Smeagol is Free!
A hermitudinal view of...stuff...



I thank my God always concerning you for the grace of God which was given you in Christ Jesus, that in everything you were enriched in Him, in all speech and all knowledge, even as the testimony concerning Christ was confirmed in you, so that you are not lacking in any gift, awaiting eagerly the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will also confirm you to the end, blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

If you're anything like me, and you have a tendency to skip back and forth between books of Scripture, this passage may sound somewhat standard for Paul's writings. From the sound of his gratefulness and confirmation of God's evident grace, it would seem appropriate to assume that Paul was writing to the Philippians, who were notably generous in caring for Paul and striving to meet his needs. Another likely addressee might be the church in Rome, for which Paul lists many individuals he desires to send a warm and personal greeting to. Or, on an even more intimate level, I would not question the assertion that Paul was writing this to Timothy, his "true child in the faith."

But that is most certainly not to whom Paul was writing. In fact, these are but some the outstanding qualities and actions of the characters in question: quarrelsome; sexually immoral; arrogant; drunkenness at the Lord's Supper; and divisive. Wow. Despite all of these and more, Paul genuinely thanked the LORD for the Corinthian church concerning the evidence of God's grace in their lives.

C.J. Mahaney points out this passage as a practical incentive to look upon our brothers and sisters in the LORD with humility. The fact that Paul wrote something like this to the Corinthian church, that infamously shameful group of believers, sobers me into thinking upon the deep immediacy and patience of God's saving grace. Do I look upon others as Paul did? Is there a fountain of love that springs forth from the bedrock of God's evident grace in my assertion of and interaction with others? And do I plead with the Lord to show me evidence of grace if my unbelieving and prideful eyes do not see His wonderful grace?

posted by Bolo | 10:33 AM
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