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Tag Archives: 2 Corinthians 4

“The Plain Truth!” (A Study of 2 Corinthians 4:1-3)

Friends: If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you know that my friend Frank (in New Jersey) and I have been doing an email Bible study for over a year. We read the same chapter every day for a week — and then send a brief email of encouragement to each other. We’ve completed most of the epistles of the New Testament — and it’s been a great discipline for both of us.

We’re now working our way through 2 Corinthians. Here’s my outline for several verses in chapter four:

Years ago a false teacher by the name of Garner Ted Armstrong had a very popular preaching ministry called “The World Tomorrow.” His magazine was called “The Plain Truth.” The father Herbert W. and his son (Garner Ted) denied the doctrine of the Trinity (as well as other cardinal truths of the Christian faith). The false doctrines of Armstrongism are detailed here. After the death Herbert W. Armstrong, the cult moved more in the direction of orthodoxy as described here.

What brought Armstrongism to mind is the expression of Paul in verse 2 – “We set forth the truth plainly.” Notice the following elements about

“The Plain Truth” (A Study of 2 Corinthians 4:1-3)

I. This is a ministry we have through God’s mercy and, therefore, we should not lose heart (v. 1)!

II. The message that we preach is not based on secret and shameful ways (v. 2).

III. Our proclamation of the gospel is not with deception or distortion of the Word of God (v. 2).

IV. Rather, we set forth the truth plainly with a good conscience (v. 2).

V. We recognize that some, those who are perishing, have veiled minds to the gospel (v. 3)

Today’s Challenge: I don’t know who you are trying to reach with the gospel, but let this passage be an encouragement to you! Don’t lose heart and realize that only God can un-veil the minds of those who don’t yet believe!

 
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Posted by on June 13, 2020 in 2 Corinthians 4

 

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Suffering?! What Suffering? (A Study of 2 Corinthians 4:7-12)

Friends: If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you know that my friend Frank (in New Jersey) and I have been doing an email Bible study for over a year. We read the same chapter every day for a week — and then send a brief email of encouragement to each other. We’ve completed most of the epistles of the New Testament — and it’s been a great discipline for both of us.

We’re now working our way through 2 Corinthians and we’re in Chapter Four:

Suffering?! What Suffering? (A Study of 2 Corinthians 4:7-12)

What is “this treasure” (v. 7) to which Paul refers? The passage is clear. It is: “The word of God” (v. 2), “our gospel” (v. 3), “the light of the gospel” (v. 4), “we preach . . . Jesus Christ as Lord” (v. 5), “the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ” (v. 6). But being “jars of clay” which contain this treasure comes with a cost — suffering!

I. The Descriptions of Paul’s Suffering (vv. 8-11)

II. The Purpose of Paul’s Suffering (v. 10)

>>> “so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body”

III. The Benefit of Paul’s Suffering (v. 12)

>>> “So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you” (v. 12)

Today’s Challenge: In a real sense, we believers are walking dead men.  We carry with us the death of Christ who can become LIFE to those who believe. How in the world could we think that such a ministry would be accomplished with no suffering attached to it?! Count yourself privileged today to suffer . . . for Him!

 
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Posted by on June 11, 2020 in suffering

 

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Keys to Not Losing Heart (A Study of 2 Corinthians 4)

Friends: If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you know that my friend Frank (in New Jersey) and I have been doing an email Bible study for over a year. We read the same chapter every day for a week — and then send a brief email of encouragement to each other. We’ve completed most of the epistles of the New Testament — and it’s been a great discipline for both of us.

We’re now working our way through 2 Corinthians. Here’s my outline for several verses in chapter four. (I needed to include the entire chapter below):Keys to Not Losing Heart (2 Cor. 4)

1. Follow God-Honoring Ways in Your Ministry (v. 2)

2. Set Forth the Truth — and Yourself — Plainly (v. 2)

3. Recognize That the Minds of Unbelievers Are Blinded (vv. 3-4)

4. Don’t Preach Yourself, But Christ! (vv. 5-6)

5. Don’t Minimize Your Own Suffering for the Savior (vv. 7-12)

6. Do Your Work Out of Faith in the Lord Jesus (vv. 13-15)

7. Be Motivated by the Biblical Certainty of Eternity (vv. 16-18)

 
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Posted by on June 9, 2020 in ministry

 

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Are you wasting away? Join the club!

FirefoxScreenSnapz262FirefoxScreenSnapz263Within one week I have developed three problems with my right leg. FirefoxScreenSnapz261 I have a weak hamstring, the beginnings of plantar fasciitus, and a serious case of athlete’s foot!  Really.  My whole right side is a mess.  This on top of occasional stabbing pain from arthritus on the top of my right foot.

I played a tennis match last night and during the very first point of the match I felt my right hamstring tweak a bit.  I prayed that I could make it through the match (that hamstring made me FirefoxScreenSnapz264retire in a match months before.  It was followed by weeks of physical therapy), and I did.  So I spent some of today looking up exercises for a weak hamstring (’cause I have a weak mind and had forgotten the exercises I spent over $500 to learn months before).

I like being active.  I like playing tennis with guys 20-30 years younger than me.  My body disagrees with my likes.  I can hear the conversation my hamstring had with my foot yesterday:

Hamstring:  “Hey.  Foot.  Let’s show this old guy who’s in charge!”
Foot:  “What do you mean, Hammie?”

Hamstring:  “I mean he’s always acting like he’s 30 and he’s over TWICE that!  FirefoxScreenSnapz265Tell you what:  I’ll tweak him just a bit to scare him some and you can do, well, whatever it is that you do!”

Foot:  “Deal!  Maybe we can convince him to buy a rocking chair!”

2 Corinthians 4:16-17 says, “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”

There’s a lot in this passage that I don’t understand.  How do you not lose heart when body parts are conspiring and physical therapists are plotting to separate me from my money?  I don’t understand why we have to “waste away.”  I don’t understand why it is I ache where I didn’t even know there were places which could get sore, or pop, or get strained.

But I do understand a few things:  (1)  This world is fallen and broken and in pain (like my body parts).  I should expect some effects of the Fall in Genesis 3 in my own life (thanks, Adam & Eve).  (2) This world is not the only FirefoxScreenSnapz266one that is.  There will come a new world and I will get a brand-new resurrection body without plantar fasciitus or athlete’s foot or weak hamstrings.  So I need to think a bit more about that new world that’s a-comin’.  (3) I need to focus more on allowing my inner man to be renewed!  This is not to say that our bodies are the prisonhouse of our souls or that we shouldn’t exercise or take care of ourselves.  It is the simple truth that we are more than our bodies, more than our athletic abilities, more than our energy and stamina can produce.  And lastly, (4) I must take a comparative view and somehow recognize that the issue really is between “light and momentary troubles” versus “an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”  Meanwhile, I’ve just got one question for you:  Got any Ben Gay?

Questions:

1.  What physical exercises do you regularly do?

2.  What spiritual disciplines do you regularly practice?

 
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Posted by on August 14, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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