We have called this list: Ďa list of how Paul served Godí. Actually, it is something more than that. In verse 4, Paul wanted to show how his behaviour during his troubles recommended him. He wanted his list to show to Corinthís Christians that he was genuinely serving God.
Let us see, then, how the contents of the list recommend Paul and his work for God.
Paul began in verses 4 and 5 with a list of great troubles. The fact that Paul stood firm for God during such serious troubles showed him to be a genuine servant of God. In fact, even the troubles themselves provided evidence of that fact*. However, the strongest evidence was that Paul behaved like a servant of God during his troubles.
Therefore, his right attitudes in verse 6 recommend him. Of course, many people behave well when they feel no pressure. However, troubles test a personís true character *. It is hard to show kindness when you are under great strain. It is hard to show love to an enemy*. Paul had constantly done these things, even in the greatest danger.
In all these things, Paul depended not on himself, but on God (verse 7). That is the only proper way for a servant of God to behave. He spoke Godís truth; he depended on Godís power. He did what is right; and God gave him the strength to overcome in every situation.
Paul had known honour and shame, kindness and cruelty. People had believed him, and they had refused to believe him. If Paul had cared about his own honour, his own importance or even his life, he could not have continued. Therefore, it was clear that Paul was not working for himself, but for God.
* See complete article for these Bible references.
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© 2016, Keith Simons.