The Book of 2 Corinthians Bible Study Chapter 7 Part 1 Leave a Comment / Love Israel Connection Blog / By Rivka Korman Our next reading is 2 Corinthians 7:1-9 We need a compassion that can be used by G-d for the purpose of influencing others. This compassion causes us to think, speak and behave differently – so that G-d’s purposes can be mediated out to others through us. This is the call upon every believer. In this chapter Paul writes in a very personal way as he wants to show his love toward these people in Corinth, as well as to help them understand his motivation for doing the things that he did. v1: Therefore having these promises: In light of the promises that Paul shared with us in the previous chapter – G-d will be our G-d, we will be His people, His sons and daughters (part of His family). · Beloved: Paul spoke in an endearing way to this congregation. They were very significant to him because of their position, their location, as well as the potential this congregation had in spreading the gospel (many people travelled through Corinth so it was a place from which the gospel could be more easily spread ‘to the ends of the earth’). · Cleanse ourselves: In light of what G-d has extended to us, His promises etc, we want to be clean and rid ourselves of anything, spiritually or morally, that would defile us or cause us to be unclean. When we cleanse ourselves, it brings about a proper change in our lives. · Perfecting holiness: To come to an end. To be made perfect. The standards of G-d’s Kingdom, His righteousness and holiness, are what we are pressing on toward behaviourally – we want to reflect the character of G-d (even though we are declared ‘holy’ and ‘righteous’ when we are saved our behaviour needs to undergo a change). · Holiness: Holiness is always related to the purposes of G-d. When we are pursuing, committed to, striving for, and passionate about the things that relate to the purposes of G-d it is going to produce holiness in our lives. Holiness is the instrument that rids us of that defilement. · The fear of G-d: The person who fears G-d is the person who is committed to the priorities of G-d. v2: Open your hearts: This is a word that speaks of giving priority to something. It is referring to clearing our agendas and schedules and making room for the things of G-d. Here Paul is asking the Corinthians to give Paul and his companions their attention, to give them priority in their lives. · Wronged…corrupted….defrauded: Injustice, corruption or exploitation were not the characteristics that summarised Paul’s ministry. v3: Not … to condemn: Paul spoke some very strong words to this congregation, but he did not write to them to bring condemnation upon them (Roms 8:1 – in Messiah there is no condemnation). · I have said before: Paul’s message is consistent.· You are in our hearts: Paul’s objective was to minister to the Corinthians in a way that was not unjust, corrupt or that exploited them in any way. Paul’s objective was to help them to move forward in attaining spiritual perfection. He wanted them to be individuals that were committed to the things of G-d and manifested the holiness of G-d. · Die together: Paul realised that walking in obedience to the purposes of G-d can bring about suffering – even to the point of being put to death. People were often put to death together. · Live together: If they are not put to death they will be living together. Paul is speaking about the commitment we have to each other. Togetherness speaks of a community living in intimacy in order to fulfil the purposes of G-d. v4: Boldness: Paul is speaking confidently and accurately to them. He understands their situation. He is confident that they need to hear these terms. He wants a G-dly change, a G-dly perspective, to come into this congregation, that is why he speaks to them like he does. He wanted them to grow in their seriousness for the purposes of G-d. · Boasting: Rejoicing.· Comfort: Encouragement· Tribulation: They have tribulation because they are walking with G-d. Paul and his companions had suffered because of what they had done on this congregation’s behalf. v5: Macedonia: When they went into Macedonia for the purpose of doing this work, being obedient to the leadership of the Holy Spirit, they did not find rest. Paul is probably the best example, from a new covenant perspective, of what serving G-d and doing ministry should look like. · Flesh: Bodies. · Troubled: Stressed. Suffering. Having hardships. · Outside: In the physical. What he encountered in the world physically. · Conflicts: Battles. · Inside: Inwardly.· Fears: Written in the plural. Paul had much fear inwardly. v6: Downcast: Humble ones. Those who have been made low as the world has pushed them down or dominated them. · G-d … comforted us by the coming of Titus: A fellow brother and fellow servant. This should be one of our objectives – when we go into a place or when we have fellowship with other believers, we should become instruments of encouragement. v7: He was comforted in you: Titus went to the Corinthian congregation and witnessed how G-d was bringing change into their lives. They were growing, maturing and had a passion for the things of G-d. This was an encouragement to Titus. · He told us: Titus testified of this change in the Corinthian congregation to Paul and the others with him. Titus was comforted when he saw that change in this congregation, and Paul in turn was comforted by the report back from Titus. · Desire: Will. It speaks of their sincere commitment – what they were truly committed to. · Mourning: Weeping. Sorrow. Lamenting. When this congregation heard what Paul and the others were going through (the suffering etc) because of their ministry to this congregation and to others they were filled with sorrow because of it. · Zeal: This is a word that shows a great commitment and passion. This congregation were committed to Paul. v8: Made you sorry with my letter: The strong words that Paul had written to them in his letter had caused them to be grieved. Paul would have written this epistle to set this congregation in order, to help them to understand their call. · I do not regret it: Because of the change that Paul’s epistle brought about in their lives Paul did not regret writing the letter to them.· Although I did regret it: What Paul did regret was the fact that they had to undergo sorrow in order for that change to occur (2 Cor 7:10). Paul’s objective wasn’t to cause them grief, but it was to cause them to pursue the things of G-d. · For a while: Literally ‘For an hour’. For a brief moment, a short period of time. v9: Sorry in a G-dly manner that you might suffer loss from us in nothing: G-d brought them to a place of sorrow which in turn led them to repentance so that they would not suffer loss on account of any omission on Paul’s part (1 Cor 3:15).