When God rescues
We begin 2 Corinthians with a look into Paul's confidence in the God who rescues
Verse of the Day: “We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. And he did rescue us from mortal danger, and he will rescue us again. We have placed our confidence in him, and he will continue to rescue us.” - 2 Corinthians 1:8-10
“We were crushed and overwhelmed”.......Ever felt crushed and overwhelmed before? I have. Whether by the weight of responsibilities, bills, family, work stress, relational stress and more? We have all felt this way before. We may be feeling it right this second. If you are reading this and going through a season that has crushed and overwhelmed you, be encouraged. This Bible study is for you.
“Beyond our ability to endure”.......I love the word “endure”. I love how often we find it in the Bible. In fact, the concept of enduring is mentioned in the Bible nearly 100 times! And often it comes right after the concept of faith. Our faith is an active faith. In order to have an active faith, we have to have the ability to endure. We cannot expect to walk this Christian walk and not face trials of fire and sorrow. They’re coming. They may be here already. You might’ve just walked out of one. But we have to remain encouraged, even when our own fickle minds are filled with faulty human wisdom. We serve a God who is greater.
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“We thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die”........I can relate to this verse so much it brings tears to my eyes typing this. I have gone through serious trials of anxiety and depression in my life. When I was 16, I went a solid 4-5 months in constant anxiety and depression that I was unable to shake off. I was ready to commit suicide because I couldn’t take not being able to get out of my own head. But it was then I reached out to a God that I didn’t know and had never encountered before. And in that moment, God freed me from that cloud of evil sent straight from the enemy. But because God saved me one time did not mean that I wouldn’t go through it again. Oh buddy, I did. But the Lord has rescued me every time. The last and greatest time was earlier this year, when the Lord helped me to overcome a giant roadblock of anxiety that has quite literally changed my life and my direction. I pray that you have a similar testimony. Paul’s testimony below is incredible and so encouraging.
“But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves”.......we are not strong enough to rely on our own strength. We shouldn’t put our entire lives on our own shoulders. We will fail ourselves every single time. And if you try relying completely on another human being, they will fail you, too. Proverbs 3:5-6 lays it out simply - “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him and he will make your paths straight.” God is the great waymaker. Let Him direct your path.
“And learned to rely on God, who raises the dead”.......this is where the fun starts. God is able to do anything at any time to any person. He is that good. He raises the dead. He breaks unbreakable chains. He makes the impossible possible. Refer to John 11:38-44 to learn of a time that Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. When all seems lost and humans try relying on their own wisdom, that’s when God shows up and does what only He can do.
“And he did rescue us from mortal danger, and he will rescue us again”......this fires me up, man. God is so good. He is our safe place. Our refuge. Our strength. He is all that matters.
“We have placed our confidence in him”.......The Hebrew meaning of confidence means something that is sure and a promise. God can keep His promise. He does what He says. He is a man of His word. Joshua 1:9 says “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” When our confidence is in the heart and character of God, it stirs up a strength and self esteem in us that is not attainable anywhere else in the world. He is with us wherever we go. How comforting is that truth?
“And he will continue to rescue us”........Yes and Amen. God goes with us everywhere we go. He never promises that we won’t face trouble, but He does promise to be there with us in the trouble. Whatever your trial may be, put your confidence in God. Allow him the chance to rescue you. He will deliver every time. Our hearts must be turned to Him and we must have the obedience to continue to follow Him even when the road gets difficult.
This life is not easy. If it were easy, everybody would follow Jesus and have the fruits of the Holy Spirit. We have to keep walking. Even when we are pressed on very side. You may be facing a losing situation, but with your confidence in God, you will never be lost. He is the great Redeemer. We can trust Him. Let us pour out all of our love for God today. Hallelujah, Father! Great is Your faithfulness.
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