When our children were young, it was interesting to see how quickly they wanted to become self-sufficient, self-reliant. Whenever they began to learn a new skill, whether it was feeding themselves or walking or dressing themselves, they would soon express in one way or another, “I want to do it by myself.” They didn’t want someone else helping them. That is a trait that many people carry into adulthood and throughout their lives. They believe that to be successful they have to be self-sufficient without any help from someone else. While each individual is responsible and accountable for their own decisions and actions in life, no one is truly self-sufficient enough to be able to live and walk in the abundance of life to which God has called believers.
As we go to the Scriptures, we will see that God promises to be our sufficiency and to always supply our need. We have the choice to either trust Him or to put our trust in people or the things of this world to be our sufficiency. God’s sufficiency includes everything we need to live abundantly no matter the circumstance. We can rely on Him above all our abilities or our circumstances.
God has made us complete in Christ, and He promises to be our sufficiency, to supply our need, at all times. As God’s children we can believe His promises. We can be willing to accept His support and trust Him to work with us and for us to supply our need—instead of relying on our own natural abilities. I love the line in the hymn “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God” which states, “Did we in our own strength confide, Our striving would be losing.” We are not to place our confidence in the flesh, in our own natural abilities and skills. We trust in God, not the world. God causes us to triumph and makes our way prosperous. God’s sufficiency to us includes every aspect of life imaginable.
What is it to have sufficiency, to be sufficient? It is to have enough to meet the needs of a situation or a proposed end. To meet any need, to accomplish any goal, requires resources and abilities. How do we obtain sufficiency in the various categories of life? How do we become sufficient, able for any situation? Man’s tendency is to trust in his own ability and strength, to be “self-sufficient.” He may pursue different avenues to achieve this self-sufficiency—education, physical development, financial prosperity, and more—but none of these will bring him to the point of true sufficiency in all things.
Man does not have the resources within himself to meet all his need. The only place the believer can find an adequate source of supply in order to grow and serve is by the sufficiency that comes from God Himself. Only when we trust in the promises and resources of God, not in those of the world, can we truly have sufficiency for all things at all times.
II Corinthians 3:5 and 6:
Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God;
Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.
God’s Word clearly sets forth the truth that our sufficiency is not of ourselves. As believers, we recognize that we are not the source of our sufficiency. Our sufficiency is of, or from, God. The emphasis in verse 5 is not on the sufficiency but on the Source, which is God. God is our sufficiency physically (health, longevity, shelter, food), our sufficiency mentally (peace, confidence, hope), and our sufficiency spiritually (the new birth, sonship rights, manifestations of holy spirit)—in all ways, in all circumstances, for all times. He is an inexhaustible supply, the Source by which every need is met. Our confidence is not based on human resources but on divine ones. Our sufficiency and competence are given by God. His sufficiency more than compensates for our insufficiency. God’s answer to insufficiency is His all-sufficiency.
The Greek verb translated “hath made…able” in verse 6 is related to the Greek noun translated “sufficiency” in verse 5. God has made us able, sufficient, and adequate to minister the greatness of the new birth. Our God is powerful enough to supply the greatest needs and loving enough to provide for the smallest details of our lives. He is not limited by anything in how He can provide but will always bless, support, defend, and care for His people. God will not leave unequipped those whom He has called to and entrusted with the ministry of His Word.
God’s sufficiency in our lives enables us to carry out the ministry of reconciliation given to us. We have been made adequate and competent to bring God’s deliverance, His sufficiency in Christ, to others. We can show those who are seeking, how they can manifest God’s power and grace and have a life filled to overflowing. When we have confidence in God’s supply through Christ Jesus, there is no anxiety but a comforting peace. Trusting in God’s sufficiency, His willingness and ability to provide, frees us to live a life of service. As we trust God and put Him first, He brings us good success and victory.…
This is an excerpt from the November/December 2015 issue of The Way Magazine.
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