I had a great discussion with my Tuesday Morning Bible Study this morning! Here are my notes. Please feel free to continue the discussion in the comment section!
2 Corinthians Bible Study Weekly Recap
October 1, 2014
Chapters 4 & 5
4:7 – Jars of Clay
- The gospel is the treasure which is contained in a person, a clay pot
- The clay pot is fragile – Paul was naming his own fragility, but it is a good reminder to us that we are also fragile
- We should not focus on the container that the gospel is in, we should focus on the gospel itself
- A great analogy
- We may be broken on the outside, but there is treasure within us
- Our spirit is NOT our body – who we are as a child of God is not who we are in the flesh
4:16 – So we aren’t depressed. But even if our bodies are breaking down on the outside, the person that we are on the inside is being renewed every day.
- We live in a world obsessed with image – that isn’t what is important
- RENEWAL – God is constantly working within us, God’s mercy is constantly new
- God speaks to us directly, we don’t need a mediator
Christianity as Religion vs. Faith
- More and more, people are focusing on their faith – but the community aspect of religion is still so important
4:18 – We don’t focus on the things that can be seen but on the things that can’t be seen. The things that can be seen don’t last, but the things that can’t be seen are eternal.
- You can’t see the wind, but it turns a windmill – you can’t dismiss something just because you can’t see it
- The power of storytelling – people’s stories of how God is working through them are the windmills of our faith
How do we hold people accountable in their faith?
General theme – renewing your mind, the pull between what we are experiencing now on earth and wanting to be with God
- A reminder that the material stuff that we have and the successes we have in life really aren’t what matters in our lives and in our faith
- Easy to speak from a position of comfort that we need to concentrate on God
5:11-21 Ministry of reconciliation
- When we think of reconciliation we think of arguments and fights, but in this instance Paul is probably talking about God is reconciling us with God
- A great reminder that God wants to reconcile with us – we need to open ourselves to the possibility of reconciling with others
- “Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us”
- As we become stronger in our faith, it becomes easier to forgive others
- Does forgiving someone mean allowing them to hurt you over and over again?
- This is put to the test in parenting
5:16 – So then, from this point on we won’t recognize people by human standards. Even though we used to know Christ by human standard, that isn’t how we know him now.
- We need to let go of our human expectations
- Paul was standing on the threshold of the transition between Jesus the man and Christ the divine. We ALL stand on this threshold, even today.
5:17 – The old things have gone away, and look, new things have arrived!
- How is this passage relevant in our lives today?
5:20 – So we are ambassadors who represent Christ.
- We have to tell the story!
- There is something very bold and visible about the term “ambassador”
- The people in your life that have made a difference are not the ones that have told you something, they are the people that showed you something.