3 Reasons For Comfort In Affliction

“For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison.” (II Corinthians 4:17)

The Apostle Paul gives the Corinthians — and us — three reasons in this verse why we can find comfort regarding the afflictions that we as Christians have to endure here on earth:

— First, he tells us that our affliction here is “momentary”. It doesn’t last forever. Many times our most difficult trials are only a brief episode in our lives, which soon pass. Thus we can take comfort in that they will be over soon. They are only “momentary.”  And the truth is, even if our affliction lasts virtually our whole life here, it is still only “momentary” when compared to eternity!

— Second, we can take comfort that our affliction here is “light.” It may seem heavy to us now, but again, compared to the glories that await us, it is light. (And if our difficulty seems very heavy now, consider that if it can be called “light” compared to the glory that is to be revealed to you, then how weighty must that glory that awaits you be!!!)

— Finally, he says that the affliction you endure now has a PURPOSE: it “is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison.” God is using this very affliction that seems so onerous and difficult, to strip you of impurities, to make you like Christ, and to prepare you for a reward in heaven that is an “eternal”, “weight” of “glory.” Your afflictions are not wasted. God is using them all. There is an eternal purpose in them.

Our task in the meantime is to have faith, and to believe what God says here. Your afflictions are only “momentary”; they are “light”; and they are being used by God for His purposes, to produce an eternal glory for you that is not merely “better” by comparison, but is “BEYOND all comparison.” Romans 8:18 puts this all in perspective: “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”!


About Shawn Thomas

My blog, shawnethomas.com, 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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