Boast in the Lord (2 Corinthians 10:7-18)
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.
13 But we will not boast beyond limits, but will boast only with regard to the area of influence God assigned to us, to reach even to you. 14 For we are not overextending ourselves, as though we did not reach you. For we were the first to come all the way to you with the gospel of Christ. 15 We do not boast beyond limit in the labors of others. But our hope is that as your faith increases, our area of influence among you may be greatly enlarged, 16 so that we may preach the gospel in lands beyond you, without boasting of work already done in another's area of influence. 17 “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.” 18 For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends. (2 Corinthians 10:7-18)
1) In Corinth, Paul's authority had come under attack by so-called "super-apostles" (2 Corinthians 11:5). But to Paul, this church's very existence was proof that God was at work through him in their lives (see 2 Corinthians 2:17-3:3; Acts 18:11). How have you seen God influence others through you? Who has God used to influence you?
2) In this passage, Paul says that we should be focused on being faithful to the work God has given to us rather than measuring our significance by comparing ourselves to other people. In what ways are you tempted to compare yourself to others?
3) What work has God given to you to do? Who are the people he's put around you to influence with the gospel? What does faithfulness to that task look like?
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