As Paul continues his list, his words become more and more powerful. The ideas that people had about him were very different from the reality.
Paul had given up everything so that he could declare the truth about God. Everywhere, he behaved in a completely sincere and honest manner. Paul loved the truth, but in every place, people considered his words to be lies. They declared him a wicked man whom nobody should trust.
Somehow, those strange contrasts seemed to affect everything that Paul did. Everywhere, people spoke of Paul as an unknown and unimportant fool. In that manner, reports about Paul spread across the region, even into countries where Paul had never been.
It became worse. Wherever Paul went, people were trying to kill him. In some places, vast crowds gathered to oppose him. People were constantly demanding Paul’s death. In time, even Paul thought that he must die soon*. It astonished him that he was still alive. ‘Look!’, he said to Corinth’s Christians in 2 Corinthians 6:9. ‘We live!’
Paul was a good man. People punished him as if he were evil. They hurt him badly on several occasions. They wanted to show him that he had no place in this world*. In the incidents in 2 Corinthians 11:24-25, it surprises us that they had not yet killed him. However, it was God - and not men - who had control over Paul’s life.
Paul knew that his proper place was not really in this world*. He belonged in heaven with Christ, which is a much better place to be*. However, in the meantime, God had given Paul work to do. So Paul made it his ambition in every circumstance to please God*.
* See complete article for these Bible references.
To download all our articles, including our 700+ page book in PDF format, please go to our download page.
© 2016, Keith Simons.