What does 2 Corinthians 1:3 mean?
ESV: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort,
NIV: Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,
NASB: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort,
CSB: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and the God of all comfort.
NLT: All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort.
KJV: Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort;
Verse Commentary:
Paul often begins his letters by giving thanks to God for those to whom he is writing, as well as praying for them in some way. This letter is different. Instead, he begins by focusing on God's comfort to those who experience affliction. As later verses will reveal, Paul had recently endured an incredibly traumatic event in his life. Instead of praying for his readers, he will ask them to pray for him.

He starts out, though, by offering praise to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Paul often focuses his prayers on God the Father, something possible only through personal faith in Christ the Son, who is our Lord (John 14:6). Paul calls God by two names: the Father of all mercies and the God of all comfort.

Because God stands in the position of judge over all people, He is also the source of all mercy. Instead of executing judgment on all who deserve it—which is all of us—He freely gives His mercy to those who come to Him through faith in Christ (John 3:16–18). Paul understands that in the middle of our suffering and affliction, believers must remember that God has given us mercy and will continue to do so.

He is also the God of all comfort. Christians do not run from God to seek relief from their pain; they run to Him as the source of comfort. God's comfort is a major theme of 2 Corinthians. Some form of the word translated comfort, paraklesis in the Greek, appears 29 times in this letter. The idea of the word is more than just momentary relief from pain; it also involves encouragement and strengthening. God's comfort allows us to quit striving in our own strength against suffering and affliction and to rest, to be strong, in His strength.
Verse Context:
Second Corinthians 1:3–11 contains profound praise to God for His comfort of all in affliction. Paul connects Christian suffering to the sufferings of Christ. This shows the Corinthians how Paul's suffering and the comfort he has received from God during it have been for their benefit. Paul has experienced grave suffering recently, bringing him and his co-workers to the edge of death. The God who raises the dead has delivered them. Paul invites the Corinthians to participate in the celebration of God's power by continuing to pray for Paul and his companions and to give thanks for God's deliverance.
Chapter Summary:
Paul begins another letter to the Corinthians following a series of tumultuous events with them. He begins by praising God for His comfort to those who are in affliction, connecting Christian suffering to the sufferings of Christ. Paul insists that his suffering and the comfort he has received from God have been for the Corinthians' benefit. He defends both his integrity and sincerity in dealing with them and explains that he delayed his planned trip to visit them again for their sake.
Chapter Context:
Second Corinthians 1 follows about a year after the end of 1 Corinthians, and much has happened between the two letters. Paul has had a painful visit with the Corinthians before traveling to Macedonia, where he wrote a painful letter. The text of which has not been kept. He writes this new letter from Macedonia, as well, after learning about a positive change of heart on their behalf. Paul begins by praising God for His comfort for those who are afflicted and defending himself against several complaints from some in the church.
Book Summary:
Second Corinthians returns to similar themes as those Paul mentioned in his first letter to this church. Paul is glad to hear that the church in Corinth has heeded his advice. At the same time, it is necessary for Paul to counter criticisms about his personality and legitimacy. Most of this text involves that subject. The fifth chapter, in contrast, contains comforting words which Christians have quoted often in times of hardship. Paul also details his expectations that the church in Corinth will make good on their promise to contribute to the needs of suffering believers in Jerusalem.
Accessed 4/22/2024 2:37:35 PM
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