Tag: test yourselves

Test yourselves!

Scripture reading for August 15th:  2nd Corinthians 13

Key Scriptures for over-comers:  2nd Corinthians 13:2-5  “I already gave you a warning when I was with you the second time.  I now repeat it while absent:  On my return I will not spare those who sinned earlier or any of the others, since you are demanding proof that Christ is speaking through me.  He is not weak in dealing with you, but is powerful among you.  For to be sure, He was crucified in weakness, yet He lives by God’s power.  Likewise, we are weak in Him, yet by God’s power we will live with Him to serve you.  Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves.  Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you–unless, of course, you fail the test.”

Pastor Paul was concerned about those in the church that were still living in sin.  He had warned the church that this was dangerous and repeated the warning that these people should be dealt with.  He would come in Christ’s authority and power to deal with these people if necessary. But a better way was for them to do a healthy self-examination.  Each member must test themselves to see whether they were truly in the faith through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and the indwelling Holy Spirit.  When we have Christ in us, we have the power to repent and live free from sin.

Observations for over-comers:  Regular self-examinations concerning Christ in us is a healthy form of discipline. “Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid.”  (Proverbs 12:1)

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Aim for perfection!

Scripture reading for August 14th:  2nd Corinthians 13

Because of the false teachers, there were many in Corinth that had not repented of their sins.  Often, false teachers fail to call people to repentance and preach a false gospel of grace without the need to repent.  Paul was concerned that on his third visit there, he might have to deal severely in discipline with those still living in sin.  “I am afraid that when I come again my God will humble me before you, and I will be grieved over many who have sinned earlier and not repented of the impurity, sexual sin, and debauchery in which they have indulged.”  (2nd Corinthians 12:21)

Failure to repent of known sin is dangerous to the soul involved as well as to the whole church.  People living in know sin and claiming to know Christ give a false witness of the power of God to deliver from sin’s power!  The Apostle Paul knew that if that was the case, he would have to deal with this when he arrived in order to restore the church.

“Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith;  test yourselves.  Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you–unless, of course, you fail the test.”   (2nd Corinthians 13:5)  When we are conscious of Christ Jesus living in us and through us, we can no longer use our bodies and minds for sinful purposes.  When we are truly born again from above and have the Holy Spirit, He leads us to be like Christ!  Healthy self-examination is good for the soul!

“Finally, brothers, good-by.  Aim for perfection, listen to my appeal, be of one mind, live in peace.  And the God of love and peace will be with you.”  (2nd Corinthians 13:11)  We must aim for perfection through Christ living in us!

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Self examination of your soul!

Scripture reading for September 13th: 2nd Corinthians 13:1-14

Paul was coming for his third visit and promised to address their problems with the sins he listed.  Some people there were questioning Paul’s authority and the power of Christ.  He told them that every matter would be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.  He had warned them on the second visit and now was prepared to deal with those who had not repented.  “. . .since you are demanding proof that Christ is speaking through me.  He is not weak in dealing with you but is powerful among you.  For to be sure, he was crucified in weakness, yet He lives by God’s power.  Likewise, we are weak in Him, yet by God’s power we will live with Him to serve you.” (2nd Corinthians 13:3-4)  It was Christ’s power in Paul’s weak body that made him a servant of Christ to help them.  Christ would not put up with sin in His body!

“Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves.  Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you–unless, of course, you fail the test?  And I trust that you will discover that we have not failed the test.” (2nd Corinthians 13:5-6)   Paul told them to test themselves for Christ in their life.  The real test of true Christianity is Christ living in us.  Paul knew that Christ lived in his body and was confident that these Corinthians would see that in him.  (Galatians 2:20)  They also would be able to know whether or not Christ was in them!

Paul was writing this letter to help these Corinthian Christian make the needed corrections in their lives before he came and would need to use his authority in person.  His desire and Christ’s was for their perfection!  His final words showed his heart to these brothers:  “Finally, brothers, good-by.  Aim for perfection, listen to my appeal, be of one mind, live in peace.  And the God of love and peace will be with you.” (2nd Corinthians 13:11)

If we will take godly correction from those God places in our lives, we will make progress towards perfection!  If we don’t aim for perfection, we surely won’t hit it by accident!  We must help one another in order to make progress and to work at living in peace.  God will work in us and love us to perfection!

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Healthy Self Examination!

Scripture reading for November 30th: 2nd Corinthians 10-13

The apostle Paul had heard reports concerning the Corinthians and knew their culture well after living and ministering there for over two years.  He was planning on coming back to deal with some of their ongoing problems and besetting sins and wrote them to prepare them for the visit.  His words contained a gentle warning that he would have to act to deal with these problems.

“For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be.  I fear that there may be quarreling,  jealousy, outbursts of anger, factions, slander, gossip, arrogance, and disorder.  I am afraid that when I come again my God will humble me before you, and I will be grieved over many who have sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, sexual sin and debauchery in which they have indulged.”

The main problem was sins common to most church families.  These sins caused division and disorder in the church and grieved those in church leadership.  Quarreling and jealousy caused many people to have an attitude against others.  Slander and gossip spread like gangrene and brought decay to the members of the church.  Disunity and factions developed that further eroded the church’s ability to function as a strong witness for Christ.

The only way out of sin is repentance!  The only way to truly repent is to first examine yourself.  “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves.  Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you–unless of course, you fail the test?” Are you living by faith in Jesus Christ?  Is Christ dwelling in you daily and are you allowing His life to flow through you?  If not, repent of the flesh and begin walking by the Spirit!  Paul’s prayer for these Corinthians was for their perfection!  (2nd Corinthians 13:9-11)  He told them to aim for perfection!  Without a goal of holiness, they would not make progress and the apostle would have to rebuke them!

“May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.” (2nd Corinthians 13:14)  With the Holy Trinity dwelling with you, you will not fail the test!

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