The Ministry of Trouble
II Corinthians 7:10
INTRO: The difference between people isn't the ABSENCE of trouble, but their ATTITUDE towards it.... WHAT YOU DO WITH IT.
There are two things you can do with it:
(1) Bear it God's Way
(2) Bear it the World's Way - death, bitterness, resentment, etc.
HOW TO BEAR IT GOD'S WAY:
(1) Realize it is the SUFFERINGS OF CHRIST. (1:5)
(2) Realize God is up to something, has a purpose. This is the tool God is using to perfect his plan in your life.
I. THAT WE MIGHT EXPERIENCE THE COMFORT OF GOD.
(1:3-5) Paul is uniquely qualified to speak on this subject.
1. COMFORT - a rich word, same as Matt. 5:4, "standing beside a person in time of need to strengthen and encourage, to defend his cause, to make it his own."
2. "THE GOD OF ALL COMFORT".
(1) Emphasizes the complete adequacy of God's comfort.
(2) Excludes any other source of comfort. If He is the God of all comfort, there is no real comfort anywhere else. If we turn from God in time of trouble, become bitter, etc., then there is absolutely no comfort.
3. PRESENT TENSE VERB-- God's Comfort is:
(1) Complete - "All" for every need. II Cor. is Paul's testimony to this, 7:4; 6:10; 4:16 NEB.
(2) Continual - Present tense verb, not occasional and spasmodic, but continual--as long as there's a need, a trouble, there is comfort.
(3) Conquering - God's comfort enables the Christian not merely to ENDURE the trouble, but to REJOICE in it! 7:4, 6:10; 4:16.
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