“As we work together with him, we urge you also not to accept the grace of God in vain. For he says,
“At an acceptable time I have listened to you,
and on a day of salvation I have helped you.”
See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation! We are putting no obstacle in anyone’s way, so that no fault may be found with our ministry, but as servants of God we have commended ourselves in every way: through great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger; by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, holiness of spirit, genuine love, truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left; in honor and dishonor, in ill repute and good repute. We are treated as impostors, and yet are true; as unknown, and yet are well known; as dying, and see—we are alive; as punished, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing everything. (II Corinthians 6:1-10)
I have many times been critical of the writer of II Corinthians (and towards the writer of many of the other Epistles in the bible). I have never doubted that writer’s sincerity, nor his conviction and concern for those he ministered to and wrote to. It is most likely that if he lived in our contemporary time much of what I am critical of, he would not have said/done simply because he would have known it was not appropriate.
But what he wrote then (in this passage) is just as true this day – NOW is the correct time to renew and recommitment ourselves. Every day is the day of salvation and a most excellent day to listen to the message of salvation and claim (or re-claim) it for our own.
And it is my hope too that I have not put any obstacle in anyone’s way. I actually find his statement touching, and if it was written in all sincerity, I forgive him for all the times he has peeved me.
I believe him, and moreover say with him . . .
“We have spoken frankly to you Corinthians [and I to you, beloved reader]; our heart is wide open to you. There is no restriction in our affections, but only in yours [if indeed there is]. In return—I speak as to children [I to you as ones who are beloved] —open wide your hearts also.” (II Corinthians 6:11-13)