The State of the World
Verse by verse, Paul explains the state of the world and contrasts how believers should be different.
But we have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God's word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone's conscience in the sight of God. – 2 Corinthians 4:2
And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. – 2 Corinthians 4:3
In their ccase the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. – 2 Corinthians 4:4
For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake. – 2 Corinthians 4:5
For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge to the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. – 2 Corinthians 4:6
The "god of this world" refers to Satan. All that this world has to offer comes from Satan. All that is in this world is evil. All that is in this world is meaningless. Below I did a comparison between the world and believers.
|2||The world uses disgraceful, underhanded ways. They are cunning with God's words and tell lies.||Believers recnounce disgraceful, underhanded ways. They embrace God's words at face value.|
|3||The world is perishing.||Believers are prepared for eternity.|
|4||The world is blinded to the glory of Christ by the devil.||Believers see the glory of Christ and many other unseen things.|
|5||The world is selfish and glorifies itself.||Believers are selfless and glorify Jesus.|
|6||The world drowns in darkness.||Believers are saved by God's glorious light.|
Persevering For The Unseen Things
We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to depair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed. – 2 Corinthians 4:8
It is not any easier to live life as a believer. We walk a difficult path. We experience affliction, perplexion, persecution, and are put down. We experience hardship in every way imaginable.
At the very least, Jesus comforts us. That is why despite all the struggling, we can keep moving on. Someone may push us down, but we through Christ still have the strength to get back up.
So do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal. – 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
But if being a believer is only about experiencing hardship, there would be no reason to be a believer at all. Believers have hope–we look forward to the day when we can experience the unseen and eternal things. We aren't satisfied with just the things of this world that are seen. We seek the unseen.
That is why we have the power to persevere against all trials coming our way. It is through Christ that we have this power.
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