2 Corinthians: Suffering and Consolation

II CORINTHIANS 1:5

 

Scripture verse: “For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ.”

 

Objectives:

  1. Students should memorize the verse and understand its meaning.
  2. Students should understand the context of the book and be able to apply the sufferings of Paul to their own lives.

 

Background on the book:

            This letter was written by St. Paul in the same year as I Corinthians, after he received a report from Titus about the state of the church in Corinth.  Paul had now left Ephesus, having been almost killed in the great riot, and was visiting the region of Philippi and Thessalonica. The problems of immorality and idol worship had been dealt with, but new problems were surfacing. Paul sent Titus right back to Corinth with his response. Later that year, Paul himself would visit Corinth, and there write the letter to the Romans. Find Corinth, Ephesus, Philippi, and Thessalonica on a map.

 

Possible Lesson Plan:

  1. Open with prayer.

 

2.   Scripture lesson: II Corinthians 1:3-7, Job 1 and 2, I Kings 19, Psalms 43 and 55

 

  1. Review the background of the book.

 

4.   Can the students think of characters in the Bible who suffered from “feel bads”?

What about Job, Elijah, David, Peter? Review their stories; does God always promise us a bed of roses without the thorns?

5. Discuss the emotional life of a teenager: What are some emotions the students experience? What life stresses are they responding to? Can the students share some experiences in their own lives that made them feel bad? (breaking up with a boy/girl friend, arguing with a parent over the rules, getting a bad grade on a test, being fat/ugly/too tall/too short, moving to a new town, being rejected by a club, not “making the team”, arguing with a friend, etc.)  How do their bodies react to these emotions (stomachaches, headaches, palpitations, fainting, cold sweat, etc.) Is this normal?

6. How do we deal with the “feel bads” as Christians? Are Christians never supposed to feel bad? How are “feel bads” different for Christians than for non-Christians? Do we feel bad because we have no faith?

 

7.   Close with prayer.