Elders Represent the Knowlege of Christ in the Church – Part 3

Chapter 3 of this second epistle to the Corinthian church gives Paul’s defense of his authority in and of from God further weight, as he stresses that not only is he not seeking to appeal to or please men by his words, but that God has written that upon the hearts of those he is writing to, so much so, that they are “our letter of recommendation,” and the weight of this letter of recommendation is not even their own testimony (although such is implicit in a secondary sense), but the fact that the law of God has been written on their hearts as surely and more effectually than it was on the tablets of the decalogue (vv. 1-4), and that is the entirety of the foundation for Paul and his companions confidence, which confidence has, as its sufficiency, God, and which confidence is communicated in all that they suffered, will suffer, are consoled in, and share with the Corinthians for the sake of their being built up in the grace of God.

These things are all done for the sake of revealing that glory of God in Christ which is shown to be beyond comparison, by the use of such comparison, first, to that ministry of the law of God written on stone, which Paul calls both glorious, yet, in his comparison to the present ministry of life (“ministry of the Spirit,” v. 8) which has written the law of God upon the tablets of the Corinthians’ hearts, he also calls “the ministry of death” (v. 7). Another comparison is made with a view to the passing of the glory revealed in the Old Covenant as compared to the New; the former is said to have shown forth the glory of God, yet is said to be “the ministry of condemnation;” the latter is shown to be superior in that it is not only showing the glory of God as well, but further and more so, in displaying His righteousness, and therefore, what was seen as glory in the Old is shown, by such contrast with the New, as having “no glory at all.” Indeed, the first glory is shown to have resulted in death, in that the letter, apart from the Spirit, can only kill (vv. 7-10; cf. v. 6b). It is the surpassing superiority of the glory of the New that makes null and void, by the contrast the apostle draws, that glory which was revealed in the Old; it is not that there was no glory revealed in the Old, but that such glory was not intended, by God, to be of any permanence, whereas the glory given in the New is without end (v. 11).

Paul’s use of metaphor to teach the Corinthians (and us) of the reality of the glory of God’s grace in Christ Jesus is strong in this chapter; actually, it is stronger than metaphor, it is typological. The type of the veil over Moses’ face is actually a type, which has echoes in the New Testament (Matthew 27:50-51), so that those who read Paul’s words in this epistle would well know that a literal veil in a literal temple, both of temporal construction, represented the Old Covenant ending and the glory of the everlasting covenant – the New Covenant – having been brought in by the redemptive work of our Lord, inaugurated. This is further alluded to in the Old Testament (Isaiah 25:6-7). Of this passage, Calvin comments, on v. 7, “Here also commentators differ, for by the word covering is meant the disgrace with which believers are covered in this world, so that the glory of God is not seen in them; as if he had said, “Though many reproaches oppress the godly, yet God will take away those reproaches, and will make their condition glorious. I pass by other interpretations; but, in my opinion, the true meaning is, that the Lord promises that he will take away the veil by which they were kept in blindness and ignorance; and therefore it was by the light of the gospel that this darkness was dispelled.

In that mountain. He says that this will be in mount Zion, from which also the light of the word shone on the whole world, as we have already seen. (Isaiah 2:3) This passage, therefore, must unavoidably be referred to the kingdom of Christ; for the light did not shine on all men till Christ, the Sun of Righteousness, arose, (Malachi 4:2) who took away all the veils, wrappings, and coverings. And here we have another commendation of the gospel, that it dispels the darkness, and takes away from our eyes the covering of errors. Hence it follows, that we are wrapped up and blinded by the darkness of ignorance, before we are enlightened by the doctrine of the gospel, by which alone we can obtain light and life, and be fully restored. Here, too, we have a confirmation of the calling of the Gentiles, that is, of our calling; for not only the Jews, but all nations, which formerly were buried in every kind of errors and superstition, are invited to this banquet” (Calvin – Commentary on Isaiah – 1551), while Gill has it that the doctrines of man are intended, which result in darkened understanding and ignorance (John Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible – 1690-1771); both senses may be held together, although I favor Calvin’s more. Here again, we see the harmonious organic whole and richness of the Scriptures, and even with Gentile converts, since, the Scriptures of the New Testament being not yet complete, they would be conversant with the existing Scriptures which the apostles and appointed elders and teachers of the New Testament used to teach from, even using the Old Testament Scriptures in such Holy Spirit breathed New Testament Scripture as they wrote – this was a common manner of using Old Testament Scripture, which may be said to repute strongly those who deny that there was any such usage of metaphor, allegory and typology, since the New Testament is replete with such usage from our Lord, the apostles, and other writers of the New Testament.

The doctrine of maturing in the grace of the Lord (v. 18) is taught by the apostle strongly in the last vv. of this chapter. We see how the progression from suffering and despair, to trusting in the Lord, sharing the hope that is divinely given through such suffering to those who will suffer in like manner (and in any manner), to a joyous expounding of the radiant grace of God in the face of our Lord Jesus Christ, as evidenced by the Spirit in Scripture through the agency of the apostles and prophets – this is that “freedom in the Lord” which is taught to us by our Lord and His apostles – the freedom to revel in and celebrate, worshipfully, thankfully, all that God has done for His glory, which self-glorification includes His love of His saints, in His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Paul triumphantly declares that it is the Lord Jesus Christ who removes this veil from our understanding and shines that glory He alone procured, which gracious glory will transform us into His perfect likeness, as to His humanity, in eternal blessedness with our God; that is, the freedom which He so dearly purchased for us, and which His Spirit so graciously applies to us. Although Paul is presenting these truths to us as an apostle of Christ, it must be seen that he is doing so largely in his capacity not only as an apostle, but to show the ongoing reservoir of these great doctrines in the functioning of his role as an elder to the church, which function is continued (true apostolic succession is of the doctrine of the apostles as delivered to the church by those who are elders, both for the church catholic and for the local covenant communities, as we noted above) in the eldership of the church universal and in particular, each local body of that catholic church (1 Corinthians 3:1-11).

SDG –  Bill

Elders Represent the Knowledge of Christ in the Church – Part 4

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Elders Represent the Knowlege of Christ in the Church – Part 2

Continuing our observations of the ministry of Paul and his companions to the Corinthians, in chapter two, we immediately see the pastoral prerogative Paul exercises in his apostolic office continued from chapter one. He has said that he did not come that he might spare the Corinthians, and it is right to ask: from what is he sparing them?

It may be supposed (and rightly, I think) that he is referring to his former epistle he wrote to them, especially since the tone of the current epistle is much more conciliatory, whereas the former was strongly corrective and admonitory; in both cases (the former and the current epistle), he exercises, clearly and firmly, the pastoral aspect of his ministry. However, Paul is speaking of coming to them again (1:15), so we may also suppose (more strongly, perhaps, than that occasion of his first epistle, although both are sufficient suppositions), that he is referring to his ministry among them when he brought to them the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, and stayed there a year and six months (Acts 18:1-11); in either case, it is to work a second work of grace, or be twice blessed in that confirmation of the gospel by the building upon the foundation that was laid with them at the first, and through his first epistle (with the additional possibility of God graciously adding more souls to the church). By second work of grace, we intend the ongoing grace of our Lord being ministered through the elder’s ministry of the same, not an infusion of the Spirit subsequent to salvation further empowers the believer to do works of this same grace given at salvation, and continually given through the means of grace which our Lord established for His church. The means of grace used to deliver that once given, inexhaustible supply of sufficient grace which the apostle utilizes here is the preaching and teaching of the Word, and it is noteworthy to observe that all members of the body of Christ partake of His limitless, sufficient grace to grow therein, each time they hear the Word preached and taught by those appointed of our Lord to care for that portion of His flock.

Whether we suppose it is correction received from his first epistle to them, or during his long stay with them at the first wherein he would have done some gentle admonition, at this point, he has established that he would spare them of further correction, rather wishing to build them up in grace in the most positive manner, while at the same time mildly rebuking them for any doubts they yet hold against him by reason of the false accusers and their own reticence in validating his ministry among them (ref. 2 Corinthians 10 regarding those accusers and false apostles who accused Paul and caused mayhem among the Corinthian church – there is no need to disregard that these same were operating at the time of the occasion of his first epistle, especially in view of the many errors of theology and morality he addressed therein). Various commentators have said that Paul throws back the blame upon the Corinthians that they supposed his failure of coming to them this second time evidenced, therefore they were accusing him of not acting in accordance with integrity; that they supposed this as a fault of the apostle, that is, but the Scriptures under consideration show us that such was not a fault of the apostle, but of their lack of confidence in him due to the aforementioned reasons; in any case, he certainly vindicated himself of their doubts by referral to his initial work among them, as well as his previous epistle. His appeal for his integrity is to God, as we have shown above, not in the confidence of either his flesh or that of the Corinthians (v 17).

Therefore, he is sparing them the rod of further correction, which again is reminiscent of his first, strongly corrective and disciplinary epistle, for he wishes to increase their abundance in the fruit of the Spirit, not their sorrow, which would also make him sorrowful. He is stating that he would have them rejoice with him (2:3), not share in additional grief, regardless of the supposed or real warrant for such. He is giving them instructions that they may not only partake of his instructions in the Lord in the present letter, but fully benefit from what he had occasion to write in his previous letter – the heart of a pastor runs strongly through this epistle!

SDG – Bill

Elders Represent the Knowledge of Christ in the Church – Part 3

Elders Represent the Knowlege of Christ in the Church – Part 1

2 Corinthians 5:16-17: From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

The above Scripture quotation occurs within a context wherein the apostle Paul is speaking of some of the roles and functions of elders, whether as apostles or teachers (and perhaps deacons), as the usage of the pronouns shows. To prove this, we have, in this second letter to the Corinthians, the use of the plural pronouns in chapter 1, which pronouns refer to Paul and his companions in ministry, set over against the use of those pronouns referring to the recipients of the letter, who are comforted by the aforementioned group (2 Corinthians 1:4:-6: who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. 5 For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. 6 If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer). (Emphasis in bold mine.) This distinction of groups, between the group ministering with Paul and those they minister to, is continued throughout the context of these five chapters of this epistle of the apostle we are considering in our series of articles. This is shown by the relation, in context, of the pronouns, to the respective groups represented (although considering the syntactical relations in the original language would show this to be the case even more, it is evident enough in the translation that such is not considered absolutely necessary – for those who wish to consider such things, there is no doubt whatsoever that such study will not only prove the point we are making, but prove profitable in many ways, and such study is encouraged).

Paul is speaking of, representing, and sharing those sufferings which he and his companions have undergone during their missionary and church planting journeys, which the Corinthians certainly had first-hand knowledge of (cf. Acts 18-19although the sufferings of Paul and his companions at this point of their missionary journeys were light, compared to what they and he suffered elsewhere, the reports of his sufferings elsewhere no doubt preceded his arrival in Corinth – for instance, his stoning at Iconium in Acts 14. Additionally, we have the accounts of that which Paul suffered, but this does not mean we know all of that which he suffered at this time; still, going through the accounts of his missionary journeys in Acts certainly gives us enough material to explain such passages as the first chapter of Corinthians). This type of representation of what Paul and his traveling companions went through was communicated to the Corinthian church beginning in chapter one, and extending to the quotation (and beyond) we began this article with, and it is proper to notice that the apostle reasons that the purpose of their undergoing afflictions and sufferings is, firstly, for the sake of Christ, and secondly, to comfort those he is writing too; lastly, it is imperative to notice how he is comforting them, which is by the shared Word of the Lord as given to him, so that when they undergo like things, they will have this sure word of the divine grace and providence of God, in Christ, to turn to, receiving the same divine comfort for themselves as that which was given to the apostle and his companions.

As we go through the first chapter, we see the comfort given was during times of extreme duress for Paul and companions. Paul tells the Corinthians that they were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself, and the word for despaired in this phrase means “to be in extreme despair, implying both anxiety and fear—‘to be in utter despair, to despair completely.’ ὥστε ἐξαπορηθῆναι ἡμᾶς καὶ τοῦ ζῆν ‘so that we despaired even of living’ or ‘so that we totally despaired of our lives’ 2 Cor 1:8.”[1]

To emphasize the strength of the trials he and his companions were going through, he bluntly tells the Corinthians that “we felt that we had received the sentence of death (1 Corinthians 1:8-9a). This is truly depression (another word for despair to such an extent), where one has despaired even of being able to live; even believing that their death was decreed. In this, we see more than the physical afflictions; we see the mental, or spiritual and emotional afflictions as well.

This is a communication, by the apostle to the Corinthians, that the elders (and deacons) represent the knowledge of Christ in the church, and how they live in accordance with that knowledge shows that the deposit and distribution of it accords with Scripture. Paul is sharing with the Corinthians that knowledge which is essential to be able to undergo trails of varying magnitudes, and immediately, in the following vv, Paul gives the reason that they were subjected to such terrible physical and spiritual hardships: But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again (1 Corinthians 1:9b-10).

Reliance upon God; reliance upon His promises and grace in Christ Jesus, as given to us through His Holy Spirit, is what makes us able to endure all things for the sake of Christ, even deep, life-despairing depression (Philippians 4:13; 1 Corinthians 10:13 – and note the range of temptations Paul has mentioned in the subsequent chapters of this particular context – 2 Corinthians 12:8-10). The strength and ability to do all things and undergo all things spoken of in the Philippians passage, the temptations spoken of in the 1 Corinthians 10 passage, the personal trial Paul pleads with the Lord to take away three times (in chapter 12 of this epistle we are considering), but which is left to humble him, are all based on that simple, childlike trust in our Lord Jesus Christ’ sufficient grace; all these things are actually, truly able to be borne by that sufficient grace of our Lord and the ability and power which comes because of God who strengthens (us).

This is what Paul is communicating to the Corinthian church, in the power of the Spirit, by his written words; this is what is communicated to all of us who are Christians today by these same God breathed words, and these words are those which we have to read, meditate upon, and learn the depths of from those who are appointed elders over us.

Quickly, let us go through the next three and two-thirds chapters of this second letter to the Corinthian church (verses referred to and commented upon in the context of each chapter will mainly be referenced by v. or vv.), leading up to our text quoted at the beginning of this article; lightly touching here and there, to emphasize that this is, first and foremost, a letter of instruction and encouragement from one who is not only an apostle, but a teacher of the Word – an elder, just as our own pastors and elders (for the apostolic office encompassed all the other offices within it).

First, however, notice how the first chapter ends:
Paul admonishes the believers at Corinth to help him and his companions by that means of grace Scripture calls prayer (v. 11), he appeals to their knowledge, already communicated to them through God-breathed writings they were acquainted with, as valid in Christ, and therefore to establish themselves in that knowledge that he may boast of them as they boast of him on the day of our Lord’s second advent (vv. 13-14), and that his actions were done in simple sincerity before God and men (unbelievers [“in the world”] and especially the Corinthians – v. 12); he links his and his companions desire to come to them with the certain promises of God, giving assurance of their sincerity and showing the absoluteness of the certainty of God’s promises at the same time (vv. 17-20). The final verse of chapter one gives both the apostolic authority (which is continued in the ministry of elders as to teaching and example of living) of Paul, as well as that of his companions (though theirs is not intended as apostolic, but as regarding the other parts of ministry which adhere to being an elder), and does so in a context of the proper use of one in a church office and ministry (whether they were an apostle in the early church, or are an elder in the church in any age – v. 24; cf, v. 23). Thus, the foundation,  set in the previous, introductory post, is further developed with regard to our context and our opening text, which we will see further developed as we continue rapidly though the next three chapters, which will be continued in our next installment of this series.

SDG – Bill

Elders Represent the Knowledge of Christ in the Church – Part 2

[1] Louw, J. P., & Nida, E. A. (1996). Vol. 1: Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament: Based on semantic domains (electronic ed. of the 2nd edition.) (313). New York: United Bible Societies.

Elders Represent the Knowledge of Christ in the Church – Introduction

A Brief Forward

The title of this series of posts is “Elders Represent the Knowledge of Christ in the Church;” however, by this statement, we do not intend that there is no knowledge of Christ in the other members of the covenant communities that represent the catholic church in local assemblies of such members, but rather, we intend that there is an order to that deposit of knowledge of God in Christ Jesus by which He graciously communicates this knowledge to His church. We also do not intend, by the word “knowledge,” here, simply that which is able to be intellectually grasped, but also, by the same Spirit of Christ, experientially grasped and applied. This order and divine method is intended by the apostle Paul in such places as Ephesians 4:11-16 and 1 Corinthians 12:13-31, and is inherent (and often explicit) in all he writes in all his epistles, but these two texts touch upon it most explicitly, so the reader is invited to study them for further edification.

The overall text we will be concentrating on is that of the first five chapters of 2 Corinthians, to show how this went forth in the first elders (the apostles and their immediate contemporaries) of the church to the church in the area of Corinth. The key text from within this broader text will be given at the start of the exposition for consideration and meditation, which will be 2 Corinthians 5:16-17.

Introduction

The office of elders in the church is often not fully understood, overlooked by those who are taught, led and protected by these men who are gifts of Christ to His church, and often looked upon as a position of personal authority (sometimes by those who hold that office); in truth, it is sad, on the first two counts, due to a large scale, purposed ignorance, by those who are led, fed and protected by those elders (and this fault lies, first of all, with the bad teaching of such who ought not to be elders), of what the Scriptures teach about this most weighty position, and tragic on the last count, due to purposed abuse of that authority by those who are elders in some churches, when the authority is not theirs at all, but actually Christ’s, and the elders only hold, in stewardship, that which Christ has, through His Spirit, gifted them with for the feeding, leading and protection of the respective local churches of which they are to be examples of His excellencies.

A definition of terms is needful, at this point: By feeding, we intend preaching and teaching (although all teaching is preaching, and all teaching is preaching, to an extent, when it comes to the Scriptures); by leading, we intend by example, both of doctrine and personal living that accords with that doctrine; by protecting, we intend that discipline in the church of God which is set forth so plainly in the Scriptures, so that there may be the order of God’s grace in Christ Jesus in the church, safeguarding against false doctrines, as well as against those who live carnally – tares, posing as true wheat among the sheep of Christ, enticing them to carnal behaviors (and this intends more than sexual conduct and words – we mean, by carnal, that behavior which looks upon the outward appearance more than the truth of God; that which promotes judgment by looking upon the behaviors and language of others in an ill-intended manner, such as would be called by our Lord the judgment that sees splinters past its own logs).

Thankfully, Christ has said He will build His church, and there are true gospel churches where His doctrine is preached, taught and lived according too, as He gives grace; in such churches, the office of elder is a blessing to those men who have been gifted to His church, and a blessing to those He leads, feeds and protects through them, though it is not an easy office to discharge, which follows hard upon the example our Lord and His first elders (the apostles and their companions) set forth, by that same life-giving, life-empowering, life-preserving grace of God all elders – and indeed, all believers – do obtain pardon of sin and eternal life through.

For those who are elders, truly ordained by God in Christ, words could be multiplied, but rather than do such, we will simply mention a few portions of Scripture, with some expounding, before launching into the main thrust of this series of articles.

Luke 22:25-27: And he said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those in authority over them are called benefactors. But not so with you. Rather, let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves. For who is the greater, one who reclines at table or one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am among you as the one who serves.

James 3:1: Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness.

1 Peter 5:1-3: So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock.

In these three brief portions of Scripture, we find the demeanor of the elder, and that behavior is modeled by our Lord in the first example. He was among the first disciples to be trained to plant and water His flock, in various local covenant communities, as “one who serves.” There can be no doubt of His example, as there can be no doubt of any living out that example consistently but Him; still, it is the example, and as He had the Holy Spirit without measure to live in a manner that satisfied God’s requirement of law, and being perfected, made expiation for our sins, so do elders have a measure of grace given them in the gifts necessary to care for those portions of the body He has charged and empowered them to be able to do so within (to avoid confusion, we certainly make no claim that any, from the apostles up to present day elders, in any manner do that which provides expiation of sin – that was Christ’s alone to do).

Many people see the example of our Lord’s life, in His first advent, as just an example, but it is more; it is that which shows us that we can depend on God for that same power by which our Lord lived; that is, it is an example that leads to and provides that same power of God in the believer’s life which He exercised in raising our Lord from the dead. He lived by the power of the Holy Spirit, and this is what the true example is. It is living in reliance and trust in God’s power, according to the life of our Lord (about the grace He earned for us and continues to give us daily, moment-by-moment). Being a servant of the flock of God entails an empowerment that gives which, while expecting return (those served grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord), never demands a return, because, as their Master, they are among those He has set them as undershepherds over as a servant. A servant does not demand, but gives example, whether in teaching or holy living. The Lord of all creation deigned to enter into His creation to live as a man to show us that, and earned for us the multifaceted grace to do so, which comes to us through His Spirit; this is more obvious for those who have the stewardship of His flock in local churches, although not less necessary than it is for all in the flock. Our Lord spoke these words to His first disciples, whom He appointed to be apostles, because, in their apostleship, they were to be stewards of the manifold grace of God in Christ Jesus, which is to say, intrinsic in their being used for revelation, they lived according to that revelation already given, by the same inexhaustible grace of God as our Lord (although the apostles and their companions in ministry did not have theSpirit without measureas our Lord alone did). They gave new revelation, but they lived according to both that revelation which came before, as well as that which they delivered, and in all this, they were faithful teachers, preachers, and watchmen of the church of Christ, which is to say, they exercised, among their gifts, the office of being the first elders to the church (we are not saying that elders are apostles of Christ, but that apostles of Christ were the first elders of His New Covenant church, as well as being the source of new revelation which expounded clearly on that which already was theirs).

Many aspire to become elders (for so James intends in his instruction when he mentions teachers), but they often desire it for the office, instead of the service. This is no more than the very “being noticed of men” which our Lord so strongly condemned, and for those who want the office for such reasons, we say, please, step down. If that is the reason for desiring the office, that is the proof that those who so desire it should not have it, for they seek reputation, rather than the glory of God. They do not understand James’ simple admonition, and will reap the reward of all who seek the approval of men, rather than God, for if the true elders receive stricter judgment, what shall we say for those who do their ministry to be held in high esteem of those they should rather be serving?

The apostle Peter simply expounds upon that which He received first from our Lord, in regards to these matters. It is to be noted that he gives these instructions to the elders among you, and he does so in the same manner as our Lord did, by association, as a fellow elder. Peter could have made appeal to the apostolic authority he was given by the Lord; he did not. Rather, he appealed to that station and office which is one of service and example, just as we observed our Lord doing. As one not better than those elders he appealed too, although used of God to give the revelation of the New Covenant, established in Christ, to the church, he simply states and instructs from a position of like servitude, as one who serves the flock of God, even as those He is instructing and writing to also do. This is not done by appealing to his authority as an apostle, and neither are those receiving these instructions to appeal to their authority as undershepherds of the flock of God entrusted to their care, but rather, by being an example of faith and practice in the doctrine of Christ. It is therefore not for shameful gain, as of temporal treasure, whether of reputation or monetary gain; rather, the oversight – the care, protection, and nourishing of the flock they have been charged with and gifted by God – is in accordance with that glory that is to be revealed of which all believers will have their part, and which is now, in a limited sense, communicated to the church through their elders by that gifting and office that they have been given. It is not sought by compelling, or demanding, from their position, but rather a willing example of service that models that trust in God which we first see perfectly in our Lord Jesus Christ, and which elders are to show to those entrusted to their care. It is not domineering, but example of service, that those they care for by God’s grace may also grow in that grace and knowledge of our Lord by their mutual care of and for one another, to His glory, by His grace.

This gives us a foundation, now, to consider how the apostle Paul is doing these very things in his ministry to the Corinthian church, which we will begin to look at in our next installment of this series of articles.

SDG – Bill

Elders Represent the Knowledge of Christ in the Church – Part 1