Tag: fragrance of Christ
Scripture reading for September 19th: Isaiah 64-66, 2nd Corinthians 2
2nd Corinthians 2: 5-11 “Now if anyone has caused pain, he has caused it not to me, but in some measure–not to put it too severely–to all of you. For such a one, this punishment by the majority is enough, so you should rather turn to forgive and comfort him, or he may be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. So I beg you to reaffirm your love for him. For this is why I wrote, that I might test you and know whether you are obedient in everything. Anyone whom you forgive, I also forgive. Indeed, what I have forgiven, if I have forgiven anything, has been for your sake in the presence of Christ, so that we would not be outwitted by Satan: for we are not ignorant of his designs.”
Paul wrote this second letter in part to this church family to encourage them to forgive a repentant brother that was under discipline as a result of serious sexual sin. (1st Corinthians 5) Paul and the church leadership had put this person out of the church for the destruction of his flesh that he might ultimately repent and be saved. Paul noted that this discipline process had worked and that now the church needed to forgive and restore this person. Satan’s design was to destroy this man and the church through strife and unforgiveness. In forgiving, the church would totally defuse any design of Satan to destroy anyone involved and spread the aroma of Christ’s mercy and restoration to many.
2nd Corinthians 2:14-16 “But thanks be to God, Who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of Him everywhere. For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life.”
Prayer: Father God, thank You for giving us insight into Satan’s designs and traps and for protecting us through clear instructions in Your eternal Word. Help me to always forgive and restore those who are contrite and repentant and demonstrate the love and mercy of Your Son Jesus Christ. Allow the fragrance of Christ in me to spread the knowledge of Him everywhere.
Isaiah 66:1-2 “Thus says the Lord: “Heaven is My throne, and the earth is My footstool; what is the house that you would build for Me and what is My place of rest? All these things My hand has made, and so all these things came to be, declares the Lord. But this is the one to whom I will look: he who is humble and contrite in spirit and trembles at My Word.”
Scripture reading for July 29th: 2nd Corinthians 2
Key scriptures for over-comers: 2nd Corinthians 2:14-17 “But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of Him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life. And who is equal to such a task? Unlike so many, we do not peddle the word of God for profit. On the contrary, in Christ we speak before God with sincerity, like men sent from God.”
Paul, a man who was conquered by Christ, pictured himself and other believers as those led in a triumphal victory procession by their conqueror King. As they were led, these believers spread the fragrance of their conquering King among those along the way. To those who would be saved, the fragrance of Christ was the smell of life eternal. To those opposing Christ, they smelled like death. To God the Father, the believers were the fragrance of Christ Himself! Paul was not a hireling but a bond-slave of the Lord Jesus. Believers are sent or led by Christ in victory on their journey through this world to their glorious inheritance!
Observations for over-comers: Not everyone will love us as we are led by Christ, but we smell sweet to God! “How delightful is your love, my sister, my bride! How much more pleasing is your live than wine, and the fragrance of your perfume than any spice. Your lips drop sweetness as the honeycomb, by bride’ milk and honey are under your tongue. The fragrance of your garments is like that of Lebanon.” (Song of Songs 4:10-11)
Scripture reading for July 30th: 2nd Corinthians 2
Paul had a painful visit to the church sometime before he wrote this letter. (2nd Corinthians 2:1-2) Some of those in the church that should have been a source of joy to the Apostle, were instead a cause of distress! He wrote to assure the church of his love. “For I wrote to you out of great distress and anguish of heart and with many tears, not to grieve you but to let you know the depth of my love for you.” This is a pastor’s heart for those he loves and the heart of Christ for His Bride!
Paul encouraged forgiveness by the church towards the member that had been disciplined earlier. (1st Corinthians 5:1-2) This man was evidently repentant and needed the love and restoration to fellowship that he had lost earlier through his sin. The exercise of discipline and the grace to restore are needed in a healthy church!
Paul explained that he did not peddle the word of God for profit like many of the false teachers. He preached the Gospel with sincerity as one sent by God. God used him and all who would respond to Christ’s call to be special messengers. “But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of Him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; and to the other, the fragrance of life. And who is equal to such a task?” (2nd Corinthians 2:14-16) None of us is adequate in ourselves, but carry this fragrance of the knowledge of Christ through His grace and stand between the living and the dead!