Friday, March 07, 2014

The authentic Christian life (for Lent) from 2 Corinthians 5:11-6:10

I hope you won't think the following headings are too gross a misuse of a passage where the Apostle Paul is defending his ministry. A sermon on authentic Christian ministry might have been closer to Paul's intention, but I hope there's some food for the soul here:

(1)   The Christian life is motivated by the fear of God (v11).

(2)   The Christian life is motivated by the love of Christ (v14)

(3)   The Christian life prioritises what is in the heart over what can be seen (v12, esp. 12b)

(The virtues which Paul lists in 6vv6-10 are matters of the heart.)

(4)   The Christian life is matter of death and resurrection with Christ, of radical transformation, of New Creation (vv14-17)

(5)   The Christian life depends on God reconciling us to himself, on his gracious gifts of forgiveness and righteousness (vv18-6v2)

(6)   The Christian life is a glorious combination of troubles and blessings, of joy in the midst of sorrow, of riches in poverty (6v3-10)

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