A Fresh Start


Having God's promises provides powerful motivation for believers to separate from unbelievers. Paul's use of the word therefore is a call for action based on what he has previously written (cf. Rom. 12:1–2; 2 Peter 1:3–8). The apostle moves beyond the commands of 2 Corinthians 6:14, 17 and appeals to God's promises enumerated in 6:16–18. Those promises should elicit love, gratitude, and thankfulness for His overwhelming generosity. In fact, one of the things that characterizes unrepentant sinners is ingratitude (Luke 6:35; Rom. 1:21; 2 Tim. 3:2)

The endearing term beloved (cf. 2 Cor. 12:19; Rom. 1:7; 12:19) defines who God's promises apply to. Only His beloved children, accepted by Him because of their union with His beloved Son (Eph. 1:6; Col. 1:13), receive God's promises.

Paul defined the appropriate act of gratitude in both negative and positive terms. Negatively, believers must cleanse themselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit (cf. Isa. 1:16; James 1:21). The reflexive pronoun heatous (ourselves) indicates that though the cleansing work is God's (cf. Acts 15:9; Eph. 5:26; Titus 3:5), it does not happen apart from believers' effort (cf. Phil. 2:12–13). Molusmos (defilement) appears only here in the New Testament. In all three of its uses in the Septuagint, however, it refers to religious defilement. Paul calls believers not only to cleanse themselves from sin and immorality but especially, in this context, from all associations with false religion. That complete cleansing is to be both of flesh and spirit...

Sermon ID 13121422513
Duration 01:59
Date Dec 31, 2011
Category Question & Answer
Bible Text 2 Corinthians 7
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