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Sunday Reflection: Sorrow According to the Will of God

Description

Genuine mourning over sin leads to repentance and hope.

Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians follows up on a previous letter of his (likely 1 Corinthians), in which he rebuked that congregation. In this later epistle, he writes about their feeling grieved and draws a distinction between the sorrows of the world and being “sorrowful according to the will of God” (2 Corinthians 7:9-11). Paul asks them to repent in sincerity and see what fruit that will bear.

This kind of mourning doesn’t have to be a dark, scary, or joyless experience. In fact, it can be quite the opposite—hopeful and filled with light. As we let go of temporal desires and instead pursue the good that God has for us, we get a taste of the eternal comfort He has promised.

THINK ABOUT IT

  • Paul is writing about a sorrow that produces repentance. In some translations, this is written as “godly grief.” Consider the opposite—what is borne of worldly grief? How is that different from the fruit that results from a godly kind of sorrow?
  • Earlier in this letter, the apostle reminds the church that we live “as sorrowful yet always rejoicing” (2 Corinthians 6:10). How can both things be true?
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