SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
- Paul spends much of this chapter writing about his personal feelings and deep affection for the Corinthians.
- He also writes about how his last letter made them sorrowful, and how that was a good thing because it led them to repentance. Paul calls this godly sorrow and contrasts it with what he calls worldly sorrow.
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
- Paul explains that godly sorrow brings repentance and leaves no regret while worldly sorrow brings death. The key difference in these emotions is who each one focuses on. Worldly sorrow focuses on self. We feel stupid for getting caught, or temporarily feel guilty.
- Godly sorrow, on the other hand, focuses us on the people we have hurt, including God. This focus often motivates us to make things right and propels us to action and real lasting change.
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
- Have you ever experienced the two kinds of sorrow mentioned in this chapter? When have you seen worldly sorrow that didn't really lead you to change anything in your life? When have you experienced godly sorrow that brought about true life change? What do you think was the difference between the two situations?
- Where in your life should you be experiencing some godly sorrow now?