Pray for the World
Read the Word
This Week's Bible Reading
Day 1 09/21/2014 Day 2 09/22/2014 Day 3 09/23/2014 Day 4 09/24/2014 Day 5 09/25/2014 Day 6 09/26/2014 Day 7 09/27/2014 2 Samuel 17, 2 Corinthians 11 2 Samuel 18, 2 Corinthians 11 2 Samuel 19, 2 Corinthians 12 2 Samuel 20, 2 Corinthians 13 2 Samuel 21, Galatians 1 2 Samuel 22, Galatians 2 2 Samuel 23, Galatians 3
Bible Reading Guide
September 22; 2 Samuel 18; 2 Corinthians 11
In the continuing pressure he felt to respond to those who were undermining his authority in Corinth, Paul finds he must “boast” while not “boasting” (see yesterday’s meditation). In 2 Corinthians 10 Paul climaxes his argument by insisting that the Christian’s only proper boasting is in Christ Jesus: “Let him who boasts boast in the Lord” (10:17). In 2 Corinthians 11:16-33, he adopts a slightly different slant to get at the same truth.
What Paul does is take a kind of “time out”: he says he will boast, not as Paul the apostle, not even as Paul the Christian, but rather as Paul the “fool” (11:16-21). He is frightfully embarrassed to do even this (11:21b, 23), but he cannot see another way forward. True, he says, he was steeped in Hebrew culture and language from his youth, and he is a “servant of Christ” no less than others—but to talk like this is so painful that he explodes parenthetically, “I am out of my mind to talk like this” (11:23). And then he inverts all the categories. He “worked much harder”: he means he worked physically, with his hands—something no first-class, self-respecting Hellenistic teacher would do. Further, he says, he has a longer prison record than they do. He has been flogged more often. Five times he has endured the synagogue sanction, the thirty-nine lashes. He has been shipwrecked three times in his voyages for the Gospel (11:25)—and this was written before the one recorded in Acts 27. Constant danger has bedeviled him in his travels, and he has often been forced to go without food. Worse, he has been betrayed by “false brothers” (11:26) while facing the perpetual stress of his concern for all the churches (11:27-28).
We must not read this with Western Christian eyes as an exciting saga of endurance under pressure. We read Paul’s sufferings and admire his faithfulness and steadfastness, his conformity to the Christ who went to the cross. But his opponents would see all these “boasts” as signs of weakness and even stupidity: he does not even have enough sense to keep himself out of trouble. But Paul is determined to invert human boasting; he will boast about the things that display his weakness (11:30). Even his last shot runs along these lines (11:31-33). We tend to see Paul’s escape from Damascus through Luke’s eyes (Acts 9). Paul himself saw his flight as an embarrassing defeat. At a time when the highest Roman military honor went to the soldier of centurion rank or higher who was first over the wall at the end of a siege, Paul avers he was the first down.
In what ways do you boast of your weaknesses?
2 Samuel 12:13
David said to Nathan, "I have sinned against the Lord." And Nathan said to David, "The Lord also has put away your sin..."
Below you will find resources to assist you with Family Worship.
Family Worship Guide
- This resource is based on the Bible Reading Guide and includes reading, discussion, prayer and music to help you conduct Family Worship this week.
- Family Worship Song
- This resource will include an MP3 or link to the music that is used in the Faith Family Worship Guide each week.
- Simple Guide To Family Worship
- A "how to" resource for families to help you begin Family Worship in your home.
View the Faith Family Worship Guide Archive.
- Family Worship Guide
Message Discussion Guides are written each week from the message series teaching each Sunday. You can access the Message Discussion Guides on our Weekly Teaching page for use in your Small Group or personal study.
The South Annex Entrance will be open on Sunday mornings and evenings from 5:00-6:30pm, but, will be locked for the remainder of the day. Please keep the new hours in mind as…
We all know the call to make disciples.Because we want to ultimately be a part of accomplishing this mission globally, for most of us it has to start locally... wherever we…
Use the new Brook Hills App to follow along with our daily Bible reading, the latest sermons, and more. Available on both Apple and Android devices. More info at…
On January 1, we as a faith family began a new Bible reading plan. This reading plan has been designed to take us through the entire Bible. Over the next two years we will…
Institute for Disciple-Making - Registration is open for fall training through our Institute for Disciple-Making with Starting & Leading Small Groups (taught by John…