Something Beyond Ourselves

“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves” (II Corinthians 4:7)

Why is it that God often allows those of us in His service to experience weaknesses and difficulties?  This verse sheds light on at least one answer to that question:

Paul writes that our vessels (our bodies/minds/perhaps even our personalities too?) are common and weak: “earthen vessels.”  There is nothing extraordinary or “fancy” about us.  In fact we are often very weak and prone to failure.

But he goes on to say that these common vessels have a “treasure”: “the glory of God in the face of Christ” (as we saw in :6).  We are not exceptional in ourselves, but we know One who has great glory — and we know how others can attain to it also!

And Paul adds that there is a “surpassing greatness of the power” in us too, a power that is beyond our “earthen vessels.”  That is, people can tell that there is something beyond us that is at work in us.  This is the Holy Spirit of God in us — the real power and witness of Christianity.

BUT THE QUESTION EACH OF US SHOULD ASK IS: DO I HAVE THIS? DO THEY SEE THIS IN ME?  Is there something about my life which is beyond simply my education, or skill, or personality — that is unexplainable except by “the surpassing greatness of the power” of God? THIS is what we should long — and PRAY — for!

The thing is, this extraordinary power won’t just “happen.” It comes as the result of some commitments in our lives, which we will address in our devotion for tomorrow.


About Shawn Thomas

My blog,, features the text of my sermons, book reviews, family life experiences -- as well as a brief overview of the Lifeway "Explore the Bible" lesson for Southern Baptist Sunday School teachers.
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1 Response to Something Beyond Ourselves

  1. Pingback: Prayer + Purity = Power | shawnethomas

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