Today is Tuesday January 7th. In todays text Paul is defending himself and his ministry. Often times the Corinthians get caught up in things that are superficial comparing one person to another. Paul’s appearance and speaking ability is often used against him by his opponents. Paul wants to be clear he isn’t writing his letter with such boldness to bring about fear, but to respond to the false apostles. He stands upon the authority given to him by God. Paul wants to build up the Church not destroy it and he assures them that he is the same Paul whether in person or on paper. We must remind ourselves that we are all in Christ. What good does it do to compare ourselves to one another?
The following guide is a resource for you to use in your personal time of solitude with the Lord as well as when you connect with the Community that you facilitate. It can also be used for times with family or friends around the table.
CATCH-UP- What was your high and low from last week/yesterday?
SING + PRAY- Take some time for song (guitar, hymn, acapella or read a Psalm) and extended prayer as an individual/community. A simple path of prayer is to pray through one of the Psalms as a group or use the acronym ACTS (Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication).
DISCOVER (IN LARGE GROUP)
[2 Corinthians 10:7-12]
7 Look at what is before your eyes. If anyone is confident that he is Christ’s, let him remind himself that just as he is Christ’s, so also are we. 8 For even if I boast a little too much of our authority, which the Lord gave for building you up and not for destroying you, I will not be ashamed. 9 I do not want to appear to be frightening you with my letters. 10 For they say, “His letters are weighty and strong, but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech of no account.” 11 Let such a person understand that what we say by letter when absent, we do when present. 12 Not that we dare to classify or compare ourselves with some of those who are commending themselves. But when they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding.
+ WHAT are some of the main ideas that emerge from these verses?
(Use these questions to help make additional observations to clarify the main point)
_ What does Paul want the Corinthians to be reminded of in Vs. 7?
_ Why does Paul boast in Vs. 8?
_ Why did the Lord give Paul authority?
_ What do others say about Paul in Vs. 10?
_ What does Paul want them to know in Vs. 11?
_ What does Paul not do in Vs. 12?
_ What does Paul say about those who compare themselves with one another in Vs. 12?
PROCESS (IN BREAKOUTS OF 2-3’S, GUYS/GIRLS)
+ HOW is the Lord calling me to action/obedience? Is there sin to confess, a next step to take, how has it gone since last time?
_ Do you compare yourself with others when it comes your success or ability?
_ Do you compare others when gauging success or ability?
+ WHO am I walking with and praying for to discover Jesus, what is my next step? (e.g., Build trust by spending time with them, set-up an intentional time to share your story, begin a discovery study on the teachings of Jesus with them)