We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed. 2 Corinthians 4:8-9 (NKJV)
In the world ye shall have tribulation. John 16:33 (KJV)
You’re going to have trouble! Jesus stated. “In the world, ye shall have tribulation.” But He didn’t stop there. He added, “But be of good cheer.” Why? “I have overcome the world.” The psalmist phrased it:
Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but God delivereth him out of them all! Psalm 34:19 (KJV)
- we are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed;
- we are perplexed, but not driven to despair;
- we are hunted down, but never abandoned by God;
- we get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.
We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed. 2 Corinthians 4:8a (NKJV)
(We are) perplexed, but not in despair. 2 Corinthians 4:8b (NKJV)
The verb here, aporeomai, means ‘to be at one’s wits’ end’. Life has a way of throwing us a curveball now and then.
(We are) persecuted, but not abandoned. 2 Corinthians 4:9a (NKJV)
In his first letter to the Corinthian church, Paul describes his situation:
A wide door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many adversaries. 1 Corinthians 16:9 (ESV)
(We are) struck down, but not destroyed. 2 Corinthians 4:9b (NKJV)
J B Phillips offers us this memorable paraphrase:
We may be knocked down, but we are never knocked out! 2 Corinthians 4:9b (JBP)
Though Paul was pressed, perplexed, persecuted and punched, he also finished his sentence and confidently stated what He was:
- not crushed;
- not driven to despair;
- never abandoned by God;
- not destroyed.
From my experience playing baseball on the Wii with my children over the years, I have noticed everyone dislikes curveballs, but I have also learned that with the right attitude you can make a home run! That’s what Paul did with what life threw at him and we can learn from his attitude. When life throws you a curveball, still make a home run!