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Our weakness = His Strength! shares this insightful commentary on 2 Corinthians 12:9-10.

Many of the principles of God’s kingdom are paradoxes. When the apostle Paul pleaded with God to remove his affliction—one he called a “thorn in the flesh”—the Lord said to Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:8-9). …God’s strength is made perfect in weakness because He delights in taking situations where human strength is lacking to demonstrate the greatness of His power.

God’s denial of Paul’s request for healing turned out to be a blessing in the apostle’s life. One commentary explains that the thorn “kept Paul from imagining himself as a spiritual superman, and revealed to him the reality of his human mortality and weakness despite his extraordinary revelations. The ‘thorn’ also kept Paul pinned close to the Lord, in trust and confidence” (Barnett, P., The Message of 2 Corinthians: Power in Weakness, InterVarsity Press, 1988, p. 178).

Paul stopped protesting his situation and began to boast and even take pleasure in his weakness so that the power of Christ could work through him: “That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10). Paul expressed the paradox of his condition—that in his frailty, he was strong because his strength came from Christ.

The words made perfect in 2 Corinthians 12:9 mean “fully or entirely accomplished or made complete.” Christ’s power is made complete—it is able to fully accomplish its purpose—when His people are weak and depend on Him for strength. When we, like Paul, stop resisting and complaining and let the power of Christ rest on us, we make room to receive countless unexpected blessings from the Lord. By allowing God’s strength to be made perfect in our weakness, we have the opportunity to display God’s glory flawlessly….

Over and over, the Bible gives examples of God’s strength manifesting when His people are weak. Moses, the great leader of Israel, was deeply aware of his human shortcomings (Exodus 4:10). When the Lord called him to go to Pharaoh, Moses cried, “I’m not adequate. Please send someone else!” But God replied, “Go anyway, Moses, because I will be with you”….

Gideon’s story proves that God can accomplish great things through people who forget about their human weaknesses, trust in God’s strength, and obey His guidance (Judges 6:14-16). And, of course, our most notable biblical example, Jesus Christ, was “crucified in weakness” but “now lives by the power of God” (2 Corinthians 13:4)….

When we are in a position of need, it allows us to see how much we need God (2 Corinthians 1:9; 3:5; 13:4). The more aware we are of our weakness, the more God can reveal His power through us: “We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves” (2 Corinthians 4:7, NLT).

Our weakness = His Strength! When we think we are qualified and sufficient for the work of the Lord, we tend to get in the way of what He wants to do. But when we recognize our absolute dependence upon Him, then the miracle can happen. And when we are weak, then we are truly strong! When we recognize our weakness – that we can do nothing on our own and therefore must completely rely upon the Lord – then we have divine resources available to us. All of Christ’s power is available to us when we don’t allow our ego to get in the way. Paul even went so far as to boast about his weaknesses. Are you ready to celebrate your weaknesses and His strength?


This Sunday, March 3, we will continue our teaching series, “Going Deeper!”, with the beautiful truth, “Only Jesus!” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10). Please invite someone to join you at 10:35am in the building or online for the Live broadcast on either Facebook (Honolulu AG) or our YouTube channel (Honolulu Assembly of God). We livestream every Sunday to both locations and would love to have you join us.

Our next “Drive-Through Prayer” outreach in the church parking lot is this Saturday, March 2, from 11am-1pm.

Aloha ke Akua!

Bryan L. Ashpole


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