As we follow the pattern set by Jesus Christ, we will suffer as God prepares us for roles of great glory as members of His Family.
Our response to God's call has not removed all of our suffering. However, responding to God changes the reason for suffering and what it can accomplish.
The fact that God Himself grieves over human sinfulness and the separation it causes—which we learned in Part Two—begs the question of why God created an order where even He and the Word are not immune to suffering. ...
Why did God allow this tragedy? Why do the good suffer and the evil prosper? We want answers to these questions, but Jesus points us in another direction.
Clyde Finklea, reminding us that spiritual maturity does not come about without difficulty, asserts that suffering is one of the tools God uses to perfect us. Suffering is part of a process to refine endurance and character. At the onset of a trial, we mus. . .
Of all people, one might think, Christians should be the most blessed, yet they often fall under heavy trials. However, the reality is that God is putting us through the paces, correcting us and refining us, to bring us to salvation.
Acts 27 teaches that we must distinguish among several types of suffering. Regardless of the type of suffering, we must remember that God will deliver us.
Affliction is a necessary aspect of life, yielding strength of character, while ease and comfort weaken us. Christ was perfected as High Priest through suffering.
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the analogy or metaphor of wilderness wanderings, focuses on the role of suffering or persecution (pressure) in perfecting the saints. God the Father perfected Jesus Christ (our Elder Brother, High Priest, and Mediator) throu. . .
John Ritenbaugh, defining providence as the protective care of God, suggests that the providence of God also touches on the pains and sufferings of persecution. To the elect whom God foreknew, all things- pleasant or unpleasant- happen for ultimate good (R. . .
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that the Apostle Paul, in this prison epistle, conveyed to the Philippians his optimism that the apparent misfortune was actually a blessing, actually enabling Paul to magnify his effectiveness, enabling more fruit to be borne. P. . .
Persecution involves a wide spectrum, ranging from torture, physical beating, social excommunication, imprisonment and death. Our boldness should match Paul's.
John Ritenbaugh addresses three foundational principles: 1) God's omniscience (knowledge of what is going on everywhere); 2) God's assurance that even though we have trials, they all have a niche in His overall purpose;, and 3) God's continual providence i. . .
Christ's sacrifice was not merely substitutionary, but representative, with Christ giving us a pattern for life - mortifying our flesh and putting out sin.
We sometimes mistake faith for certainty about God's will. However, faith is not knowing what God will do in a situation but trusting Him to do what is best for us.
John Reid observes that many people live in a state of discontent. Ironically, what they set their hearts upon (wealth, power, influence) often displaces the love for family and a relationship with God. True riches consist of godly character coupled with c. . .
Richard Ritenbaugh acknowledges that although many in God's church have gone through sore trials and tests of sorts, virtually no one has gone through the nightmarish persecutions suffered by the early Christians in Imperial Rome. Because most of us have l. . .
Military strategists have long realized the key to success in the training of new recruits is to identify the danger they will encounter—in short, to know their enemy. Recruits to God's spiritual army also need to know their enemy and to make appropr. . .
Since God's thoughts are higher than ours, we must keep an intimate GPS-like dialogue with our heavenly Father so we can stay on the right path to the Kingdom.
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting that our national holiday Thanksgiving may be a parody of what God intended should be our understanding of thankfulness. Rather than something we do annually, we should be returning thanks several times daily. Thankfulness equip. . .
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