and with them we are sending our brother whom we have often tested and found earnest in many matters, but who is now more earnest than ever because of his great confidence in you. [2 co 8:21]
dokimazō means to test, to prove true, to examine, scrutinize, as in metallurgy: heat is applied to the metal in order to prove that it is what the seller says it is, but also to refine it so that it might be worked by a craftsman. the tested brother in 2 corinthians 8:22 is unnamed. he will never have fame before men, he is not recognized by paul, but he does have one qualification: he is mature in his walk with Christ Jesus. Christ is genuinely evidenced in the way he lives his life, and his love, confidence and authenticity has only grown due to the obedience and revival found among the corinthians.
even as i type this on this rainy afternoon, i ask myself the questions–do i care about position? do i care about platform? if tested, would i prove earnest, genuine, passionate about the truth of the gospel? do i have a heart for the readers of this daily devotional–earnestly seeking that they would pursue the presence of our most Holy God, or do i simply care about not looking stupid, uninformed in the word, scattered?
and so i go to my Father in heaven and as the psalmist cry:
search me, o God, and know my heart!
try me and know my thoughts!
and see if there be any grievous way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting!
knowing that even david–a man after God’s own heart–struggled with the same impulses that i do, prayed a prayer and asked the Lord to test him. when we are tested we will all be found wanting unless we are found in Christ–
examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. test yourselves. or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test [2 Corinthians 13:5]
what an incredible mystery! what an incredible truth–we pass and fail our testing strictly by one measure–is Christ found in us? are we in him? is he our all? have we pursued his presence with passion?
i want to be found in you! i want to withstand the testing, not on my merit or my accomplishments, but because of the blood of your precious son. test me. melt away the dross from my heart, so that all that is left is a pure love for your holiness, a burning hatred for sin, a pure love for Jesus, and an abiding and full joy in your presence.
~ conor eastman