2 Corinthians 2:5-11
5 Suppose someone has made us sad. In some ways, he hasn’t made me sad so much as he has made all of you sad. But I don’t want to put this too strongly. 6 He has been punished because most of you decided he should be. This punishment is enough. 7 Now you should forgive him and comfort him. Then he won’t be sad more than he can stand. 8 So I’m asking you to tell him again that you still love him. 9 I wrote to you for another special reason. I wanted to see if you could stand the test. I wanted to see if you could obey everything asked of you. 10 Anyone you forgive I also forgive. Was there anything to forgive? If so, I have forgiven it for your benefit, knowing that Christ is watching. 11 We don’t want Satan to outsmart us. We know how he does his evil work.
V7 time to forgive him so that he won’t be overcome by discouragement.
Paul had sent a letter telling them what to do with a man who had insulted Paul during an earlier visit. It was difficult for them, but their obedience has produced the desired result, repentance and change. Now, because of that change, they can and should reach out to him to prevent discouragement overtaking the offender. Paul knows how destructive that discouragement can be to a believer, and regardless of his personal feelings, the welfare of this man’s soul is more important.
A familiar instruction from Paul to the early churches was to encourage one another. Especially when a believer repents and changes their ways, encourage them so that discouragement does not overtake them.
Discouragement is so destructive, that God, through Paul’s letter to us says to watch out for discouragement. After repentance and change, encourage each other, at all times – encourage one another.
I am so thankful for everyone who has, and continues to encourage me.
Written by Andrew Martin