2 Corinthians 7
1. Dear friends, we have these promises from God. So we should make ourselves clean free from anything that makes body or soul unclean. We should try to become complete in the way we live, because we respect God.
Paul is talking about the promises in chapter six. Remember the Corinthians lived in a dirty city filled with demons and immoral people. There is a thing called an unclean spirit. This kind of spirit makes a person not care about themselves or take care of themselves. We want to offer everything about ourselves as clean before God.
2. Open your hearts to us. We have not done wrong to anyone. We have not ruined the faith of any person, and we have cheated no one.
Paul is asking them to stop and think about how stupid the church arguments were. Paul did not do anything bad to anyone and there is no reason to make their hearts hard against him.
3 – 4
I do not say this to blame you. I told you before that we love you so much that we would live or die with you. I feel very sure of you. I am very proud of you. You give me much comfort. And in all of our troubles I have great joy.
Paul says, “How can I say anything against the people that I love so much?”
5. When we came into Macedonia, we had no rest. We found trouble all around us. We had fighting on the outside and fear on the inside.
Paul was attacked by a spirit of fear. He was having fire arrows shot at him saying things like, “Where is Titus? Why is he not here? Did something happen to him? What did the Corinthians him say to him? Will the church in Ephesus also be attacked?”
So we see that even a strong man of God can be attacked by such thoughts. Paul tells us how to fight back in 2 Corinthians 10:5.
6. But God comforts those who are troubled. And God comforted us when Titus came.
Tell yourself that you have decided not to look too much at your problems. Bury yourself in the Word and in prayer. If you look at your problems too much the devil will tell you that you are a special case and that God is hiding the answer from you. Matthew 6:33, Proverbs 16:7
7. We were comforted by his coming and also by the comfort that you gave him. Titus told us about your wish to see me. He told us that you are very sorry for what you did. And he told me about your great care for me. When I heard this, I was much happier. Him
Good news from far away is like cold water to a thirsty man. Proverbs 25:25
8. Even if the letter I wrote you made you sad, I am not sorry I wrote it. I know it made you sad, and I was sorry for that. But it made you sad only for a short time.
Paul sent a letter while he was waiting for Titus. This letter said some very strong things. We do not have a copy of this letter because Paul and the church decided that it was best to forget about it.
9. Now I am happy, but not because you were made sad. I am happy because your sorrow made you change your hearts. You became sad in the way God wanted you to. So you were not hurt by us in any way.
Repenting means to take your finger out of the fire. You can stop hurting yourself if you change your mind.
10. Being sorry in the way God wants makes a person change his heart and life. This leads to salvation, and we cannot be sorry for that. But the kind of sorrow the world has will bring death.
Many people will tell you that they are sorry they got caught. They are not sorry for what they did. Thinking this way will only bring more death into their lives.
11. You had the kind of sorrow God wanted you to have. Now see what this sorrow has brought you: It has made you very serious. It made you want to prove that you were not wrong. It made you angry and afraid.
It made you want to see me. It made you care. It made you want the right thing to be done. You proved that you were not guilty in any part of the problem.
The Corinthians have proved that they are done with all the church fighting.
12. I wrote that letter, but not because of the one who did the wrong. And it was not written because [he hurt me]. But I wrote the letter so that you could see, before God, the great care that you have for us.
Paul is saying that he did not take the accusations of the man who was leading the church rebellion personally. Most Bible teachers agree that Paul is telling the Corinthians that they loved Paul more than they thought they did.
13 – 15
That is why we were comforted. We were very comforted. And we were even happier to see that Titus was so happy. All of you made him feel much better.
I bragged to Titus about you. And you showed that I was right. Everything that we said to you was true. And you have proved that what we bragged about to Titus is true.
And his love for you is stronger when he remembers that you were all ready to obey. You welcomed him with respect and trembling.
Paul had sent Timothy and there is no record of what they said to him. It must be that they would not listen to Timothy. Later, when Titus came with the strong letter from Paul they change their minds.
I will bless those who have humble and contrite hearts, who tremble at my Word. Isaiah 66:2
16. I am very happy that I can trust you fully.
When you tell someone that you trust them and you think they would be a good artist or musician or something else, you build them up in their spirit.