Reading for Friday, Sept 21: 2 Cor 4
To participate in the new covenant is to take up the charge to ministry (v1). Paul will have more to say about this ministry in the next chapter. But Paul makes us aware of the present forces of evil that seek to counter the work of the Spirit. Speaking of the perishing, Paul says that “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,” (v4). But we preach Jesus (v5), not ourselves, knowing Christ is the only antidote to what ails the world.
In His great foresight, God has entrusted this message to us, jars of clay containing the great treasure of the Gospel (v7). Life in the flesh is difficult and Paul acknowledges such. But these difficulties do not have the last word. We are afflicted but not crushed; persecuted but not forsaken; struck down but not destroyed (v8-9). We move forward confident of a coming resurrection (v14). Therefore, we will never lose heart, though we outwardly waste away, our inner self experiences renewal on a daily basis (v16). “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,” (v17-18).