Where’s the beef?

Rembrandt, “The Apostle Paul”

2 Corinthians 6:1-13
For Sunday, June 24, 2012
Proper 7

Where’s the beef?  In a nutshell, this is what the Apostle Paul is asking the Corinthians in this passage.  He says, “As God’s fellow workers we urge you not to receive God’s grace in vain” (v. 1).   For Paul the gospel was everything.  He had himself received the grace of God deep within his person and understood its significance.  This is what propelled him forward in “troubles, hardships, and distresses” (v. 4).

As I’ve heard my friend and pastor Steve Sonderman puts it: “The greatest gift you can give to another person is your own spirituality“.   Paul could point to the reality of the gospel as made manifest in his own life.  No one could ask of Paul, “Where’s the beef?”.  He was 100% Ground Sirloin.

Can we say the same?  Are we just playing at Christianity or maybe just pursuing it professionally?   The validation of Paul’s ministry was not in the title “Senior Pastor” or even “Apostle”.  The validation of his ministry was the extent to which he opened wide his heart (v. 11) in a ministry of service to others.   As we live today in our families, in our workplaces, and in our churches, may we experience the blessing of doing the same.

Reader’s Corner:
Based on this passage is the Apostle Paul someone you would enjoy meeting?  Why or why not?

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