Weak Yet Eternal (2 Corinthians Series #4)
How would you measure success?
2 Corinthians 4:1-5:10
We are vessels. Jars of clay. But as followers of Jesus, we have been filled with treasures— the all-surpassing power of God. Not to draw attention to us but Christ in us.
Our Western society would see success as social status, achieving fame, wealth, seniority, and popularity. Even in the church, this type of thinking has filtered in from our culture. A successful church might be measured by size, facilities, finances, number of staff, appeal, numbers of ministries and popularity.
As God’s people, we are the church. And Paul in this letter to the Corinthians gives us a very different picture of being successful followers of Christ. To know and understand our purpose. Paul didn’t just theorize about this; this was his practice. He lived it and he encourages us to live it as well.
As an apostle, the father of the Corinthian church, he explains his life not in strength and power, success, and celebrity, but in weakness and suffering for Christ.
“But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body." (2 Cor 4:7-10)
We are vessels. Jars of clay. But as followers of Jesus, we have been filled with treasures— the all-surpassing power of God. Not to draw attention to us but Christ in us. We continue to be shaped—dying to self and the things of this world so that his life might be revealed in us. Success is death, weakness and suffering so that life and light might shine in us and in those who come to know and grow in Christ. And our reward, our eternal glory is yet to come.
So, we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
Be encouraged today. Any suffering, hardship, crisis, is temporary. Christ is walking with you so don’t lose heart. And keep your eyes on the eternal.