SUNDAY, JANUARY 02, 2022
10:30 AM (in-person only—NO LIVESTREAM + communion)
Second Corinthians Series:
2 Corinthians 3:7-3:18
What threatens our flourishing? What does real freedom look like, and what gives us the power to be free? How does Jesus ground all freedom? What are practices that help us be empowered, confident people?
The Apostle Paul addresses some issues from those who want to mix-and-match various religious traditions with Jesus, and why this does not work for freedom. A buffet does not grant the freedom it claims. There is a path that gives you power to live a fulfilling life of love—a Jesusy life.
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TAKE OFF: Stories
“Brother Seymour generally sat behind two empty shoe boxes, one on top of the other. He usually kept his head inside the top one during the meeting, in prayer.”
Ben Witherington III, Rhetorical Structure
1. The epistolary prescript (1:1-2).
2. The epistolary thanksgiving and exordium (1:3-7). "the beginning or introductory part, especially of a discourse or treatise."
3. The narratio (1:8-2:14), which explains some of the facts that occasioned the letter and climaxes with a further thanksgiving and transition (2:15f.).27
5. The probatio and refutatio (3:1-13:4), which includes:
a. Paul's defense of his ministry and of his anti-Sophistic rhetorical approach (3:1-6:13)
FLIGHT: Through the Text
"...In the Christian church, we still have both "ministry of condemnation" and a "ministry of the Spirit," which brings life...Jesus Christ [left us]... with his very own internal Spirit to change us from within...Often the church can hold on too tightly to the old way of doing things, assuming it is the only right way of doing things. We become very set in our ways, and there is a sense of security in doing the familiar and relying on old rules and regulations" (J. Diehl, 141).
2 Corinthians 3:7-11 New-Ministry Glory Sets the Old Aside
2 Corinthians 3:12-18 Veiled and Unveiled Faces and Minds
Paul shows the results of both dispensations, but whereas in the former instance he concentrates on those results--death and separation from God---in the latter case he concentrates on the [Holy] Spirit himself. -John Chrysostom, Homilies, 2nd Cor.
PREP AND LANDING, How can this bring you to a new place?
Sources: Conflict and Community in Corinth: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary on 1 and 2 Corinthians, Ben Witherington; Believer's Church Commentary, V. George Shillington; NIV Application Commentary; The Letters of the Corinthians, William Barclay; Second Epistle to the Corinthians: New International Commentary on the New Testament (NICNT), Paul Barnett; Wisdom Commentary, 2 Cor, Antoinette Clark Wire; The Story of God Com., 2 Cor, Judith A. Diehl; 1 and 2 Cor., Craig S. Keener; Others.
For Reflection and Discussion