Saturday, April 4, 2020

心の奥底の望み

ダンカンは、何はともあれ経済力だと考え、20代から野心的に働きました。有名なシリコンバレーの企業で出世し莫大な富を得ました。多額の預金、高級車、カリフォルニアの豪邸など、欲しいものすべてを手に入れました。にもかかわらず、彼は物凄く不幸でした。不安で満たされません。実際のところ、富は人生を悪くしたと言います。お金の山は、仲間や友情、喜びをもたらすどころか、頭痛の種になることの方が多かったのです。

確実な人生のために富を蓄えようと膨大なエネルギーを費やす人たちがいます。それは愚かなゲームです。「金銭を愛する者は金銭に満足しない」と聖書は語ります(伝5:10)。身を粉にして働き、人に負けない財産と経済的な地位を得て、何でも買える自由を手にしたとしても、満足できません。十分ではないのです。「これもまた、むなしい」と伝道者の書の著者が語るとおりです(10節)。

神を念頭に置かずに満ち足りた人生を送ろうと頑張っても無益です。聖書は、しっかり働き、世の中が良くなるように己の能力を使いなさいと教えていますが、心の底から満たされるような貯蓄ができる人はいません。イエスだけが、本当に満たされた人生、愛の絆を土台とした人生を提供します(ヨハ10:10)。それで十分なのです。


from デイリーブレッド

Cognitive Disability and Eternal Destiny: Open Letter to Uncertain Loved Ones

Cognitive Disability and Eternal Destiny

My heart aches as I think about the recent loss of your beautiful 15-year-old daughter, Hannah. I grieve for you both and the pain you must be experiencing. You are wonderful parents who loved Hannah well and honored Christ in her ongoing care. I am praying you experience the tender, steadfast love of God in this difficult time (Psalm 59:16–17). He is truly sufficient to sustain you and strengthen your weary hearts (Psalm 55:22; 28:7). He is near and is our peace, dear friends.

You wrote to ask me if the Bible provides any hope regarding the eternal destiny of your daughter, since she functioned at a very limited intellectual capacity her entire life. My wife and I have pondered this question over the years. We lost a baby boy before he was born and have thought deeply about our oldest son, Levi, who is almost nine years old but understands and processes the world around him like an infant. I know well the joys and challenges of loving a child who ages in years but continues to function at a very limited cognitive level. Oh how our hearts long for him to know and treasure Christ and be restored from his broken body living in a fallen world.

What happens eternally to a person, whatever his or her age, who possessed a limited lifelong cognitive ability? Whether it is someone like your daughter, or a baby who dies in the womb, or a child who dies in infancy, the question is the same. Each of these people is unable to grasp spiritual truths, does not commit conscious acts of sin, and does not understand the concept and choice between right and wrong. Does God call these precious souls home to heaven to enjoy the pleasures of his glorious presence, or does he destine them to an eternity of pain and suffering in hell, away from his fellowship?

What Does Scripture Say?

You asked a weighty question and, sadly, there are some confusing resources out there trying to offer some measure of hope regarding the salvation of people like your daughter and my son. Some claim a form of special revelation through lack of knowledge, and I have read others who even claim salvation through the faith of a caregiver.

But I want to offer biblical answers, not theoretical ideas. This is no trifle. Let us not build our hope on sentiment, but rather look to the Scriptures. I want to show you why I wholeheartedly believe God saves those who die with limited lifelong cognitive ability.

I cannot simply give you one biblical passage to answer your question. As with many theological questions, the Bible provides an answer in various ways and in various passages. God’s word does not directly address the question you have raised. Yet I believe God’s word is sufficient to provide an answer — one you can hold with conviction, confidence, and comfort in our sovereign, wise, and good God.

Three Truths to Affirm

Let me first clarify three important biblical truths we must affirm and not neglect.

No One Is Innocent

No person stands innocent before God. Everyone is conceived and born sinful, worthy of God’s judgment (Psalm 51:5). All human persons are “by nature children of wrath” (Ephesians 2:3), “alienated and hostile in mind” (Colossians 1:21), and thus under God’s judgment (John 3:36).

Because of Adam’s original sin, God subjected the entire world to death and futility (Romans 8:20; 1 Corinthians 15:21). Additionally, condemnation justly passed to every individual person who would ever live (Romans 5:12–19). Every human being is therefore desperately in need of redemption in the person and work of Jesus Christ.

Salvation Belongs to the Lord

Every human person is an eternal soul. Each will live forever (John 5:28–29) either under damnation and judgment in hell, separated from God (2 Thessalonians 1:9; Revelation 14:9–10; 20:15), or with immeasurable joy in heaven, communing with God (Psalm 16:11; Matthew 25:34).

Salvation belongs to God (Psalm 3:8). From all eternity (2 Timothy 1:9), God in his own purpose and grace determines to save guilty sinners through his Son Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5) from every tribe, tongue, people, and nation (Revelation 5:9; 7:9). God foreknows and predestines these individuals (Romans 8:29–30). He chooses them according to the purpose of his will to be holy and blameless before him (Ephesians 1:4–5; Romans 8:29) to the praise of his glorious grace (Ephesians 1:6).

Salvation comes only in and through the atoning work of Jesus Christ. As the apostle Peter so boldly declares, “There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

God Saves Through Faith

Throughout the Bible, God gives spiritual faith through cognitive capacities. The Spirit–enabled abilities of spiritually hearing (Romans 10:17), spiritually seeing (2 Corinthians 4:6), and spiritually understanding (1 Corinthians 2:12) the glory of Jesus Christ in the gospel come by way of intellectual capacities. Salvation comes through faith, and faith is always intertwined with a certain level of cognitive understanding.

John Piper writes, “One must see and interpret the human language of the Scriptures in order to see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ in them. Which means that the only pathway to the self-authenticating light of the glory of God in Scripture is the path of human observation and human reasoning” (A Peculiar Glory, 271). It is through the understanding of the mind in combination with the affections of the heart that one receives Jesus Christ as saving refuge and ultimate treasure (John 1:12). Thus, verifiable salvation is possible only when the gospel goes forth, and its hearers or readers have the cognitive capacity to comprehend and receive that message (1 Thessalonians 2:13). Without cognitive understanding, faith has no truth to trust.

Two Reasons for Confidence

Now, in light of these truths, here are two biblical reasons why I wholeheartedly believe God saves those who possess lifelong limited cognitive ability and why you can have confidence that your precious Hannah is joyfully experiencing the presence of Jesus.

1. God reserves his wrath for those without excuse.

In Romans 1, Paul writes that God reveals his wrath against those to whom he has made himself “plain” (Romans 1:19), to whom he has “shown” what can be known about himself (Romans 1:19), who have “clearly perceived” his eternal power and divine nature in creation (Romans 1:20), and who have “known” him and yet suppressed his glory and dominion (Romans 1:21). Such people “are without excuse” (Romans 1:20). In other words, God pours his wrath upon people who have the ability to comprehend him and yet suppress him.

Every person is guilty in Adam and lives under God’s eternal wrath. However, Romans 1 implies that God gives those without the cognitive ability to understand him and consciously dishonor him an excuse not to experience his eternal judgment. This excuse exists because those with severely limited intellectual capacities do not have the ability to perceive, understand, and honor. They therefore never consciously dishonor God by perceiving and then rejecting him. A lack in perceiving and understanding corresponds with a lack of certain guilt before God.

Consider also what Jesus says to the Jewish leaders in John 9:41: “If you were blind, you would have no guilt; but now that you say, ‘We see,’ your guilt remains.” Again, we see that a lack in perceiving and understanding corresponds with a lack of responsibility before God. At an infant’s funeral sermon several years ago, Piper helpfully commented on this text:

The point for us is that even though we human beings are under the penalty of everlasting judgment and death because of the fall of our race into sin and the sinful nature that we all have, nevertheless God only executes this judgment on those who have the natural capacity to see his glory and understand his will, and refuse to embrace it as their treasure.

I believe he is right. God reserves his punishment for those with the ability to behold his glory and refuse to receive him as Savior.

2. God judges people for conscious individual sin.

Although Adam’s sin is imputed to all human beings (Romans 5:12–14), this sin is not the basis of God’s individual eternal punishment. Scripture teaches that God punishes sinners based on the sins they individually commit. Additionally, God punishes only for sins that people willingly desire and pursue.

Universal human death is evidence of God’s judgment upon all due to Adam’s sin, but only those who willingly commit sin are eternally punished for sin (2 Corinthians 5:10; Revelation 20:12–15). God’s judgment accords with sins that a person with severely limited cognitive ability is unable to commit (see, for example, the sins listed in Matthew 15:19–20 or Revelation 21:8).

Deuteronomy 1:35–39 reveals that God punishes people for personal, individual sin. In this passage, Moses hearkens back to God’s declarative judgment on the wilderness generation: it is not the children of this generation, those “who today have no knowledge of good or evil,” who will be condemned, but rather their parents (Numbers 14:20–35). God deals differently with people who have limited intellectual abilities than he deals with those who are capable and guilty of conscious sin.

Deuteronomy helpfully reveals that one may be temporarily unable to distinguish right from wrong. Isaiah acknowledges the same reality when he writes, “Before the boy knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good . . .” (Isaiah 7:14–16). These passages suggest there is a state when a person is unable to distinguish between right and wrong. As such, God does not hold such people to the same standard he uses for those who willfully disobey. When this state extends throughout one’s entire life, there is no individual sin for God to eternally punish.

For these reasons, no biblical author describes an infant, someone with any form of limited intellectual ability, or even a young child as under God’s judgment after death. Instead, we find hints of the opposite. Job and the preacher in Ecclesiastes, for example, remark that stillborn children are at rest (Job 3:16–17; Ecclesiastes 6:3–5). In context, these statements imply that these infants have not merely escaped the trouble of this world, but have entered into everlasting rest.

Safe in the Arms of Jesus

The Bible provides sound hope regarding the eternal destiny of your daughter. I believe Hannah is with Jesus. I believe you can confidently trust that God saves all who die in infancy, as well as those, like your daughter, who possess a lifelong limited intellectual capacity.

All the glory and thanks be to Jesus alone! It is only through the finished work of Jesus Christ, who defeats the sin of Adam and offers everlasting life, that we confidently rest in the hope that those with lifelong limited cognitive abilities are safe in his arms. And not only safe, but filled with love to Christ. Because heaven is for people who love Jesus, I believe God saved Hannah through faith in Jesus Christ at the moment of her death and the first sight of her Savior.

Hannah was a beautiful young lady. She was fearfully and wonderfully created by Jesus and for Jesus (Psalm 139:14; Colossians 1:16). And now she is joyfully glorifying her God with a perfectly restored body, free from all the effects of living in a sinfully broken world. She is free from hindrances in her mind and heart as she unreservedly lives in the everlasting delight of her glorious God.

Never Stop Sharing

Some might propose that, since God saves all who at the point of death possessed a lifelong limited cognitive capacity, then we don’t need to articulate the gospel to those who we believe fall into that category. What folly! Who are we to determine who does and does not understand the beauty and glory of Christ in his gospel?

I am grateful you continued sharing Jesus with Hannah until the end of her days. That is also something we continually share with our Levi. God alone reigns sovereign over salvation. Our task is simply to be faithful with the message of Christ, never stop sharing the gospel, and pray like crazy that God would graciously ignite a heart of faith, even if we never see evidence on this side of glory. And at the end of each day, we rest in the sovereignty, wisdom, and goodness of our great God.



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Friday, April 3, 2020

Is It a Sin to Back Out of a Commitment?

Honesty, integrity, and reliability should characterize every Christian. Since God delights in truth, so should his people.

Listen Now



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Corona Cannot Prevail Against Her

Corona Cannot Prevail Against Her

These may be unprecedented days in our lifetimes, but they are not unprecedented in the life of the church.

The church has endured such suffering and uncertainty before, and much worse, just by way of pandemic, not to mention persecution. In days like these, and in every season of our lives, we do well to remember the certainty and centrality of the church in the care of the living Christ.

To be clear, this is not a word about being the church in the coronavirus age. This is the church’s age, not a virus’s. The church will not pass. Coronavirus will.

And this is our Father’s world. This is Christ’s world. And as his Bride, this is indeed, in real measure, the church’s world. Not the news media’s. Not the epidemiologists’ and statisticians’. Not the economists’ and politicians’. The church will endure these days, and outlive this trial, and be stronger because of the footnote that is our present distress.

Main Story in the World Today

The main news happening in the world right now does not concern data about the spread, or the economy and the stimulus and the free money coming your way. The main news is the church. Jesus Christ, with all authority in heaven and on earth, is building his church (Matthew 16:18). Not even the gates of hell hold back the final advance of his church, much less temporary panic and financial freefall.

Not that Christians won’t get sick, and some die. Some already have. And not that particular local churches won’t go belly up. Some will. Some are. Some local churches have closed doors that will not open again. But the global Church stands unassailable, under no genuine threat, and will be stronger than before.

The story of the global Church, as seemingly isolated Christians text and call and video chat and learn anew how to care for each other, and for our towns and cities, is the main thing happening in the world right now. Neither CNN nor Fox is following the story. But this is the first and greatest headline. In Christ, we are living the story that will be told, more than any other, for ages to come.

We are not only the audience and eyewitnesses, but also the participants. As we gather in living rooms to worship as families. As pastors and elders assemble over Zoom to take counsel and care for their scattered and physically dispersed flocks. As we open our Bibles with a hunger and thirst for substance and guidance like some haven’t felt in a long time, or ever. As we bow our knees in our room, and bow our heads with the family. Our churches are being sifted, and some are being found wanting. But the Church is alive and well. Not just holding on, but growing in strength. Christ’s Bride will be better for having endured these days.

Through the Church

Not only is the future of the global church certain in the sovereign power of God through Christ, but his sovereign purposes in the world center, we might say, on his church. The picture the apostle Paul paints in Ephesians 3 of the centrality of the church in God’s work in the world is nothing less than stunning: Christ channels his global glory uniquely through his church.

God made him a minister of the gospel, Paul writes, “to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ” and

to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God, who created all things, so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 3:8–10)

Did you catch that? God is making known his manifold wisdom, not just in the physical realm but also in the spiritual one — for all the universe to see. And how? Through the church. Wherever else human heads may be turning, the angelic and demonic hosts are watching the church. God is channeling his work in the world through his church.

And not just one channel among others. The church is the only channel mentioned here. Epidemiologists and economists have their part to play, but the main thing happening in the world right now, and at all times, is what Jesus Christ is doing in and through his church.

In the Church

As God’s people, united in Christ, we are part of that collective lens through which God is focusing his work in the world and for the very glory of his Son. Paul doesn’t just say it once. He comes back to it a few sentences later. He was not speaking imprecisely in verse 10. Don’t try to explain it away. The point is just as plain, and striking, in one of the great blessings in all the Bible:

Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:20–21)

How is God — the one able to do far more than we can even dream — being glorified in our world today, and at this time? Stand in awe: in the church and in Christ Jesus. Through Christ, seated in heaven, and through his church, displaying him around the world in every major city and advancing on every tongue, tribe, people, and nation. The Husband, who is the very image of God (Colossians 1:15; 2 Corinthians 4:4) and the focal point of God’s glory in history, gave us, his Bride, his own Spirit that we might collectively image him, and our Father, in this age.

This Is the Church Age

We are not the church in the coronavirus age. We may be enduring a global pandemic, but we do so as the church in the church age. We are not now living in a pandemic age, or a digital age, or a pragmatic age, or a whatever-new-thing-you-want-to-emphasize age. This is the church age.

And church is not simply another reality among others to swap in and out as an adjective for our times. Church is the adjective. This is what this age is. And in Christ, let’s not let the mainstream media, or social streams, or our own forgetfulness lead us to think any differently.

As days disrupted turn to weeks, and weeks to months, let’s be the church to each other, as promised, in these precious days. And let’s represent Christ, as the Church, to our neighbors. There’s no Plan B. Christ doesn’t need a Plan B. Quarantined hours invested in what it means to be the church in such unusual days won’t be in vain. Jesus will build his Church, however many congregations do not survive. The Church, every faithful member, will endure — and forever enjoy a new world without virus, disease, or any other ailment. The gates of hell will not prevail against Christ’s advancing church.

Let’s Be the Church

As odd as it may seem, days like these, when we cannot gather in large numbers, are precisely why we don’t simply attend but make promises to each other in the local church.

This is why we have membership covenants. Not for the easy and comfortable seasons. Anyone can do convenient. But for the hardest and most challenging days. For the threatening times. For the uncertain and (seemingly) unprecedented seasons. For the times when shallow people curve inward, concerned only for their own safety and protection and remote productivity, instead of reaching out diligently (and digitally) across the social distance to check in on others, get updates and pray, and, if needed, help with medications and supplies and groceries.

In marriage, we pledge ourselves for better and for worse, for richer and for poorer, in good times and in bad because those are the times when the objectivity of the covenant spreads its wings, gives life to our lives, and provides clear direction in our disoriented, confused, and subjective uncertainty. Objective covenants are for seasons of subjective confusion. This is one of those times.

The wind of these days may carry away much chaff. The tides are going out on the shallows. But Christ’s church will endure. And shine out all the clearer. Hard times are good days to be Christian.



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Welcome Whatever Keeps You from Pride

Welcome Whatever Keeps You from Pride

If we are in Christ, then suffering cannot interrupt or interfere with his love for us. Even our worst trials are forced, through his powerful and loving hands, to serve our good — to draw us nearer to him, to strengthen our faith to endure, to prepare us to comfort others, to expose and uproot our remaining sin, to carve out deeper, stronger wells of joy in him.

But sometimes, the good that God does in suffering is something averted rather than something gained. In these cases, we often do not realize what we’ve been spared. As a Father, God knows not only what we need, but what we desperately need to avoid. While some pain awakens us to our sin, other pain is God’s way of lovingly preventing sin — like the dark, dangerous, and inviting sin of pride.

The apostle Paul suffered a specific and persistent pain that awakened him to temptation and restrained his pride:

To keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. (2 Corinthians 12:7)

To keep me from becoming conceited. He makes the point twice, in just one sentence. Why repeat himself? Because he knew the deadly, seductive appeal of pride. When God reveals his greatness to us, we can be tempted to think we are great. And the more he reveals, the more tempted we might be.

Pride’s Real Perils

Knowing more about God can be dangerous, even deadly. Even Satan might encourage you to learn more about God if learning causes you to rely more on yourself and less on God. God gave Paul his thorn “because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations” — because he had seen more of God than most. If we, like Paul, knew the spiritual dangers of pride, we would not despise our thorns like we do — our chronic pain or illness, our unfulfilled dreams or expectations, our relational brokenness and strife, our besetting temptations, or whatever else harasses you.

Paul uses the word for being conceited elsewhere when he describes the antichrist that will rise up one day: “the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God” (2 Thessalonians 2:3–4). He is, in one heinous and horrifyingly destructive person, a life-sized portrait of the seeds of conceit in each of us. Conceit convinces us that we deserve what only God deserves, until we declare ourselves to be God, and harden our hearts against God.

In another letter, Paul warns us that a new believer thrust into leadership “may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil” (1 Timothy 3:6). Even after a church wants to make a man an elder, pride may yet well up in him until he falls over into Satan’s hands. The temptation to pride has a terrifying and ruining power, even (and maybe especially) within the church because of all that people in the church think we know about God.

Blessed Thorn

Unless we learn to see the devastating power of pride, we will not see our thorns as blessings — and we may begin resenting God for having anything to do with them. But if pride really destroys people forever, and if we are vulnerable to its temptations, then our thorns — though genuinely unpleasant, even dreadful at times — will take on a new and surprising dimension of loveliness.

To be clear, any loveliness we see in our thorns will not dull or remove the pain, and Satan still harasses and threatens us among the thorns (2 Corinthians 12:7). But we will suddenly and slowly begin to see how the pain is being forced, by God, to protect, and refine, and serve us. The thorn that felt like a curse now becomes unexpectedly precious, because of what it has produced in us and for us.

Paul suffered more severely, and more often, than most. So he never minimizes the real agony of suffering. But he also would not let the heartache of suffering, any suffering, rob him of the good God is working for him through suffering. He was afflicted, perplexed, persecuted, and struck down (2 Corinthians 4:8–9), but he could still say, in every circumstance,

We 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. (2 Corinthians 4:16–17)

The wasting away was real. Yet the tremendous, never-ending weight of glory was just as real, and even greater than what he lost or suffered. The affliction was intense, even unbearable at times (2 Corinthians 1:8), but the blessing always outshone the suffering, like a sunrise conquering the morning horizon.

Pleading with God

As much as Paul eventually embraced his thorn, he did plead for it to go away. Our thorns may be producing eternal good for us, good we would not trade for temporary comfort, but that does not mean we must want our thorns — or that we can’t ask God to remove them. “Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this,” he says, “that it should leave me” (2 Corinthians 12:8).

Paul pleaded with God, just as he pleaded with churches (he uses the same word in Romans 12:1; 1 Corinthians 1:10; Ephesians 4:1; 1 Thessalonians 2:12). Paul pleads a lot in his letters, but only once does he plead like this to God. What can we learn from his pleading? First, it is okay, even good, to plead with God for suffering to pass. Paul does here, and Jesus himself does in Gethsemane, even when he knew what he must suffer (Matthew 26:39).

Second, not only is it good to plead earnestly, with humility and faith before God, that he remove whatever thorn harasses us, but Paul pleaded repeatedly. Not just once, or twice, but three times he went to the Lord, begging for relief and deliverance. Even though he knows our every need and prayer before they touch our lips, God loves when we ask — and when we keep asking (Luke 18:1–8). So, when the pain or heartache feels overwhelming, don’t be shy to plead with him again.

Last, he did not plead forever. He pleaded, and then pleaded again, and then pleaded again, and then he embraced his thorn, almost as a calling, trusting that God meant to use his weakness in ways greater than he might have used his strength. If he truly needed this thorn removed, God would have removed it. Paul trusted that God knew what he needed and would give it freely, in his perfect timing. We are not limited to pleading just three times, but we should also, like Paul, prepare to embrace a “light and momentary” lifetime with our thorns.

We should not be afraid to plead with God, and then plead and plead again. But he also would have us cultivate a heart that can receive, embrace, and even boast in his all-wise, always-loving No — knowing that our trials and weaknesses reveal his grace far more than our triumphs and strengths do.

Content to Carry Thorns

We do not have to want or ask for our thorns, but if God is for us and with us, we can learn to be content with them. Paul says, “For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10). Content not just with weaknesses, but with hardships, with calamities, with persecutions.

In the previous chapter, he rehearsed his hardships in brutal detail:

Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. (2 Corinthians 11:25–27).

And yet content. And not just in them or through them, but with them. Why? “For the sake of Christ” (2 Corinthians 12:10). Because of how Paul’s weaknesses, hardships, persecutions, and calamities bring the power, wisdom, grace, and love of Christ into fuller, more brilliant color. His thorns, however severe for now, served to frame all that he loved about Jesus.

And he was content with his thorns because they kept him from conceit. Therefore, when your thorns come or stay, “Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:6–7). Pride foolishly demands to be exalted now. The humble love to exalt God — his grace, his power, his wisdom, his timing — even while we must carry our thorns for now. And the humble happily wait, with great and sincere contentment, for the day when God will exalt us forever and free us from every thorn we’ve ever carried.



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