Borrowed Truths

The Struggle

the struggle
Borrowed Truths

The Struggle

I am going to inform you of something that the “mainstream Christians” will vehemently deny, God wants us to suffer, and I believe that, in part, it can be proven in the Scriptures.

You must realize that there are people who are saved that have what some might consider enormous wealth, but their bodies are frail, and others who are, as they use to say, healthy as a horse, who live in abject poverty, and there are inferences in the Scriptures for these individuals. Consider Mephibosheth, in the court of David, “And David said unto him, Fear not: for I will surely shew thee kindness for Jonathan thy father’s sake, and will restore thee all the land of Saul thy father; and thou shalt eat bread at my table continually.” (2 Sam. 9:7) Bad feet and all.

And consider Lazarus, full of sores at the rich man’s gate, on his way to glory. “For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called.” (1 Cor. 1:26) Right alongside “And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.” (Matt. 19:24)

Find a prophet in the Old Testament that lived in the lap of luxury, one could perhaps, to a degree, place Solomon in this genre, but recall not only his end, but the turmoil of the mind of the wisest man who ever lived. How about the apostles, as far as we know, John was the only one to die at a ripe old age, but in a land far from home, banished. “These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.” (John 15:11) “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” (John 14:27)

From these examples and from the words of our Savior, we learn that suffering is not only a part, a sure sign even, if you will, of being a Christian, but it is relative. Relative in the sense that it must always be compared to the promises, to the prize that is Christ. (Phil. 3:14) Far too many see Jesus’ suffering as only pertaining to the cross, they do not look at the man who was “acquainted with grief.” (Isaiah 53:3), the man of sorrows, an entire life full of them.

I would ask this question of you, did Jesus know, while he was in the flesh here amongst us, just by looking at them, who was going to be in His kingdom, and who was not. Think on that, the Creator of hell, meeting with people on a daily basis that He knew without a shadow of a doubt that one day they would meet Him again, and He would be casting them into the fiery pit for all eternity. I can think of few greater sorrows.

The human mind would see no purpose in even continuing the conversation, after all, there is no hope for that individual, they will die in their sins, and nothing is going to change that. This is why we cannot tell who our brothers and sisters are just by looking at them, we must speak with all we meet about His love, and in this we suffer, for most will cast us from their presence as soon as possible, others use the name of Christ as a curse word, in fact, I would venture a guess that you have heard the name of Jesus more from the lost than the saved.

Must we suffer here on earth in this life so that our eternal home will seem that much more sweeter, or do we suffer because He suffered. That is the question, what is the purpose for our suffering. Most that profess Christ will call all this nonsense, but they are unable to tell the difference between happiness and the joy of the Lord, circumstances and emotions are the basis of their faith, not faith itself. Rejoicing always, (1 Thess. 5:16) singing at midnight in the dungeon, (Acts 16:25) these are they that understand Hebrews 12:2, “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

The conclusion is the answer, if you want to be Christlike, you must be a man of sorrows, an easy thing in our world today, and you must be acquainted with grief. But it matters little to the one who has been crucified with Christ, rejoicing or sorrow, “good” times or bad, how He calls us to serve is how we will serve, if we love Him, no matter the struggle.

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