Far Beyond All Comparison (4:17)
4:17 "For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison."
God is a just God. When He renders judgment, the punishment always fits the crime. But here the reward to be received is said to far outweigh the trial endured in order to achieve it. How can this be explained?
This is not justice, it is the grace of God. Our reward is not based on OUR righteousness but the righteousness of Christ. By His perfect righteousness Jesus has earned for us a weight of glory beyond our ability to fathom. (Even in heaven it will be beyond our ability to fully fathom.) That’s why the reward far outweighs the afflictions we endure.
It seems that faithful endurance of earthly afflictions actually increases our capacity to enjoy this glory of God. When endured with faith and gratitude instead of with bitterness and self-pity, afflictions empower us to more fully perceive and take delight in our reward, even in heaven. This is why Paul can say that "momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison."
Lord, I’m so much better at trusting when everything seems to be going well. When things appear to be falling apart, it seems that my faith begins to fall apart too. Please help my unbelief. Please help me to face trials in the confidence that they are sent for my good in order to prepare me for the glories of heaven. Help me to endure them with joy and with gratitude, preferring heavenly glory to earthly comfort.