For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, rejoicing and beholding your order…
The apostle commended —
I. THE EXTERNAL ORDER OF THE CHURCH — "Beholding your order." This is mentioned first because it first meets the eye, though all external discipline must spring from faith.
II. THE APOSTLE CHERISHED A DEEP, PERSONAL INTEREST IN THEIR WELFARE.
1. In spirit He was present with them.
2. While the Church pre serves its order and stability it is invulnerable.
3. It is cause of rejoicing when the Church faithfully maintains the conquests already won.
Parallel VersesKJV: For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ.