November 26


"May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father... comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work" (2 Thessalonians 2:16, 17, NKJV).

The apostle Paul enlarges his portrait of Christ in this memorable prayer for steadfastness in the gospel. First, he portrays Christ as the One who has loved us and who has given us everlasting consolation and a good hope. Then, he depicts Him as the One who comforts and establishes His people (see 2 Thessalonians 2:16, 17).

In His intercessory ministry in the heavenly sanctuary, Christ is the parakletos. This Greek word means one who comes to the side of another as his or her comforter, helper, or advocate (see 1 John 2:1). In the role of the parakletos, Christ comforts, encourages, and establishes our hearts with the assurance of peace with God through His atonement. Jesus also comforts and establishes His people in their daily pilgrimage. In His parting message to His disciples, Jesus promised to petition the Father to send another comforter like Himself (see John 14:16). This Comforter is the Holy Spirit, who would comfort and minister to the needs of God's people in their heavenly pilgrimage.

Those who are truly established in the gospel automatically demonstrate this fact in acceptable words and works. Paul elsewhere asserted that we are God's "workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works" (Ephesians 2:10, NKJV). Our great heavenly Comforter and Establisher is always available to fortify our hearts in the truth as we are made ready for our heavenly home. "There is no comforter like Christ, so tender and so true. He is touched with the feeling of our infirmities. His Spirit speaks to the heart. Circumstances may separate us from our friends; the broad, restless ocean may roll between us and them... But no circumstances, no distance, can separate us from the heavenly Comforter."--That I May Know Him, p. 171.

My Prayer Today: Lord, by Your grace, comfort and establish me in Your truth so that my words and works may reflect Your transforming power. Amen.