Temple Baptist Church - 5-27-2018
A. Tonight, I will preach on a subject that I am too often not good at living. Suffering is a way of life! “When you know that life is hard, you can make it!” I am not a fan of suffering and I want to say this right, but neither was our Lord in His humanity.
Matthew 26:37-39 And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. (38) Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. (39) And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.
B. The question will be asked, “Then why the Lord allows suffering?” Because of sin! Jesus suffered in this life because of His great love for sinners.
C. In this life, we will suffer but, in the life to come, there will be a glory revealed in us that will never fade away.
D. Suffering can bring about good results.
1 Peter 1:6-9 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: (7) That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: (8) Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: (9) Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.
1. Suffering is often a fiery trial that brings about heaviness. Tonight, I will not minimize our suffering because it can be painful physically and heartbreaking spiritually. I do not often use the words, “I know how you feel.” But I can say that God does.
2. In our suffering, we can become better or we can become bitter. I try to choose better! I am not always a “happy camper” as I see the injustice that is in the world, but I do know that God’s grace is sufficient.
3. Our suffering “might” be found unto “praise and honour and glory” when our Lord comes for His church. But, the verses say, “Might be found.” This carries the meaning that it might or it might not. God wants and expects the former instead of the latter.
1. Suffering Strengthens our Faith - 1 John 5:4 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.
2. Suffering Sharpens our Focus - Hebrews 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
3. Suffering Strengthens our Finish - Philippians 1:20-21 According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death. (21) For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
F. There are blessings that can only come through our sufferings.
1. Sufferings Bring Glory To God - 1 Peter 1:7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
2. Sufferings Introduce Us To God’s Sufficient Grace - 2 Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
3. Sufferings Bring About Closeness In Fellowship - 1 Corinthians 12:26 And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.
4. Sufferings Bring God’s Comfort - 2 Corinthians 1:5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.
5. Sufferings Purify Our Lives - 1 Peter 4:1 Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;
6. Sufferings Produce Patience - Romans 5:3 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
7. Sufferings Strengthen Our Faith - 1 Peter 4:19 Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.
8. Sufferings Produce Stability - 1 Peter 5:10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.