Friday, 22 January 2016
For we can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth. 2 Corinthians 13:8
With a cursory reading of this verse, it appears that Paul is speaking as a person who is incapable of working against the truth. We would then see it comparable to the words ascribed to George Washington which say, “I cannot tell a lie.” Although this is a noble way of looking at it, Paul’s words are more intense than that. They are somewhat comparable in type to the words of John the Baptist when he said, “He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30).
The “we can do nothing against the truth” isn’t speaking of his personal abilities so much as that of the power of the Holy Spirit in Him as an apostle. In essence, “I have no ability to work the power of my apostleship against the truth (because of the Holy Spirit in me.)” Thus the reciprocal is also true – “I only have power to work in accord with the truth in my apostolic ministry (because of the Holy Spirit in me.)”
As a man, Paul had the ability to lie or to sin in any other way. But when he was exercising the powers of his apostleship, this was not possible because the Holy Spirit is God and can in no way work unrighteousness.
Paul’s words here demonstrate that when he comes and makes judgments to enforce the standards of the church, his actions will be perfectly just. This is not because he is perfect, but because the Holy Spirit who would speak through him is.
Life application: Today, many claim they have the powers of an apostle or some other Holy Spirit designated ability which then elevates them to a position of power within the church. Some go so far as to say that when you speak against them, you are committing a crime against the Holy Spirit. Reject such people as perverse and stay far away from them. The Bible is written. It is our source for determining if someone is speaking the truth concerning God or not. Such fools will be dealt with by God. But for now, let them play alone in their own deluded funhouse.
Heavenly Father, You are marvelous in all Your ways. By Your wisdom, You made the coconut tree and the bald eagle. You have given us sweet scents and delightful tastes. From Your wisdom come the changing seasons and the rains from the skies. You have given us iron in the ground and beautiful shells come from the ocean. To ponder Your majestic workings will take all eternity because You are the Source of all wonder. Praises be to You, O God. Amen.