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Scripture Reading: Psalm 31:21-24
How Jesus Overcame Discouragement
1. Discouragement may include “deep and sober concern because of real problems.” (Gene Taylor, “Dealing with Discouragement”)
2. Apostles were “hard pressed on every side” and “perplexed”, yet not crushed and not despondent (despair), 2 Cor. 4:8-10.
3. Jesus faced discouragement. Heb. 4:15; 5:7-9
4. Jesus always overcame discouragement and never came to the point of despair – A perfect example for us, 1 Pet. 2:21.
I. DISCOURAGEMENT TAKES MANY FORMS AND IS CAUSED BY MANY THINGS.
A. Family Matters, cf. Jno. 7:1-5.
1. Troubled marriage, illness, financial concerns, business, etc.
2. Misunderstandings and conflicts in the family.
3. Let none of these become a distracting care, Matt. 6:25, 34.
B. Moral Failures, Lk. 22:47-48.
1. Alcohol, drugs, sex, lying, laziness and neglect (1 Cor. 6:9-11).
2. Put away the past (repent) and press onward, Phil. 3:13-14.
C. Spiritual Matters (“little faith”, Matt. 8:26).
1. Personal struggles of faith, little or no growth, bad influences…
2. Church problems (1 Cor. 1:11); by brethren (Deut. 1:28).
D. We must Remember that Others Also have their Disappointments and Discouragements, cf. Job (3:11-13); David (Psa. 22:1-2); Elijah (1 Kgs. 19:4); Jeremiah (Jer. 9:2).
1. Helps us avoid self-pity and gives us opportunities to be a blessing to someone else to help relieve them, Gal. 6:2.
2. Accept help from someone else – source of great blessing.
-“Discouragement will come (Matt. 18:7). We must know how to deal with it.”
II. JESUS OVERCAME DISCOURAGEMENT:
A. With Endurance: He did not give in and give up, Heb. 12:1-2.
1. Jesus ruled his circumstances instead of allowing his circumstances to rule him, cf. Paul, Phil. 4:10-13.
2. Your reasons to endure include:
a. More than conquerors through Christ, Rom. 8:35-39.
b. Christ in you is greater than Satan in the world, 1 Jno. 4:4.
c. Faith and trust is in the One who never fails or falters, Heb. 11:32-39.
d. Remember: Someone is counting on you!
B. With an Eternal Perspective: Look beyond the moment, Jno. 4:35.
1. “Lift up your eyes” – God is in heaven and rules; See the opportunities; All things turn out for good to those who love God, Rom. 8:28.
2. See the light – not the present moment of darkness:
a. You can be made stronger and draw closer to God (Jas. 1:2-3).
b. You can remove impurities and rejoice in future, 1 Pet. 1:6-9.
c. You can be an instrument of God’s glory, 2 Cor. 4:14-15.
C. He Kept Working: Stay active in your faith, Jno. 9:4.
1. When blocked in one direction, go in another, Acts 16:6-10.
2. Esther: “Who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14).
3. At first sign of discouragement too many stop coming to worship services, stop praying, stop obeying God, Prov. 24:10, 16.
4. Do not grow weary while doing good, Gal. 6:9.
D. He Prayed Often: In nothing be anxious, Phil. 4:6-7.
1. Jesus often retreated to prayer, Lk. 5:15-16; 6:12-13.
2. David knew the refuge of prayer, Psa. 22:24; 55:1-7, 16-18.
3. Cast your burdens on Him, Psa. 55:22; 1 Pet. 5:6-7 (humility and trust that He will take care of you).
E. He was Thankful: Joy comes in the morning, Jno. 11:41 (Psa. 30:5); Jno. 16:22.
1. God’s presence and blessings sustain us through moments of darkness and danger, Psa. 23:4.
2. We can give thanks in everything, 1 Ths. 5:18.
1. "Let not your heart be troubled" (Jno. 14:1).
2. God strengthens and saves His people, Psa. 31:21-24 (Heb. 13:5-6).
3. The Lord bless you and keep you...and give you peace, Num. 6:24-26.
Resource: “Dealing with Discouragement” by Gene Taylor; www.centervilleroad.com/articles/discouragement.html
Some might question whether Jesus was ever discouraged. Here are just some of the discouragements Jesus faced:
a. By hard and unreceptive hearts (Jno. 6:60-61, 67).
b. Little faith of apostles; failed to grasp his meaning (Matt. 16:6-9).
c. When Peter would have obstructed his purposes (Matt. 16:22-23).
d. In Gethsemane (Matt. 26:38; Heb. 5:7).
e. On the cross (Matt. 27:46).