Power Point Show MP3 audio
Scripture Reading: Psalm 3
Why do Christians Suffer?
1. Why do God’s people suffer? Some wrong answers…
a. Job’s friends said he suffered because of his sin, Job 4:7; 22:4-5.
b. Apostles’ question reflected this view, Jno. 9:1-3.
c. Jesus denied a necessary, direct linkage / Used by Him to warn all of us to repent of sin, Lk. 13:1-5.
2. Right answers include…
a. The pains of mortality are a result of sin entering the world (Gen. 3).
b. The presence of evil (Job 1:7).
c. Time and chance (Eccl. 8:11-12).
3. Like Job, God still allows the suffering of the righteous to occur, and in it we can find enduring & eternal blessings.
a. Eccl. 8:16-17: Don’t know all the “whys” & “wherefores.”
b. We should consider the day of adversity, while trusting that all things work together for good to those who love God, Eccl. 7:13-14 (Rom. 8:28).
I. SUFFERING IS A TIME OF EDUCATION (discipline from the Lord), Heb. 12:3-8, 11 (Heb. 5:7-8).
* Opportunity to turn to God, to repent, grow spiritually & refine ourselves (Examples: Amos 4:6-12; Hag. 2:17).
* Results of this training, Heb. 12:9-11: Life (9), holiness (10) and righteousness (11).
-Psa. 94:12-15: Are brought to God’s word & find rest in adversity.
-Psa. 119:71: Should compel us to turn to God’s law (119:65-67).
II. SUFFERING SERVES TO REFINE US, 1 Pet. 1:6-7 (Job 23:10-12; Psa. 66:10-12).
* Produces Trust, Psa. 3:1-8 (growth of faith).
* Produces Patience, Jas. 1:2-4 (Rom. 12:12); Rom. 5:3 (maturity).
* Promotes Dependence upon God, 2 Cor. 12:9-10 (Prov. 24:16, 10).
III. THE CHRISTIAN’S SUFFERING CAN BE A TESTIMONY TO OTHERS…
* Of God’s righteous judgment, 2 Ths. 1:4-5.
* Of God’s glory (as we must our faith in Him), John 11:4.
* Of God’s grace in your lives, 2 Cor. 12:9.
* Of your reliance upon Christ, Phil. 1:28-29.
IV. SUFFERING FOR CHRIST SHOULD BE HUMBLY RECEIVED, 2 Tim. 3:12; 1 Pet. 4:16.
* With rejoicing, 1 Pet. 4:12-14; Matt. 5:10-12.
* With an eternal outlook, 2 Cor. 4:17-18 (Rom. 8:17; Phil. 3:10-11).
1. We must have the faith to see the blessings that exist in the moment of suffering, Jas. 1:12.
2. Such times of discipline, education & refining are not pleasant, but fruitful; Heb. 12:11.
3. The eye of faith sees and knows that eternal rest waits beyond the suffering (Rev. 14:13; 21:4).