Cattails, Rabbit Trails, and Thistlefish: "And GOD is faithful..."

Friday, March 6, 2015

"And GOD is faithful..."

"No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it." - 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV)

I think it really interesting, and worth noting, that Paul does not write to the Corinthians and say, "Don't worry, your temptations are nothing unusual; everyone faces them. But I believe in you! You are strong overcomers!" 
No, Paul says, "Your temptations are the same every man faces. But God is faithful."
Paul does not give his audience any false hope in themselves, but points them directly to the only source of true strength. 

Sometimes I feel, in our efforts to exhort and encourage others (especially fellow Believers), we can be very quick to point to their own strengths that will get them through. We sound something similar to "Don't worry, So-and-So; I know you have it in you. You're such a strong person, and you've done so much, and you're so good, and you're so great at these things," and so on. But truly, we're all poor and broken sinners incapable of doing one good thing apart from Jesus Christ and His Holy Spirit within us.

So it should not be surprising that Paul puts the emphasis on God's faithfulness in his encouragements. He is very aware of how easy it is to encourage someone in their own strength, and very aware of how misleading that can be. Our only strength, our only hope of goodness, lies in Christ.
In addition, that is the only encouragement I can give you in the every day. There are constant temptations to sin or doubt or worry or despair. But God is faithful. And that's something we can count on. 

Just some food for thought. :)
Hope you are all having a fantastic week!

1 comment :

  1. Such a good reminder, thank you! I've been extremely challenged in life lately and it's almost an automatic response to try to "get through" it all on our own strength. Trusting God is a lot harder sometimes but it's the only way.