KJB Daily Devotion – Following Jesus Through Every Chapter
Date: Tuesday, December 05, 2017
Chapters: II Corinthians 1-4
Message: Hanging On By A Thread
Hello My Friend,
You know that feeling you get when things are going so good that something bad is about to happen at any time? It seems like affliction hits us like a brick, even when you are expecting it it smacks you right in the face, and it is not just one thing that happens, multiple things do. I have to admit that no matter how much I try to keep my head up and believe something good will come out of the afflictions I am going through, I am a little more discouraged than encouraged. On top of my affliction, as I work hard to day by day to get my daily bread I see things just being handed to others and wonder what could I possibly be doing wrong that they are getting blessed and I am hanging on by a thread. Can I tell you that affliction does bring blessings, in fact, much more, even when we are hanging by a thread. Of course, when we are hanging by a thread, the one we need to be holding us is Jesus. “And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. I and my Father are one.” – John 10:28-30.
Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians was one of discipline, this one, written about a year later, is one of encouragement. He had it written when he himself was discouraged and heard how they had turned things around. He wanted to show them how pleased he was that they were living by the true Gospel, and how much of an encouragement they were to him. He points out that there are indeed blessings as we endure suffering.
“For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ. And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation. And our hope of you is stedfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation. 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 life: But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead: For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us, even by me and Silvanus and Timotheus, was not yea and nay, but in him was yea. For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us. Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God;” – II Corinthians 1:5-9,19-21.
“that we should not trust in ourselves,” You see, something happens when we get so confident in our faith, we unintentionally leave God out of the picture, and I do not mean we forget Him or He is not a part of our lives, I mean that we tend to thank Him less and seek His help less when everything is going good. So, then to get our attention and remind us that He is always with us, here comes affliction, and it really does hit you hit you like a brick, even if you do get that feeling. Consultation; comfort from distress. We really have no idea the impact we have on others who are depressed and discouraged, we must be careful that, we with heavy hearts not become a person that will drag someone down rather than life them up. Paul explains this further.
“But I determined this with myself, that I would not come again to you in heaviness. For if I make you sorry, who is he then that maketh me glad, but the same which is made sorry by me? And I wrote this same unto you, lest, when I came, I should have sorrow from them of whom I ought to rejoice; having confidence in you all, that my joy is the joy of you all. For out of much affliction and anguish of heart I wrote unto you with many tears; not that ye should be grieved, but that ye might know the love which I have more abundantly unto you. For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish: To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things? For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.” – II Corinthians 2:1-4,15-17.
“who is he then that maketh me glad,” To endure our afflictions with Jesus, really does gives consolation and salvation to others. It is actually during our affliction that we find comfort in God and discover that Jesus is right there with us. I understand how affliction can cause depression and discouragement, it happens to the best if us, but as long as we have Him holding the thread He will never let us go, He will pull us back up, and we will be even stronger. “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” – II Corinthians 12:9.
We must realize something while we are hanging by a thread, we have direct one on one communication with God. Jesus is not going to let us go, He will see us through. Through Paul, we are reminded that we can look God in the face and talk to Him directly because Jesus took the veil away on the cross.
“Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech: And not as Moses, which put a vail over his face, that the children of Israel could not stedfastly look to the end of that which is abolished: But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which vail is done away in Christ. But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away. Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” – II Corinthians 3:12-18.
“are changed into the same image from glory to glory,” Do you see that? Through our affliction, Christ reflects off of us, changing us into the image of Christ Himself. We may not realize this, but we are walking, talking Bibles to those who know we are saved, even if they do not know Christ themselves, that means our number one priority in life is to show Christ through us. Tell a person who has no interest in God that you will pray for them and see the response you get. Find a person who is going through a great deal of difficulties and who they turn to after they have exhausted all their options. People need Jesus, our faithfulness to Him, especially in our affliction brings salvation to many, and we do not even realize that.
“But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake. We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak; Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you. For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God. For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” – II Corinthians 4:3-5,13-18.
“In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not,” Who is the god of this world? The devil himself. I had a pastor that calls him, smutty face, and he sure is. Old smutty face is the main culprit behind our affliction because while God already knows we will see Him through our affliction the devil will do everything he can to discourage the lost from seeing Jesus. Believe it or not, the affliction we face and how we handle it with Christ has a bigger impact on others than it does us. If you are saved and living a life with Christ in it, it is not because you were forced, it is because you willingly chose Christ. From that moment on your name was written in the Book of Life, you are not better than anyone else, you just have God’s favor since you are trusting in His only begotten Son for your salvation. We can hang on by that thread knowing that our Lord Jesus Christ never makes a mistake in what He does in our lives, and that our names are written in heaven. “Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.” – Luke 10:19-20.
Jesus Christ Magnified: “For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.” – II Corinthians 4:11.
Today’s Prayer: God, When affliction comes my way, and I feel like I am only hanging by a thread it is comforting to know that You are right there holding on to the thread, and will not let me go. I admit that I can lose sight of You, and all I want to do it hide in a corner somewhere and not talk to anyone, but You are always there, ready to pull me up, and show me how to handle things. You are so merciful to me that it tears me to think that I suffered needlessly when all I had to do was come to You. Lord, there is no one like You, so loving, so trusting, so fearing, just as any loving Father should be, You may not remove the affliction right away, but Your grace is sufficient enough to help me through it and I thank You for that. Walk with me, guide me, and abide in me, give me that consolation that I know only comes as I remain in Your presence. I love You Lord and ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.
God Bless You, I am praying for you,
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