1 Corinthians 1:8,9 - This Happened That We Might Not Rely On Ourselves But On God!!!
1Cor.1:8,9: This Happened That We Might Not Rely On Ourselves
But On God!!!
2 Cor 1:8 (KJV) For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant
of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out
of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of
2 Cor 1:9 (KJV) But we had the sentence of death in ourselves,
that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the
2 Cor 1:8 (NIV) We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers,
about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under
great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired
even of life.
2 Cor 1:9 (NIV) Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of
death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on
God, who raises the dead.
2 Cor 1:8 (NCV) Brothers and sisters, we want you to know about
the trouble we suffered in Asia. We had great burdens there that
were beyond our own strength. We even gave up hope of living.
2 Cor 1:9 (NCV) Truly, in our own hearts we believed we would
die. But this happened so we would not trust in ourselves but in God,
who raises people from the dead.
Paul had personally experienced the comfort of God in the midst
of the greatest sufferings, as well as His deliverance from a
life-threatening experience. To express the anguish he had felt Paul uses a
number of words with which many of us can identify: "tribulation" (v.
4), "sufferings" (v. 5), "afflicted" (v. 6), "burdened", "despaired"
(v. 8), and "sentence of death" (v. 9). [Believer?s SB]
Paul reserves his strongest expressions for mental anguish
rather than physical danger and suffering. [SDA Commentary]
Paul's stoning at Lystra did most evidently destroy his life, so
that his being raised was an effect of the miraculous power of God;
(Adam Clarke Commentary)
Paul's hardships were so life-threatening that he regarded his
survival and recovery as tantamount to being raised from the dead. [NIV
"All sunshine makes a desert." The danger of prosperity is that
it encourages a false independence; it makes us think that we are
well able to handle life alone. For every one prayer that rises to
God in days of prosperity, ten thousand rise in days of adversity.
As Lincoln had it, "I have often been driven to my knees in prayer
because I had nowhere else to go." It is often in misfortune that a man
finds out who are his true friends, and it often needs some time of
adversity to show us how much we need God.
The outcome was that Paul had an unshakable confidence in God.
He knew now beyond all argument what he could do for him. If God
could bring him through that, he could bring him through anything. The
joyful cry of the Psalmist is, "Thou hast delivered my soul from death,
my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling." (Ps 116:8.) What
really converted John Bunyan was when he heard some old women sitting
in the sun "talking about what God had done for their souls." The
confidence of the Christian in God is not a thing of theory and
speculation; it is a thing of fact and experience. He knows what God has
done for him and therefore he is not afraid. [Barclay Commentary]
All men have a strong tendency to trust in themselves, a
tendency that is most difficult to overcome. It took ?the sentence of
death? and ?a thorn in the flesh? before Paul overcame it. Israel?s
experiences on the way from Egypt to Canaan were designed to teach Israel
this fundamental lesson. God often permits His people to experience
dire straits in order that they may come to realize their own
insufficiency and be induced to trust and hope in His sufficiency. Trials are
requisite to Christian experience (Acts 14:22). It is fundamental to man?s
salvation that he learn to rely wholly upon Christ. Confidence in God is
an essential factor in day-by-day Christian living. It is often in
the fiery furnace that men learn to walk side by side with the Son
of God. [SDA Commentary]
We have come a long way in our Christian lives when we learn to
put faith in God alone and not in self, circumstances, or men. . The
believer who fears the Lord and lives to please Him enjoys peace and
confidence even in the midst of trouble. What a lesson to learn! [Wiersbe
Christians will suffer because of their strong identity with
Christ. The Bible says that Christ learned obedience from what he
suffered; see Why did Jesus need to learn obedience through suffering?
(Heb. 5:8). Why then should his disciples expect anything less?
Our suffering is, in fact, a link to Jesus Christ. Though he was
the Son of God, he endured the frustrations of the flesh while
living in a sinful world. We still live in that fallen world and feel
the tension caused by its influence. Some face severe physical pain.
Others encounter intense emotional battles. But because Jesus lives
within us, he shares the pains, the sorrows and the frustrations we
feel. He joins with us in our suffering and - even more encouraging -
he also offers us comfort.
But Christ shares with us, not just in a spiritual sense, but in
another sense - through other believers. Paul speaks of an overflow of
comfort that goes from one to another. At times we may have difficulty
feeling Christ's comfort. But others can encourage us with their
physical presence, sharing our pain and offering comfort in tangible,
practical ways. Their spiritual strength can flow into our lives, not as
pat answers, but as genuine grace. As part of our lives, their
empathy, confidence and hope in Christ will lift us.
Christians may go through some tough times. But they should
never have to go through them alone. [Quest SB]
"LIFE IS DIFFICULT!" With these three words Scott Peck begins
his bestselling book The Road Less Traveled But in 2 Corinthians
Paul says this and more. Just where life is difficult, where our
relationships are strained, where our competence is questioned, where our
health and security are threatened God makes himself known in powerful
comfort. We discover that one of the supreme greatnesses of Christianity
is that it does not seek a supernatural escape from the
difficulties of life. Instead it offers a supernatural use for them. Troubles
become triumphs as God makes himself known in our weakness. [Quiet Time
It has been well said that "earthly cares are a heavenly
discipline." But they are even something better than discipline, - they are
God's chariots, sent to take the soul to its high places of triumph.
Everything that comes to us becomes a chariot the moment we
treat it as such; and on the other hand, even the smallest trials may
be a Juggernaut car to crush us into misery or despair if we so
consider them. It lies with each of us to choose which they shall be....
Look upon your chastenings then, no matter how grievous they may
be for the present, as God's chariots sent to carry your souls into
the "high places" of spiritual achievement and uplifting, and you
will find that they are, after all, "paved with love."
The Bible tells us that when God went forth for the salvation of
His people, then He "did ride upon His horses and chariots of
salvation." And it is the same now. Everything becomes a "chariot of
salvation" when God rides upon it. He maketh even the "clouds his chariot,"
we are told, and "rideth on the wings of the wind." Therefore the
clouds and storms that darken our skies and seem to shut out the
shining of the sun of righteousness are really only God's chariots, into
which we may mount with Him, and "ride prosperously" over all the
darkness. Hannah Whitall Smith [Time With God SB]
All comforts come from God, and our sweetest comforts are in
him. He speaks peace to souls by granting the free remission of sins;
and he comforts them by the enlivening influences of the Holy
Spirit, and by the rich mercies of his grace. He is able to bind up the
broken-hearted, to heal the most painful wounds, and also to give hope and joy
under the heaviest sorrows. The favours God bestows on us, are not
only to make us cheerful, but also that we may be useful to others.
[Matthew Henry Commentary]
We may have very little to give our friends; but, however little
of this world's goods we possess, we may give them the priceless
treasure of our prayers. [Barclay Commentary]
God is our source of power, and we receive his help by keeping
in touch with him. With this attitude, problems will drive us to
God rather than away from him. Learn how to rely on God daily. [Life
Paul learned to rely on the ?comfort? he had found in God (see
on ch. 1:4). [SDA Commentary]
Paul was an apostle. But he was also a human being. Because he
suffered, he came to know God?s comfort as a reality in his life. [The
365-Day Devotional Commentary]
God's comfort and deliverance are certainties, even in the
middle of difficult trials. [Inspirational SB]
God's grace is all-sufficient, and our weakness is precisely the
opportunity for his power to be displayed [NIV SB]
God often brings his people into great straits, that they may
apprehend their own insufficiency to help themselves, and may be induced
to place their trust and hope in his all-sufficiency. Our extremity
is God's opportunity. (Matthew Henry's Commentary)
Many Christians are reluctant to acknowledge any connection
between God and suffering. Some see Satan as the only cause for the hard
times we all go through. Others blame every difficulty in this life on
the fact that we are members of a fallen creation whose rebellion
has inflicted suffering on the world.
I believe that these views are interrelated and that both are
true. Satan does cause suffering. Scripture describes him as a thief,
a liar, and a destroyer, and we are encouraged to learn to do
battle with him, wearing the whole armor of God (see Eph. 6:1-18)
It is also true that tremendous suffering has resulted from
humankind's choice to follow Satan into rebellion against God's way. The
world is reaping the natural consequences of man s fallen condition -
in the wars that rage among nations, in the breakdown of the
family, in the appalling spread of sexually transmitted diseases.
But I believe it is important for us Christians to know that
regardless of where suffering originates, God is now, has always been, and
always will be in control of His universe. Satan has not "pulled any
fast ones" on the King of kings and Lord of lords. Sinful mankind has
not managed to foil heaven's best intentions while some powerless
deity was catching a catnap! God is sovereign! He is God! Whatever
happens in His universe has happened with God's knowledge and
permission. And this includes suffering. Claire Cloninger [Passages Of Life
"Why?" we wonder as we struggle to put the pieces back in a
"Why?" we think as we read of a devastating earthquake halfway
around the world.
"Why?" we cry as we stand at the grave of a loved one.
Life is short and sometimes tragic, and each day we are reminded
of our finiteness. We don't know the future, we don't know the
relationship between events, and we certainly don't know why.
But we do know that God is good and all-knowing - nothing
catches him by surprise, not the car out of control, the malignant
tumor, the hurricane, or the disease. So even as we wonder and question
the reason and cause for each event, we can be confident that God
knows and that in everything, even the senseless tragedy, he is
working. (From On Eagle's Wings by Dave Veerman) [Inspirational SB]
Give your whole being to God without holding back and without
doubting. He will prove himself to you, and work in you that which is
pleasing in His sight through Jesus Christ. Keep His ways as you know
them in the Word. Keep His ways, as nature teaches them, in always
doing what appear right. Keep His ways as providence points them out.
Keep His ways as the Holy Spirit suggests. Do not think of
waiting on God while you say you are not willing to walk in His path.
However weak you feel, only be willing, and he who has worked to will,
will work to do by His power....
So come with every temptation you feel in yourself, every memory
of unwillingness, unwatchfulness, unfaithfulness, and all that
causes your unceasing self-condemnation. Put your powerlessness in
God's almighty power, and find in waiting on God your deliverance.
[Andrew Murray; Time with God devotional SB]