Friday, January 13, 2017

God of All Comfort

You may be going through some difficult times in your life. But God is a God of comfort even in the tough times. Scripture is proof of this as well as the testimony of millions. "Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly in Jerusalem, and proclaim to her that her hard service has been completed, that her sin has been paid for, that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all her sins” (Isaiah 40:1-4).

I am reading a commentary be Warren Wiersbe called “Be Comforted.” It speaks as the ancient Jewish Rabbis calling Isaiah, “The Book of Consolation.” God through His “Suffering Servant” says to His people, “Be Comforted.” He is telling them that the warfare is over and He will return double what it has stolen in Babylon exile. His is a voice of peace. The voice of God saying, “speak tenderly” is encouraging and uplifting, or at least it should be.

The word comfort appears often in Scripture, however, perhaps the most encouraging and consoling verse appears in 2 Corinthians 1:2-4. I often use this verse to open funerals and memorials services.
 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.  For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ.

He is indeed the God of compassion and all comfort. He is the Counselor who brings healing and mercy to us in times of trouble. He covers us with his love in times of loss and grief. There is no greater source of solace than the Lord. His love endures forever and will never leave or forsake us the Bible tells us often. Psalm 23 tells us that even though we walk through the valley of death to fear no evil for His rod and staff "comfort us." 

As we “cry out” to God He hears us, even before we call. He knows our pain and fears. He knows our needs and ways. He wants to bring us hope in the hurts of life, even when they don’t seem to leave us. Job’s wife said to her husband in trial, “curse God and die.” Job answered, “Should we not take the bad with the good?” The whole book of Job goes on, increasing the trial for him, yet he praises God in it.  However, he does cry out to God wanting to know what was going on in his life. God just told him who He was and that Job should worship and call on Him in the trial. He told Job that he was with him and was his friend.

He is our friend and will comfort us in our trials and troubles. It is God’s will to bring us “goodness and mercy” so we can dwell in the house of the Lord forever. “Comfort, comfort my people, says the Lord.”

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