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The simplicity of Christ

“Have I committed an offence in abasing myself that ye might be exalted, because I have preached to you the gospel of God freely?” 2 Corinthians 11:7

I love the simplicity of Christ, and the autonomy of following him, it’s free from eternal influences. I like what Paul said in 1 Corinthians 3:18-23;

[18] Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. [19] For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness. [20] And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. [21] Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours; [22] Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; [23] And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s.

This chapter undertakes just that, christianity is simple – you don’t have to die hard. This reminds me of  the conversation Jesus had with the people concerning John the Baptist, in Luke 7:22-34.

[22] Then Jesus answering said unto them, Go your way, and tell John what things ye have seen and heard; how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached. [23] And blessed is he , whosoever shall not be offended in me. [24] And when the messengers of John were departed, he began to speak unto the people concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness for to see? A reed shaken with the wind? [25] But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? Behold, they which are gorgeously apparelled, and live delicately, are in kings’ courts. [26] But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? Yea, I say unto you, and much more than a prophet. [27] This is he , of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee. [28] For I say unto you, Among those that are born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist: but he that is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he. [29] And all the people that heard him , and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John. [30] But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him. [31] And the Lord said, Whereunto then shall I liken the men of this generation? and to what are they like? [32] They are like unto children sitting in the marketplace, and calling one to another, and saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have mourned to you, and ye have not wept. [33] For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine; and ye say, He hath a devil. [34] The Son of man is come eating and drinking; and ye say, Behold a gluttonous man, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners!

Go tell John of the simplicity of Christ;

  • blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me. Because he has abased himself it doesn’t mean he isn’t Christ.

Of what Christ did so much was going on unnoticed by the clergy, which when taken account of, one is deemed to say, “I suppose I was not a whit behind the very chiefest apostles,” (2 Corinthians 11:5).

Didn’t they see, “…how that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached…“? I bet they did but somehow through deception they were soon moved from the simplicity that is in Christ to a different gospel. We see that in churches these days – it’s about virtue and power that people are after.

Haggai 2:3 says, “Who is left among you that saw this house in her first glory? and how do ye see it now? is it not in your eyes in comparison of it as nothing?

Preaching another gospel, “…have indeed a shew of wisdom in will worship, and humility, and neglecting of the body; not in any honour to the satisfying of the flesh.” Colossians 2:23

2 Corinthians 11:13-15 says,

[13] For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. [14] And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. [15] Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

These false apostles or deceitful workers came preaching another gospel and people’s minds were suddenly corrupted, into look for wisdom, miracles, signs and wonders. What Paul was preaching to them now was old school.

Paul then asked, “Did I do wrong and cheapen myself and make you look down on me because I preached God’s Good News to you without charging you anything?” He is pleading, “Receive us; we have wronged no man, we have corrupted no man, we have defrauded no man.” 2 Corinthians 7:2

I preached the gospel of God to you free of charge, but false prophets don’t they charge you? When I was present with you, and in need, I was a burden to no one, they deceitful workers, do they not burden you?

“...in everything I kept myself from being burdensome to you, and so I will keep myself.” 2 Corinthians 7:9

2 Corinthians 11:12-15 says,

[12] But what I do, I will also continue to do, that I may cut off the opportunity from those who desire an opportunity to be regarded just as we are in the things of which they boast. [13] For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. [14] And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. [15] Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.

Receive us even though we have wronged no man, we have corrupted no man, we have defrauded no man.

Would to God ye could bear with me a little in my folly: and indeed bear with me.” 2 Corinthians 11:1

He is saying I am behaving like this because, “I am jealous over you with godly jealousy..” (2 Corinthians 11:2). Jealous that you should not be beguiled like Eve through Satan’s subtlety. He is frightened, fearing that in some way you will be led away from your pure and simple devotion to our Lord.

Romans 16:17-20 says

[17] Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. [18] For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple. [19] For your obedience is come abroad unto all men . I am glad therefore on your behalf: but yet I would have you wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil. [20] And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.

In Mark 4:30-31 Jesus said, “Whereunto shall we liken the kingdom of God? or with what comparison shall we compare it? [31] It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when it is sown in the earth, is less than all the seeds that be in the earth: But when it is sown, it groweth up, and becometh greater than all herbs, and shooteth out great branches; so that the fowls of the air may lodge under the shadow of it.”

“This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.” Acts 4:11

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Bible verse of the day

He that is slow to anger is better than the mighty; and he that ruleth his spirit than he that taketh a city.

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