Paul feared the pain of broken friendships in Corinth. He experienced that heartbreak before. Must it happen again? The beginning of relationship breakdown is when an idea takes root, when a lie is believed. What lie? The same one that the serpent used in the garden. The serpent didn’t even say it; the snake just suggested the most destructive lie ever to be heard. What lie? The lie that says you are not created in the image of God. The lie that says God does not want you to be like Him. The lie that says you are not enough. The lie that say you do not have everything you need. Eve did not ask Adam if it was true. Adam did not ask God if what they heard from the shadowy character in the garden was true. Instead, before there was any act of sin among human beings, Adam and Eve believed the lie that God does not love them completely. As soon as that lie penetrated their sinless hearts, Adam and Eve turned away from God to get something they didn’t even need. God made them in his image. God gave them everything they needed. But they believed the lie that turned their hearts away from God. That’s what brought the first tears; those hot tears of grief were God’s when he cried, “Where are you?” Sin hollowed out their souls. And strife, anger, and a flood of lies divided the human family. This is the lost condition of the human heart without Jesus our savior.
“I do admit that I have fears that when I come you’ll disappoint me and I’ll disappoint you, and in frustration with each other everything will fall to pieces—quarrels, jealousy, flaring tempers, taking sides, angry words, vicious rumors, swelled heads, and general bedlam. I don’t look forward to a second humiliation by God among you, compounded by hot tears over that crowd that keeps sinning over and over in the same old ways, who refuse to turn away from the pigsty of evil, sexual disorder, and indecency in which they wallow.”
2 Corinthians 12:20-21 MSG