The Great Mystery of Suffering

When we as believers endure long hours and dark nights of suffering and loneliness, we do not go through them alone. Isaiah said, “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God.” (Isaiah 41:10) Jesus said, “I will be with you always, even unto the end of the age.”

There is a story of the timid prisoner. It goes like this:

There was a hole - the inmates dreaded this cell. It was cold, dark, soundless, damp and still. The door clanked shut and he sank to the floor in despair. Suddenly, he heard footsteps. Then a voice said softly, “I am the prison chaplain. I knew you could not stand the loneliness alone, so I’ve come to be with you. I will be here as long as you are.” Knowing he was not alone, the tomb of darkness and loneliness became a place of rest.

2 Thessalonians 2

The Day of the Lord

The Day of the Lord extends from the Rapture until the purgation of the heavens and the earth by fire, preparatory to the new heavens and new earth. Momentous events will take place within this “Day:”

- A confederation of countries will form a Roman Empire (see Daniel 2 and Daniel 7). A political ruler will rise to rule this empire and he will make a covenant with Israel (see Daniel 9:27 and Revelation).

- A false religious system will be formulated under a false prophet (see Revelation 13:11-18).

- The pouring out of judgments will take place: the seal judgments (see Revelation 6), the trumpet judgments (see Revelation 8:11), and the bowl judgments (see Revelation 16).

- The overthrow of the professing Church will occur (see Revelation 17-18).

Trials Come and Go

"When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee; when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. For I am the Lord thy God..." -- Isaiah 43:2-3a. God has only one route for every child of God. It is through. Every trial, no matter how severe and long, is only temporary. We’re going through. "Through waves, through clouds and storms, God gently clears the ...

Affliction and Learning

"Before I was afflicted I went astray..." Psalm 119:67 "It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn Thy statutes." Ps. 119:71 "But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel." Phil. 1:12 -------------------- Sometimes we have to go backwards in order to better go forward. Life’s reverses—its setbacks—are often our biggest helps in advancing. We ha...

Godly Conduct Under Persecution

Daniel Chapter 3 INTRODUCTION In Daniel chapter 3 we learn some of the things that were going on in the lives of Daniel’s friends, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. We will learn that the Lord does not always deliver from the trial, but that He will be with us in it, and that we must be prepared to trust him when the heat is unbearable, knowing that He will see us through. Let us examine some of the lessons of this chapter. THERE IS NOTHING WORSE THAN TRUTH DISTORTED, EXAGGE...

NT Church - The church is not ashamed to bear the reproach of Christ.

For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which are in Judea in Christ Jesus; for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they have of the Jews (1 Thess. 2:14). It is not the name of a local church that distinguishes it as being a pattern of the New Testament. The church may have a very unique title such as "The New Testament Church of Jesus Christ" and yet it may not follow the pattern displayed in the New Testament. It is not even the cree...

We Faint Not!

The Apostle Paul suffered greatly for the glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ, but despite being pressed, perplexed and persecuted he did not lose heart - he did not quit! (2 Cor. 4:1; 7-9) Two great truths of Scripture kept Paul pressing on. The first was that he served a living Saviour. God had raised up the Lord Jesus and would also raise him up with Jesus. (2 Cor. 4:14) The second truth was that eternity is real. That which is seen is temporary, but that which is unseen is eternal. (2 C...

Afflictions and Consolations

Afflictions and Consolations Notes of an Address on the First Epistle of Peter By J. G. B. Aug., 1851. (extracted from The Northern Witness, 1880) There are three things in this epistle: 1st, the apostle contemplates the saint in times of various troubles; 2ndly, the mind with which the trouble should be passed through; and 3rdly, the consolations which God provides for such a time. There is nothing very remarkable in the bearing of it; but so much the more needed by the soul very often; &...

The Trial of Your Faith - J. Tannahill

(Adapted from an article that appeared in “Knowing the Scriptures”, Nov. – Dec. 1935) Peter therefore was kept in prison; but prayer was made without ceasing of the Church unto God for him. And when Herod would have brought him forth, the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers; bound with two chains; and the keepers before the door kept the prison. (Acts 12:5-6)There is something characteristic about the circumstances in which Peter appears in this incident: “...

Suffering the Reproaches of Christ

There is a suffering that a Christian must indeed endure if he is to be used of the Lord. The book of Hebrews describes this suffering when we are told of Moses, who “chose rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season, esteeming the reproaches of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt…” (Heb. 11:24). To suffer the reproaches of Christ is characteristic of a Christian who has willingly chosen a path of suffering fo...
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