Today's chapter: 2 Corinthians 1
This short video will help you read this book in the right context.
GOD COMFORTS YOU SO THAT... We know for sure that God's grace is totally unconditional and free; we don't have to do anything to earn it. Because of that grace, we also receive comfort and compassion from the same God that sin had once put us at enmity with! But this comes with strings attached: not in the sense that God will yank His grace away from us if we don't do certain things, but rather He gives us compassion and comfort 'so that we can comfort those who also experience trouble (v4).'
BE COUNTERCULTURAL: The term rebel still has many negative connotations. We often think of rebels as malcontents who refuses to conform to the good standards of society. As our culture rapidly tears itself away from Godly values, you are going to need to become a rebel. Not a rebel in the sense that you selfishly live the way that you want to live, but rather as one who 'relies not on worldly wisdom but on God's grace (v12).'
IT IS FINISHED IN CHRIST: The Bible contains thousands of God's promises (anywhere between 4,000 - 9,000 depending on who's counting system gets used). But all of those promises get answered with one Word: CHRIST (v20). Even promises God has made, for example, to make all things new again, that have not yet materialized still can be considered fulfilled. Remember, God exists outside of time & space, so things which are in the future for us are experienced in an eternal present for Him. This is why Paul reminds us that we can be comforted by this compassionate omnipresent (present in all times and places at once) God.
AMEN & Ἀμὴν & אָמֵן: This little four letter word we use so often is actually a Greek word that comes straight into English without translation (and the Greeks took it straight from ancient Hebrew). It's pronounced the same in all three languages, and it simply means 'so be it.' This certainly adds to the power of our prayers, doesn't it! It's not just a signal that we can open our eyes again because the prayer is over, rather it's a way of claiming the promises of God through our participation in Christ (v20).
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Follow the AAA Prayer Pattern:
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: The Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in our troubles (v3-4)
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Do not rely on worldly wisdom, but rather on grace (v12). Let your life and prayer be a resounding AMEN in Christ (v20).
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: