Purkey’s

B i b l e   S t u d y

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Rev. Ronald C. Purkey, a Baptist minister, claims no originality for this Bible study outline.

However, every Bible study posted on this website has been taught by Rev. Purkey.

To see more Bible study outlines go to: More Bible Study Outlines.

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ADDRESSING TENSIONS

August 24, 2014

 

SCRIPTURE: 2 Corinthians 6:1-13; 7:2-4

 

KEY VERSE: Receive us; we have wronged no man, we have corrupted no man, we have defrauded no man. (2 Corinthians 7:2)

 

INTRODUCTION: We find set before us here the requirements of a good servant of Jesus Christ. None of us can read this without saying again, “Who is sufficient for these things?” None of us could meet these high standards. But I want you to notice that we are still in the section (of Paul’s letter) of God’s comfort. Here we see God’s comfort in all circumstances of the ministry of Christ.

 

I. THE DAY OF SALVATION. (2 Corinthians 6:1-2)

 

A. The right worker.

 

(2 Corinthians 6:1) We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain.

 

Note: You will notice in your Bible that “with him” is in italics, which means that these two words have been supplied by the translators. It should be “We then, as workers together.”

 

There is a line that needs to be rubbed out, and that is the line between the clergy and laity. There are certain ones who have been given the gift of teaching… There are those who are gifted to teach, those who are gifted to be pastors, and those who are gifted to be missionaries. We would term them the clergy.

 

But God gives a gift to each member of the body of Christ. There ought NOT to be the distinction between the pulpit and the pew that we make today. We are all workers together… You may be a bank president or the president of a large corporation, a truck driver, a housewife, but you are responsible today to get out the Word of God.

 

B. The right time.

 

(2 Corinthians 6:2) (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)

 

“Have I succoured thee” means I have helped you. A great many people say, “Well, I won’t accept Christ now. I will do it some other time.” They postpone it.

 

Some people want to wait until a certain evangelist comes to town or until they can attend a great meeting. Now I don’t know who you are or where you are right now, but if you are not saved, “now is the accepted time.”

 

Look at your clock. Whatever time it is right now is the time for you. Somebody will ask, “Can’t I accept Him tomorrow?” Probably, but you have no promise of a tomorrow. The important thing is that God says the time is right now.

 

A Man Under Conviction Of Sin

By B.H. Carroll

 

Mr. Spurgeon, in talking to his preacher-students, tells of an incident that he witnessed. He was visiting an Episcopalian preacher, and a man under conviction of sin came to see his pastor. He told Mr. Spurgeon to stay and hear what the man had to say. The sinner stated his case. The preacher said, "You go home and read a certain book on the 'Evidences of Christianity' and read certain passages, and pray to the Lord, and in a week come back to see me."

 

Mr. Spurgeon leaped to his feet and said, "My dear sir, don't dismiss that man that way. You have no right to do it. He comes to you as an anxious sinner, for you to tell him what to do, and you have marked out a line of conduct that may take him beyond his life time. If you will permit me, I will tell him what to do. Let him now accept Christ; let us pray now that he may at once accept Christ."

 

The Episcopalian said, "If you want to do it, do so." Mr. Spurgeon said to the man, "Will you right now look to the Lord Jesus Christ while we pray," and he knelt down to pray and the man arose happily converted. – Illustration from B.H. Carroll’s An Interpretation of the English Bible

 

II. PAUL’S HARDSHIPS. (2 Corinthians 6:3-10)

 

Note: The Apostle Paul has been defending his life and ministry in the first five chapters. His enemies at Corinth had accused him of wrong motives and methods, and he successfully answered them. Paul’s final statement in chapter 5 deals with his ministry of reconciliation, so it is just one step forward for him to appeal to the Corinthian Christians to be reconciled to him and to receive God’s grace.

 

Paul not only “beseeches” the sinners in 2 Corinthians 5:20, but he “beseeches” the saints in 2 Corinthians 6:1, too. It is tragic when Christians and churches receive God’s grace in vain. The Christians in Corinth were babes in Christ, immature saints, because they failed to grow in knowledge and grace. The Corinthians had the greatest pastor available – the Apostle Paul -- and yet they failed to benefit from his ministry!

 

The apostle had been watchful to do nothing that would in any way discredit the ministry or would make others stumble. In 2 Corinthians 6:3-10, the apostle gives several arguments to prove that his ministry was blameless.

 

A. The battles Paul waged.

 

(2 Corinthians 6:3-5) Giving no offence in any thing, that the ministry be not blamed: But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings;

 

“Patience” here means “endurance.” It is not a picture of the Christian in a rocking chair, doing nothing, but rather of the soldier in battle, pressing on to victory in spite of opposition. The battles the Apostle Paul fought in obedience to Jesus Christ were proof of his sincere, unselfish ministry.

 

This distress came, not because he was disobedient and needed chastening, but because Paul was obedient and a threat to Satan. (1) Stripes refer to the beatings he endured; (2) tumults, the mobs he faced; (3) “labors” reminds us of Paul’s toil day and night to support himself and his companions; (4)watchings describes his sleepless nights of prayer and ministry of the Word; (5) fastings indicates that he often went without food. No counterfeit minister would have endured so much!

 

B. The weapons Paul used.

 

(2 Corinthians 6:6-7) By pureness, by knowledge, by long suffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned, By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left,

 

The apostle’s conduct and character were always Christ-like. Paul had clean hands and a clean conscience, and his love for the saints was honest, not “put on.” Paul used (1) the Word of God and (2) prayer as weapons to defeat Satan. Dishonest ministers would have used carnal methods to promote their work.

 

C. The reputation Paul gained.

 

(2 Corinthians 6:8-10) By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true; As unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.

 

We have here a series of paradoxes, or seemingly contradictory statements. Certainly the Christian servant is looked upon differently by the sinners and the saints. The sinners see him in one light, the saints in another, just as men look at Jesus Christ with differing opinions. What a thrilling description is verse 10 of the Christian who is sold out to Christ!

 

As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.” (2 Corinthians 6:10)

 

The apostle closed this appeal by reminding them of his love. His heart was wide open with love, but their hearts had been narrowed (“impoverished”). He appealed to them as his children to receive him.

 

III. OPEN YOUR HEARTS. (2 Corinthians 6:11-13; 7:2-4)

 

A. Be holy.

 

(2 Corinthians 6:11-13) O ye Corinthians, our mouth is open unto you, our heart is enlarged. Ye are not straitened in us, but ye are straitened in your own bowels. Now for a recompence in the same, (I speak as unto my children,) be ye also enlarged.

 

The problems in the Corinthian church were spiritual: the members were living like worldly people and not like Christians. There was compromise with sin.

 

Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?” (2 Corinthians 6:14)

 

The Apostle Paul then went on to say: And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corinthians 6:15-18)

 

It’s a basic principle of life that opposites cannot fellowship together. The “unequal yoke” takes us back to Moses’ admonition in Leviticus 19:19. The Corinthian Christians were yoking themselves with unbelievers in marriage, business life, and other ways, and were losing their testimonies for Christ. After all, if Christians live like the world, how can they witness to the world?

 

B. Be receptive.

 

1. Paul said, “Receive us.”

 

(2 Corinthians 7:2) Receive us; we have wronged no man, we have corrupted no man, we have defrauded no man.

 

Note: “Receive us” literally means “Make room for us in your hearts” (notice 2 Corinthians 6:11-12). Paul again reminds them of his clean life and honest ministry; he hastens to assure them that his writing in this way was not to condemn them.

 

The apostle assures the Corinthians that he has corrupted no man. He has defrauded no man. He didn’t come to them to take up offerings for all sorts of projects. I wish a great many Christians could say the same thing.

 

I feel that sometimes things are not done correctly by the deacon boards in our churches. I think that if a person makes a donation for a specific purpose, it is the duty of the deacon board to make sure the money is used for that specific purpose. They do not have the liberty to say, “Oh, we’ll just put this in the general fund,” or, “We think it would be more important to use this to retire our debt on a building.”

 

The Apostle Paul could assure them that he had wronged no man, corrupted no man, and defrauded no man. Paul was a man who practiced what he preached!

 

2. Paul said, “Accept correction.”

 

(2 Corinthians 7:3) I speak not this to condemn you: for I have said before, that ye are in our hearts to die and live with you.

 

The Apostle Paul loved these Christians. They were constantly on his heart.

 

3. Paul said, “Experience Rejoicing.”

 

(2 Corinthians 7:4) Great is my boldness of speech toward you, great is my glorying of you: I am filled with comfort, I am exceeding joyful in all our tribulation.

 

Now the Apostle Paul tells them that he is comforted and is filled with joy. He goes on to give the reason for this rejoicing as the chapter continues.

 

The Teacher's Legacy

By Henry G. Bosch

 

Pastor Paul Walker shared this story of his salvation experience: “During my lifetime I was instructed by many different Sunday school teachers, but only one stands out in my memory. He was a big, red-faced ex-Marine, who probably broke every rule and technique of good teaching. The thing I remember best about him is how much he loved us. . . .

 

“At the end of each session he would say, ‘Boys, let’s take time to kneel and talk to the Lord.’ Then he would try to put his big arms around all nine of us as we huddled together, and he would pray for each of us by name. Are you surprised that seven of those boys are now in the ministry, and that I am one of them?”

 

If you have a Sunday school class, small group, or some other teaching responsibility, do you take a warm, personal interest in your students? The apostle Paul said he commended himself as a minister of God “by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love” (2 Corinthians 6:6).

 

The exact methods employed by the one who taught Paul Walker do not need to be duplicated, but the earnest attention he gave and the spiritual concern he showed toward each pupil is a beautiful example of the importance of teaching by love.

 

A Sunday school teacher, I don't know his name,
Was a wonderful person who never found fame;
Yet he shaped my whole life far more than he knew,
For his loving example has helped me be true.
— Anonymous

 

 -- By Henry G. Bosch, Our Daily Bread, April 27, 2005

 

CONCLUSION:

 

A. Often those in the church who cause problems are people who have never truly been born again.

 

They may think they are saved, but they are not. Now is the time to accept God’s grace. Tomorrow may be too late.

 

B. It is easy to forget the sacrifices others have made so we can know the Lord.

 

Paul never spoke about his sufferings unless his words helped to protect the ministry. Do you take your church fellowship for granted? Have you thanked those who came before you and made it possible?

 

C. The same people who give you joy can also cause you sorrow.

 

When Titus reported that the church had disciplined an offender in the church, the Apostle Paul was overjoyed. Have you ever been an answer to somebody’s prayers as Titus was?

 

THOUGHT TO REMEMBER: “Don’t hesitate to correct someone you love just because it’s unpleasant for you -- or for him/her.”

 

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REFERENCES: References used in the Bible study are the King James Bible (KJV), the Scofield Study Bible, the Believer’s Bible Commentary, Charles J. Woodbridge Bible Outlines, Lee Roberson’s Sermons, Don Robinson’s Bible Outlines, Women’s Study Bible, The Bible Reader’s Companion Ed. 3, The Nelson Study Bible: New King James Version, KJV Bible Commentary, Dr. J. Vernon McGee © Thru the Bible Radio Network ( www.ttb.org ), Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines of the New Testament ed. 4, Cliff Robinson’s Bible Outlines, Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines of the Old Testament, With the Word Bible Commentary, Wiersbe’s “Be” Series: Old & New Testaments, selected illustrations, and other references.

 

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