But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing; to the one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life. And who is adequate for these things? 2 Corinthians 2:14-16 (NASB)
Who is adequate for these things? That’s the question asked in 2 Corinthians 2. Does Paul’s cry here resonate in your heart? In light of such responsibility, are you confronted with the reality of your own utter inadequacy? When you think of what you are sent to do, I am sure that is a question that grips your heart as it does mine. Who can do this? It is very easy to get overwhelmed by the magnitude of the task, especially when we consider the Great Commission. Who is sufficient for these things?
What is the answer to this question? Paul goes on to answer it in the third chapter:
Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God, who also made us adequate as servants of a new covenant. 2 Corinthians 3:5-6 (NASB)
To use the language of 2 Corinthians 4:7, He transports the treasure of the gospel in unimpressive, weak earthen vessels. Why?
…so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves… 2 Corinthians 4:7 (NASB)
Our adequacy is from God. The word “adequate” in the original Greek is hikanos meaning ‘sufficient, competent, able and qualified’. We ourselves are of no account, and what we can do is likewise of no account. But the sufficiency, competency and qualification for the ministry comes from the living God Himself. God has graciously equipped us as sufficient to dispense and disperse the sweet fragrance of Christ to a lost and dying world. Remember this: apart from Christ, we can do nothing. On the other hand, with Christ we are adequate for all things.
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13 (NKJV)