Emmanuel Church Canterbury

Talks

Talk
Boasting in Weakness
Weakness is the Way
Bible Passage

Isaiah 53 (Listen)

53:1   Who has believed what he has heard from us?1
    And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?
  For he grew up before him like a young plant,
    and like a root out of dry ground;
  he had no form or majesty that we should look at him,
    and no beauty that we should desire him.
  He was despised and rejected2 by men,
    a man of sorrows3 and acquainted with4 grief;5
  and as one from whom men hide their faces6
    he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
  Surely he has borne our griefs
    and carried our sorrows;
  yet we esteemed him stricken,
    smitten by God, and afflicted.
  But he was pierced for our transgressions;
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
  upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
    and with his wounds we are healed.
  All we like sheep have gone astray;
    we have turned—every one—to his own way;
  and the LORD has laid on him
    the iniquity of us all.
  He was oppressed, and he was afflicted,
    yet he opened not his mouth;
  like a lamb that is led to the slaughter,
    and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent,
    so he opened not his mouth.
  By oppression and judgment he was taken away;
    and as for his generation, who considered
  that he was cut off out of the land of the living,
    stricken for the transgression of my people?
  And they made his grave with the wicked
    and with a rich man in his death,
  although he had done no violence,
    and there was no deceit in his mouth.
10   Yet it was the will of the LORD to crush him;
    he has put him to grief;7
  when his soul makes8 an offering for guilt,
    he shall see his offspring; he shall prolong his days;
  the will of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.
11   Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see9 and be satisfied;
  by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant,
    make many to be accounted righteous,
    and he shall bear their iniquities.
12   Therefore I will divide him a portion with the many,10
    and he shall divide the spoil with the strong,11
  because he poured out his soul to death
    and was numbered with the transgressors;
  yet he bore the sin of many,
    and makes intercession for the transgressors.

Footnotes

[1] 53:1 Or Who has believed what we have heard?
[2] 53:3 Or forsaken
[3] 53:3 Or pains; also verse 4
[4] 53:3 Or and knowing
[5] 53:3 Or sickness; also verse 4
[6] 53:3 Or as one who hides his face from us
[7] 53:10 Or he has made him sick
[8] 53:10 Or when you make his soul
[9] 53:11 Masoretic Text; Dead Sea Scroll he shall see light
[10] 53:12 Or with the great
[11] 53:12 Or with the numerous

(ESV)

2 Corinthians 11:16–33 (Listen)

Paul’s Sufferings as an Apostle

16 I repeat, let no one think me foolish. But even if you do, accept me as a fool, so that I too may boast a little. 17 What I am saying with this boastful confidence, I say not as the Lord would1 but as a fool. 18 Since many boast according to the flesh, I too will boast. 19 For you gladly bear with fools, being wise yourselves! 20 For you bear it if someone makes slaves of you, or devours you, or takes advantage of you, or puts on airs, or strikes you in the face. 21 To my shame, I must say, we were too weak for that!

But whatever anyone else dares to boast of—I am speaking as a fool—I also dare to boast of that. 22 Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they offspring of Abraham? So am I. 23 Are they servants of Christ? I am a better one—I am talking like a madman—with far greater labors, far more imprisonments, with countless beatings, and often near death. 24 Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; 26 on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; 27 in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food,2 in cold and exposure. 28 And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me of my anxiety for all the churches. 29 Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to fall, and I am not indignant?

30 If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness. 31 The God and Father of the Lord Jesus, he who is blessed forever, knows that I am not lying. 32 At Damascus, the governor under King Aretas was guarding the city of Damascus in order to seize me, 33 but I was let down in a basket through a window in the wall and escaped his hands.

Footnotes

[1] 11:17 Greek not according to the Lord
[2] 11:27 Or often in fasting

(ESV)