“Gladly Spent For Your Souls” ( 2 Corinthians 12: 15, ESV ) by Carley Evans

To the church at Corinth, Paul rhetorically asks, “Have you been thinking all along that we have been defending ourselves to you? It is in the sight of God that we have been speaking in Christ, and all for your upbuilding, beloved.” Paul reminds the church body that he is “content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities.” (2 Corinthians 12:10) He is content in these and “boasts all the more gladly” of them, for “when [he] is weak, then [he is] strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9,10) Paul boasts of his weaknesses because Christ’s “grace is sufficient for [him], for [Christ’s] power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)

Paul tells the Corinthian church, “I will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls.” (2 Corinthians 12:15) He fears “God may humble [him] before [them]” as he “may have to mourn over many of those who sinned earlier” without repentance. (2 Corinthians 12:21) He knows what he will tell them when he comes in person. He “warns them now while absent, as [he] did when present on [his] second visit.” He tells them that the third time he “will not spare them.” (2 Corinthians 13:2) He can not spare them for “Christ is speaking in [him].” (2 Corinthians 13:3) Paul writes, “[Christ] is not weak in dealing with you, but is powerful among you. For He was crucified in weakness, but lives by the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, but in dealing with you we will live with Him by the power of God.” (2 Corinthians 13:3-4)

“Live with Him by the power of God,” Paul tells the church body. “Boast in your weaknesses for Christ’s grace is sufficient for you, and is made perfect in weakness.” Yet Paul warns, “Repent, for Christ is not weak in dealing with you.” And, Paul encourages them. He writes, “I will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls.”

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. mtsweat says:

    Wow! What a blessing! These words, “spend and be spent” kept coming to mind all day yesterday, and for the life of me, I couldn’t remember where I’d heard them. We were so wrapped up with family and friends, I didn’t make my way to my office to search it, and when I did… (moment of confession), I forgot the verse was on my mind. Thanks for putting it so wonderfully into context. Wouldn’t you agree, these are the words every believer should strive to live by, to spend and be spent for Jesus and the furthering of His Gospel?
    God Bless

  2. lambskinny says:

    Yes, mtsweat — I do agree. And you are so welcome! I really appreciate your comments; it’s encouraging. God bless you and your family. Carley

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