Studies In The Book Of II Corinthians
(II Corinthians 4:1-12)
1. What was one motivator that kept Paul and Timothy from tiring in the work of the Lord?
The mercy God showed them: “Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not” (II Corinthians 4:1).
Š “Ministry” is service (Strong’s #1248). Paul and Timothy were servants (Philippians 1:1).
o Paul was supported to be in service (II Corinthians 11:8). * Same Greek word.
o Jesus put Paul to service (I Timothy 1:12; cf. Acts 9:1-18).
o Others helped Paul (II Timothy 4:11).
o All Christians are servants (Romans 6:16-18), ministers (Hebrews 6:10).
§ Some, who preach the Gospel, may be known as ministers of the Gospel (Colossians 1:23).
§ Others might be ministers to the needs of others (Philippians 2:25).
Š The mercy of God is a motivator (Luke 7:36-50).
2. Did Paul try clever tactics and misdirection in teaching the Gospel?
No: “But have renounced the hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God” (II Corinthians 4:2).
Š Faithful men of God do not use craftiness to teach (Psalms 19:7, Psalms 51:13, Romans 1:16, I Corinthians 2:1-5, II Corinthians 1:12, II Corinthians 2:17, and I Thessalonians 2:3-5).
Š Think about what type of person hides what they are really wanting to say or do (Proverbs 26:22-28 and II Corinthians 11:3; 13-15).
3. What can cause the Gospel to be hidden from someone?
Being lost and succumbing to the ways of the devil: “(3) But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: (4) In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (II Corinthians 4:3-4).
Š Hidden to them that are lost, let’s allow the Scriptures to explain: Matthew 11:20-25, II Corinthians 3:12-16, and II Thessalonians 2:10-12.
Š Satan is the god of this world (Matthew 4:8-9, John 16:11, and Ephesians 2:2).
Š Neither God nor Satan make us obey or disobey, the choice is ours (Deuteronomy 30:19-20, Ezekiel 18:4, Matthew 3:1-2, Matthew 4:17, Matthew 12:41, Mark 6:12, Luke 3:7-8, Luke 11:28, Luke 13:1-5, Luke 24:47, Acts 2:38, Acts 2:40-41, Acts 3:19, Acts 17:30, Acts 26:20, II Corinthians 7:8-10, II Peter 3:9, and Revelation 2:5).
Š When one disobeys God, Satan’s INDIRECT influence is accredited (Matthew 13:19, Mark 14:10-11 [cf. John 6:70-71, John 13:2], Acts 5:1-10, etc.).
Š Why is this the case? Answer: I John 3:8-10.
4. Did Paul and Timothy try to exalt themselves through their work in preaching?
NO: “For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake” (II Corinthians 4:5).
Š John 3:27-31, John 7:18, Acts 3:12-13, Acts 10:25-26, Acts 14:8-18, Romans 15:17-18, I Corinthians 3:5-6, etc.
Š Christ, not man, is the message (Acts 5:42, Acts 8:5, Acts 8:12, and II Corinthians 1:19).
5. Did Paul consider the knowledge of God something valuable?
A treasure: “(6) For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (7) But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us” (II Corinthians 4:6-7).
Š God’s plan for the light, through Christ, to come to the lost had been prophesied (Isaiah 42:1-9; cf. Luke 2:25-32 and Acts 26:23).
Š They, we, are the earthen vessels wherein we carry the message of Christ to the lost (Romans 10:14-17, Romans 16:25-26, and Titus 1:2-3).
Š We are the vessels, but the treasure is the word of God (Psalms 19:8-10, Psalms 119:72, Psalms 119:127, Psalms 119:162, Proverbs 16:16, and Matthew 13:44-46).
6. With all that Paul and Timothy were facing, did they feel destroyed and forsaken?
No: “(8) We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; (9) Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed” (II Corinthians 4:8-9).
Š They were troubled on every side (II Corinthians 1:8-10 and II Corinthians 11:17-33).
Š Suffering, but unfazed (Proverbs 14:26, Proverbs 18:10, and Proverbs 28:1).
Š They knew God had not forsaken them (Psalms 37:25 and Hebrews 13:5-6).
7. Were Paul and Timothy willing to suffer as Christ did so that Christ would continue to be made known in the world?
Yes: “(10) Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. (11) For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh” (II Corinthians 4:10-11).
Š Romans 8:17-18, II Corinthians 1:5, Galatians 6:17, and Philippians 3:10-11.
8. What worked in Paul and Timothy?
Death: “So then death worketh in us, but life in you” (II Corinthians 4:12).
Š Acts 20:24-27, II Corinthians 12:15, II Corinthians 13:9, and Philippians 2:30.
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