"We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you not
to receive the grace of God in vain. For he says: 'In an acceptable
time I have heard you, and in the day of salvation I have helped
you.' Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of
salvation" (2 Cor. 6:1-2).
This passage appears in the middle of Paul's discourse exhorting
the Corinthians to turn from sin and live holy before God. In 2
Corinthians 5, Paul wrote concerning the resurrection and subsequent
judgement of each soul according to the things done in the body.
He implores them on Christ's behalf to: "be reconciled to God" (2
Cor. 5:21). And in the sixth chapter he exhorts them to do this
Webster defines "now" as: "at the present time or moment." In 2
Cor. 6:2, nun is translated "now" denoting the "present time." To
exemplify the meaning of nun, notice Matthew's record of the reviling
toward Jesus upon the cross: "'He saved others; Himself He cannot
save. If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the
cross, and we will believe Him. He trusted in God; let Him deliver
Him now if He will have Him; for He said, 'I am the Son of God'"
(Matt. 27:42-42). The Jews wanted to see Jesus come down from the
cross now, immediately - not a day, week, or month later.
This lesson is also expressed in the usage of parachrema
which is translated "immediately" and "at once." Parachrema
is a word favored by Luke as he writes from a historical view emphasizing
order and time. Luke often uses this word to express the immediacy
of miracles. But one of the best examples of parachrema is in Luke
22:60 wherein Luke records Peter's third denial of Jesus saying:
"'Man, I do not know what you are saying!' And immediately, while
he was still speaking, the rooster crowed."
Luke describes the time frame of events between Peter's denial
and the rooster crowing - parachrema, immediately. And notice,
Peter had not completed his denial of Jesus before the rooster crowed.
Throughout the Bible we see individuals rendering immediate obedience
to God, but the word parachrema appears in only one record
of conversion. In Acts 16 we find Paul and Silas in the inner prison
praying and singing psalms at midnight. There was a great earthquake
shaking the foundation of the prison during which the prison doors
were opened and prisoner's chains were loosed. Luke describes the
time frame of these events with parachrema saying: "immediately
all the doors were opened and everyone's chains were loosed" (Acts
Later that night Paul and Silas spoke the word of the Lord to the
jailor and his household. Then Luke again uses the word parachrema
to describe their obedience saying: "And he took them the same hour
of the night and washed their stripes. And immediately he and all
his family were baptized" (Acts 16:33).
It is human nature to procrastinate. But when it comes to obedience
to God, there is no room for procrastination. Obedience to the Lord
should be immediate - no man is promised tomorrow.
Now is the day of salvation! Tomorrow is the day of . . .?