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Studies in II Corinthians

Studies in II Corinthians



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A series of 15 messages dealing with subjects like hope, the heavenly body, the face of God, Christmas, change, seeing the invisible, and godly change.
A series of 15 messages dealing with subjects like hope, the heavenly body, the face of God, Christmas, change, seeing the invisible, and godly change.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Dec 09, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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1. FROM DESPAIR TO HOPE Based on II Cor. 1:8-112. PAUL'S SELF-DEFENSE Based on II Cor. 1:12-173. OUR JESUS IS YES Based on II Cor. 1:15-224. GODLY CHANGE based on II Cor. 2:1-115. THE WEAPON OF FORGIVENESS Based on II Cor. 2:5-116. THE FACE OF GOD based on II Cor. 4:1-6
SEEING THE INVISIBLE based on II Cor. 4:8-188. THE SECOND BODY BASED ON II COR. 5:1-109. A HEAVENLY HABITATION BASED ON II COR. 5:1-1010. THE BRIDGE OF RECONCILIATION Based on II Cor. 5:27-2111. THE COST OF CHRISTMAS Based on II Cor. 8:1-912. THE GREATEST GIFT Based on II Cor. 8:913. GLAD GENEROSITY Based on II Cor. 914. MOTIVES FOR GIVING Based on II Cor. 915. HEAVEN CAN BE HARMFUL TO YOUR HEALTH II Cor. 12:1-101. FROM DESPAIR TO HOPE Based on II Cor. 1:8-11Paul Aurandt tells the story of one of the fastest rising young singers back in the early 50's. He was called the Romantic Voice Of America. Teenagegirls would give anything to see him, but he never appeared anywhere. Hewas not even seen in photographs. He was strictly a radio voice. Soon KFRCin San Francisco was flooded with teenage fan mail begging for signed photos,but none were ever sent. The golden voice was heard, but the person behindit was never seen.One day a young girl went into the studio looking for a glimpse of heridol. When she saw him she was overwhelmed, and not with awe, but with
laughter. The Romantic Voice of America was 5 ft. 10 and weighed 260 lbs.He was so embarrassed by her laughter that he went on a 4 month gruelingdiet. Because of that embarrassment he became fit enough to be seen inpublic, and he went on to become popular on television. By being crushedinto despair he was able to rise to the heights of stardom. This young man isthe now well-known Merv Griffin.His experience reveals that there is often a link between the lows of lifeand the highs. The lows, or the failures, are often the motivating factors inour reaching for the heights and success. Had he never been crushed downby that negative experience he may never have been moved to change andclimb to new heights. We see this process going on in the life of Paul as herecords for all the world to see the depths of despair which forced him theheights of hope. Paul has been as low as a Christian can get, and he has beenas high as a Christian can get. He knows the depth to which a Christian cansink in negative feelings, and he knows the heights in which they can soar inpositive feelings.Paul opens up and shares this intimate view of his own emotions, for heknows it will be a comfort to many, and God knew it would be a comfort tomillions all through history. Christians need to know it is not a sign of lack of faith, or that God has abandoned you, because you feel sunk in a pit of despair. It has happened to the best of God's family, and is, therefore, anacceptable state of emotion event though it is not a state where you want tosettle down and live. The proper response to this low state is to be motivatedto climb to a higher level of faith and hope. We want to look at these twolevels of life that Paul experienced so we can learn also to cope with thedepths and climb to the heights. Let's look first at-I. THE DEPTHS OF DESPAIR.The Greek word Paul uses here to describe his low point means-to have nooutlet whatever. Paul felt trapped with no way to escape. It was a hopelesssituation, and there was nothing he could do. It looked like death wasinevitable, and there was no other choice but to die. Paul was at a dead end.The enemy was bearing down on him and there was no exist. The pressurewas great that it was beyond his ability to endure it. Paul was admitting thathe had come to the end of his rope, and he could not longer hang on. This is aterrible place to be, but God had Paul share this so that Christians might not
be superficial in their judgments of Christians who reach this level of despair.Many Christians who have lived sheltered lives, as many of us have, donot know the depths to which life can push the emotions. We have all feltdepressed but despair goes deeper than depression. It is the feeling of utterhopelessness. It is a very dangerous state of mind, for this is what leadspeople to take their own life. It is the feeling that made Job wish he had neverbeen born. It is the feeling that made Solomon feel that everything was vanityand totally meaningless. It is a theme very common in literature.John Bunyan in Pilgrim's Progress has a scene where Great-Heart has amajor battle with Giant Despair who had as many lives as a cat. In otherwords, despair is a hard foe to get rid of. John Milton in Paradise Lost hasSatan cry out in despair, "Which way shall I fly-infinite wrath and infinitedespair? Which way I fly is hell; myself is hell; and in the lowest deep a lowerdeep still threatening to devour me opens wide, to which the hell I sufferseems a heaven."The lost world has picked up on the despair philosophy of Satan, and it hasbecome, in the words of Francis Schaeffer, the culture of despair. He tracesdespair as one of the key ideas in art, poetry, and music in our culture. If youthink a lot of modern art, literature and music is meaningless, then they havesucceeded in communicating, for that is exactly what they are trying toconvey-that life is meaningless and absurd. So when you look at a Picassopainting not knowing if you are looking at a male, female, or a chair, and yousay this is absurd, you have gotten the point.Despair leads to all kinds of absurdity. But despair does explain absurdity.The reality of despair helps us understand all of the mysteries of evil, and whypeople engage in atrocities so vicious and inhuman. Despair means there isno way out, and so what do you have to lose? Despair causes people to go andshoot fellow workers, or to kill strangers on the street. Despair causesteenagers by the thousands to take their own life every year. George Eliotsaid something long ago that fits our day as well: "There is no despair soabsolute as that which comes with the first moment of our first great sorrow,when we have not yet known what it is to have suffered and be healed, to havedespaired and have recovered hope."Studies show that despairing teens take their own lives because they think 

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