Now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages” (Romans 16:25, ESV)

The word that the ESV translates “to strengthen” means: “to support, sustain, strengthen, fix firmly in place,” [Theological Lexicon of the New Testament].  The word means more than just strengthen here, it means “to strengthen so as to stay firmly fixed in place.”  I like to think of it as the pillar of a wharf or jetty set into the sea.  The builder must set the pillars firmly into place so that they are not swayed by the relentless onset of the waves.

As followers of Christ we are to rely on Christ to set us firmly into place so that we will not be moved as we experience the difficulties that every Christian faces: Ill-health, suffering, sickness, financial difficulties, loss of employment, persecution, oppression, opposition by loved family members, we could go on, but you get the point.  There are any number of life experiences that might knock us loose from our moorings in the gospel if we are not set firmly into place with the gospel as a foundation.  For this we must rely upon the aid and help of Christ.

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