- 2 Corinthians 13:1-7
- 2 Cor 13:1 (KJB)
- This is the third time I am coming to you. In the mouth of
two or three witnesses shall every word be established.
- Here Paul is telling the Corinthians that he will be coming to visit
them. This visit may have been for the purpose of shutting the mouths of the
false teachers. (Deu 19:15 KJV) One
witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in
any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of
three witnesses, shall the matter be established.
Paul also takes the procedure from Deuteronomy concerning the validation of
accusations. One person is not sufficient to establish an accusation because
one person can be out for revenge and that is why Paul is going to require
multiple witnesses to validate any accusations the false teachers have
leveled against him.
- 2 Cor 13:2 (KJB)
- I told you before, and foretell you, as if I were present, the second
time; and being absent now I write to them which heretofore have sinned, and
to all other, that, if I come again, I will not spare:
- Here Paul is basically saying that when he finally does come to Corinth
he is not going to spare any method to put to death the accusations which
were made against him. Paul even had the right to use legal means. Paul
desired to rid the church of all the evil which had invaded and then
pervaded that church, although there may have been some who did not believe
the accusations against Paul, but it always seems those who wreak havoc in
churches always seem to get the preeminence instead of getting the boot.
Paul is warning those who have sinned but he wants everyone to know that if
they follow in the footsteps of the false teachers and those who have
sinned, then they will not be exempt from the punishment that the others
will receive. This should also be a warning to all Christians that those who
want to follow the wrong crowd in a church will face consequences.
- 2 Cor 13:3 (KJB)
- Since ye seek a proof of Christ speaking in me, which to you-ward is not
weak, but is mighty in you.
- There were a group of people at Corinth who demanded that Paul prove
that he was a true Apostle and that Christ was really speaking through him.
He would give them ample proof upon his arrival in Corinth. This time
though, he would be coming in the spirit of being a disciplinarian. Just as
the Lord Jesus Christ came the first time to deal with sin and be an
advocate for His people, but the second time He will return as the judge of
all unsaved mankind. Paul will also come to Corinth in this manner and will
show that he has God-given authority to deal with those who have brought
turmoil into the church. Paul had to start dealing with the situation there
as soon as possible or else the church could suffer a dissolution because of
all the dissension which the false teachers have caused. This should be a
warning to all churches that once false teachers are given a platform, the
end of the church, that is a church which still preaches truth, will
gradually come to pass.
- 2 Cor 13:4 (KJB)
- For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power
of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power
of God toward you.
- When the Lord Jesus Christ was crucified, He was possessing a human body
with all its frailties. Those who looked upon Christ at the crucifixion saw
a man who was tortured and dying so they had mocked him believing they were
mocking a weak man. (Mat 27:42 KJV) He
saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him
now come down from the cross, and we will believe him.
The reality is that they had no idea what was
transpiring. If Christ would have come down from the cross and saved
Himself, then there could have been no salvation in the world. Jesus was
vindicated by being raised from the dead by God who showed the world that
Jesus was His Son. Just as in the case of how the world saw Christ, the
world sees Christians the same way as being weak but one day when the Lord
returns, he will endue them with His power for all eternity. For now, Paul
is stating that even though he is weak in the flesh, when he comes to
Corinth, they will experience the power of God concerning their situation.
- 2 Cor 13:5 (KJB)
- Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your
own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you,
except ye be reprobates?
- Examine - Try or put to the test
- Prove - Scrutinize or test
- Reprobates - Rejected, depraved, or disqualified
- Here is a warning not only to the Corinthian Christians but to all those
who claim to be Christians. Paul is telling them to examine themselves, that
is, put their motives and actions to the test to see if they are truly
saved. Paul then states again but more strongly that they are to prove
themselves. The Greek word for “prove” carries with it the meaning of
“eliminate the dross and recover the valuable or genuine remains.” Paul
wants them to examine themselves very closely, not leaving out any areas of
their life. He wants them to know completely and be fully assured that they
are Christians and not just church goers. He does this because he does not
want those who think they are saved but are truly reprobates to continue on
in their present state. The day of salvation is always today and as long as
a person lives, there is always a chance that a person can be saved. The
final separation will be on Judgment Day when Christ separates the sheep,
His saved, from the goats, the unsaved. This is why Paul wants them to test
themselves as David as God to test him.
(Psa 139:23 KJV) Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my
thoughts: David wanted God to search his heart, to
try him and to know his thoughts. How many of us would be willing to undergo
that kind of examination but that is exactly the type of analysis which Paul
had in mind.
- 2 Cor 13:6 (KJB)
- But I trust that ye shall know that we are not reprobates.
- The Corinthian church had spent much time examining Paul and he was
confident that they would not consider him to be a reprobate. Paul was
always making sure of his testimony that it completely brought glory to God
and did not puff himself up in any manner taking away from Christ. Paul
never desired to place himself first, to come between Christ and other
people. This is what the false teachers did. They puffed themselves up and
the people did not see Christ but only saw them.
- 2 Cor 13:7 (KJB)
- Now I pray to God that ye do no evil; not that we should appear
approved, but that ye should do that which is honest, though we be as
- Approved - Acceptable or esteemed
- Paul had prayed to God that the Corinthian Christians would live lives
becoming that of Christians. He would have loved it that the church would be
free from sin. Paul also knew that the church at Corinth would not be
trouble free and he was not asking it to be so, just so he could appear to
others to be totally approved as if he founded a perfect church without any
problems. He wanted them to be honest in all their dealings in life because
he was willing to appear to others as a reprobate if it would have helped in
their salvation. What he prayed for was these Christians would continue to
live in the power of the Lord and as redeemed before the rest of the world.
He wanted them to be in good standing, not only before others but before