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The God of All Comfort

As we experience persecution from a lost and dying world we see that God is not absent from our struggles. David wrote this in Psalms 18:1 I love you, Lord; you are my strength. 2 The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety. 3 I called on the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and he saved me from my enemies. In the first verses of this Psalm we hear the heart of a king who has been attacked from all sides and yet his God, our God, has come through again and again with protection and with power to defeat his enemies. In the following verses, we hear a king who has realized that God does live and God does intervene and God can be trusted and it has strengthened his faith. Psalms 18:46 The Lord lives! Praise to my Rock! May the God of my salvation be exalted! 47 He is the God who pays back those who harm me; he subdues the nations under me 48 and rescues me from my enemies. You hold me safe beyond the reach of my enemies; you save me from violent opponents.

In John 15 Jesus tells His disciples that the world is going to hate them and He shows them some realities about following Him. In John 16 Jesus begins in verse 1 telling them this 1 “I have told you these things so that you won’t abandon your faith. Jesus goes on to give us a reality about how people who are of the world's thinking will respond to those of us who live a vibrant solo-out faith. In verses 2-4, Jesus says 2 For you will be expelled from the synagogues, and the time is coming when those who kill you will think they are doing a holy service for God.3 This is because they have never known the Father or me.4 Yes, I’m telling you these things now, so that when they happen, you will remember my warning. I didn’t tell you earlier because I was going to be with you for a while longer.

There will be persecution in the world and yes, there will be persecution in the church. When we are totally sold out it intimidates people who are just "going through the motions" and that guilt they feel has to be dealt with and a sold-out believer is an easy target. The following story illustrates a good attitude when dealing with persecution. When the emperor Valens threatened Eusebius with confiscation of all his goods, torture, banishment, or even death, the courageous Christian replied, "He needs not fear confiscation, who has nothing to lose; nor banishment, to whom heaven is his country; nor torments, when his body can be destroyed at one blow;

Those words are very touching and can give some peace in tumultuous times, but in verse 7 Jesus explains how He will deal with the situations of life, knowing that He would be leaving soon. Verses 7 But I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I am leaving; for if I do not leave, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you.8 And He, when He comes, will convict the world regarding sin, and righteousness, and judgment:9 regarding sin, because they do not believe in Me;10 and regarding righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you no longer are going to see Me;11 and regarding judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged. In the King James Version of this scripture, Jesus uses the word "comforter" to show how the Holy Spirit will help us. He will give us comfort in these times of persecution. Paul wrote this in 1 Corinthians 1:3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort.4 He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.

Our God is available and always here to comfort us and also protect us. Put yourself in His hands and allow the God of all comfort to be just that for you!! If you are gonna serve Jesus you are gonna need His comfort at some time or another.

The Pilgrimage Continues.

David Warren

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