2 Corinthians 4:7-11 Strive To Arrive

“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed – always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.”

2 Corinthians 4:7-11

The treasure of gospel light and grace is put into earthen vessels. The true ministers of the gospel are subject to the same passions and weaknesses as other men.

God could have sent angels to make known the glorious doctrine of the gospel, or could have sent the most admired sons of men to teach the nations, but The Lord chose humbler, weaker vessels, that His power might be more glorified in upholding them, and in the blessed change wrought by their ministry.

The apostles were great sufferers, yet they met with wonderful support. Believers may be forsaken of their friends, as well as persecuted by enemies; but their God will never leave them nor forsake them.

There may be fears within, as well as fighting without; yet we are not destroyed.

The apostle speaks of their sufferings as a counterpart of the sufferings of Christ, that people might see the power of Christ’s resurrection, and of grace in and from the living Jesus. In comparison with them, other Christians were, even at that time, in prosperous circumstances.

If your life as a Christian is only suffering minor or petty trivialities, or it’s simply full of drama, and you have not known persecution, personal rejection from family and churches, it does not necessarily mean you are not in the truth. However the thing to consider is that true faith cannot be proven without trial. Joy cannot be known without anguish.

Most people in the fullness of truth and awareness of reality are going to go thru painful hardships throughout their lives. Never take for granted that you are ready for Heaven.

We must always strive for more of God, for genuine truth. We never arrive …

2 Timothy 1:7 Salvation And Grace

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”

2 Timothy 1:7

God has not given us the spirit of fear, but the spirit of power, of courage and resolution, to meet difficulties and dangers; the spirit of love to Him, which will carry us through opposition.

And the spirit of a sound mind, quietness of mind. The Holy Spirit is not the author of a timid or cowardly disposition, or of slavish fears. We are likely to bear afflictions well, when we have strength and power from God to enable us to bear them.

As is usual with Paul, when he mentions Christ and his redemption, he enlarges upon them; so full was he of that which is all our salvation, and ought to be all our desire. The call of the gospel is a holy call, making holy.

Salvation is of free grace. This is said to be given us before the world began, that is, in the purpose of God from all eternity; in Christ Jesus, for all the gifts that come from God to sinful man, come in and through Christ Jesus alone.

And as there is so clear a prospect of eternal happiness by faith in Him, who is the Resurrection and the Life, let us give more diligence in making His salvation sure to our souls. Those who cleave to the gospel, need not be ashamed, the cause will bear them out; but those who oppose it, shall be ashamed.

The apostle had trusted his life, his soul, and eternal interests, to the Lord Jesus. No one else could deliver and secure his soul through the trials of life and death. There is a day coming, when our souls will be inquired after.

Thou hadst a soul committed to thee; how was it employed? in the service of sin, or in the service of Christ? The hope of the lowest real Christian rests on the same foundation as that of the great apostle.

He also has learned the value and the danger of his soul; he also has believed in Christ; and the change wrought in his soul, convinces the believer that the Lord Jesus will keep him to His heavenly kingdom. Paul exhorts Timothy to hold fast the Holy Scriptures, the substance of solid gospel truth in them.

It is not enough to assent to the sound words, but we must love them. The Christian doctrine is a trust committed to us; it is of unspeakable value in itself, and will be of unspeakable advantage to us. It is committed to us, to be preserved pure and entire, yet we must not think to keep it by our own strength and means as so many modern churfhes do, but by the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in us; and it will not be gained by those who trust in their own hearts, and lean to their own understandings.

Isaiah 43:25 (Salvation)

“I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake; and I will not remember your sins.”
 
Isaiah 43:25
 
I, even I, am He – This verse contains a gracious assurance that their sins would be blotted out, and the reason why it would be done. The pronoun ‘I’ is repeated to make it emphatic, as in Isaiah 43:11.
 
Perhaps also God designs to show them the evil of the sins which are mentioned in the previous verses, by the assurance that they were committed against him who alone could forgive, and who had promised them pardon. The passage also reminds them, that it was God alone who could pardon the sins of which, as a nation, they had been guilty.
 
That blotteth out thy transgressions – This metaphor is taken from the custom of keeping accounts, where, when a debt is paid, the charge is blotted or cancelled. Thus God says Ghe blotted out the sins of the Jews. He cancelled them. He forgave them. Of course, when forgiven, punishment could not be exacted, and he would treat them as pardoned; that is, as His friends.
 
For Mine own sake – Not because you deserve it, or have any claim, or that it would not be right to punish you. Not even primarily to promote your happiness and salvation, but for My sake;
 
1. To show the benevolence of My character;
 
2. To promote My glory by your forgiveness and salvation (see Ezekiel 36:22).
 
And will not remember thy sins – They shall be forgiven. Hezekiah Isaiah 38:17 expresses the same idea by saying ‘thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back.’ We may learn from this verse:
 
1. That it is God only one who can pardon sin. How vain, then, is it for man to attempt it! How wicked for man to claim the prerogative! And yet it is an essential part of the papal system that the Pope and his priests have the power of remitting the penalty of transgression. This is an abomination and a defiant spit in the face of God.
 
2. That this is done by God solely for His own sake. It is not
 
(a) because we have any claim to it, for then it would not be pardon, but justice. It is not
 
(b) because we have any power to compel God to forgive, for who can contend with Him, and how could mere power procure pardon? It is not
 
(c) because we have any merit, for then also it would be justice, and we have no merit. Nor is it
 
(d) primarily in order that we may be happy, for our happiness is a matter not worthy to be named, compared with the honor of God. But it is solely for His own sake – to promote his glory – to show His perfections – to evince the greatness of His mercy and compassion – and to show His boundless and eternal love.
 
3. They who are pardoned should live to his glory, and not to themselves. For that they were forgiven, and it should be the grand purpose of their lives so to live as to show forth the goodness, compassion, and love of that merciful Being who has blotted out their sins.
 
4. If people are ever pardoned, they must come to God – and to God alone. They must come, not to justify themselves, but to confess their crimes. And they must come with a willingness that God should pardon them on just such terms as He pleases; at just such a time as He pleases; and solely with a view to the promotion of His own glory. Such as the thief who hung beside Jesus. That was a great mercy and a logical exception to the baptism since obviously he could not be baptized. That is not a valid reasoning for denying the baptism. Denying the baptism is denying your willingness to submit under God. Even worse so it is a rebellious attitude towards Him.
 
Unless we have this feeling of genuine remorse for our sinful behaviors, they never can be forgiven, nor should they be forgiven.
baptism