Because of the proof given in this ministry they will glorify God for your obedience to your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for the liberality of your contribution to them and to all. 2 Corinthians 9:13
Obedience – They’re making a new Superman movie. I saw the previews a few days ago. This culture has a fixation on super heroes and heroines. X-men, Spiderman, Batman, Electra and other comic book characters on the screen simply reveals how much we want to be all-powerful in the name of good. It’s an old mythology. The Greek gods were super heroes of their age. Before that there was Marduk and Isis, Min and Istar. Every developed culture wants gods of power who will protect us from the world.
Sometimes we imagine that the God of Scriptures is this same kind of super hero. We look at the miracles as magical acts performed by the all-powerful master of the universe. While it’s certainly true that the God of the Bible is the absolute and supreme God, He has decided to show Himself to us in quite a different way. He is the God of compassion, humility, weakness and submission. The picture Jesus paints of the Father is a far cry from Superman. So it’s not surprising that our obedience should reflect that same kind of character. In this Greek word, we see the truth of real power. It is the power of Under Man.
The Greek hupotage comes from the verb hupotasso. It means, “to place in submission, to put under in an orderly fashion”. That is the essence of obedience. If I am to obey, I must place myself under the authority of another. And in God’s world, hupotasso is the central element of all power. The hero of Scripture is Under Man, the one who is willing to submit completely to God’s will no matter what the cost. Every man or woman of God must become the under hero or heroine. In God’s kingdom, there are no super heroes. There are only those who are submitted to authority. They wear the costume of the Under Man, a towel wrapped around their waists while they wash feet.
Now look carefully at this verse. Paul tells us that the proof of the ministry is determined by submission. Has God given you an assignment? It can only be fruitful if you place yourself under. No marketing magic, no promotional techniques, no careful planning or strategic execution will amount to anything in God’s world unless you first understand your role as the Under Man or Under Woman. God only honors what glorifies Him and what glorifies Him is flat-out, down-on-your face obedience.
That is the only game in town.