Never Lose Heart, Christian

Posted on February 17, 2021

16


By David Ettinger

Fierce Battles
It’s difficult living holy lives in such a sinful world. It’s even more difficult while in a sinful body. Though our spirits have been reborn in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17), we are still entombed in a decaying body that wages war against the spirit (Galatians 5:17).

The battles are fierce, and I have often lost them. It’s enough to make a Christian lose heart.

However, the apostle Paul tells us to not lose heart, for the flesh is not the determining factor of spiritual destiny. He wrote: “Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer person is decaying, yet our inner person is being renewed day by day” (2 Corinthians 4:16).

Though Paul was speaking of the trials facing him and his fellow apostles, this truth impacts all believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Eternal Reward
Previous to verse 16, Paul had been speaking of the hardships facing those who share the Gospel fulltime. However, it was all worth it to Paul knowing that when his days on Earth were over, “He who raised the Lord Jesus will also raise us with Jesus, and will present us with you” (v. 15).

In other words, Paul’s earthly trials would result in not only eternal reward for him, but for those to whom he presented the Gospel. His work as an evangelist would lead to not only his resurrection, but that of, in this case, the Corinthian believers.

Knowing eternal glory awaited, Paul was able to “not lose heart.” Yes, he was beaten and imprisoned (2 Corinthians 11:22-33), but, he saw beyond the affliction, saying, “though our outer person is decaying, yet our inner person is being renewed day by day.”

This same truth holds true for you and me.

Renewed Spirit
The human body is a temporary abode for the spirit, and will decay and eventually die. However, the great news about this earthly existence of ours is that though we deteriorate physically, our “inner person” – that is, our spirits; that which interacts with God – is being reinvigorated daily.

In other words, though our bodies decay, if we are walking with the Lord, He allows us to experience the renewing work of the Holy Spirit daily. If we are faithful in prayer, Bible-reading, and Holy living, God sends daily supplies of power and enablement for Christian service. Though we may be confined to a hospital bed with 20 tubes poking us, our Spirits – if empowered by God – are strong, vigorous, and alive. We can commune with Him in prayer, while He in turn energizes our spirits!

So yes, whether physical ailments or enduring the ugliness of this world, our spirits are untouchable, imperishable, and incorruptible. God has saved us through the power of the resurrected Christ, and continues to rejuvenate our spirits!

Take Heart
It is no wonder, then, that Paul took heart despite his trials and tribulations. Yes, he suffered physically, but his spirit was being energized and galvanized every day. He communed with God daily, and it enabled him to be free of the shackles of despair, and forge on for his Lord and Savior.

The same holds true for you and me. Though our bodies decay and the trials of this dark world sometimes anger and trouble us, so long as we remain faithful to God, He will renew our spirits daily that we may serve, love, and revere Him until the day He calls us home!