Problems And Power by Claude Thomas

PROBLEMS AND POWER
Claude Thomas
II Corinthians 4:8-9

Introduction: A new college year. Soon calls and
cards come from college dorms to home addresses. Some
are welcomed with delight and pride. Others...well...
Boy is sent to college with great hopes. After a few
weeks, the boy was kicked out for flunking his
classes. Knowing his parents would be disappointed,
he sent a telegram home which said, "Flunked out -
coming home - prepare Pop." The next day he received
a telegram. It simply read, "Pop prepared - prepare
yourself!"

Life has its problems. There is no such thing as a
"trouble-fee" area or people without problems.

I. People and problems go together

Application: It is a mistaken notion that Christians
are somehow exempt.

Explanation: Note the experience of Paul. Remember
who he was: converted on Damascus Road; called to be
an apostle to Gentiles; commissioned to author one
half of New Testament (13 books); founder of
churches...yet this great Christian...
v. 8 - "troubled on every side" = pressured from
without. External pressure.
v. 8 - "perplexed" = despondent over lack of
means. Emotional pressure.
v. 9 - "persecuted" = hunted by man. Physical
pressure.
v. 9 - "cast down" = Physically smitten.

These four form a climatic characterization of
Paul's life -- PROBLEMS!
Paul even warned in II Timothy 3:12 "All who
desire to live godly lives in Christ Jesus will
be persecuted."

Application by Illustration: Can you name a Bible
character greatly used of God who did not endure
problems? Almost, if not, without exception,
men/women of God had problems.

Illustration: When Noah sailed the waters blue
He had his ...


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