I am deeply impressed with Paul’s integrity. There are so many areas of his ministry that were attacked by others, but he was unflinching in maintaining a God-honoring standard in personal life, relationships and ministry. He insisted that “truth” govern everything he did so that “by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God” (2 Corinthians 4:2).
“Truth” proclaimed in the power of the Holy Spirit, by nature brings conviction, repentance, transformation and life. It does not need the ways of man to validate itself. Why? Because God is the Author! (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21; See also Isaiah 40:14).
This means for Paul and all who are called to proclaim the gospel, plant, establish and equip churches, we “as men of sincerity, as commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ” (2 Corinthians 2:17). We must adhere to Christ’s authority over us and never lower the standard to accomplish a goal! Human means to an end will never rise to the divine plan or purpose. If any tradition, method or program cannot stand the test of biblical truth, it must be quickly abandoned lest it leads people into a false sense of spirituality, but neglects a personal relationship with God guided by the Spirit. God’s end result will always justify the means He has taken to achieve it.
What standard are you using in life and ministry? If you are sincere as Paul was, the truth you proclaim and live by will appeal to every conscience that has been sovereignly prepared by God.
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