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Passage: 2 Corinthians 1:12-22

2 Corinthians 1:12-22 – God Is Faithful

Summary

Paul uses questions about his own faithfulness to his word with the Corinthians as a springboard to proclaim the faithfulness of God and the fulfillment of all of God's promises in Christ.

Analysis

Paul's sincerity about a plan to visit the Corinthians has been questioned. Did he really mean to come to visit them or was he merely feigning interest in them? Can his word be trusted? Paul addresses this concern in two ways. First, he says his conscience is clear. He knows that he, Silvanus, and Timothy have spoken and acted faithfully. Secondly, he says that he is sure the apostles still have the understanding and respect of the Corinthians, and he assures the Corinthians that they are themselves a cause for him to feel pride.

The rest of the chapter makes it clear that Paul's second point-about the Corinthians finding in Paul a cause to boast-may be more hope than certainty. The fact that Paul had canceled a trip to see them has provided evidence for those who are arguing that Paul has been speaking out of both sides of his mouth, as it were, saying "yes" and "no" at the same time. Paul denies this adamantly, perhaps because he fears that the trustworthiness of his message of the gospel is at stake. If the Corinthians have reason to doubt that Paul is honest as he speaks of a visit to them, will they not also doubt God's faithfulness as Paul has described it to them? In the face of such a question, Paul proclaims, "For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, whom we proclaimed among you, Silvanus and Timothy and I, was not 'Yes and No'; but in him it is always 'Yes.' For in him every one of God's promises is a 'Yes.'" (2 Corinthians 1:19-20a).