2 Corinthians 10-11 - Paul's Defense

2 Corinthians 10 - Paul's defense of his ministry here comes from a confidence in who sent him and what his purpose and motivation was. He doesn't qualify his defense or try to appease those critical of him, even while he addresses their arguments. He's simply stating the facts, not trying to make them feel better. He's more concerned with the truth than pleasing people. I too often have it the other way around.

2 Corinthians 11:2-4 - While he's clearly talking about himself vs. some other teachers, his concern is not that they are straying from his teaching rather that they are straying from Jesus. He "betrothed [them] to one husband, to present [them] as a pure virgin to Christ". That's the mark of a true man of God, concern not that they are straying from the teacher but that they would stray from the Lord.

2 Corinthians 11:16-21 - I wonder what had happened to spark such words? Here he speaks of being 'too weak' again, referencing back to 2 Corinthians 10:10. There's a hint of sarcasm in his words, "Oh, I was too weak to abuse you the way those teachers did, shame on me!" It makes me think of the old ICOC who looked down on those who were 'weak on sin'. I wonder how many of them looked in and saw not strength, but abuse and harsh treatment in the name of being hard on sin. Not to reopen old wounds, but it was certainly there and we arrogantly. as those from Corinth did, claimed our harshness as holiness.

Yet look at Paul's hard line here with those men. He was not weak nor easy on them, he called them out in ways that I think many would shy away from for the sake of being 'nice' or 'considerate'.

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