“For as we share abundantly in Christ's sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too” (v5). Paul taught the believers to expect suffering as part of life, but also to anticipate the joyful experience of knowing Christ’s comfort (v3-7), a unique kind of “sharing” that would lead them to spiritual maturity. Paul saw his own desperate situations – “we despaired of life itself” – as the moments when he learned to rely on “God who raises the dead” (v9).
Deep, steadfast faith comes from experiencing God’s comfort in the hardest of trials. “On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again” (v10).