Daily Reading: 5-27-16
2 Corinthians 11:1-6 The Voice (VOICE)
Yesterday, I shared about the work of the Gospel and the necessity for our response. When we choose to respond, the work of the Gospel of Love rises up and begins to teach us to live Christ-oriented rather than self-oriented lives. A self-oriented life is simply being overly concerned with one’s own desires, needs, or interests. If we are honest, we can be preoccupied in our minds with ourselves. Jesus Christ brings a new focus to His followers: Loving God with every part of our being (Christ-oriented) and then turning to love others (becoming other-oriented) the way we have loved ourselves. Jesus loves us and affirms our individual value. He is not trying to diminish us; He is seeking to bring His glory to our lives. As Truth, He knows more about the work of deception than anyone and He knows our minds need to be renewed by the Holy Spirit, because at the core of our being we really are self-oriented. If we are serious in our quest to live the Gospel and to be Christ-oriented, our minds will experience a type of battle. What Christ may speak to our hearts to bring growth can conflict with our own natural inclinations and seem like foolishness.
The Apostle Paul urges the Corinthians to press through what seems foolish to find a deeper life with Christ. Even though they are satisfied in the shallow realms of the Gospel, the Corinthians must get beyond what they want, think, or feel to lay hold of the Christ-oriented life God has promised those who believe. Paul wants more for the Corinthians and the culture is seeking to deceive them. He writes his letter to remind them of the work of Grace and to give them Hope to rise in the glory of God.
2 Corinthians 11:1-6
1 Please endure a little foolishness on my part; you have come so far with me already. 2 To be completely honest, I am extremely jealous for you; but it’s the same kind of jealousy God has for you. You see, like an attentive father, I have pledged your hand in marriage and promised to present you as a pure virgin to the One who would be your husband, the Anointed One. 3 But now I’m afraid that as that serpent tricked Eve with his wiles, so your hearts and minds will be tricked and you will stray from the single-minded love and pure devotion to Him. 4 So then, if someone comes along and presents you with a Jesus different from the one we told you about, or if you receive a spirit different from the one gifted through our Lord Jesus, or even if you hear a gospel different from the one you heard through us; then you’re ready to go with it.
Prayer: Father, I was created to live in Your glory; to be filled with Christ. Even though I have a long way to go, please do not stop Your work of Grace in my life. The Gospel requires a renewal of my mind, so please continue to resurrect my self-oriented inclinations and bring me salvation. Holy Spirit, when things seem foolish to my natural mind, help me to welcome the clarity of Truth. In Jesus’ name. Amen.