Friday, 26 September 2014

2 Corinthians

I really feel for Paul - for him as a man, made of flesh - when I read the second half of his second letter to Corinthians (and actually his 3rd), and the fact that he had to deal with so much. This is *the man* who has got "his authority from the Lord himself and not from men" (like the rest of Apostles) and has gone through so much beating, shipwreck, persecution, etc and yet his authority being questioned here. He is  seen secondary to these "Super Apostles" and his eloquence and command of doctrine is not sufficient for the people of Corinth. And aside this, he has got a "thorn in the flesh" from the Lord: prayed three times to the Lord to take it away and yet God's grace was sufficient for him.

I love how the personality of the authors of the Bible do come across the word of God and travels thousands of years in time in such a way that we feel as if we had known these people intimately like a brother. Whether it is David, Job, Peter, Paul or Solomon, we feel all alike and this is because this stuff ain't made up. These people lived, went through the joys and sorrows of life like the rest of us, had hopes and dreams, fell deep halfway and yet stood up again with the power of grace.

When comes to Paul, honestly, you cannot "not like" this guy. He was an intellectual, a thought leader of his time, perfected in following the Jewish tradition and understanding the Law. And his eyes get opened, quite literally, and then he spends two years in the desert to try to make a sense of all this dichotomy of Law and Grace, New and Old covenant, Promise and Fulfilment. And it ain't rocket science to us is it, yet so many Jews stumbled?

Well, it is the power of Holy Spirit. This Bible is the same one that I read or rather scanned through 2 years before giving up my life to Christ and it all sounded completely irrelevant both to me and also for our time and problems. The same Holy Spirit helped him to get a grasp of this all and explain it to us so well in his letters.

And this man of such stature is being questioned here. It seems, Paul, as solid and eloquent as we see him in his letters, in personal presence he is meek, loving and humble - like the Lord Jesus - and this is being taken advantage of.

And perhaps it is a lesson to us, for we have come a long way but the road to salvation is not paved with the glory but with the meekness, gentleness, humility and many sacrifices.

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