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Paradox

Feb 11, 2018

Comfort & Affliction | Paradox Part 1 | West Jordan Campus

PARADOX: Two truths that appear to contradict, but actually COMPLEMENT each other.

 

THEME VERSE: 2 Corinthians 12:10 For when I am weak, then I am strong.

 

SERIES THESIS: Peace is the finish line of every paradox.

 

There’s an eagle in me that wants to soar, and there is a hippopotamus that wants to wallow in the mud. –Carl Sandberg

 

TODAY’S PARADOX: God LOVES me. God lets me SUFFER.

 

2 Corinthians 11:24-27 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one.[25] Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea,[26] I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers.[27] I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked.

 

2 Corinthians 1:3-7 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,[4] who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.[5] For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ.[6] If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer.[7] And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.

 

If I only praise God in GOOD circumstances I’ll always DOUBT him in bad ones.

 

2 Corinthians 1:3-4a Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,[4] who comforts us in all our troubles.

 

2 Corinthians 1:8-11 We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about the troubles we experienced in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself.[9] Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.[10] He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us,[11] as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.

 

We all look for COMFORT where we’ve already placed our CONFIDENCE.

 

MY AGENDA: To be as COMFORTABLE as possible.

 

GOD’S PURPOSE: To COMFORT me and make me a COMFORTER to others.

 

2 Corinthians 1:5-7 For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ.[6] If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer.[7] And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.
If God can take the worst thing that could ever happen - the death of His Son - and turn it into the best thing that can ever happen - the opening of heaven for all who follow Him - then He can take your difficulties and draw good from them, if you trust in Him. –Lee Strobel

 

BOTTOM LINE: Look to Christ FOR comfort, then look for others TO comfort.

 

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS


1. Do you have an example of painful time in life that you wouldn’t want to repeat but wouldn’t want to remove from your life?


2. Read 2 Corinthians chapter 1 aloud as a group. What stood out to you in this chapter?


3. How can praising God be good for someone when they are suffering?


4. Review as a group the fill in the blanks for “My Agenda” & “God’s Purpose”. As explicitly as possible answer the follow question: “What is my Agenda?”


5. Where do you most often see a conflict between your agenda and God’s purpose for your life?

 

Series Information

Other sermons in the series

SMCC is a non-denominational Christian church, meeting at five locations in Utah. You will experience joyful worship music and hope-filled biblical messages. Your children will have fun while learning about our loving God in a safe environment.

Above all, you can expect to be welcomed!