Christian Perspective on Suffering

Suffering

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Facts About Suffering

This is a message that I heard in church last Sunday, and it is so important that I believe it needs wide coverage over the Internet. It is a message of great comfort for all suffering people, especially for those who are in Christ.The gist of the message is as follows:

i. The Lord Jesus Christ is God's provision for all our needs, all our problems. Just as safety, security and salvation (from the avenger) were found in the six cities of refuge in Joshua 20:7,8, so all needs of salvation, security and sustenance are found in the Lord Jesus Christ. But we must get to know the Lord Jesus by experience. It is experimental knowledge of Christ that is important.

ii. While talking about the third city of refuge, Hebron, the preacher spoke of the great human problem of loneliness. So often we hear of children complaining, 'My parents are too busy to spend time with me.' Because of lonely lives, so many seek solace and friendship on the Internet.

iii. But true fellowship is found in the Lord Jesus Christ. Hebron means fellowship. We can enjoy continual communion with the Lord Jesus, walking with Him and talking with Him every day of our lives. Further, it is in the church, in the company of the redeemed saints of God, that we enjoy wonderful fellowship, comfort and blessing. When we are saved, we are not only indwelt by Christ through the Holy Spirit, but the Lord adds us to the Church, which is His Body, Acts 2:47.. The fullness of God is found in Christ, and the riches of Christ are enjoyed in the Church. Eph 1:23, 3:21.

iv. The riches of grace and glory are to be experienced and enjoyed by the believer in Christ right here on earth. God wishes to reveal His glory to us, and that glory comes to us by faith. 'If you will believe, you will see the glory of God.' John 11:40. It depends on our faith, and God aims to increase, purify and strengthen our faith.

v. How does faith grow? By suffering. 1 Pet 1:7 says our faith is purified and made strong by suffering, by our undergoing fiery trials. We are chosen in the furnace of affliction, Isa 48:10.

The preacher then went on the mention certain Facts regarding Suffering:

i. Suffering is integral to the Christian experience. All who live godly lives in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. 1 Tim 3:12. There is a false teaching prevailing these days that suffering is not the will of God. But the fact is that God takes all His children through painful trials of faith. To us believers, it is granted not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, Phil 1:29.

ii. For a child of God, there is nothing that comes by chance or accident. There is no such thing as good luck or bad luck. All is appointed by God, all is ordained by God. There is nothing accidental, there is no chance happening in the lives of God's children. God apportions to each saint his or her share of trials in this life. But for what purpose?

iii. God explains in Deut 8:16, that the Israelites were tested in the wilderness, and humbled (by trials), so that He might prove them and do them good 'at the latter end'. We know the 'latter end' of Job. How he received twice as much for all that he had suffered, Job 42:12. For all our shame and suffering, God will reward us with 'double honour', Isa 61:7.

iv. Suffering never works against a child of God, but actually works for him. Jacob cried out in grief in Gen 42:36 that all things were working against him, but at that very time in fact God was working for him. He was to see his beloved son, Joseph, elevated as ruler of Egypt, and becoming a blessing to the world.

v. Every disappointment is God's appointment. Observe how the Lord tarried two more days, when He heard of Lazarus' death. This delay of His was to strengthen the faith of His loved ones, John 11:15. We cry out to God, like the Psalmist, 'How long, O Lord? Why have You forgotten me?' But we know the glorious result at Bethany, how Lazarus was raised from the grave; and we too will declare one day, 'Lord, it was good that You delayed for me.'

vi. All sufferings are under the control of God. He sets the thermostat, as it were. How much (heat), and how long (timing) - are two aspects which are under His grip. He will not keep us one minute more in the crucible of fire. He will provide a way of deliverance, which only He knows. 1 Cor 10:13.

vii. All things work together for our good, Rom 8:28. ALL things. Every disappointment, every delay, every apparent denial - every bitter experience - is actually working for our good, and for His glory. We, from our earthly point of view, see only the ugly underside of what is actually a glorious tapestry of a saint's life that is being woven by God in heaven.

viii. All contrary forces, such as gales and storms, are meant to strengthen and deepen our roots in God. The eagle flies in the face of the storm and spirals upwards till it becomes a speck in the sky. And by resisting the wind, the eagle's wings become large and strong. The trials which oppose us are creating the necessary lift for us to rise higher and higher. God wants to bring us to 'higher ground' - and to acquire a deeper, stronger, unshaken faith in Him.

ix. In Mark 6, we see that the Lord Himself constrained His disciples to get into the boat and into the storm. But He was watching them from the mountain top, and He came to them, walking over the waves, Mark 6:48. He knows all our problems - family problems, financial problems, health problems, job problems, ministry problems, every kind of problem. He sees us; He cares for us; and He comes to us...just when we are at the point of giving up.

x. In all our afflictions, He is afflicted, Isa 63:9. He shares in our sufferings. In Mark 4, He is in the boat with the disciples; He is going through the terrible storm with them. He has not left them alone. He wants us to have faith in the midst of the storm - real, living, practical faith.

xi. Tribulation produces godly character, the fruit of the Holy Spirit. The Greek word for tribulation means pressure. Tremendous heat and pressure are needed to create diamonds. God seeks the best materials - gold, silver and precious stones. Left to ourselves, living easy and comfortable lives, we will produce only wood, hay and stubble. 1 Cor 3:12. But precious stones and gold are found buried deep in the earth. God takes us into the depths of suffering, so that we may enter into His abundant glory.

© Tom Prato/Tan Pratonix


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Comments 14 comments

Pollyannalana profile image

Pollyannalana 6 years ago from US

I find faith a hard thing knowing I am not worthy so I use my faith is the words of Jesus, He says if we pray this prayer the Father will hear and answer so after I pray I remind God Jesus could never lie and I put my faith in that which I truly know has to be true. I don't know how or how long but I know it will be answered. Polly


Pratonix profile image

Pratonix 6 years ago from Asia Author

The main thing is to be born again and to be 'in Christ'. That is a real experience. Remember John 3:3,5,7.

This article speaks meaningfully and clearly to those who are born again, who know that they are the children of God, having been regenerated by the Holy Spirit.


Bryn 6 years ago

This amazed me as I and my wife were going through a lot of suffering having been apart since January 2010 and not seeing each other since, while we go through the burdensome task of my immigration to join her in America. We were feeling very down hearted as of lately especially as at the very moment we were expecting my interview date to come through, only to be told that they have now doubled the waiting time on this. But the Lord has been lifting us up again in a number of ways and we know He has not forgotten nor forsaken us. This message has served to lift us up even more and so we praise Him for all He has done, is doing and will continue to do in bringing us together again. Thank You Jesus. Amen.


Judah's Daughter profile image

Judah's Daughter 6 years ago from Roseville, CA

What anointing! Would you mind if I link this hub to my "Trials and Temptations" hub? It is just so beautiful and right on! It truly ministers to my wounds and to all who know those wounds well ~ and, O does God love us so, for we do rise up on the wings of eagles!

I remember, when I go through trials of faith, John 15:2, which also comforted me as the multitude of scriptures in your hub: "Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit." He knows us by our fruit! I want to bear fruit, so I welcome His pruning!! Hallelujah; I will praise Him in ALL THINGS. God bless you mightily!! And your PASTOR, TOO!!!


Pratonix profile image

Pratonix 6 years ago from Asia Author

Thank you, JD. Pray for me, because I know that I will be attacked by the God-haters on HubPages for standing for the faith! 2 Tim 3:12. John 15:18,19.

You can link this hub to your hub! Grateful if you can point other Christians to this hub, 'Christian Perspective on Suffering'. I know it is a blessing, because it has blessed me in my great trial.


Judah's Daughter profile image

Judah's Daughter 6 years ago from Roseville, CA

In Mat 5:11-12 Jesus said, "Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you."

We'll stand together, no matter where we are on this earth, brother!! I think of 1 Pet 5:9 "But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world."

Tears bring so much joyful healing, for when we are broken I AM is there in greater presence ~ less of me, MORE OF HIM! He will NEVER give us more than He's empowered us to bear! And a blessing awaits!! God loves you, and I do, too!!


Pratonix profile image

Pratonix 6 years ago from Asia Author

Thank you for all your prayers and encouragement. Let us fight the good faith of faith here on HubPages, and stand up for the Lord Jesus Christ!


Artin2010 profile image

Artin2010 6 years ago from Northwestern Florida, Gulfcoast

This is truly an excellent explanation of Suffering as it pertains to God.In 2 Timothy 2:12 says, If we suffer, we shall also reign with Him,and in Chapter 4, it is written, verse 2 PREACH THE WORD, be instant in season;reprove,rebuke,exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

Revival and Gods people are aware through their faith that Jesus Christ return is closer with each passing day. We need to stay ready and stay in Gods Word! Thank you for sharing this information! God Bless


coffeesnob 6 years ago

Excellent. Love the point of evdery disappointment is God's appointment..Thanks for writing


Pratonix profile image

Pratonix 6 years ago from Asia Author

Thanks, coffee, for visiting my hub. Bless you.


Tamarajo profile image

Tamarajo 6 years ago from Southern Minnesota

Thank you for your thoughtful hub and so true. I had an experience last night that really stretched me and it occurred to me that it might be test and trial and knowing that helped me endure it. Experiencing trial isn't always so bad if you know there is a purpose and especially if you know God is glorified in it. I would love to hear more on the 6 cities of refuge too.


Akampurira Robert 6 years ago

HEY,

Thank you for all your prayers and encouragement. Let us fight the good faith of faith here on HubPages, and stand up for the Lord Jesus Christwho suffered for us and killed, but one time he will come back

Robert


ronniehenshaw@gmail.com 19 months ago

sufferings! I can't say I suffer for Christ ! I have a great peace. I just can't call that sufferings for Jesus , Jesus done all my sufferings on the cross!


danlamiumaru99@gmail.com 18 months ago

Suffering...yes,weeping may endure but for the night but joy comes in the morning.Yes storm do come but it does not last..hallelujah!!!

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