'We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed' 2Cor 4:8
I grew up in a household that was pretty strict, especially when it came to some of the principles of life that my mom held so dear, such as: integrity, loyalty, education, or just telling the truth... but definitely cowardice. She didn't quite get the whole MLK 'we shall overcome' thing. She was more like Leonardes' wife in the movie '300' when she said, 'Come back With your shield or ON it!' In other words, if some bad kid ran you home from school, you'd better not stop at home, (especially if it was just one kid... your size).
Because, if you ran inside and went under the bed, she'd pull you out and give you that stern look and say, 'You Better Get back out there!'
Today, the kids that chase you home are called bullies. My mom called them a hindrance to your self respect, and consequently, to your purpose in life. We were taught that the enemy wasn't a person, it was a mentality. She would say, 'think about it, if you run now, you'll always run.'
While she may not have received the Dr. Seuss parenting award, I think my mom was closer to the biblical teaching of our Lord than not! Jesus said:
"For which of you, desiring to build a tower, do not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? Lest, when he has laid a foundation, and is not able to finish, all that look will begin to mock him, saying, this man began to build, and was not able to finish. Or what king, as he goes to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and take counsel whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him that comes against him with twenty-thousand?" Luke 14:28-33
The Lord is showing us how that counting up the cost, and knowing what you're going up against, will help you prepare for the opposition. Sometimes the most difficult thing for Christians to understand is opposition. We're hated by some, and we don't get it. We're rejected by loved ones and so-called friends, and it blows our minds. We're under constant attack, and we wonder why we're being shot at. The Apostle Paul, when facing much opposition, wrote:
'We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;' 2Cor 4:8
Notice, Paul never minimized the attack, but he states his mental response as his strongest weapon! Examine the text... each section explains how God wants us to think when we encounter opposition!
1. We are troubled on every side = from the Grk thlibo meaning 'to press down'. Has the enemy ever made you feel oppressed on all sides...and sometimes depressed? Yes! But the Apostle Paul says, Yet we are not distressed! This word means 'not crushed'. You are not pulverized and forced inward. Why? Because you push back with faith! You push back with your prayer language (our tongues of fire!). You push back with the Word of God! No weapon that is formed against you shall prosper!
2. We are perplexed = from the Grk aporeo meaning 'to have no way out.' It's that feeling of being trapped and overwhelmed. But remember, we are NOT in despair! The Grk word for despair exaporeomai means 'utterly at a loss, wondering what to do next, confused and anxious.' Listen, you are never at a total loss trapped with no way out wringing your hands with anxiety. You have the power to operate from another realm and from another Kingdom. You can 'beam up'. You can enter into that secret place and hear from HIM. Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace...who knows how to 'beam up!'
3. Persecuted = from the Grk dioko which means 'to be hunted down, to cause to suffer'. This word denotes being chased by a pack of wolves. It's when one thing after another is attacking your body causing you pain; then one thing after another attacking your mind causing you to suffer. But remember, God says, you're not forsaken! You are not egkataleipo, which means abandoned, or left to die. The enemy wants to kill your health, your faith and your future... But God has goodness and mercy following you! This means whatever opposition you have that's attacking your health, God is saying, I'm not leaving you to handle it on your own...I will work it together for your good and give you Favor for the process! And if God be FOR you! Who?
4. And finally, cast down = from the Grk kataballo which means 'to put in a lower place, to throw down'. When the enemy tries to put you in a lower place, he is foolishly dealing with spiritual rank! He can't stop you, so he tries to undermine your position. But Paul responds, 'we are Not destroyed, from the Grk apollymi ... You are NOT put out of the way, pushed to the side, or put to ruin. Your spiritual rank has been determined by your assignment. And God has given You the authority! Our weapons are not carnal, but they're mighty through God! We're NOT destroyed...because we Fight!
Many of us are about to face great opposition because we're about to have Great Victories! There will be wars within and wars with-out. Jealousy and envy will cause much dissension in the church because of a spirit of celebrity in the Body of Christ. It's time for us to be battle ready like never before. The power on the earth is in the hands of the righteous. We have only ONE agenda...HIS! And every kind of opposition is an opportunity to GIVE HIM GLORY AND TO EXPERIENCE THE POWER OF GOD!
So GET BACK OUT THERE!
"And they shall fight against thee; but they shall not prevail against thee; for I am with thee, saith the Lord, to deliver thee!" Jer 1:19
Dr. Glories Powell