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Paul's Continued Defense (17 of 19)
Series: THE BOOK OF II CORINTHIANS
II Corinthians 12:11-21
August 31, 2005
1. In our lesson this evening, Paul continues to defend himself against those who were raising questions about his apostleship. Last week, we looked at the first part of the chapter, where he demonstrates his apostolic superiority and seeks to validate God's calling on his life by sharing his heavenly experience (vv. 1-3). Though he is speaking in the third person, it is obvious Paul is referring to himself (vs. 6).
2. For our lesson this evening, let me give you three points:
I. The Signs of an Apostle
II. The Heart of an Apostle
III. The Concern of an Apostle
I. THE SIGNS OF AN APOSTLE (VS. 11, 12)
A. In true humility
1. In (vs. 11), Paul states: "For in nothing am behind the very chiefest apostles." Then he adds: "though I be nothing." In other words; "There is nothing lacking in my apostolic credentials; yet, I consider myself to be nothing."
a. The truth of the matter is that Paul had no equal--he was greater than all apostles; but part of his greatness was in his humility. He considered himself to be nothing. This was one of the true signs of his apostleship.
1) For the last three Sunday mornings, we have listened to the Lord's Word concerning humility. How important is humility? It is very important. God never blesses the proud, but He always blesses the humble. Paul was a great man, but he was also a humble man.
QUOTE: Andrew Murray said, "Humility, the place of entire dependence on God, is, from the very nature of things, the first duty and the highest virtue of the creature, and the root of every virtue."
B. In all patience (vs. 12)
1. Paul was in the fiery furnace during most of his ministry (read chapter 11); however, his patience caused him to wait on God for deliverance; and it also caused him to never get ahead of God's plan. Friend, you and I wi ...
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