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2 Corinthians 7 - Hurts so Good

Confronting sin causes sorrow that leads to either salvation or death. How can you find the one while avoiding the other?

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2 Corinthians 7 Summary

It's never easy to call out sin in the lives of other people, even when (especially when!) the motivations for doing so are good and proper.

The Corinthian church had been tolerating some very wicked sins, and Paul risked his entire ministry and relationships with people he loved in order to call them to repentance.

Paul was willing to cause sorrow in this church community, because,

Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret... (v10)

Paul had confidence in the Holy Spirit's ability to use the sorrow Paul caused by confronting the Corinthians to bring them to repentance. The final few verses of the chapter make it clear that although Paul's confrontation brought temporary pain, it quickly gave way to salvation and deep seated joy & encouragement.

Dig Deeper

Notice that v10 differentiates between Godly sorrow and worldly sorrow. Too often our goal in confronting wrongs is to bring retribution; to cause the offender pain because that's what the offender deserves.

We've seen so many confrontations over sin go bad, even if the initial motivation was solid and pure, so it's our instinct to avoid these bad situations altogether.

On the one hand we're tempted to just ignore sin - to live and let live. On the other hand, we might just subtly excise the offender from our lives. Anything seems better than an uncomfortable, awkward interaction that could possibly result in lifelong wounds. But this avoidance often leads to worldly sorrow that brings death.

Don't cower away from using Godly sorrow when the Holy Spirit is calling you to do so. This fear may cause both you and the offender to miss out on the joy that Godly sorrow can lead to.

The best way to differentiate between these two kinds of sorrow is to check your motivation before confronting somebody. Make sure you're acting in love, that the sin you're confronting is actually a sin and not just a pet peeve, and that your goal is to bring the offender to repentance and salvation.

AAA Prayer:

  • ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our Father is the God who comforts the downcast (v6)

  • ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray that you will be able to repent of your own sins and lovingly cause sorrow to bring others to repentance.




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