Paul had spent a year and six months establishing the Corinthians church. (Acts 18:11). The second time he accosted them was in the painful visit mentioned in 2 Corinthians 2:1. Since then, Paul refrained from visiting and used letters to communicate his mind. He didn’t stay away from them completely, he found a way to keep in touch. Within this period, a group of false teachers namely; “super apostles” crept into the church and began to sow tares. Paul had to spend enormous time to write again to correct every wrong impression and teaching and to announce his intention to visit a third time.
Part of this passage; verses 14-18 talk about the issue of finance. Paul is not interested in the money or financial help the Corinthians might wish to give him. He tells them: “It is you I want, not your money”. After all Children should not have to provide for their parents, but parents should provide for their children”. This is the same heart that our lord Jesus had. He would feed the people spiritually and still ask his apostles to give them something to eat instead of sending them away empty and famished. We thank God for the very few pastors who are still upholding this virtue of our lord. A huge majority are only interested in members’ money and never in the members. A parishioner who contributes more Money is given preferential treatment over the one who is poor. They milk the people until they are reduced to paupers. Yet they keep using all sorts of craftiness to get More. Such pastors are no shepherds at all. They are rather hypocrites and whited sepulchres. They pretend like the pharisee but all they look out for is their own personal aggrandizement.
Paul’s major interest of writing and concluding the long letter is still focused on correcting wrong. He is loving, kind considerate yet firm. He will never condone evil. So he warns again that those who have sinned in the past which he already know about or the church is aware of, should repent and desist from such. He is not talking about recent sins (for none is infallible) but encourages all to repent of their past sins. This is the major lesson for us today. Sin should not be allowed to separate us. The elders should be shepherds and angels of the church indeed. Let them in love seek out the erring one as Jesus would go looking for the lost sheep. Let us put away covetousness in ministry and really seek to do the masters will. He has laid us an example to follow. Instead of trying so hard to amass wealth and live luxuriously here on earth, may we retrace our steps today in the light of this message and seek to do the Master’s pleasure.
Also listen to this 8 mins sermon from East End church of Christ, Toronto
Read also: Paul’s visions and Revelations