There is a pain that is beyond all comprehension, no one alive today, no matter what state they are in or have been in can understand this pain in its totality. I will not belittle in any way any physical or emotional affliction that anyone has ever had to endure, for to compare ones pain and suffering to another’s is reprehensible, and even those who have suffered the same types of pains as some others can at best console them in those valleys, but they can never walk in the exact same steps, nor can those that are in it do the same for others.
Some of these pains are so deep, so unrelenting that sadly many over the centuries have ended their lives because of them, the only release they can find is in death, others will seek refuge in busying themselves, hoarding, seemingly endless psychiatric counseling, the list of ways to hide from pain is endless. The drug epidemic around the planet bears witness to this, the problem with alcoholism is rampant, the ways to alleviate pain are as far and reaching as are our attempts to thwart its arrival. It is the way of this age of man that we live in today, pain, suffering, sorrow, all are to be avoided at all cost, and when they do come and the grip is too strong, too much for us to bear in our minds, we seek a way out, in fact, we are encouraged daily by the bombardment of advertisers on our phones, televisions, and every other media outlet to alleviate all possibilities of any form of discomfort, whether it be physical or mental.
You will not hear a physician telling you that your prescription includes a healthy, daily dose of the word of God, no pharmaceutical company is going to include within their chemical formulations the truths of the Scriptures, self-help books are solely for the individual, not the individual and Christ. Sadly, many religious organizations and even some churches now preach that we must look no longer in ourselves for the direction of the Holy Spirit, but only to ourselves, that the Lord’s face is not what we should seek, but only the fellowship of the congregation. Very few Christians I meet anymore see pain as a blessing from the Lord, as a means of rejoicing, (Rom. 12:12) the knowledge that one day we will never know pain or suffering in any form. I actually met a young man on vacation once that my lovely wife and I were blessed to take that firmly believed that if a child of God stayed continuously in the will of God, he would never know sickness or suffering in any form, needless to say, we spoke at length on the subject, and when he comes into my mind, I still pray for him.
There is a pain that the born-again believer will never know, and it is as foreign to us as it is going to be eternally real to the lost. Yes, there is a torment of hell for them, where even one drop of water from the finger of Lazarus (Luke 16:24) would be as a flowing spring, there is the unmentionable suffering of eternal pain from the lake of fire, (Matt. 25:41) but above all this, exponentially without comparison there is a pain that will last for all eternity without end, the knowledge, the unmitigated fact that all hope is gone, the suffering of complete hopelessness. We as believers will never know this emotion, this terrible feeling of being separated from the love of God forever, but those whom the wrath of God abides on, (John 3:36) those who will be, and are, the vessels fitted for wrath, (Rom. 9:22) will know no end to this dreadful experience.
They will know for a fact without question that there is a living God, that Jesus Christ is the judge of all the world, (John 5:30) they will know these truths beyond a shadow of a doubt because they have just spent a thousand years in hell, they have stood at the great white throne ofjudgement (Rev. 20:11) and looked directly into the face of the Lamb of God, and have been cast alive into the lake of fire, into the black pit of eternal hopelessness. No reprieve, no appeals, no second chances, forever in the knowledge that this is their abode forever.
We will never know this pain, and no pain or suffering on this planet can compare to it. The suffering of being separated from the Lord God is unconceivable to us, but the Lord Jesus knew that suffering, He experienced it for us so that we would not have to. “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me.” (Matt. 27:46) He knew it, and even when He knew that it was going to be for an infinitesimal period of time compared to eternity, He prayed that the cup would pass from Him. (Luke 22:42) Is it any wonder that His name is above every other name, (Phil. 2:9) that every knee will bow to Him and that every tongue will confess that He is Lord. (Rom.14:11)
This unworthy servant has done all that he can do in this letter to you to help you understand what true pain is, what real suffering is, that we have no right or place to ever complain about our own perceived troubles, trouble that will last for but a moment in comparison to the eternal glory that awaits us. (Rom. 8:18) Can you see why it is so important to witness to the lost, can you finally put aside all fear and shame, can you be just as convicted to speak to them when they are standing right in front of you as you hopefully are right now, and those times when you contemplate their end. The pains that rack my body some days may be nothing in comparison to yours, the suffering in my mind at some moments may pale in comparison to what the Lord has allowed you to experience, but not one Christian, not one single born-again believer will ever be able to comprehend in even the smallest way what awaits the lost for all eternity. “Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.” (2 Cor. 9:15)
The One who gave His life for us in love asks us to share that unspeakable gift of love with all we meet for this very reason my friends, and these truths should compel us to do so.