The apostle Paul concludes his letter to the Corinthians by calling on them to abide by the word of God and rid themselves of evil. By dwelling in the truth, believers are made new as their sin is washed away in redemption, and wisdom attained through scripture.
Paul’s prayer for the Corinthians focuses on strength to resist temptation which surrounds believers each day. Through the Holy Spirit, the Corinthians would be inspired to continue their walk along the narrow path that leads to the gates of heaven.
“7 Now I pray to God that you do no evil, not that we should appear approved, but that you should do what is honorable, though we may seem disqualified.” (2 Corinthians 13:7)
Paul shared his preference to be labeled as “disqualified” for not rebuking the Corinthians more harshly, his hope was for conflicts to be resolved among the members of the church, in spite of his authority to discipline those involved. Once again the apostle would capitalize on a weakness to advance the gospel of Jesus Christ.
“8 For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth. 9 For we are glad when we are weak and you are strong. And this also we pray, that you may be made complete.” (2 Corinthians 13:8-9)
Because the gospel is based on truth, little can be done against it. As such the corinthians’ focus should be on advancing the truth independently of Paul and his missionaries who would then appear week since there would be no need for rebuke, for discipline. Paul’s home for the Corinthians was they would become themselves seed planters at the root of a harvest beyond measure.
“10 Therefore I write these things being absent, lest being present I should use sharpness, according to the authority which the Lord has given me for edification and not for destruction.” (2 Corinthians 13:10)
Again the apostle reiterates his desire for conflicts in Corinth to be revolved without his involvement, which would require discipline in tune with the authority bestowed onto Paul by the Lord Himself, as a chosen apostle.
“11 Finally, brethren, farewell. Become complete. Be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you. 12 Greet one another with a holy kiss.” (2 Corinthians 13:12)
Praying for unity and peace among the church, Paul concludes his letter by inviting believers to greet each other with a “holy kiss” which continues to be tradition to this day worldwide.
“13 All the saints greet you. 14 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.” (2 Corinthians 13:13)
Paul closes his epistle with greetings and salutations from fellow laborers in christ, as well as prayer for grace, love and communion to flow from heaven onto all believers.
Meant for edification and building up rather than destruction, Paul calls on believers to abide by the word of God and to treat one another with christ like love. Let us pray!
We thank you for your blessings in our lives and for your servant Paul,
We praise you Lord for his wisdom and for his works through this scripture,
We ask you Lord to inspire us to use these verses in our lives
As we grow in you through the teachings of your faithful apostle.
Lord we ask you to strengthen us each day as we endure through battles,
Allow us to praise and love each other through faith in you Jesus,
Shield us from evil through truth, the gospel, salvation and prayer,
Guide us to abide by your word as we spread your gospel to one and all
Becoming examples of faith through our character as we walk the narrow path.
God we pray that you will continue to bless us, to bless our lives and fill us with hope
We ask you Lord to guide our footsteps and lead us to the way everlasting,
Through faith in you Lord we seek salvation and a place with you in heaven
According to your word, your everlasting wisdom and strength.
May your will be done
In our lives, for your life.
We thank you for your love and all you bless us with each day.
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre