2 Corinthians 5:11–15 (ESV) – 11 Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others. But what we are is known to God, and I hope it is known also to your conscience. 12 We are not commending ourselves to you again but giving you cause to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast about outward appearance and not about what is in the heart. 13 For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14 For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; 15 and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.
The Apostle Paul was driven to preach the gospel. Once he was opposed to the Church and Christianity, but then he changed sides. What changed him? He met the living Christ. Jesus had been crucified and buried, but now he was alive again and Paul knew it was true. He could no longer oppose Jesus. He had to share the truth of the resurrection with everyone! Paul needed to persuade others to believe.
When Jesus died, he died for all. His death counts as ours. Our sins were placed on him and the punishment we deserved was taken by Christ. “One has died for all, therefore all have died.” All who trust in the sacrificial death of Jesus are forgiven and saved.
Paul knew that if Jesus had done this for him, he could no longer live for himself. He needed to live for Christ. The same is true for us today. Jesus has died for us and given us life. We can no longer live for ourselves, but must seek to persuade others of this great truth.
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