2 Corinthians 7:2-16
2 Make room for us in your hearts. We haven’t done anything wrong to anyone. We haven’t caused anyone to sin. We haven’t taken advantage of anyone. 3 I don’t say this to judge you. I have told you before that you have an important place in our hearts. We would live or die with you. 4 I have great faith in you. I am very proud of you. I am very happy. Even with all our troubles, my joy has no limit. 5 When I came to Macedonia, my body wasn’t able to rest. I was attacked no matter where I went. I had battles on the outside and fears on the inside. 6 But God comforts those who are sad. He comforted me when Titus came. 7 I was comforted not only when he came but also by the comfort you had given him. He told me how much you longed for me. He told me about your deep sadness and concern for me. That made my joy greater than ever. 8 Even if my letter made you sad, I’m not sorry I sent it. At first I was sorry. I see that my letter hurt you, but only for a little while. 9 Now I am happy. I’m not happy because you were made sad. I’m happy because your sadness led you to turn away from your sins. You became sad just as God wanted you to. So you were not hurt in any way by us. 10 Godly sadness causes us to turn away from our sins and be saved. And we are certainly not sorry about that! But worldly sadness brings death. 11 Look at what that godly sadness has produced in you. You are working hard to clear yourselves. You are angry and alarmed. You are longing to see me. You are concerned. You are ready to make sure that the right thing is done. In every way you have proved that you are not guilty in that matter. 12 So even though I wrote to you, it wasn’t because of the one who did the wrong. It wasn’t because of the one who was hurt. Instead, I wrote you so that in the sight of God you could see for yourselves how faithful you are to us. 13 All of that cheers us up. We were also very glad to see how happy Titus was. You have all renewed his spirit. 14 I had bragged about you to him. And you have not let me down. Everything we said to you was true. In the same way, our bragging about you to Titus has also turned out to be true. 15 His love for you is even greater when he remembers that you all obeyed his teaching. You received him with fear and trembling. 16 I am glad I can have complete faith in you.
After Paul wrote the letter to Corinthians church previously, he was somewhat regretful for writing that letter. Because it was with serious words and many tears and possibly, more rebuke than encouragement. The letter did hurt them for a little while and gave them deep sorrow and grief.
But when Titus feed back the reaction of Corinthians after his visit, Paul was greatly encouraged. It’s not because the sorrow of Corinthians, but because their sorrow led them to repentance. And repentance not only led to salvation and left no regret, but also produced lot of earnestness, self-cleaning, indignation, longing, concern and freedom from sin. It’s different from the worldly sorrow which brings death.
The challenge of this passage to me is:
- Do I tend to be defensive when confronted my sin?
- Do I make my leaders joyful when they give account?
- Am I daring/brave enough to speak out if I see ungodly/wrong things happening in the church?
Dear Lord, thank you for letting me know that Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. Help me to take off my pride from admitting my sins. Amen.
Written by Allen Leu