You ought to forgive and comfort him, so that he will not be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. I urge you, therefore, to reaffirm your love for him.
2 Corinthians 2:7,8
We Find Comfort
Eureka! I found it! It is such a relief to find something that was lost. But there is no joy greater than when a lost soul is found.
Today’s Bible reading is about just such an event. A man in the Christian congregation in Corinth had been so lost in sin that he refused any correction. To warn this man of his lost condition, his church had to declare that this man was outside of God’s kingdom and destined for eternal death. Can someone get more lost than that?
Thankfully, the congregation’s act of love achieved its goal. By the grace of God, the man repented and returned to the Lord. A heart that was once calloused to the Word and warning of God was now broken and longing for comfort. And that’s what the apostle Paul instructed his church to give him—comfort through complete forgiveness.
Think of how our world treats someone who has done something it considers shameful. So often, there’s no coming back. The person is written-off, canceled—that’s it. But this man returned and was restored. No hoops to jump through. The one who was once lost found comfort and relief, and heaven rejoiced over one sinner who repented—he recognized his need for forgiveness and trusted in Jesus for complete forgiveness.
That same comfort is yours! Jesus does not shame us when we come to him in humility, recognizing how much we need him. Jesus doesn’t cancel us and cut ties. He does not give us hoops to jump through to earn back his love. He reaffirms his unconditional love for us and reassures us of his forgiveness. In that love and forgiveness, we find eternal comfort.
Jesus, lead me back always to your love and forgiveness to find comfort that lasts. Amen