“We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about the troubles we experienced in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. BUT this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.” 2 Corinthians 1:8-9.
Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Job 41-42, and 2 Corinthians 1-2.
Paul’s troubles were so bad that he was forced to trust someone other than himself……God.
We see things in this world with limited vision whether we are willing to admit it or not. God’s ways are not our ways. He didn’t consult us with His decisions. They will happen without our approval.
There is something in this Scripture that I had missed despite having read this Scripture many times. It was, “who raises the dead,” at the end of it.
What makes God different? He not only starts life but He also can end death!
When Jesus died all His followers abandoned Him physically and many mentally as well. He was a great teacher even though much was not understood at the time of what He said. He performed some remarkable feats. BUT He died and all those things He did were not translating into loyalty to Him. In fact, many flat-out denied any connection to Him. What changed? God raised Jesus from the dead. Many saw Him. Some ate with Him. Others talked to Him. Jesus was back from the dead! God had raised Him. That God was One you could follow and they did. The followers recognized the power of the God they followed. Earthly forces were no longer obstacles. God was all-powerful and they committed to Him.
My current thoughts are that we are presenting the Gospel backwards. We start with Jesus’s death and present it as Good News. At the time, it happened it certainly wasn’t Good News. No one was racing around in public positively excited about His death. The resurrection was a different story. When the reality of His resurrection sunk in, His followers were out from behind closed doors and in the streets telling everyone the news. Jesus gave them His power and they were fearless.
Interesting stuff. Certainly, a new angle to the Gospel for me. More later, I suspect.
“God, You raised Jesus from death. You are all-powerful. I ask for Your power in my own life. I ask to see You clearly for Who You are and what You are doing. Forgive my sinfulness. I love You, Lord.”
The God you love raised Jesus from the dead. He’s all-powerful. Come out of hiding!