12 So then death is working in us, but life in you
12 So then
The ultimate conclusion of the gospel team’s suffering had a purpose. They endured pain, but the Corinthian church benefited from it.
death is working in us,
The process of death working in Paul’s team had no saving power, but it produced fruit. Because as non-Christians the Corinthians saw how this group handled death looming over them constantly, they became Christians. There was a cause-effect to their becoming believers. Previously they belonged to a temporal order, but now they saw the eternal order of these witnesses for Christ.
but life in you.
Corinthians heard the gospel, believed it, and received eternal life because of it. Just as Christ brought everlasting life to the Corinthians through His death, the life-threatening ministry of Paul’s team bore the triumphant fruit of evangelism.
Maximum pressure produces fruit.
The permanent life of the risen Jesus enables Christians to suffer persecution willingly. Those without Christ constantly watch the way believers handle their problems. All the torture, scorn, and means of death are from an order that will pass away. That time will pass, but God’s time will continue forever. The believer who lives in the light of eternal values will have an effective life for Christ.