“And you show that you are letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.” (ESV – Read the chapter)
The Corinthians were a letter from Christ, delivered by Paul? Huh?
Think about it like this. What might a letter from Jesus have to say? From the witness of the Gospels we can say a few things. It would say, “I love you.” It would say, “I am for you. I want you to live fully the life God designed you to live and I’m going to help you every step of your journey to do that. I gave my life for you so that you can be a part of My Father’s family. I want you to leave behind the sin that drags you down and steals life from you. The abundant life of the kingdom can be yours if only you will trust me.”
As Christians, as “little Christs,” as the word literally means, this should be the message of our lives to the people around us. Because of our presence and activity in our world, people should get this message. Jesus said the world will recognize us as His followers when we love one another. Our love reveals the nature and extent of His own love. The more and better we can do this, the more and better we will point people in the direction of God’s kingdom.
But, that’s not Paul’s point. He said that they were this letter from Jesus to the city of Corinth, yes, but who delivered it? Paul and his ministry companions. In other words, it was Paul who brought the letter for the broader Corinthian culture to read. But how? By His mentoring and training and equipping the believers in the direction of Jesus. By planting the church in the first place and training them up in the way of Jesus. By showing them the life that is truly life that Jesus proclaimed and helping hold them accountable for living it.
The challenge here for us is this: Through whom are we delivering a letter like this and to where? Do you have a person whose life is a love letter from Jesus that you are intentionally delivering to a people who need to hear it? Is there anyone you are raising up in the faith to be more fully equipped to accomplish the work God has for them than they were before? Who are you mentoring to be more like Jesus? Who are you shaping to be a disciple of Jesus? This is the call that all of us are expected to answer. We are to be making disciples as followers of Jesus. Who are yours?