A Cruciform Life – Part 1

2 Corinthians 2:14-16

Captives of Christ

I. RELATIONSHIP Status: It’s COMPLICATED (I Cor. 1:10-4:21; II Cor. 1:12-2:13, ch. 10-12)
A. Paul vs. The SUPER APOSTLES (II Cor. 10-12)
B. Paul’s INFATUATION with WEAKNESS (I Cor. 1:18-2:5, 13:4-8a; II Cor. 1:8-11, 12:7-10)

II. An UNFLATTERING Image (II Cor. 2:14-16)
A. Everyone LOVES a PARADE (v.14)
B. …well, ALMOST EVERYONE. (v.14-16)
C. An EVOCATIVE AROMA (v. 15-16, Eph. 5:1-2)

III. The Keys to Being CONQUERED
A. Step 1: ACKNOWLEDGE Said CONQUERING (2:14; Romans 10:9-10)
B. Step 2: Be SMELLY (v. 15-16; Eph. 5:1-2, I Thess. 1:4-6)
C. Step 3: Recognize INADEQUACY (2:16b, 3:4-6, 12:9-10; I Cor. 15:9-11, Rom. 8:37)
D. Step 4: THANK GOD all the MORE (II Cor. 2:14, 8:16, 9:15; Rom. 6:17; I Cor. 15:57; Psalm 8)

Questions for further reflection:

1. Kid’s Question: Have you ever felt like someone doesn’t like you? What have you done to try to “win them over”? Do you get along now?
2. Are there any modern day examples of the “Super Apostles”? How can we spot them?
3. What would the world call a “weakness” in your life? How might Paul view that weakness?
4. How do you feel about Paul linking the victory of Christ with the pomp and power ofRome? How are they similar? What is different about them?
5. How do you feel about Paul locating himself within that victor’s parade? Would you say you have been “taken captive” by God?
6. Is there a time when you have been an aroma of Christ leading someone to experiencemore abundant life? Perhaps someone has been that for you?
7. Is there a time when you have been an aroma of Christ leading someone to experience theweight of sin and death? How did you feel in that moment?
8. What does it mean for you to say that Jesus is Lord? How do you live that out?
9. Do you have a hard time or an easy time acknowledging your inadequacy? Why do you think that is?
10. Take some time to thank God for rescuing you and for using you despite yourself.