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Suffering (Comfort and Salvation)

“The source of afflictions is the sin of humanity. The purpose of afflictions, if we use them properly, may be our comfort and salvation, as the Father Himself preserves us through them (2 Corinthians 1:3). The means of facing our afflictions is a hope in God that allows us to enter into the afflictions of others in actual, experiential knowledge.” (Orthodox Study Bible, 2 Corinthians 1:3-11)

“God comforts us for our own encouragement and also to make us comforters of others. The comfort that God gives to us becomes a gift that we can give to others.” (Foundation Study Bible, 2 Corinthians 1:4)

“The English word “comfort” is form the Latin comfortis (brave together). St. John Chrysostom. “He says, ‘God comforteth us in all our affliction, not in this or that, but, in all that we may be able to comfort those literally in every affliction.” (Holy Apostles Convent Bible)

“We mostly think of comfort in the pathological individualistic way meaning comfort of self or what makes us feel comfortable. Many times we avoid others in their pain, grief, and suffering because we don’t know what to say or do and therefore retreat to our own comfort zone and avoid them. That’s not good for us or them, the latter often feeling alone and isolated in their sufferings as a result. The Christian understanding of comfort, as explained beautifully by St. Paul (see 2 Corinthians 1:1-7) is more closely linked to suffering and affliction and how we go out of our own comfort zone to reach out to and help others and ‘brave together’ with them their suffering. The relationship of suffering and comfort and what we do within both is very much tied to our salvation.” (Sacramental Living Ministries)

“For not through believing only comes your salvation, but also through the suffering and enduring the same things with us …Your salvation…is more especially energized, that is, displayed, increased, heightened, whenever it has endurance, whenever it suffers and bears all thing nobly.” (St. John Chrysostom)

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