Therefore show to them, and before the churches, the proof of your love, and of our boasting on your behalf.
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Paul is urging the Corinthians to demonstrate their love by the way they treat those he is sending to them. If they received them with honor, they would be demonstrating to all the other churches how far they had progressed and that the good things which were said about them were true. He is therefore encouraging their resolve, for someone who is well thought of usually shows improvement. Commentary on Paul’s Epistles.
'Now show,' he says, 'how ye love us; and how we do not lightly nor vainly boast in you: and this you will show, if you show forth love towards them.' Then he also makes his words more solemn, by saying, unto the person of the churches. He means, to the glory, the honor, of the churches. 'For if you honor them, you have honored the churches that sent them. For the honor passes not to them alone, but also to those that sent them forth, who ordained them, and more than these, unto the glory of God.' For when we honor those that minister to Him, the kind reception passes unto Him, unto the common body of the churches. Now this too is no light thing, for great is the potency of that assembly.
3. Certain it is at least that the prayer of the churches loosed Peter from his chains, opened the mouth of Paul; their voice in no slight degree equips those that arrive unto spiritual rule. Therefore indeed it is that both he who is going to ordain calls at that time for their prayers also, and t...