At the end of 2 Corinthians 1 Paul writes to the Corinthians Not that we lord it over your faith, but we work with you for your joy, because it is by faith you stand firm (2 Cor. 1:24). This gives a fascinating insight into what Paul’s design was in dealing with the Corinthians. His design was to labour so that the Corinthians would enter into joy. That means entering into that delight which comes through living a life in harmony with God. Faith leads to joy. When our trust in the Lord is unhindered by sin, then there is joy.
Understandably then, Paul was interacting with the Corinthians to deal with all their sins, fractures and rebellion. He labours in 1 and 2 Corinthians to address a number of issues and deficiencies in understanding in the church in Corinth. His goal was not that they must be a nice prim and proper church. His goal was that they might be enjoying God.
He does not say here that he is labouring for his joy or even “our” joy. No! His passion is to work for their joy. Of course, it would have been easier not to have bothered. He could have just left them to their own devices. He loved them too much to do that though. He wanted to get involved so as to bring forth their joy.
What about me? Am I transfixed by a desire to see others experiencing the joy of the Lord? Does this drive me to preach, teach, exhort, pray, counsel, confront, instruct.
Oh how beautiful it is to find the people of the Lord knowing the joy of the Lord.