By Norman P. Grubb
“MT. EVEREST” SCALED
The conforming process also includes appearances of needs and necessities of life abundantly supplied by Him, who “spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all” (8:32). But does Paul sum up his great victory chapter by our being immersed in a sea of prosperity and popularity? Just the opposite! His summation includes the rough, rough seas of every form of outer distress, persecution, material necessity, and subjective assault — “killed all the day long” and “accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” Constant physical dangers dogged Paul, and today many most likely face modern-day oppositions to our “pilgrim” walk, and experience, as did Paul, by lost reputations as Christ’s fools (8:35,36).
Do we wilt? Do we question, “Why does God allow that?” Do we murmur about hard experiences, manifesting more disturbed feelings than enjoyment and praise? Paul used just one word: “conquerors.” He stands, as it were, on HIS Mt. Everest, having scaled the jagged peaks of suffering and persecution (2 Cor 11:21-31) which had defied his ascent. How? Because it was Christ in Paul’s form. A prisoner of Nero? No, a prisoner of the Lord; and his fiery trials were called the “sufferings of Christ” (1 Pet 4:12, 13). Even Jesus Himself, when suffering came to Him by Satan’s agents, called it “the cup which my Father hath given me” (Jn 18:11).
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