Tuesday, 16 June 2015
Therefore I urge you to reaffirm your love to him. 2 Corinthians 2:8
Having suffered punishment sufficient to bring repentance, Paul was concerned that the offender may arrive at a state of extreme sorrow where great harm may come to him. In hope of that not taking place, he urges those at Corinth “to reaffirm your love to him.” By doing so, he would feel that he was fully brought back into the fold in good-standing.
The word for “reaffirm” here is kuroo. It is found only here and in Galatians 3:15. In Galatians, it is used when speaking of the establishment of a covenant –
“Brethren, I speak in the manner of men: Though it is only a man’s covenant, yet if it is confirmed, no one annuls or adds to it.”
A covenant stands as it was agreed on. This seems to be the idea with the man who had been the offender in this situation. He was disciplined, but he was also a saved believer in the Lord. That would not change. All believers are sealed with the Holy Spirit when they believe (Ephesians 1:13, 14) and this is a guarantee which will not be broken. One result of this is that they are brought into the body of Christ. Though they may be disciplined, they are no less a part of that body. Paul is therefore asking them to receive him back as such after his discipline, just as Christ will receive him at His coming.
In order to do this, Paul uses this word kuroo to ask them to reaffirm his position in Christ. According to Thayer’s, the intent here is that they were “to make a public decision that love be shown to a transgressor by granting him pardon.” The man had been openly rebuked and disciplined. Paul’s words imply that he should be openly shown that he has been received again into the fold.
Life application: If the intent of discipline is realized, it is only proper to make a public display of reconciliation when a public display of discipline was meted out. Otherwise, there will seemingly be a greater importance placed upon the discipline than there is on the restoration.
Gracious God, I am so thankful for each and every blessing which You pour out on me day by day. Too often, I fail to recognize them as they come. Or I fail to thank You for them for whatever reason. But as I collectively think of all You have done for me, I know that every breath I take and every flower along the path was a gift that I participated in. The stream of goodness from You has never been anything but full and fulfilling. Thank You for each and every blessing which You pour out on me day by day! Amen.