2 Corinthians 10: Measuring Ministry

In ministering to the Corinthians, what was Paul wanting to give them, which they didn’t have?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:1 I, Paul, appeal to you with the kindness and understanding of Christ, humble in your presence and forceful in my letters.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:1 Now I Paul myself beseech you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ, who in presence am base among you, but being absent am bold toward you.

How can a letter be more effective than a personal confrontation?

Author’s Thoughts
Author’s Insights Pending
Author’s Paraphrase
2 Corinthians 10:1 I, Paul, appeal to you with the kindness and understanding of Christ, humble in your presence and forceful in my letters.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:1 Now I Paul myself beseech you by the meekness and gentleness of Christ, who in presence am base among you, but being absent am bold toward you.

Why might the Corinthian believers have misjudged Paul’s motives?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:2 I am begging you now so when I come, I won’t have to be so harsh with those who think we have self-serving motives.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:2 But I beseech you, that I may not be bold when I am present with that confidence, wherewith I think to be bold against some, which think of us as if we walked according to the flesh.

In their battles, how do followers of Jesus differ from others in the world (; ; 2 Corinthians 10:3–5)?

Author’s Thoughts
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Matthew 5:39 But I say you should not try to get even. If people slap you on the cheek, do not retaliate, but allow them to slap the other cheek.
John 18:36 “My Kingdom is not of this world,” Jesus said. “If it were, my disciples would have fought to prevent my arrest by the Jews. No, my Kingdom is not from here.”
2 Corinthians 10:3 We may be human, but we don’t fight like people of the world.
10:4 The weapons of our warfare are spiritual, not physical—powerful through God to defeat every stronghold that opposes him,
10:5 destroying human reasoning and overcoming anything that would rise up against his truth, making every thought subject to the will of Christ.
King James
Matthew 5:39 But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.
John 18:36 Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.
2 Corinthians 10:3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh:
10:4 (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)
10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.

Why does our way tend to look better than God’s way?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:6 When you are fully surrendered to him, you dispel any tendency to go your own way.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:6 And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

How is our vision helped by knowing Jesus better?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:7 Is your judgment limited to the way you see yourselves? If you think your connection with Christ is exclusive, expand your vision. If you know him, rest assured that we know him very well.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:7 Do ye look on things after the outward appearance? If any man trust to himself that he is Christ’s, let him of himself think this again, that, as he is Christ’s, even so are we Christ’s.

What is the difference between worthless boasting and valuable claims?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:8 I am not embarrassed in boasting that our greater authority has been given to strengthen you, not tear you down.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:8 For though I should boast somewhat more of our authority, which the Lord hath given us for edification, and not for your destruction, I should not be ashamed.

Some have said they made a choice for Heaven because they were scared to death of Hell. How motivating do you think “fire and brimstone” messages are?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:9 Don’t think that I’m trying to scare you into obedience with my letters.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:9 That I may not seem as if I would terrify you by letters.

Why do you think people would say Paul won’t be as strong in person as he is in his letters?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:10 Some may say my letters are impressive and demanding, but in person I will have no charisma and my speaking will be worthless.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:10 For his letters, say they, are weighty and powerful; but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech contemptible.

How might Paul’s words in person be even stronger than what he put in writing?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:11 Let those people know that our appearance in person will be as strong as our letters.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:11 Let such an one think this, that, such as we are in word by letters when we are absent, such will we be also in deed when we are present.

What should be our standard for evaluating our ministry?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:12 We dare not be like others who brag about what they say and do, ranking themselves by using themselves as a standard for greatness, which isn’t very smart.
10:13 We will not use ourselves as a standard for measurement. We will only boast to the extent that we have measured up to the call of God to reach out to you.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:12 For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.
10:13 But we will not boast of things without our measure, but according to the measure of the rule which God hath distributed to us, a measure to reach even unto you.

If Paul had taken liberties in ministry beyond what he should have, what do you think he would have been guilty of doing?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:14 We did not go beyond God’s call or exercise undue authority over you, for we were the first to bring you the message of Jesus Christ.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:14 For we stretch not ourselves beyond our measure, as though we reached not unto you: for we are come as far as to you also in preaching the gospel of Christ.

When we have what we believe for, we no longer need faith for it. If growth in faith has not increased what we have, what is its value?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:15 We take no credit from work others have done, but we believe abundant rewards will follow your growth in faith.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:15 Not boasting of things without our measure, that is, of other men’s labours; but having hope, when your faith is increased, that we shall be enlarged by you according to our rule abundantly.

Since God requires more of us if we have more, what is the benefit of having more?

Author’s Thoughts
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Luke 12:48 But the one who does wrong out of ignorance will receive a lighter sentence. Much is required of those who are given much responsibility, and more is required of those who are given more.
2 Corinthians 10:16 Then we can go to regions beyond you, again receiving no benefit from someone else’s work.
King James
Luke 12:48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.
2 Corinthians 10:16 To preach the gospel in the regions beyond you, and not to boast in another man’s line of things made ready to our hand.

What is the difference between boasting in ourselves and boating in the Lord?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:17 A person should boast in the Lord, not himself.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:17 But he that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.

If we think we must be effective marketers of ourselves to be successful and we’re really good at what we do, what’s the danger of boasting?

Author’s Thoughts
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2 Corinthians 10:18 Those who boast about their own work deserve no recognition, because what matters is the Lord’s commendation.
King James
2 Corinthians 10:18 For not he that commendeth himself is approved, but whom the Lord commendeth.