Today we continue our series “God is faithful!” I was led to 2 Corinthians 4. In this passage, we will look at what it looks like to believe God is faithful. Because of God’s faithfulness towards us, we can withstand and overcome anything!
Yesterday we looked at verse 8. I mainly dealt with the first half of the verse. Today I will deal with the latter half.
(2 Corinthians 4:1, 7-13, 16-18 TPT)
1 Now, it’s because of God’s mercy that we have been entrusted with the privilege of this new covenant ministry. And we will not quit or faint with weariness.
7 We are like common clay jars that carry this glorious treasure within, so that this immeasurable power will be seen as God’s, not ours.
8 Though we experience every kind of pressure, we’re not crushed. At times we don’t know what to do, but quitting is not an option.
9 We are persecuted by others, but God has not forsaken us. We may be knocked down, but not out.
10 We continually share in the death of Jesus in our own bodies so that the resurrection life of Jesus will be revealed through our humanity.
11 We consider living to mean that we are constantly being handed over to death for Jesus’ sake so that the life of Jesus will be revealed through our humanity.
12 So, then, death is at work in us but it releases life in you.
13 We have the same Spirit of faith that is described in the Scriptures when it says, “First I believed, then I spoke in faith.” So we also first believe then speak in faith.
16 So no wonder we don’t give up. For even though our outer person gradually wears out, our inner being is renewed every single day.
17 We view our slight, short-lived troubles in the light of eternity. We see our difficulties as the substance that produces for us an eternal, weighty glory far beyond all comparison,
18 because we don’t focus our attention on what is seen but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but the unseen realm is eternal.
So what does this mean for you today? A few things.
(2 Corinthians 4:8 TPT)
Though we experience every kind of pressure, we’re not crushed. At times we don’t know what to do, but quitting is not an option.
1. What to do when you don’t know what to do.
God commands us to walk and live by faith. This puts us in a situation where we must live by every Word He speaks to us (Mat 4:4). So hearing from God becomes the first challenge. Once we get past that, we are faced with the challenge of doing what God told us to do, even when it seems crazy or impossible. This is the life of faith.
I will use something that happened in 2 Chronicles 20 as an example of this. In this passage, the Moabites, Ammonites, and Meunites came to wage war against the people of God. Jehoshaphat was their leader, the king. He did not know what to do. They were outnumbered, outgunned, and soon-to-be surrounded.
The king called for a fast. He needed to hear from God. Remember, this was the Old Testament. Jehoshaphat did not have the Holy Spirit. He had to attempt to hear from God without having a direct connection to the Father. Under the Old Covenant, kings relied on prophets and priests to be able to hear from God. Even then, the prophets and priests had moments when the Holy Spirit came upon them, but He did not live inside of them.
The king called for a corporate fast. The entire nation was fasting because the situation was so serious. During this time, the spirit of the Lord came upon Jahaziel, the son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, a Levite and descendant of Asaph. This young man stood up and said, “Listen, King Jehoshaphat and all who live in Judah and Jerusalem! This is what the Lord says to you: ‘Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s… You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.’”
God then told them what to do. Instead of sending out the army, the king sent out the praise team. As the praises went up to God, God confused the enemy, and they killed themselves. In the end, the Bible says:
(2 Chronicles 20:24, 25 NIV)
24 When the men of Judah came to the place that overlooks the desert and looked toward the vast army, they saw only dead bodies lying on the ground; no one had escaped.
25 So Jehoshaphat and his men went to carry off their plunder, and they found among them a great amount of equipment and clothing[d] and also articles of value—more than they could take away. There was so much plunder that it took three days to collect it.
What do we learn from this? A few things.
— There will be times when we don’t know what to do.
— When we don’t know what to do, we need to seek God concerning it.
— Unlike the Old Covenant, we don’t have to rely on a prophet or priest to get a Word from God for us. We can go to God directly, through the Holy Spirit, in the name of Jesus!
— Fasting helps. Fasting does not change God. Fasting changes you. Fasting puts you in a position where you are more sensitive to hearing God’s voice.
— One word from God can turn any seemingly hopeless situation around.
— When you get a word from God, just know that it may not make sense. God told Jehoshaphat to do something crazy. Why? Because God is spiritual, not sensual. God does not limit Himself to things that make sense in this world. So when God speaks, you must have the faith and courage to do what He is leading you to do, even at the risk of looking foolish!
The Israelites did not know what to do. They sought the Lord concerning it, God spoke a word, they believed the word even when it didn’t make any sense, and they were delivered from the circumstances. This is how we’re supposed to live. This is the life of faith.
2. Quitting is not an option.
The first part of the statement we are dealing with today, from 2 Corinthians 4:8, reads, “At times we don’t know what to do.” We just deal with that. But now, let me deal with the rest of the verse. It says, “but quitting is not an option.”
— I understand that people quit things. People start businesses, projects, relationships, endeavors, etc., and many times, when things get rough, they wind up giving up what they initially thought was a great opportunity.
— We can give up on things if we want to. We can change course and head in a different direction. There’s nothing wrong with that when the Holy Spirit is leading you to do so. It could be that the season for the thing is over. It could be that you never heard from God in the first place. So there are reasons to stop something or to shut a project down. But if God told you to start the project and you stop it without getting clearance from God first, you are disobedient. You are allowing frustration, setbacks, and disappointment to cause you to give up on something God told you to do.
— Paul makes it clear that for us, as believers, quitting is not an option. If the Holy Spirit tells you to stop, then stop. If the Holy Spirit tells you to go a different direction, then go a different direction. But if the Holy Spirit told you to start and He has not told you to stop, then quitting is not an option. At that point, if you quit, you are giving up on God. You are failing to put in AMEN on God’s YES.
— This series is about the fact that God is faithful. I want you to know that God is faithful to you. He has been faithful, and He always will be. But for you and I to walk and live by faith, we must also be faithful to God. We must build up the grit, determination, and resiliency to press through all the opposition we face on the road to our destiny. If we give up on something God told us to do, we will make it to heaven only to realize that we missed out on God’s best. This is why Paul tells us that for us, quitting is not an option.
— I understand that things get tough. I know what it is to face difficulties, setbacks, and disappointments. I have been there and done that many times. I’ve experienced more challenges than I want to remember. But one thing I know is that God will see you through it just as long as you don’t give up. While writing to the believers in Galatia, Paul made it clear that we will receive our harvest. There is a season when our harvest will come due. There is a due season for us! We will experience that due season if we don’t give up. (Gal 6:7-9).
— If it does not look like you’re winning, and you were doing something God told you to do, then the situation is obviously not over. I know it’s hard. I know sometimes you want to give up. But the only way you can lose is if you quit!
— While you actively believing God, pursuing His well, and setting your faith against all the opposition you’re facing, you are in the middle of a faith fight. But if you ever give up and choose to stop the effort, you are LOCKING IN THE LOSS! You are making a setback an actual loss because you’re choosing to make the setback final.
Quitting is not an option! God is faithful. Will you be?
We will stop here. I have given you enough for today.
Declaration of Faith:
Father, I thank You for leading me to LEVEL UP in this season. I LEVEL UP by resolving in my heart and mind to stick with everything You lead me to do until I see what You promised. You will never give up on me. Therefore, I will never give up on You. When I don’t know what to do, I seek You. You speak to me, and I do what You lead me to do, even in the face of opposition, setbacks, disappointment, and discouragement. Quitting is not an option for me! The only way I can lose is if I quit, and there is NO QUIT in me. This is why I know GREATER IS COMING FOR ME! I declare this by faith. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
This is Today’s Word! Apply it and Prosper.