Monday, March 02, 2015
THE GOD OF ALL COMFORT
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort.... (2 Corinthians 1:3)
The name of God is sacred for it reveals the nature of God. Since His name is a disclosure of His infinite being, then many names are given in Scripture to help us relate to Him. One name is not adequate, though all others flow from the name, I AM, for that is a limitless term, as we may see in that glorious name, many facets of God's nature. I AM Alpha and Omega; I AM the Bread of Life; I AM the Good Shepherd--and so many more. Whatever we need, we may know there is a name for that need. Thus, Paul, writing to the Corinthians here, identifies Him as the "God of all comfort." It was a precious name that Paul could bear witness to for he had been the recipient of God's remarkable comfort. The degree of the solace he had received was in direct proportion to the depth of the suffering the Apostle had known. As one reads this letter, Paul opens the door into the heart of a Gospel preacher and allows us to peer into the chambers filled with pain and problems that come with ministry. Yet, in his disappointments and difficulties, during loneliness and labors, there is the note of faith in the sovereign purpose of God and declaration of the supernatural peace He bestows. The best preaching arises from more than a doctrinal proposition formulated in the pastor's study, but from the personal manifestation of that truth's reality in daily living. Paul wasn't discussing a theory but giving a testimony to the "God of all comfort."
The man of God knew something more--that God is no respecter of persons--so the comfort He gives for one man's trials is a promise of comfort to another facing his or her own problems. Whatever you are going through today--the relentless pressures and pain of life that roll in continually like ocean waves--there is a supply of comfort available to us to enable us to withstand the storm surge. God builds a sea wall with timbers of truth, grounded on the solid Rock, cemented together by grace to guard our hearts from despair.
In providing for Paul, God gave him a life message to other struggling pilgrims, and when we experience His comfort it is not meant to be hoarded, but shared. Here is the context:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ. Now if we are afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effective for enduring the same sufferings which we also suffer. Or if we are comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation. And our hope for you is steadfast, because we know that as you are partakers of the sufferings, so also you will partake of the consolation. (2 Corinthians 1:3-7)
God had comfort for Paul in his suffering and now he encourages the Corinthians that similar comfort is available to them, and thankfully to us as well! May you know the "God of all comfort" today!