I Have Confidence in You – II Corinthians 2:3-11

by Pastor John Fredericksen

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Several years ago a college football program was chasing their first national championship.  The team had one extremely good player at a highly skilled position. In his junior year, this player engaged in bar fights, and continued in the week leading up to the national championship game. In many colleges around the country, the coach would have kicked such a player off the team, or suspended him for the game by sending him home. However, this player never got more than a slap on the wrist, at most. The rationale was that he was needed to win the big game.

When the Apostle Paul wrote to believers in II Corinthians 2:3, he tells them he had “…confidence in you all.” Why? While we justifiably think of this church as the most carnal of all Paul’s converts, they were still spiritually-minded enough to follow his instruction in church discipline. In I Corinthians 5:9-13, Paul gives them a list of specific sins by believers that are never to be tolerated in a local grace assembly. Since some of these were present at Corinth, he tells them to withdraw complete fellowship from believers living in these sins, and they did. It seems today, few, if any churches or believers, practice church discipline. It is rationalized away with excuses about not being loving or needing them in the church. Perhaps we should ponder how spiritual we really are when the church at Corinth was more spiritually mature in this area than most believers are today.

Because of their previous obedience in discipline, in II Corinthians 2:3-11, Paul expressed confidence that they would now embrace the one from whom they previously withdrew fellowship. He had benefited from their discipline, repented, and now needed to be restored to the church. Paul tells them his “…punishment, which was inflicted of many” was “sufficient” (vs. 6). It was now time to “forgive him, and comfort him, lest…[he] be swallowed up with overmuch sorrow” (vs. 7). Because he had repented, now was the time to “…confirm your love toward him…lest Satan should get an advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices” (vss. 8,11). While many believers find it almost impossible to restore relationships once they have been severed, Paul was confident these believers would obey.

Could others justifiably have confidence in us that we would obey difficult instructions from God’s Word? What area is lacking obedience in your life today?

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Start each day with short, devotional articles taken from the book Daily Transformation by Pastor John Fredericksen. As Pastor Fredericksen writes in the introduction:

"We welcome you, as you journey with us..., to not only learn information, but to benefit from examples of faith and failure, and seek to apply God’s Word to every day life. Together, let’s transition from only studying theories of doctrine, to applying God’s truths in a practical way every day. May God use these studies to help you find daily transformation."