WHEREFORE AND THEREFORE

2 Corinthians 5:11–16 (KJV)

Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.

For we commend not ourselves again unto you, but give you occasion to glory on our behalf, that ye may have somewhat to answer them which glory in appearance, and not in heart.

For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause.

For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:

And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.

Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.

I am not really sure I would call this an outline for 2 Corinthians 5, but I have found something in the chapter that seems to naturally divide it into three segments.

A wherefore in verse 9

A therefore in verse 11

A wherefore in verse 16

A therefore in verse 17

I’m ending the first two sections with the word “wherefore” and then beginning the last two sections with the word “therefore.”

The two words are obviously closely related. It seems to me that in the context of the chapter they are used like this

Wherefore, “we do this because”

Therefore, “and the result is this”

We are in the second section where I want to make these observations

*I. WHY LABOUR?

2 Corinthians 5:11–12 (KJV)

Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences.

For we commend not ourselves again unto you, but give you occasion to glory on our behalf, that ye may have somewhat to answer them which glory in appearance, and not in heart.

I’ve been thinking about 2 Corinthians 5:9 (KJV)

Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him.

Ever since last Sunday.

I think it may be one of the most important Christian principles we can get hold of.

“We labour; we strive, our ambition, our goal

Whether present or absent

Whether in living in dying

Whether in suffering or ease

Whether in persecution of popularity

Whether in victory or in defeat

We may be accepted of him, our actions, thoughts, testimony would be such as glorifies and pleases Him.”

Remember what’s going on in 2 Corinthians. Paul wants to give a fair show why his “brand” of Christianity,

Which is not wealthy

Which is not popular

Which is not even healthy (he suffered much in the flesh)

in comparison to that of his accusers and those false apostles who had made their way to Corinth, is still right Christianity.

He wanted to give these believers an answer for the accusers:

Their Christianity was all about appearances

His Christianity was all about the heart

Their Christianity was meant to give rewards on earth

His Christianity was meant to lay up treasures in heaven

Their Christianity was nothing more than a reformation of the old nature

His Christianity made him a new creature

Their Christianity accused anyone who was different

His Christianity was confident in eternity

Not much has changed. The largest numbers of people still follow after a kind of Christianity that glories in appearance and not in the heart.

Notice secondly

*II. WHY SUCH PASSION?

2 Corinthians 5:13–15 (KJV)

For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause.

For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:

And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.

Barnes Notes says of this passage, “… It has not been uncommon, by any means, for the cold and the prudent; for formal professors and for hypocrites to regard the warm-hearted and zealous friends of religion as maniacs….”

Paul confessed that he was sometimes “beside himself.” He was not in control, but the Lord was in control.

A. We find in Acts 13:9 the Bible says he was “filled with the Holy Ghost.

B. Those filled this way in Acts 2 were accused of being drunk.

C. Festus accused Paul of being “beside himself” stating that “much learning doth make thee mad”.

There is a kind of “beside ourselves” I want to be, where what matters to me the most is that Christ be glorified.

Where

· Saying what He wants me to say,

· Going where He wants me to go,

· Doing what He wants me to do

becomes more important to me than what people think of me.

On the other hand, Paul also said he was “sober”, in control of his thoughts and passions for the good of those he ministered to.

· Passion

· Zeal

· Fire

that is controlled to the glory of God will be the most useful in reaching the world for Jesus Christ.

Notice finally

*III. WHY SUCH IMPARTIALITY?

2 Corinthians 5:16 KJV

Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.

Concerning this verse, Barnes’ Notes gives us this thought,

“In view of the fact that the Lord Jesus died for all people and rose again. The effect of that has been to change all our feelings, and to give us entirely new views:

· of people,

· of ourselves, and

· of the Messiah…”

Paul had determined to see every human being, not for who they were physically, but who a God intended them to be spiritually.

This sort of view would:

Eliminate issues of prejudice and intimidation on account of office

Squelch the bitterness of grudgery and

Inoculate against inward hatred of those who had in some way harmed us

It is a position no Christian can hold perfectly because, though we have been born of the Spirit, yet we still live in a body of the flesh.

Paul’s lesson does, nevertheless, equip us with a tool to strengthen the foundations of our heart in regard to others.

It is impossible but that offenses will come, but it is possible to not be offended by them

It is impossible but that there will be inequality of wealth and privilege in this world, but it is possible not to be envious of others

It is impossible but that we will experience enmity from others, but it is possible that we hold no ought against them

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Marvin McKenzie

Marvin McKenzie

219 Followers

Pastor, self published Amazon Author, avid student of the Bible. teacher of the Word of God in college level . Daily visit with God www.marvinmckenzie.org