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Wednesday, January 25, 2023

2 Corinthians 12:9

"Our Redeemer Is Strong!"

Message summary: Believing friend, God is working on your behalf today. Our Redeemer is strong. He is your advocate and vigorously defends your cause. Even when we are weak.

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"This is what the LORD Almighty says: 'The people of Israel are oppressed, and the people of Judah as well. All their captors hold them fast, refusing to let them go. Yet their Redeemer is strong; the LORD Almighty is His name. He will vigorously defend their cause so that He may bring rest to their land, but unrest to those who live in Babylon'" (Jeremiah 50:33,34).
"But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me" (2 Corinthians 12:9).

Today we consider the weak. Weakness is manifested in different ways. We can experience physical weakness due to many reasons. I am currently weak in strength due to my recent major surgery. We can experience moral weakness when temptations seems so strong. We can experience spiritual/emotional weakness when our faith is tried by the mysterious providence of God.

We have a special family on our hearts and in our prayers this morning that are surely intensely facing this spiritual/emotional weakness. Last night my cousin called me to share the very sad news that her niece (my second cousin, whom we were relatively close to due to annual family reunions) passed away yesterday morning during emergency surgery. It was a complete shock to the family as you can imagine and throughout the night and morning hours we have her husband and their three adult children on our hearts. Our prayer is that they find comfort from the Father of all compassion and thereby receive God's strength.

Jesus said if I am weak
I should come to Him
No one else can be my strength
I should come to Him

Let us consider our strong God. One of the great attributes of God expressed in theological language is His omnipotence. That is, He is all powerful.

Our Redeemer is strong! What encouragement to the devout believer the daily verse provides: "Yet their Redeemer is strong; the LORD Almighty is His name." The message here is directed to the Babylonians, who had conquered God's people and taken them into exile. In fact Jeremiah lived at the time just prior to and during the destruction of Jerusalem and Judah's darkest days. The book of Lamentations was written during this dark period.

But in this chapter Jeremiah looks beyond that temporary period to God's judgment on the proud Babylonians and to the return of the faithful remnant, post-exile. History demonstrates again and again the powerful way that God works on behalf of His people. Yes, there were "bumps in the road" and evident in these "bumps" was God's judgment upon sin. Yet, for the remnant that holds to their faith, God has always been faithful. That's still true.

2,600 years ago when the people of God were being taken into Babylonian captivity the prophet Jeremiah conveyed the wonderful truth found in our daily verse. God's long promised judgment was taking place because of the sin and idolatry of the nation. Yet some had kept their faith and commitment to God so Jeremiah was called to minister to this faithful remnant. They were oppressed and their captors held them fast refusing to let them go. Their situation seemed utterly hopeless with no end in sight. But note these glorious words: "Yet their Redeemer is strong" and "He will vigorously defend their cause."

Bible teacher A.W. Pink comments:

"Well may the saint trust such a God! He is worthy of implicit confidence. Nothing is too hard for Him. If God were stinted in might and had a limit to His strength we might well despair. But seeing that He is clothed with omnipotence, no prayer is too hard for Him to answer, no need too great for Him to supply, no passion too strong for Him to subdue; no temptation too powerful for Him to deliver from, no misery too deep for Him to relieve. "The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?" (Psalm 27:1).

Today we speak to those who, like the ancient Israelites, are seeking to hold firm to their faith in God in the midst of adversity. Some are oppressed in various ways. (We particularly think of our brothers and sisters in places of intense persecution.) But some of you undoubtedly are oppressed in other ways and your situation today may seem hopeless as well.

Hear again this word from God our Redeemer who changes not, who is the same yesterday, today and forever. Believing friend, God is working on your behalf today. Our Redeemer is strong. He is your Advocate and vigorously defends your cause. Praise the Lord!

Be encouraged today, (Hebrews 3:13)

Stephen and Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer:  Father, we trust You for You are worthy of our full confidence. No problem is too difficult for You since Your power is supernatural, unlimited in strength and and boundless in scope. There is no request we bring to You that is too perplexing or hard for You to answer, no need too great for You to supply, no misdirected passion too strong for You to restrain; no temptation too powerful for You to deliver us from, and no misery too deep for You to lift us out of, for You are the Strength of our lives. When we rest on these truths we are confident and trusting that there is no enemy force of which we should be afraid. We come boldly before Your throne of grace with Jesus as our Advocate. Amen.
Prayer adapted from this A.W. Pink's comment in message.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"Jesus Strong and Kind"  Video  CityAlight  This song is so rich in lyrical expression but has the tune of a children's song.

Jesus said
That if I thirst
I should come to him
No one else can satisfy
I should come to him

Jesus said
If I am weak
I should come to him
No one else can be my strength
I should come to him

For the Lord is good and faithful
He will keep us day and night
We can always run to Jesus
Jesus, strong and kind

Jesus said
That if I fear
I should come to him
No one else can be my shield
I should come to him

For the Lord is good and faithful
He will keep us day and night
We can always run to Jesus
Jesus, strong and kind

Jesus said if I am lost
He will come to me
And he showed me on that cross
He will come to me

For the Lord is good and faithful
He will keep us day and night
We can always run to Jesus
Jesus, strong and kind

"Peace Perfect Peace"  Video  Praise And Harmony Singers 

Brooksyne's Note: At times we are weak because we are in a state of confusion regarding a decision we must make or we're trying to make sense of a situation that makes no sense to us. Indecision, lack of understanding or uncertainty can drain us of strength. In those circumstances I often pray for supernatural peace to flood my mind and soul. This time honored hymn rarely sang in churches (in my background anyway) is based on a sermon the hymn writer, Edward Bickersteth, heard while on vacation. The speaker pointed out that in the original Hebrew the phrase "perfect peace" is "Shalom, Shalom", meaning "doubled peace" or "multiplied peace". Bickersteth was born on this day, January 25th, 198 years ago. (Robert J. Morgan - hymn background source) "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee, because he trusteth in Thee, O Lord" (Isaiah 26:3).

Squirrel in snow
We are having a snow storm today and a squirrel is attempting to raid our bird feeder!

Weber couple photo 7/3/22
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