For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. (2 Corinthians 1:5-6)
Christ Jesus himself spoke this: “14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.” (John 3:14-15)
He was indicating that he would be lifted up on a cross to suffer but so that “32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die. (John 12:32-33)
Yet through this suffering, salvation for those who believe in him becomes possible. We also must realize that as Christ followers too, suffering will come in life and when we have God’s hope through our Lord Jesus Christ, we are his messages to the World that does not know him. Through suffering, he pours his hope and consolation into our hearts and we become becons of light that show the World that suffering has not had the final say. Jesus Christ accomplished more by his death I dare say then his life teaching- though in this sense: Jesus taught his perfect ways, yet unless He died for sin, the knowlege he spread through teaching and preaching would have been all lost. The reason it would, is all Jesus did and taught and miracles performed were to draw and point people to himself for salvation. And if Jesus Christ did not finish his ministry with the sacrificial death, God would have no atonement for sins and could not forgive us even Jesus taught these people- they still needed a transformation that can only be received through faith in his substitutionary atonement for their sins and the sins of the World.
Yet as we as his followers suffer, we are to point others to Him, for if the people in the World see that Jesus Christ’s power has sustained us through fierce storms and hardships, some of them will see He is truly the answer. The Apostle Paul first says in 2 Cor 1
“If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation;”
Manifold application, suffering of a person of faith when done in the power and strength of Christ both has an effect on the lost but also younger believers who look to us who have walked with Christ longer for encouragement. As a result, many see how the Lord has enabled us to thrive in what most would be shaken by, they are inspired often and given hope. For the non Christian, may that hope lead to their salvation, for the new believer, may that hope result in their faith growing.
Secondly: “if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer.”
As we go through tests and trials, God pours his heavenly grace out and encourages us- then we with joy share our encouragement God has built us up with through time with Him and in his Word, when we pass this hope unto others suffering similar tests of faith/ they also often are blessed with God’s comfort to us as we go through similar struggles as they face. Sharing becomes caring and overflows into the hearts of many being edified, strengthened and uplifted.