O LORD, "... you in your great mercies did not forsake them in the wilderness."
Nehemiah 9:19 (ESV)
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
"God is able to make all grace abound to you..."
My reflections below on 2 Corinthians 9:8 were posted this week on the Fighter Verse blog: "To Strengthen Your Faith and Increase Your Love." Here is the link: http://is.gd/nYRALI
"And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work.
(2 Corinthians 9:8, ESV)
Often one of the things that keeps us from loving others is that we doubt God’s ability and inclination to care for us. In unbelief, we think, “If we are generous toward others, nobody will provide for our own needs.”
This verse, by the power of the Spirit, is given to you to strengthen your hope in God and increase your love for others. Just reflect on the implications of the words “all”and “every”in this verse.
First, notice that God is powerful to make “all grace” abound to you. God is not poor in his grace toward us, but being rich in grace he is able to give us grace overflowing.
Second, out of the fullness of his grace, God will provide us with “all sufficiency.” In other words, since God is rich in grace, you ought to be confident that he will care for you. Since, Christ died for you, you know that God will graciously give you all that you need (cf. Romans 8:32).
Third, this enablement from God is not just occasional but “at all times.” Even at times when you have little resources, God can be relied upon to provide what you need.
And finally, note the “every.” God’s purpose in all this enabling grace to you is that you may have excessive grace that is overflowing in “every” good work of love for other people.
I love Jesus. I love my wife and four children. And I am on the pastoral staff at Bethlehem Baptist, Minneapolis, MN (click photo for my bio on the Bethlehem website)
The Purpose of this Blog
The theme, "wilderness mercies" simply is a metaphor for how I think about the journey of the 'normal' Christian life. That is, our lives are made up of several wilderness experiences in which God works his great mercy over and over again for our joy and his glory. The deepest experiences of GOD's grace, and breakthroughs in knowledge of Christ, self, others and the world— are gained more often in the 'wilderness'.
One of the main impulses behind this blog was born when my eldest son urged me to write thoughts down for his benefit and for my benefit— and for the benefit of the rest of my children and others.
Therefore, my aim is to post content that in one way or another encourages our hope in God's steadfast love and mercy to us in Christ. I need such encouragement and I know others do too.