“But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal (thriambeauonti) procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere.” 2 Cor.2:14

Paul pours forth his thanks for the triumph of which he was a partaker. God had overcome him in conversion, and Christ was continually triumphing in the results which he was accomplishing for His kingdom. This knowledge of Christ becomes a God diffused odor by the ministry of the Apostles. Those who possess the knowledge of Christ are a sweet savor unto God, not because they are properly prepared or offered to God, but because they are filled by Him and made to diffuse the savor of Christ. As aromatics pervade a garment so the savor of Christ leaves its imprint.

Paul recognized that a Christian’s joy is God-intoxicating. (Gott-getrunkene) The 7 word triumph was used to express celebration in pomp, splendor and magnificences of a great victory. This defeat, the subduing of our rebellious passions and will; becomes the secret of our abounding joy. Instead of guilt and shame, we rejoice to become his prisoner and trophies of grace.

Always and everyplace no matter where we find ourselves, we are all alike because of our union in Christ. We celebrate loudly the perennial gladness of his victory. We march in the train of the “One” who is the captain of our salvation. Out of this knowledge of him a fragrance diffused through the air invisibly interpenetrating the community. To know Christ is to carry an aroma of beauty into the strife and vulgarities of human interaction. Though persecuted but not abandoned, struck down but not destroyed we rest in our apprehension of Christ. Like the sweetness of a hidden rose it is carried on the breeze and manifested in every place.

Paul felt a close kinship to divine joy and a near fellowship with it in the midst of tribulation and perplexity. It was not something above him but something inwrapped and indwelling in his conscious. We stand not alone but encompassed by a great cloud of witnesses -a communal spread!

This intoxication of spiritual joy, as if caught in the sweep of some world wide triumphal progress, Paul is the exemplar of all time to the Christian who is apt to lose heart. For with all the checks and balances upon its movement, the car of triumph, of Divine victory, still advances.

When we center our faith in Christ and draw from his teaching the eternal strength of wisdom and receive from His spirit the power that overcomes sin, God will lead us in the triumph. “It shall be, when you hear the sound of marching in the tops of the mulberry trees, then you shall advance quickly.” 2 Sam. 5:24 If our hearts were open to the divine joy we would feel though the air the measured march of the army of the living God in its steady triumphal progress to the ultimate breakthrough of our lives!