V. The Evaluation of his authority. 2 Corinthians 10:1-11:4
Paul returned to his defense of the faithful in the remainder of this letter. The theme is followed from chapter 10, verse 1 to chapter 13, verse 10.
Paul gave them warnings –
Because we know the date of the Roman governor’s rule over Achia, we can determine the approximate time Paul arrived and began preaching, establishing the church in the city of Corinth about 51 ad. He stayed in the city, teaching them daily, for about one and a half years. He then departed to another city and left the church to grow in the Word of God. The time that he is wrote this letter to them was three years afterward, so the church was about five years old. Sometime during these three years, some false preachers came and were trying to take over the leadership of the church. Many of the church members trusted the Apostle Paul and contacted him, letting him know what was happening. Paul wrote this letter to the church to encourage the faithful and to tell the false teachers that they needed to repent and be right with God. The false teachers accused Paul of not being a real apostle and that his letters did not mean anything to them. Paul has written in these chapters, giving them evidence of his authority and telling them to be faithful to God! In these verses, chapter 10:1 to chapter 11:4, Paul gave them two warnings –
A. Not to underestimate him. 10:1-18 which we saw last week.
He also warned them –
B. Not to be unfaithful. 2 Corinthians 11:1-4
We really need to understand what Paul told them because it is important for us to know these truths today! As he began –
1. He asked them to be patient with him. 11:1,2
a). He had seen them saved, baptized and taught the Word of God.
b). He had seen them start out right. He had given them instructions in righteousness and corrected them when they were wrong. His heart’s desire was for them to be pure for their Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
Illustration: Imagine how you would feel if you saw your children being influenced by children that did not want to do right and that had no respect for you? You would speak to your children, tell them that these are not good friends, and trust that they will listen to you. But, what if they do not? They tell you these are their friends and that you do not understand. Then you will be more forceful and warn them of the danger they are in and ask them why they are making wrong decisions! You taught them better than that! This is what Paul is doing.
2. He advised them of the danger they were facing. 11:3,4
He warned them that –
a). God’s simple plan could be perverted.
The plan to destroy the work of God has never changed. Why? Because it still works!
Note Paul’s statement in –
2 Corinthians 11:3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
(1). Satan introduced his plan to destroy God’s work –
Genesis 3:4-6 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
(2). Satan introduces this plan to each generation.
(a). The way Satan works –
2 Corinthians 11:14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
(b). The warning given to beware of Satan’s devices –
1 John 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
The church gets caught up in these lies –
 The lust of the flesh – “we want to have the things that the world has”
[2[. The lust of the eyes – That which we see that someone else has and we feel that we have to have it. We get angry at them because they have something better, do something better, the attention that they receive seems to be better –
In business there is nothing wrong with creating a better product, but with the Lord, there is nothing better!!
. The pride of life – “look what we have done…”
John 6:28-29 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.
He encouraged them to hold to –
b). God’s simple plan as presented.
(1). Conversion is simple.
Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
(2). Commitment is simple.
(a). Obedience in baptism. Acts 8:35-38
Acts 8:35-38 Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus. And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized? And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.
(b). Obedience in knowledge. 2 Timothy 2:15
(c). Obedience in service. Ephesians 2:10.
(3). Church is simple.
(a). Location. Communities
(b). Leadership. Pastoral. Pastor, elder, bishop.
Acts 20:17 And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus, and called the elders of the church.
Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
(4). Commission is simple. Matthew 28:18-20
(a). Seek the lost in the community.
(b). Seek the Lord’s direction to reach the world.
Paul has warned the Corinthians and us that we should not change God’s plan. Satan will even come to us and suggest “This is too easy, it cannot be right”! But, when we see what the Lord has done for us, we see that it has not been easy – He did all of the hard things in order to make it simple for us!
Make sure that you are living out God’s will through the simplicity of His plan!
God did not make a complicated –
Plan of salvation
Plan for obedience
Plan for the church
Plan for service