Verse of the Day Devotion 2 Corinthians 4:16 Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.
Over the next couple of days as we approach the New Year, I will be looking at verses that I believe we all, including myself, should focus on as we approach and go into 2022. I am preparing myself to focus my attention on how I want to think next year. Thus, the verse selections for this week.
Earlier in this chapter, Paul speaks of the suffering he and his companions go through for the cause of Christ. He begins by declaring that God is doing the work through them, not by them alone. “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the surpassing greatness of the power may be of God and not from ourselves;” 2 Corinthians 4:7. They had submitted themselves to God to work through them to do His great work. However, then he speaks of what this work has brought them, persecution. “we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.”2 Corinthians 4:8-10. They suffered much in this work of bringing the truth of Jesus Christ predominantly to the Gentiles, but also to Jews. We see this clarified in the next verse, “For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.” 2 Corinthians 4:11.
How could they do this? “But having the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, ‘I BELIEVED; THEREFORE I SPOKE,’ we also believe, therefore also we speak;” 2 Corinthians 4:13. This was according to what was written in Psalm 116:10. What He is essentially saying is, according to that which is written and he quoted above, we also believe, and therefore speak,” and without fear amidst afflictions and deaths. And this is assured because in verse 14 he writes, “knowing that He who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and will present us with you. For all things are for your sakes, that the grace which is spreading to more and more people may cause the giving of thanks to abound to the glory of God.” 2 Corinthians 4:14-15.
And now to our focus verse. “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day.” 2 Corinthians 4:16. His soul, that which cannot be felt or seen by others, is renewed, revived, and receives a daily increase of light and life from God, so that they grow more holy, more happy, and more filled with His glory every day.
And he can say this, “For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:17-18. He states that the afflictions He endures will bring an eternal weight of glory beyond what he could ever imagine or experience here. Also, he states that he doesn’t focus on what happens to him here, or the ways of this world, but on the things that cannot be seen, the glories of Heaven. He lives completely by faith. “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1. For as he says, the things that can now be seen or touched are temporary and will eventually no longer exist. But those things that we cannot see are eternal as we Christians also are eternal.
I have been thinking of the New Year and what changes I would like to make. A big one for me is to be more focused on eternal things rather than earthly things. Knowing that when I go home I will have a whole different life where the things here have no real value in the grand scheme of things. And also to focus more intently on being a light in this world, spreading the truth through my words as well as the life I live. And I want to encourage everyone I know to make this your goal in 2022 as well. We are called to be that light that people see. “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do men light a lamp, and put it under the peck-measure, but on the lampstand; and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16. It is so important that we don’t just not talk the talk but also walk the walk. Make this your goal in 2022. We are all called to make disciples of Christ. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20. Let’s make this our primary focus starting now and for the rest of our time here on earth.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.
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