God uses trials to test our hearts, but He never places a trial before us to tempt us. God uses trials we bring on ourselves to draw us closer to Him.
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. . .
In this message on self-deception and illusion, Martin Collins focuses upon the pernicious insidious trait of human nature to deceive itself, living in a perpetual fantasy and self-delusion. God uses a lifetime regimen of testing, designed to distinguish g. . .
Mark Schindler shares a publication produced shortly after World War II by the Reader's Digest, titled Getting the Most Out of Life, a collection of articles written by people who were able to transcend their losses by finding alternate ways of attaining g. . .
God promises certain Christians that He will keep them from the Tribulation—the "hour of trial." Here are the characteristics of those whom God will protect.
In Job 1, Satan accuses God of hedging Job about on every side, saying that if God would let down the hedge, they could see what Job was really made of. This article explains how important God's hedge about us is.
Ted Bowling, reflecting on the potter and clay analogy, reminds us that the Master Potter continually molds and shapes His people. Finding different kinds of clay in the riverbed, he weathers it to the point it stinks (like our own sins), and then pounds t. . .
Christ endured many more than three temptations; rather, He was tested continuously, and perhaps the intensity increased as He neared the end of His life.
Hard trials are not punishments from God for unrighteousness but tests of faith in which He is intimately involved to prepare us for the world to come.
Martin Collins discusses the apostle Paul's epistle to the Thessalonians, a group of dispirited, despairing Christians who had been bombarded by false teachings that the Day of the Lord had already come, prompting many to quit their employment, rest on the. . .
David Maas, examining classical Biblical and modern metaphors of sanctification, focuses on refinement, enhancement, and glorification metaphors, illustrating how we are transformed from temporal to eternal. We have some clues as to how we will appear in a. . .
Ryan McClure, cautioning us to regard neither the trials of ancient Israel nor our present trials as an oddity, reminds us that God uses trials to test and humble us, but He never impedes our ability to move forward toward His goal of creating us as a fami. . .
Kim Myers, reflecting on the uniqueness of our calling, asks us if we appreciate the miracle of our calling, an event which changed our orientation regarding our belief structure, diet, and moral behavior, totally at odds with the world. God has called eac. . .
We tend to think of the early Church as a 'golden age' of unity and momentum. But early church members experienced problems similar to what we face today.
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. . .
When Job was afflicted with physical problems, he learned that God was using them to perfect him. Afflictions are intended to bind us together.
Despite the many blessings God bestows upon His saints, real Christianity more resembles a running battle against persistent, hostile forces than a leisurely stroll down the path of life. John Ritenbaugh uses the example of ancient Israel in the wilderness. . .
We have been called to a life of avoiding, enduring and overcoming temptation. Here is the process of temptation, sin and their products, and destruction.
Trials are a means to produce spiritual growth, unless we resort to super-righteousness, straining to please God by exalting our works.
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 heroes of faith in Hebrews 11 did not have a blind naïve faith, but one built incrementally by careful examination of the evidence- adding things up or calculating- from cumulative life experiences. From this acquired fa. . .
Ryan McClure, drawing parallels between the Exodus of Israel and our spiritual conversion, points out that God shows transparency of His intentions to test us in order to see what is in our hearts (Deuteronomy 8:1-5). The Lord revealed to Moses His intenti. . .
Martin Collins, continuing the series on effective prayer, examines some of the reasons God apparently does not answer certain prayers in the affirmative. Sometimes people "pray" as a substitute for thinking. We are to become skilled at using bib. . .
The group that one fellowships with is less important than the understanding that there is one true church, bound by a spiritual, not a physical unity.
John Ritenbaugh reveals that the valley-of-shadow imagery symbolizes the fears, frustrations, trials, and tests needed to produce character, quality fruit, and an intimate trust in the shepherd. His rod, an extension of his will and strength, serves not on. . .
John Ritenbaugh warns that the pride of Jacob (or his offspring) coupled with the incredible ability to make tremendous technological advances, blinds Israel to its devastating moral deficit. Amos begins with a description or cataloging of the sins of Isra. . .
Our hope is based on having a living Savior. At times we are discouraged and overwhelmed, but God has not left us—though unseen, He is in the trials with us.
The most formidable foe in our spiritual battle is the flesh. We must mortify, slay, and crucify the flesh, enduring suffering as Jesus Christ exemplified.
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