Skip to content

A bit on suffering. (a Saturday extra)

There are times when I hear folks talk about suffering they are dealing with, and talk as though it was a gift from Jesus for them to struggle with in this life. I hear people talk about diseases this way, and financial problems, bad jobs, even bad marriages. As if Jesus tricked you into marrying the wrong man to help you mature. Hmmm. Is this what Jesus was talking about when He promised us trouble in this life?
Let’s just look at a couple verses. I won’t even comment much today, I just want to put some Scripture out there and let them do the talking. (ok I might just do a little highlighting along the way so you don’t miss the point.

Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.Blessed are you when men cast insults at you, and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely, on account of Me. Rejoice, and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you. (Matt 5:10-12

They will make you outcasts from the synagogue, but an hour is coming for everyone who kills you to think that he is offering service to God. (John 16:2)

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies; who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? Just as it is written, “FOR THY SAKE WE ARE BEING PUT TO DEATH ALL DAY LONG; WE WERE CONSIDERED AS SHEEP TO BE SLAUGHTERED.” But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:31-39)

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world. (John 16:33)

Are they servants of Christ? (I speak as if insane) I more so; in far more labors, in far more imprisonments, beaten times without number, often in danger of death. Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep. I have beenon frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren; I have beenin labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. Apart from such external things, there is the daily pressure upon me of concern for all the churches. (2 Corinthians 11:23-28)

Boy – it did me good just to read though all that scripture – How about you?
Well – all that is to say, the suffering God promises is the stuff that will be done to us by men. God promise stands sure, He will not leave us or forsake us, but He is not trying to crush us either – that would be our enemy. God is our comfort and strength, a very present help in trouble, not a very present cause of trouble.
Tell me what you think. Comment on the post or on facebook if you get stirred up reading these scriptures.
Thanks for coming today.
I remain, Ben.

0 thoughts on “A bit on suffering. (a Saturday extra)

  1. jenniferbuczynski

    haha, you made me laugh out loud at this line: "As if Jesus tricked you into marrying the wrong man to help you mature."I hear people say stuff like that all the time! Like, "Oh, I'm so sick, this must have been what it meant to carry my cross." It's like, wait...you really think that's what God had PLANNED for you? I read the Scriptures aloud and especially loved the passage from Romans 8! He is so wonderful to us!

    Reply
  2. Ben Nelson

    I started putting in those scriptures, and at first i thought i would just reference them and then make some incredibly insightful comments, and by the time i read them i was feeling like - "nuf said"Thanks

    Reply
  3. Stephen

    I have a friend who sees it differently after going through two bouts with cancer separated by many years. If she give me permission, I'll copy/paste her comments here. If not, I will paraphrase for you later 🙂

    Reply
  4. Stephen

    I couldn't paste it here, but I tagged you in the conversation, so you should be able to join in on Facebook if you'd like. I kind of got the timing wrong on that, and it didn't have the encouraging effect I hoped it would. Quite the opposite. But I think it will be OK. Love you!

    Reply

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: