II Corinthians 11:1-5

Sunday, May 18th, 2014

Text: II Corinthians 11:1-5

THE JEALOUSY OF GOD

INTRODUCTION:

In chapters 10-13 Paul is defending his apostolic authority. In 11:1-15 Paul asserts his apostleship and in 11:16-33 indicates that his sufferings for Christ demonstrate his apostleship.

Paul is hesitant to speak about himself; so, in 11:1 he asks the Corinthian believers to put up with it. In verse 2, Paul indicates that he has a fervent and godly zeal for the Corinthian believers because he has espoused them to Christ); but according to verse 3, Paul fears that Satan may have corrupted their minds from the truth in the person and work of Christ. According to verse 4, Paul fears that they might tolerate it if someone preaches a Jesus who is not the same Jesus he preached, or if they have received a spirit different from the Holy Spirit, or if they have received a gospel different from the one he preached. In verse 5 Paul, speaking sarcastically, supposes that he is not lacking in anything which characterizes the super apostles who have come to Corinth and are undermining his ministry there.

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

In verse 1 Paul expresses his desire that his readers would put up with him in a little foolishness.

Would to God is an expression of a wish that something would take place and is understood as O that or Would that.

Ye could bear with me, where ye is you (plural) and refers to the Corinthian believers and where me refers to Paul, suggests, You could regard me with tolerance. It is understood in the sense of, You could endure me, You could bear with me, or, You could put up with me. Its tense indicates Paul's desire has not been attained.

A little suggests a little bit or for a little while.

In my folly is in (my) foolishness.

Folly suggests a lack of prudence or good judgment, foolishness, or a lack of sense.

And indeed is emphatic and understood as but indeed, but in fact, or but certainly.

Bear with me, where me refers to Paul, is, You are bearing with me, You are regarding me with tolerance, You are enduring me, or, You are putting up with me.

II Corinthians 11:2 For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.

In verse 2 Paul explains that he has a godly jealousy for the Corinthian believers. He has espoused them to Christ that he might someday present them to Christ as a chaste virgin.

For introduces a cause or reason Paul wants the Corinthian believers to bear with him a little in his folly and is understood in the sense of because.

I am jealous over you with godly jealousy suggests it was a pure jealousy. They were God's children, and he wanted God's best for them. He did not want them getting involved in sin.

For may be used to clarify what Paul has said in the sense of you see; or it may be emphatic in the sense of indeed or in fact.

I have espoused you suggests I have joined you. In this context it is understood in the sense of I have betrothed you. It has been translated in a way which emphasizes the result of its action.

To one husband, where the husband in question is Christ. He is the One to Whom Paul has betrothed the Corinthian believers.

That I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ is used to show purpose or intended result. It expresses the reason Paul betrothed the Corinthian believers to Christ.

That is in order that, for the purpose that, or so that.

I may present you suggests a one-time presentation of this local church to Christ which will take place in heaven after the rapture.

As a chaste virgin, where chaste means pure or innocent and where virgin speaks of a young woman of marriageable age with a focus on virginity. In this context it refers to the congregation or church in Corinth. It is not a reference to a universal church.

To Christ indicates the One to Whom Paul desires to someday present the church in Corinth as a pure virgin. This verse indicates that it is the church in Corinth which Paul desires to present as a bride to Christ and not merely the individual believers. What is true of the church in Corinth as the bride of Christ is also true of other local churches throughout the church age. However, there may be some churches, possibly including the church at Corinth, which would not qualify Biblically as a chaste virgin bride of Christ, such as those which fall into doctrinal or practical error. This is why Paul is jealous over the believers in Corinth, earnestly desiring them to do what is right before the Lord, in order that he might be able to present them as a chaste virgin to Christ. It is also why he fears that Satan might corrupt their minds from the simplicity that is in Christ (verse 3).

For indeed I am jealous over you.

Old Testament examples of jealousy

Cain is jealous of Abel and murders him.

Joseph's brothers are jealous of him and sell him as a slave.

Saul is jealous of David and tries to murder him.

New Testament examples of jealousy

The disciples become jealous of the man who casts out devils in the name of the Lord and ask about destroying him.

The Scribes and Pharisees are very jealous of Christ and stirred up the emotions of the crowd to crucify Him.

Is jealousy always wrong? It can't be because God is described as being a jealous God.

Exodus 20:3-5 - 3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me. 4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;

Joshua 24:14-20 - 14 Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD. 15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. 16 And the people answered and said, God forbid that we should forsake the LORD, to serve other gods; 17 For the LORD our God, he it is that brought us up and our fathers out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage, and which did those great signs in our sight, and preserved us in all the way wherein we went, and among all the people through whom we passed: 18 And the LORD drave out from before us all the people, even the Amorites which dwelt in the land: therefore will we also serve the LORD; for he is our God. 19 And Joshua said unto the people, Ye cannot serve the LORD: for he is an holy God; he is a jealous God; he will not forgive your transgressions nor your sins. 20 If ye forsake the LORD, and serve strange gods, then he will turn and do you hurt, and consume you, after that he hath done you good.

Ezekiel 39:25 - Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Now will I bring again the captivity of Jacob, and have mercy upon the whole house of Israel, and will be jealous for my holy name;

God's jealousy is based on the fact that He alone is God.

How can we tell the difference between good jealousy and bad jealousy?

1. Paul is jealous with a godly jealousy, i.e. a jealousy of God.

2. Paul is jealous over or for the Corinthian believers. He is not jealous of the Corinthian believers.

For what is God jealous?

Exodus 20:2-3 - 1 And God spake all these words, saying, 2 I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

He wants no rivals.

He is concerned for the character of His people.

How did God demonstrate His jealousy?

By providing salvation on the cross of Calvary instead of destroying the world

Paul is jealous over the Corinthian believers with a godly jealousy. Why? II Corinthians 11:2 - For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.

He was their spiritual parent.

Hence, he could betroth the church in Corinth to someone. Betrothal of a maiden implies purity and faithfulness; she is committed to the one man to whom she is engaged to be married.

Paul stresses the word one (i.e. one husband). Just as the marriage relationship is exclusive, so believers in Christ owe an exclusive loyalty to Him.

Paul desires to present the Corinthian believers as a chaste virgin to Christ at His return.

II Corinthians 11:3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.

In verse 3 Paul expresses concern that the minds of the Corinthian believers might be ruined from the truth in Christ.

But introduces a statement in slight contrast to his desire expressed in verse 2 to be able to present the Corinthian church as a chaste virgin to Christ. ruined from the truth in Christ.

I fear , is, I am afraid; and its tense describes Paul's concern or apprehension for the Corinthian believers.

Lest by any means suggests that perhaps or lest somehow.

As introduces a statement which is intended to be compared with a second statement introduced by so. As introduces the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, and so introduces your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.

The serpent is the snake and refers to Satan tempting Eve in the Garden of Eden.

Beguiled Eve suggests caused Eve to accept false ideas and is understood in the sense of deceived or cheated, i.e. ruined from the truth in Christ.

Through his subtilty, where subtilty is used with an evil connotation, indicates the means by which Satan deceived Eve. It is by (or by means of) his (evil) cunning, his craftiness, or his trickery. There is absolutely no doubt in Paul's mind that the story of the serpent and Eve in the Garden of Eden is literally true. It happened exactly as reported in Genesis. It is not a myth.

So is understood in the sense of in this manner.

Your minds is understood in the sense of your understandings.

Should be corrupted suggests should be ruined, should be led astray, or possibly, as a virgin bride, should be seduced.

From the simplicity suggests away from the sincere (or single-hearted) devotion.

That is in Christ is the (sincerity) in Christ, the sincere devotion in Christ, the single-hearted devotion in Christ, which suggests the single-hearted devotion in the person and work of Christ.

Who is going to corrupt the Corinthian believers' minds from the simplicity and purity that is in Christ?

Satan - I Peter 5:8 - Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.

What instruments will Satan use?

The "super" apostles - i.e. the false apostles in Corinth

What instruments is Satan using today?

Acts 20:28-30 - 28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. 29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.

False doctrine - cults, perversions of other doctrines

False practices - spiritual gifts, unscriptural music, unscriptural methods, backslidden believers

All of our beliefs and all of our practices must based solidly on the Scriptures as our only authority for faith and practice.

II Corinthians 11:4 For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.

In verses 4 and 5 Paul is speaking sarcastically. In verse 4 Paul expresses concern that the Corinthian believers might tolerate false teaching.

For is explanatory of Paul's concern mentioned in verse 3 and is understood in the sense of because. The structure of verse 4 is that of a conditional statement and indicates that, for sake of discussion, its condition is assumed to be true. The condition is if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus . . . or if ye receive another spirit, . . . or another gospel. . . . The conclusion of the condition is ye might well bear with him. Although the condition is assumed for sake of discussion to be true, it may or may not actually be true. For this reason, if should be understood in the sense of assuming that.

He that cometh is the one who comes or the one coming. He that cometh functions as the subject of preacheth.

Preacheth is preaches, proclaims, is preaching, or is proclaiming. Another Jesus is another Jesus of the same kind; yet, it is not the same Jesus Paul is proclaiming. There is no other Jesus of the same kind; and any other Jesus of the same kind or even of a different kind would not be God the Son Who died on the cross to save all humanity from their sins. Any other Jesus would be a rival to Jesus, the Second Person of the Trinity. Another Jesus has been placed in a position of emphasis in the Greek text, which reads literally, For indeed assuming that the one coming another Jesus preaches.

Whom we have not preached, where whom refers to this different sort of Jesus and we is Paul, is used to describe this other Jesus. Since there is no other Jesus as the Jesus Paul preached (and never has been or ever will be), this Jesus is imaginary, a figment of someone's (such as Satan's) overactive imagination, and hypothetical. The Jesus preached by the cultists is always a different Jesus than is presented in the Bible.

We have not preached is we did not preach or we did not proclaim. Paul emphasizes that there is only one Jesus, the Son of God, Who is the Savior of the world. He is the One Paul preached; and if any other Jesus, whether similar or different, is preached, the preaching is false.

This is why, whenever you examine the beliefs of a cult, they will always be wrong on the 2nd Person of the Trinity. They will always be wrong about Christ.

Or introduces a second part of the condition: if ye receive another spirit. If has been supplied by the translators to indicate that the condition continues.

Ye receive is you are receiving, you are getting, or you are obtaining). Its present tense is descriptive of something which might be happening.

Another spirit speaks of another spirit of a different kind, i.e. a spirit who is not the Holy Spirit. Inasmuch as this is a spirit of a kind different from the Holy Spirit, whom they had received, it appears to be a demonic spirit or demon.

Which ye have not received is, Which you did not receive, Which you did not obtain, or, Which you did not get. It has been translated in a way which emphasizes the result of its action.

Or continues the condition.

If ye receive . . . another gospel, where another is if you receive another gospel of a different kind (or of a different sort).

Gospel is good news. The gospel is specifically defined in I Corinthians 15:3-4 - (3) For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;

(4) And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures (emphasis added).

This gospel, which Paul refers to as another gospel, will not save anyone. Any change in the gospel will render it a non-gospel. Paul addressed this in Galatians 1:6-9 - (6) I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel (i.e. another gospel of a different kind): (7) Which is not another (i.e. another gospel of the same kind); but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. (8) But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. (9) As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed (emphasis and comments added).

Which ye have not accepted is which you did not accept, which you did not receive, or which you did not take.

Well is all right but spoken in irony, which means that it is something they should absolutely never do.

Ye might well bear with him, where ye is you (plural) and refers to the Corinthian believers and where him refers to someone who would come and preach another Jesus, is, You might tolerate (or be tolerating) him all right, You might put up (or be putting up) with him all right, or, You might endure (or be enduring) him all right. Its tense suggests that they might have a tendency to do this. This is answering what Paul's fear is as mentioned in verse 3, that the believers might well tolerate these false teachers.

Proverbs 19:27 - Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth to err from the words of knowledge.

Psalms 1:1 - Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.

II Corinthians 11:5 For I suppose I was not a whit behind the very chiefest apostles.

In verse 5 Paul facetiously states that he was not inferior to the false apostles in Corinth.

For introduces a clarification of what Paul is saying and is understood in the sense of now or you see.

I suppose suggests holding a view about something in the sense of I think, I believe, or I am of the opinion.

I was not a whit behind suggests, I was not lower in status than, I was not less than, or, I was not inferior to.

The very chiefest apostles refers to some who had come to Corinth after Paul left and had sought to build up their own reputation by destroying his. They were really not apostles at all.

He describes them as the very chiefest apostles, which suggests that they thought very highly of themselves, and Paul is referring to them sarcastically. Some have suggested that the very chiefest apostles refers to the twelve apostles, but this does not fit the context as well as regarding them as false apostles.

CONCLUSION:

As your pastor, I am jealous for you folks in this church. I desire that godliness be a chief characteristic of your lives. Hence, I teach you, I pray for you, I chide you, I step on your toes, I encourage you, I push you, and sometimes I even drive you. But I do it because I love you in the Lord and am jealous for your spiritual well-being. Other godly pastors can say the same thing about their congregations.