Read 2 Corinthians 9
Paul's spiritual authority; warning against false teachers; Paul's suffering; his thorn in the flesh; his plans to visit
After his conversion, the Apostle Paul lived with only one purpose, to preach the Gospel in the regions beyond (II Corinthians 10:16) and he didn't let any difficulties keep him from the great opportunities where he was led (Philippians 3:14). Paul often faced rejection from hostile enemies of Christ and occasionally from believers as well. He recalled: Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes (lashes) save one. 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; 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; In weariness and painfulness, in watchings (sleepless nights) often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Beside those things that are without that which cometh upon me daily, the care (concern) of all the churches (II Corinthians 11:24-28).
We too have the high calling to reach out in love to all people with the Good News of eternal life. Surely everyone should have the opportunity of hearing, at least once, that at death they are destined to either eternal life in hell in the lake of fire or eternal life in heaven. Consequently, it is of utmost importance that we consider our priorities. Do they lead us to yield to Him and His purpose for our lives, or do they influence us to ignore His Word? Because Christ is God, we must willingly submit to Him in all that He requires.
Someone may be very likable and a good citizen, but the dividing line between the saved and the lost is dependent on only one vital fact — have they repented of their sins and received Jesus as Savior and Lord of their lives. We need to tell everyone that Jesus Christ said that He is The (only) Way, The Truth, and The Life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me (John 14:6). The majority will hear Him say: Depart from Me ye cursed. . . . into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal. . . . When (He) the Son of Man shall come . . . and . . . sit upon the throne of His glory. . . . before Him shall be gathered all nations: and He shall separate them . . . as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats. . . . Then shall the King say unto them on His right hand, Come . . . inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world (Matthew 25:31-34,41,46; John 1:1-2).
9:2 forwardness = readiness; 9:5 bounty = gift; 9:7 of necessity = under compulsion; 9:13 experiment = experience, proof, evidence; 10:13 without = beyond; 11:2 espoused = betrothed, engaged; 11:3 beguiled = deceived, seduced; simplicity = sincere faithfulness; 11:5 a whit behind = at all inferior to; 11:6 rude in speech = unskilled as an orator; 12:7 buffet = discipline; 12:17 make a gain of you = take advantage of or exploit you; 12:20 swellings = pride; self-assertion; 12:21 lasciviousness = lustfulness; 13:6 we are not reprobates = rejected, not genuine Christians.
Pray for The English International Shortwave Radio Broadcast sponsored by Dr. & Mrs. John Hash · Staff: Ken Sharp · Government Officials: Rep. Barbara Cubin (WY) and Sen. Richard Burr (NC) · Country: Andorra (66,000) in the eastern Pyrenees between France and Spain · Major languages: Catalan and French · Religious freedom · 94% Roman Catholic; .6% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Pray and the Lord will free you from your fears (Psalm 34:4).
Memory Verse for the Week: James 2:26