because of his great care for the corinthians, he continues to list his defense to how he is a true apostle speaking and living only the truth of the gospel. he would have been a descendant of abraham through the line of judean jews which should have highly qualified him to those around him.

as he continues, he discredits what the corinthians would have thought of the title of ministers or servants of Christ to be and describes what it should mean. servant or minister (diakonos in greek) more closely refers to a servant of the king or someone who executes the command or will of a master. paul doesn’t mean to say that he is greater in status but quite the opposite of what the other false apostles would have claimed as a greater position among others. on the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. 1 corinthians 15:10

the jews would have followed the mosaic law from the old testament in which, “forty stripes may be given him, but not more, lest, if one should go on to beat him with more stripes than these, your brother be degraded in your sight.” deuteronomy 25:3

paul was beaten. paul faced near death. paul experienced many hardships. he chose a riskier path because he would rather any path with God than the easiest of one that is apart from Him. he chose a path of obedience because he believed so deeply in the truth of the gospel that he shared.

many of us can relate to paul in experiencing physical trauma, the pain of betrayal or rejection or whirling circumstances out of our control.

that much more-so, we have a Savior who lived a life in the flesh we have a Savior with a divine empathy for us because He too was at times abused, ridiculed, tempted, alone, grief-stricken, abandoned and rejected. “for we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.” hebrews 4:15

what have you been withholding from laying at the foot of the cross because of the lie that God cannot relate to what you’re going through?

-natalie schmidt