2 Corinthians Chapter 5 (Mission Part 2)

June 16, 2012

This Preaching in Shorts Bible study is on 2 Corinthians. Each chapter is read verse by verse with the major points highlighted and discussed.

You can listen to the study by clicking here

2 Corinthians 5:11-21 (NIV)
11 Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience. 12 We are not trying to commend ourselves to you again, but are giving you an opportunity to take pride in us, so that you can answer those who take pride in what is seen rather than in what is in the heart. 13 If we are out of our mind, it is for the sake of God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14 For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. 15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. 16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

As we are working through the NT, I thought we should take a few weeks to process 2 Corinthians 5:11-21 together as these verse provide the foundation for our mission of One More. We will be looking at verses 13 through 15 in just a moment. Before we do, I want to talk about a concept that springs out of our mission statement. I said last week that as a church we are not supposed to circle the wagons, we are called to hang out with the culture. The church is a force, not a fortress. With that in mind we have developed this acronym for the church to go along with our mission:

F.O.R.C.E

Frontline
Operation
Reconciling (Radical Message)
Caring (Radical Hospitality)
Encouraging (Radical Generosity)

As part of our mission of One More, we are to be a FORCE. In the process, we will be involved in presenting a radical message, with radical hospitality and radical generosity. The idea of radical in this sense meaning not what people expect.

2 Corinthians 5:13-15 (NIV)
13 If we are out of our mind, it is for the sake of God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14 For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. 15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.

Outreach that makes people say what?

Free lunches, free soda giveaways, 1 Dollar Car Washes, whatever we can do to make people stop and think.

2 Corinthians 5:13 (NIV)
13 If we are out of our mind, it is for the sake of God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you.

This is about demonstrating a Radical generosity.

We are trying to destroy stereotypes and opinions that people have of the church, and God. If the way they have been thinking is challenged by an act of kindness or encouragement, then perhaps they will be open to rethinking some of their ideas.

Our motivation is love

2 Corinthians 5:14 (NIV)
14 For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died.

Love in a post modern world is defined by acceptance. We have to accept people where they are. The perception of many people is that the church does not do this. We are not seen as accepting. To overcome this, we have to realize that acceptance is not licensing sin. It is not saying that sin is not a big deal. It is loving people where they are and trusting God to work in the areas that need to be straightened out. We are still the people with a Radical message – Good News.

Remember the heart of the Good News or Gospel message. Christ does for our sins, was buried, and was resurrected on the third day. The ministry that is produced by the Good News is one of reconciliation. People being reconciled to God because He has made a way for restored relationship in Christ. A way for us to be forgiven from our sin that has caused the separation and be restored and reconciled into fellowship with Him now and forever.

Ministering for Him is our calling

It is also where we find life

2 Corinthians 5:15 (NIV)
15 And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.

The Apostle Paul gives us some advice on how to live out this calling.

Romans 12:9-13 (MSG)
9 Love from the center of who you are; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. 10 Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle. 11 Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, 12 cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. 13 Help needy Christians; be inventive in hospitality.

As we present this radical message, with radical generosity, we are to be inventive in Radical hospitality.

Making people feel loved, accepted, comfortable, so that God can touch and heal. In the greek, hospitality means love of strangers. We need to remove religious barriers that are keeping people from hearing the radical message of Jesus.

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