple. Following
the commandments, being baptized, and working for the Lord are all
good things and should be done.
But not a one is required for a person to be saved.
2 Tim 1:12
For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless
I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded
that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of
yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9 Not of
works, lest any man should boast.
I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you
into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Gal 1:7
Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and
would pervert the gospel of Christ. Gal 1:8
But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other
gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him
be accursed. Gal 1:9 As
we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other
gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.
Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel,
that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified,
whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here
before you whole. Acts
4:11 This is the stone
which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of
the corner. Acts 4:12
Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none
other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
5 For I suppose I was not a whit behind
the very chiefest apostles. 6 But though I be rude in speech, yet
not in knowledge; but we have been throughly made manifest among you
in all things.
explains that he was an apostle not far behind the chiefest
apostles. As a matter
of fact, I think that Paul will the that 12 name on the wall and
will sit with the others when they judge the 12 tribes of Israel one
day. We certainly know
it wonít be Judas Iscariot, because he was a lost man.
It could possibly be Matthias who was chosen to replace
Judas, but in my heart I feel sure it will be Paul, the apostle unto
the gentiles. Paul
tells them that he might not be the best speaker to be found, he
when he did speak, he knew what he was talking about.
We read the verses last week which spoke of how God does not
call many of the mighty into the work of the Lord.
He uses the base things of this world to confound the wise.
If I had my choice, I would always prefer to be like Paul,
not particularly a great speaker, but always teaching the full
Vernon McGee has a very high opinion of Paul as well as I.
Here is what he had to say about Paul:
was a brilliant man, but he used simple language. There are two men
who have had a great influence on my life. One was a scholarly man
in Memphis, Tennessee, who taught in simplicity. The other was Dr.
Harry A. Ironside who was known as a simple preacher. He was a
brilliant man, but he preached with simplicity. He put the cookies
on the lower shelf where the kiddies could get them. Simplicity was
the method of Paul.
says that he was rude in speech. I think that he actually adopted
the language that the Corinthians would understand, and I am of the
opinion that it may have been a rather rude approach. However, Paul
was a brilliant man. From his writings I would judge that he had the
highest I.Q. of any man who has walked this earth.
Have I committed an offence in abasing myself that ye might be
exalted, because I have preached to you the gospel of God freely? 8
I robbed other churches, taking wages of them, to do you service. 9
And when I was present with you, and wanted, I was chargeable to no
man: for that which was lacking to me the brethren which came from
Macedonia supplied: and in all things I have kept myself from being
burdensome unto you, and so will I keep myself.
Paul was like every true pastor.. he preached the
Gospel of God freely and accurately.
He explains that other churches helped to pay his way while
he was at Corinth. It
is an honor that we as a church can help missionaries when they go
to the foreign field. That is how we accomplish the great commission given to the
church where he spoke of how we are to preach the gospel to every
creature in the world. You
and I may not can go to the foreign field, but by supporting
missionaries, we help to reach the lost in countries all around the
world. Concerning Paul,
he was a man who was not afraid to work either.
He spoke of using his tent building trade to pay some of his
expenses as he journeyed doing the work of the Lord.
Far too many who are called to the mission field refuse to go
until they have all the support they need.
When the majority of the money is in place, I believe God
will supply every need if a man will go ahead and go and trust God.
Even if a person had to work some to begin with, to be in
Godís Will and be found preaching the gospel is one of
the ultimate accomplishments any missionary could claim.
As the truth of Christ is in me,
no man shall stop me of this boasting in the regions of
Achaia. 11 Wherefore?
because I love you not? God knoweth. 12 But what I do, that I will
do, that I may cut off occasion from them which desire occasion;
that wherein they glory, they may be found even as we.
Paul was a man determined that no one would stop
him from boasting that the gospel is free.
Paul took care of himself, and was a burden to no man. What a great
testimony this man had. He
speaks of how that he was careful to cut off those who would make
occasion to glory in themselves.
No matter where Paul went, it seemed someone was always there
as an opponent observing him and seeking a reason to criticize him.
We should not be surprised when Satan rears his ugly head up
against us. Paulís
desire was that those that criticized him might come to the point
where they could glory in the freeness of the gospel as he did.
The Warning Against False Teachers
For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming
themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14 And no marvel; for Satan
himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no
great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of
righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
Paul here is not talking about true apostles in
these verses, but those that were Ďdeceitful workers.í They had no call into Godís work, and were not saved
Christians. Paul said
that as Satan, they had transformed themselves into the appearance
of being ministers of Jesus Christ.
You donít have to look too far to find a false teacher.
Flip on the television dial and probably at least half of the
ones you see are not true men of God.
Satan is the one leading those who are false teachers.
Satan has powers like no manÖ he can literally change
himself into an angel of light.
He is devious. When
he tempted Christ, he even quoted scripture to try and get Christ to
follow after him. But none of his false teachings tricked Christ.
If Adam and Eve had not been deceived, we would not have
inherited our fallen nature.
3:4-6 And the serpent said
unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 For God doth know that in
the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall
be as gods, knowing good and evil.
And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it
was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise,
she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her
husband with her; and he did eat.
Paul says that the end of these false apostles will
be according to their works.
Paulís Forced Boasting
16 I say again, Let no man think me a
fool; if otherwise, yet as a fool receive me, that I may boast
myself a little. 17
That which I speak, I speak it not after the Lord, but as it were
foolishly, in this confidence of boasting.
Paul is not
following the example of the Lord in this boasting that he does in
these verses. Christ
never set an example of boasting of himself.
Since many in Corinth gloried after the flesh, Paul uses this
to show how much he could glory also if he so desired.
Seeing that many glory after the flesh, I will glory also. 19 For ye
suffer fools gladly, seeing ye yourselves are wise. 20 For ye
suffer, if a man bring you into bondage, if a man devour you, if a
man take of you, if a man exalt himself, if a man smite you on the
who were false teachers brought the people who followed after them
into bondage rather than liberty.
The bible sets us free when we find Jesus as our Lord and
Savior. While Paul was
no burden to the people, these false teachers devoured the
Corinthians with their false teachings.
They exalted themselves and were overbearing to the people.
Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye
continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;
And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you
For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear;
but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba,
The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we
are the children of God:
And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs
with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also
For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not
worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the
manifestation of the sons of God.
For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly,
but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,
Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the
bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of
21 I speak as concerning reproach, as
though we had been weak. Howbeit whereinsoever any is bold, (I speak
foolishly,) I am bold also.
22 Are they Hebrews? so am I. Are they
Israelites? so am I. Are they the seed of Abraham? so am I. 23 Are
they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours
more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent,
in deaths oft.
section of scripture (verses
21-29) really makes us realize what Paul suffered for the cause of
Christ. Paul says if
these deceivers are bold to speak of their own qualifications, Paul
could also be bold. Paul
explains if these false teachers could claim something in
qualifications, he could claim even more.
This man had a tremendous heritage.
Born a Hebrew, and Israelite, the seed of Abraham.
Paul was known as a leading Pharisee and really knew the word
of God, even before he was saved on that road to Damascus.
By being a seed of Abraham, that made him part of the
covenant God made with Abraham and his seed.
Genesis 22:17 That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying
I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand
which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of
his enemies; Genesis
22:18 And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be
blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.
24 Of the Jews five times received I
forty stripes save one. 25 Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I
stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been
in the deep; 26 In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils
of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the
heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in
perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; 27 In weariness
and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in
fastings often, in cold and nakedness. 28 Beside those things that
are without, that which cometh upon me daily,
the care of all the churches. 29 Who is weak, and I am not
weak? who is offended, and I burn not? 30 If I must needs glory, I
will glory of the things which concern mine infirmities. 31 The God
and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is blessed for evermore,
knoweth that I lie not. 32 In Damascus the governor under Aretas the
king kept the city of the Damascenes with a garrison, desirous to
apprehend me: 33 And through a window in a basket was I let down by
the wall, and escaped his hands.
Paul goes through a brief
history of his life and what he had experienced as a minister of
Christ. When you look
at Paulís life, and you put your own experiences against what Paul
faced, it gives you a very humbling feeling.
Iíve done so little for the cause of Christ compared to
Paul. The beatings he
mentions in verse 24 is recorded in Acts 16.
16:22-23 And the multitude rose up together against them: and
the magistrates rent off their clothes, and commanded to beat them.
23 And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them
into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely:
Paul faced many heartaches and
shipwrecks. Besides these mentioned here, he also suffered the one
in Acts 27 on his trip to Rome.
Paul was dedicated to God, and because of it, he suffered.
But a great deal of joy was in Paul for all that he did for
the cause of Christ. His
number one thing in life was to see the churches flourish and grow
to the honor and glory of God.
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But the path of the just is as the shining light, that
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