The Great Encourager (II Corinthians 1:2-5)
II Corinthians 1:2-5, Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the LORD Jesus Christ. Blessed be God, even the Father of our LORD Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.
Because we are human, we all get discouraged at times. Encouragement is something we all need. Thank God it is something He has promised to every one of us. I want you to know the sweet encouragement that only our Saviour can bring.
The Father Encourages Us. God is a Father to the fatherless. He knows, understands, sees, cares, loves, and is present with His children. Hebrews perfectly expresses the way in which He gives encouragement through His Word (Hebrews 12:5). The Scriptures are the means the Father uses to speak directly to us as His children. Our encouragement of sufferers, therefore, will simply be the means of bringing to them the encouraging Word of the Father as we read with them.
The Son Encourages Us. Jesus understands. He has experienced the loneliness, the sense of degradation, the pain, the fears of suffering. That is not simply a thing of the past for Him. Hebrews 4:15-16, For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. The One who cried out on the Cross, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" (Matthew 27:46) understands the depths of discouragement.
The Holy Spirit Encourages Us. He is the One called to our side to give us strength. When your sense of your value to God is destitute, the Spirit bears witness with your spirit that you are a child of God. When you're discouraged do not cry, "O God!" rather cry, "Abba! Father!" In this way, in the midst of our suffering, we realize we are children. If we are children, we are heirs. If we are heirs, then glory awaits us (Romans 8:15-17). This is real encouragement! We should rejoice in our salvation, in the hope of God's glory, and—yes, even in our sufferings, because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. (Romans 5:1-5).
As children of God, we should encourage and comfort one another. I Thessalonians 5:11, Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do. The Scriptures urge us to encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with everyone (I Thessalonians 5:14).
PRAYER: Father, I lift up those You have personally allowed me to encounter. Those who are suffering for Your cause, those who are struggling a besetting sin, and strengthen those who are utilizing all their efforts to make an impact for you. In Jesus Name, AMEN.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship.