God’s Comfort – Lessons learned in suffering.

My sermon notes for Sunday, Nov 18th  as we continue a study through 2 Corinthians.  Remember, these are my personal study notes and not a manuscript of the sermon.  To see the sermon each week or subscribe to the weekly sermon podcast please visit http://www.fbcap.net

(the idea for this message and the main structure of the outline was gathered from John MacArthur and his  2 Cor. commentary)



Why do we suffer?

How do we respond to suffering?


God’s Glorious Comfort – Why does God allow us to suffer.


To test one’s faith


1 Peter 1:6–7 -. [6] In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, [7] so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (ESV)


  • A true believer cannot losses their faith. ( 24:13 – a true believer endures till the end) [13] But the one who endures to the end will be saved. (ESV)


  • Matthew 13:18–23 – [18] “Hear then the parable of the sower: [19] When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path. [20] As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, [21] yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away. [22] As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. [23] As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.” (ESV)


To wean us from the world


  • Gives us a proper view of plans, hopes, dreams, and expectations.
  • Teaches us what is important to us and what we really love


To teach us the importance of obedience


Psalm 119:67 – Before I was afflicted, I went astray, but now I keep your word. (ESV)


Psalm 119:71 – It is good for me that I was afflicted, that I might learn your statutes. (ESV)


Hebrews 12:5–13 – [5] And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons?

“My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord,

nor be weary when reproved by him.

[6] For the Lord disciplines the one he loves,

and chastises every son whom he receives.”

[7] It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? [8] If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. [9] Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? [10] For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. [11] For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.


[12] Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, [13] and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed. (ESV)


  • Sin brings discipline. Sin has consequences.



To bring about maturity


James 1:2–4 – [2] Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, [3] for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. [4] And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. (ESV)



To encourage and comfort others


Luke 22:31–32 – [31] “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat, [32] but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.” (ESV)


  • Strengthen your brothers and sisters in Christ



To remind us of our eternal hope


Romans 5:3–5 -[3] Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, [4] and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, [5] and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. (ESV)


  • If we hope for heaven, we will not be disappointed in this life.
  • Endurance then assurance, confidence, and hope.




To show us His love


Isaiah 49:13 – Sing for joy, O heavens, and exult, O earth, break forth, O mountains, into singing! For the LORD has comforted his people and will have compassion on his afflicted. (ESV)


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