“We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” 2 Corinthians 4:8-9
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles… Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” Hebrews 12:1, 3
Both of the Scriptures quoted above detail elements of the Grecian (Isthmian) games held every five (5) years. 2 Corinthians chapter 4 employs a metaphor of being “pressed on every side” as wrestlers grappling through fatigue. Next is a description of some wrestlers being “perplexed but not in despair.” Meaning that there may be an adversary that is stronger, more adroit, faster, but the weaker (i.e., Believer) continues, undaunted (not in despair) because of the Life witness of JESUS. “Persecuted but not forsaken” speaks to the runner whose legs carry him farther than the competition. His “persecution” or “pursuit” leads him to dawn the victor’s crown. As in CHRIST, Our Victor, we will be persecuted but we are to take heart, for we are not forsaken but Champions in HIM. This is why Hebrews speaks about the “great cloud of witnesses” that persevered in faith now surrounding us and cheering us on to shake off sin’s hold from us. They were trusting GOD’s promises and Sovereign provision. In HIM we have life and every spiritual blessing!
Take heart, weary soul, our Victor reigns and will return for HIS Own.
This is a recent meditation which encourages me as trials undoubtedly come and my strength assuredly fails/falters.