Corinthians chapter 10:7-18
The section in chapter 10 verses 7 to 18 I’ve titled, “Recognizing the man of God.” It is a section in which the Apostle Paul is confronting the Corinthians on the issue of some false teachers who are there. False teachers, as we know, have invaded Corinth, they have intended to destroy the credibility of Paul to do a full-blown character assassination on him so that the people would lose trust in Paul and therefore trust in his theology…they then would become the reigning teachers, they could teach their damnable lies. Satan could overturn the work of God and they could get rich and famous at the same time. That’s how false teachers work.
So Paul writes 2 Corinthians to deal with the matter of his own integrity.
In this particular section of chapter 10 verses 7 to 18 he speaks directly about himself as compared to the false teachers.
And in so speaking he gives to us some very observable criteria for how you can identify the true man of God, as over against the false. Obviously the church in any age needs to be able to do this because grievous wolves not sparing the flock want to come in and wreak their havoc. As Paul told the Ephesian elders, “After my departure, the wolves are going to come and they’re not going to spare the flock.” “Satan goes about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour,” and largely works through those who are lying teachers who infiltrate the work of God to destroy it. False prophets have always been around. We are very much aware of that. And we have always been called as God’s people to be discerning.
So, Paul says I’m not going to compete. I’m not going to get on that turf. I’m not going to go with those puffed up arrogant pretenders to Christ and battle over self-imposed standards.