If I have to boast, I will boast of what pertains to my weakness.2 Corinthians 11:30(NASB)
Not only was Paul's apostolic commission being called into question by certain critics at Corinth, but these false teachers were also leading many believers astray. Paul therefore felt it was necessary to remind the Corinthian Christians that he had a divine calling, and in this chapter he set out a wise strategy to reestablish his God-given authority as Christ's apostle, in a most unusual way - by boasting in his weaknesses!
Instead of going into detail about his supernatural calling on the road to Damascus and boasting of the many revelations he had received from the Lord, Paul sarcastically labelled his critics as 'eminent apostles'... but he knew that their future destiny would expose their fleshly works and ungodly practices.
These men were anything but 'super apostles', as Paul ironically called them. They were arrogant men who had apparently accused Paul of being a fool, unskilled in speech and lacking in Scriptural knowledge. They were "false apostles and deceitful workers, who fraudulently disguised themselves as authoritative Bible teachers and servants of righteousness!
These fleshly-minded men were flaunting their 'credentials'. They were drawing believers away from their devotion to Christ, to a false gospel. They were building up a body of support from the Body of Christ, as well as expanding their bank balances.. as can so often happen in this day and age. And in order to expose the ungodly nature of these critics, Paul engaged in some witticisms and a little 'folly'!
He refused to be intimidated by the bullying tactics of these fleshly minded prosperity teachers, who.. unlike Paul, boasted about their superior knowledge and understanding of religious things.. and even charged the Corinthian Christians a high price for the privilege of their 'services'.
These critics were very eloquent about their attributes, their fortitude and resilience, their character and courage. However, to expose their hypocrisy we find Paul sarcastically "boasting" about his weaknesses rather than his strengths, in contrast with the foolish self-praise of his ungodly critics.
Paul chose to brag about something entirely different from his knowledge, understanding, achievements and divine appointment.. "If I have to boast", he wrote, "I will boast of what pertains to my weakness. If it is necessary for me to boast and brag about anything..." he concluded, "I will boast of what pertains to my weakness." - Instead of the self-congratulatory attitude of his critics and the way they bragged about their strengths and achievements, Paul chose to boast about the things that highlighted his feebleness, his weakness and his suffering.
Weakness is not normally the attribute that commends a man in the world in which we live. However, in God's economy, when we are weak in our own strength we are strong in the Lord. When we are despised by the world we are esteemed by the Lord. When we are humble before the Lord, He will exalt us and when we suffer for righteousness' sake, we can be joyful ...for Christ is our Head and in Him is the kingdom heavens.
Heavenly Father, thank You for my great salvation. Thank You for Your word and the truths it contains and the warnings it gives. Give me wisdom and insight to identify error and keep me from being influenced by those who pretend to be men of God, but inwardly are ravening wolves. Thank You that my hope and my strength is in You and that when I am weak in my own importance, I am strong in the Lord and in the might of His power. Help me to boast in the cross of Christ and Him alone - for Your greater praise and glory - this I ask in Jesus' name, AMEN.