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larry2
Oct 13th 2008, 02:02 AM
CHRISTIAN SUFFERINGS



by larry2



Part One



God’s Way Of Making Us The Best We Can Be



Who are called to Suffer? ALL


James 5:10. Take, my brethren, THE PROPHETS, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience.

Matt 17:12. Elijah (John the Baptist) is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they desired, Likewise shall also the Son of Man suffer of them.

Matt 16:21. From that time forth began Jesus to show unto his disciples how he must go into Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day.

1 Pet 2:21. For even hereunto were you called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps;

Phil 1:29. For unto you is it given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him but also to suffer for his sake.

Acts 9:15. But the Lord said unto him (Ananias), go thy way; for he (The Apostle Paul) is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel;

Acts 9:16. For I will show him how great things he The Apostle Paul) must suffer for My name’s sake (Jesus’ Name).



How Should We Regard Suffering? Rejoicing!


Acts 5:41. And they (The apostles) departed from the presence of the counsel, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His (Jesus) name.

1 Pet 1:6. In this ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold trials. Repeated using the NIV > Though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.

1 Pet 4:12. Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to test you, as though some strange thing happened to you.

1 Pet 4:13. But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings, that when his glory shall be revealed, ye shall be glad also with exceeding joy.

1 Pet 4:14. If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye, for the Spirit of Glory and of God resteth upon you. - Now look at how or what they did, and they claim to be a Christian. Very seldom will you see the non-Christian being criticized for doing or saying worse – HAPPY ARE YE.

Rom 5:3. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also, knowing that tribulation worketh patience. Repeated using the NIV > Not only so, but we rejoice in our sufferings.

James 1:2. My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials. Repeated using the NIV > Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds - And most of the time, you will have to count the trial as joyful due to the benefit to your life, not because it's fun to be in a trial of any sort, for we know that all things work together for good to them that love God (Rom 8:28).

2 Cor 6:3. Giving no offense in any thing, that the ministry be not blamed,

2 Cor 6:4. But in all things commending ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses,

2 Cor 6:5. In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in watchings, in fastings;

2 Cor 6:6. By pureness, by knowledge, by long-suffering, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by love unfeigned (Real love),

2 Cor 6:7. By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left,

2 Cor 6:8. By honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report; as deceivers (Regarded as imposters), and yet true;

2 Cor 6:9. As unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold we live; as chastened, and not killed;

2 Cor 6:10. As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; (In the things of God that will endure forever) as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.


What Do We Personally gain From Suffering?


Heb 5:8. Though He (Jesus) were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;

2 Cor 1:4. Who (The God of all comfort) comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them who are in any trouble, by the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted of God.

2 Cor 1:5. For the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.

2 Cor 1:6. And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same suffering which we also suffer, or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation.

2 Cor 1:7. And our hope of you is steadfast, knowing that, as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation.

2 Cor 12:7. And lest I (Paul) should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. Repeated using the NIV > To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations.

In (Col 1:25-26), Paul states that he became a minister according to the steward from God which was given to him for our sakes to fulfill, finish or complete the word of God; Even the mysteries which had been hidden from ages and generations, but now is made known to all who have accepted Jesus as savior and have become born of God. God gave this commission to the apostle Paul only of all the prophets and apostles he had. Would we have become proud over such a great revelation and commission freely given to us? Has God ever allowed you to lead even one person to Christ, and did you not hear the flesh boasting just a little? Have you been made aware of deeper truths such as whom Jesus will choose as His bride taken from a portion of the church much likened to when God took a rib portion of Adam’s body to make a bride for him, or other great truths such as the eternal security of the believer freely given us by divine revelation of the Holy Spirit who will lead us into all truth if we will only believe God’s word? For instance, in (2 Cor 11:2), Paul states that he is jealous over us with a godly jealously, for he has espoused (Engaged) us to one husband that he may present us as a chaste virgin to Christ (2 Cor 11:3), but I fear, lest by any means your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity (Singleness) that is in Christ. - As Eve should have gone to her head, which was Adam, and she listened to the serpent instead, most Christians go to a church denomination as their head instead of Christ and his word. When asked of what faith they are, most will respond with Baptist, Catholic, Church of Christ, Fundamental, Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian, Pentecostal or whatever, but do you see how crafty Satan is? Hopefully every one reading this is, or very soon will be of the faith of Jesus Christ, who is THE HEAD OF US THE CHURCH (Col 1:18).

Where do most Christians get the doctrines they profess to believe? Normally from the church they attend and not the Bible. Tradition robs a great many of the truth and others will believe fables and in some instances outright lies. Paul says in (Galatians 1:8), though we or an angel from heaven preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. Some will attend a certain church just because their parents or friends have always gone there. Others just love the music program or the choir and their beautiful robes. Youth activities and a silver-tongued preacher to soothe their itching ears with what they want to hear are always a plus. Are you really doing as the Berea saints did in (Acts 17:11), who received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so? You can always use the excuse of not believing something because your pastor doesn’t believe it. Many pastors have convinced their congregations that they only possess conditional life instead of eternal life. Those members try to hold on and hold out, attempting to satisfy the law, which was to show us how bad we really are and to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith; not justified by the law (Galatians 3:24). (Gal 5:4) states that Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law, ye are fallen from grace. It does not say you have fallen from salvation as many teach, but is saying that keeping a law, observing a so called holy day, eating or not eating certain foods and doing or not doing anything as a means to become just in God’s sight causes us to fall from grace or the way God deals with us. For it is written: by grace are you saved, through faith and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast (Eph 2:8-9). In other words, we would brag throughout eternity how we helped God save us if we were allowed to add our works of the law, or anything else to the complete and finished work of Christ on the cross to provide salvation and justification as a free gift to all who say Jesus is Lord, and believe in their heart God raised him from the dead (Rom 10:9). Christ died for us, not the other way around. Christ came not to be served by us, but he came to serve us by dying for us when we were the ones that deserved to hang on that cross (Matt 20:28). Therefore, God will not deal with us in any manner other than grace (Undeserved favor) and be able to do so mercifully; for look at what He did to Jesus who took our place at Calvary, and if His Son’s life and shed blood were not payment enough to satisfy the debt we owed, there is no amount of doing or not doing we can add to Christ’s sacrifice that will keep us from judgment leading to the second death.

Many claim that the bride of Christ will consist of the whole church. WHY? Paul expresses fear that many of these espoused to Jesus (That’s us) will be beguiled just as Eve was by looking to another head (2 Cor 11:2-3). This is the place in your walk with Christ where you will choose Jesus or some other as your head (Who is leading you?). (Hebrews 12:2) says we are to look unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. We are not told to look unto Rome, Salt Lake City. Springfield, Missouri or any other denominational headquarters as our head. Please learn that THE CHURCH is an organism made up of every man, woman and child that has accepted Jesus as their savior which also makes them born again believers regardless of their affiliation with different denominations. We are an organism, not an organization and are all members of the one and only church which is the body of Christ, but there are always those not satisfied with you merely belonging to THE CHURCH, but would have you become members of their particular assembly or denomination. In (1 Cor 1:12), the Corinthians were criticized when one group claimed to be of Paul (Probably Saint Paul’s Corinthian Cathedral Total Gospel Miracle Deliverance Church); and one of Apollos; and one of Cephas, and one of Christ. They didn’t have Assemblies of God, Baptists and Catholics at that time, or they would surely be listed here. Something similar to this was the probable prideful start of denominational separation of THE CHURCH.

Just because God was able to penetrate our numb skulls and get some meat of the word into us, should we now feel superior or more spiritual than our other brothers and sisters in the Lord? Should we become very pious, withdrawing ourselves from sinful people and weaker brethren and always carry a big Bible to instruct others with, pointing out their faults and correcting the error of their ways? This is the place where you had better remove the log out of your own eye so you can see clearly to remove the splinter out of your brother’s eye. No, we are no longer of this world (John 15:19, our home is in heaven), but remain in it and told to bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ (Gal 6:2). If a brother or sister in the Lord has been overtaken in a fault (A sinful act) that may seemingly destroy their and other’s lives, did you try your very best to get beneath them and restore them to their feet or place in the assembly with love, tenderness and understanding because you have been in the same condition or worse? Did you try to lift them with the same consolation we received from the Lord when He lifted everyone of us out of a horrible pit, or did you allow that stinking pious self-righteous Christian Pharisee-like stench in the nostrils of God spiritual pride to get in the way. Have you ever said, I forgive you and still love you, But ? ? ? Are ye not yet carnal or babes in Christ?
(1 Cor 3:3)

Why not just go ahead and kick or stone them when they’re down on their knees crying and seeking the Lord with tears and supplications more sincere than they ever have. You might just walk away and leave them along the side of the road robbed, wounded and half dead like all but the good Samaritan did in (Luke 10:30-35). That is the way Satan left most of us, then Jesus came by. If nothing else, help spread the rumors that are sure to come, or will you show the love of Shem and Japheth who hid the nakedness of their father Noah in (Genesis 9:20-23)? Maybe God will give us sufficient grace in our lives by allowing a thorn in our flesh to correct such pride better known as self-righteousness. (Galatians 6:1) states, for ye who are spiritual restore such an one overtaken in a fault in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.



< PART TWO CONTINUED ON FIRST REPLY >

larry2
Oct 13th 2008, 02:06 AM
CHRISTIAN SUFFERINGS

by larry2

Part Two

2 Cor 12:8. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. Paul prayed three times to have the Lord remove the thorn in the flesh given to him. The thorn was probably an ailment of Paulís eyes according to (Gal 4:14-15). And my trial which was in my flesh you did not despise or reject, but you received me as an angel of God, even as Jesus Christ. What then was the blessing you enjoyed? For I bear you witness that, if possible, you would have plucked out your own eyes and given them to me. Now you may ask, didnít the Lord say in (Matt 21:22), whatsoever ye ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive. Again in (John 15:7) Jesus said, if ye abide in me and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what you will and it shall be done unto you. Also in (John 14:13-14), and whatsoever ye ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye ask anything in my name, I will do it. Now which of you havenít asked for Godís blessing or favor on your chances of winning the lottery, being able to get financing on that special home or car, getting you out of a mess that youíve got yourself into, helping your kid make the team, or maybe something really important such as praying for the sports team of your choice to win the contest? In (Phil 1:21), Paul wrote for him to live, Christ, and to die gain. To another to live may be money, job, hobbies, their husband or wife, children and grandchildren, home and yard, football with the Broncos or baseball with the Rockies, alcohol and drugs, parties, singing with the choir, etc. Are you still putting Christ first, or have you left him as your first love? The Lord had this against the church of Ephesus in (Rev 2:4). Have you really received everything youíve prayed for in Jesusí name? Is it possible you have no faith or that youíre not believing hard enough or praying it through long enough for God to grant your petition? Perhaps, if you fast, that will impress God. Maybe you forgot to end your prayer in Jesusí name. God forbid that His words fail to abide in you. No brethren, most fail to read the whole story.

James 4:2. Ye lust, and have not, ye kill, and desire to have and cannot obtain; ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.

James 4:3. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts. Would you really give the lottery you win to the poor and the church to be used for the cause of Christ or would a new car, vacation home and designer clothes become yours?

1 John 5:14. And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask anything ACCORDING TO HIS WILL, he heareth us.

1 John 5:15. And if we know that he hear us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him. In other words, we are praying for something that we know is according to Godís will and in (James 1:5-7) we are told if any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, who giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not, and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think he shall receive anything of the Lord. Is it possible we have asked God to remove something from our lives that he had willed to be there for our good? The Lord didnít remove the thorn in Paulís flesh.

2 Cor 12:9. The Lord said unto Paul, my grace is sufficient for thee, for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly, therefore, will I glory in mine infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

2 Cor 12:10. Therefore, I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities for Christís sake, for when I am weak, then I am strong.

2 Cor 1:9. But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God, who raiseth the dead.

The Purpose? Reward and Glory

Phil 3:10. Paul states: That I might know him (Jesus), and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death,

Phil 3:10. Paul states: That I might know him (Jesus), and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death,

Phil 3:11. If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. Paul is saved and assured of having a part in the first resurrection described in (Rev 20:6) along with all others whose names are written in the book of life on which the second death has no power. So, what part in the resurrection is Paul talking about and desires enough to suffer for?

Rom 8:16. The Spirit himself beareth witness with our spirits, that we are the children of God. In (1 John 5:11-13) it is said: And this is the record, that God has given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life, and he that hath not the Son hath not life. In (Acts 4:12) it is written: Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is none other name (Than Jesus Christ in Acts 4:10) under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. Jesus told Thomas in (John 14:6), I am the way, the truth, and the life: No man cometh unto the Father, but by me. Does this possibly mean the teachings of Buddha and Mohammed have no validity?

1 John 5:13. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that ye may know YE HAVE ETERNAL LIFE. This is Godís own eternal life bestowed upon whosoever believeth in his Son everlasting (John 3:16). This in no way states we only possess conditional life. The gift of God which is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Rom 6:23) makes us the children of God.

Rom 8:17. And if children, then heirs Ė heirs of God and every child of God has already been given eternal life right now as a gift while we dwell in our earthly bodies, but according to (1 Cor 3:13-14), fire will test what sort of works each have built upon the only foundation which is Jesus Christ, and if anyoneís work which they have built upon Christ endures, they will receive a reward). Again, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, IF indeed we suffer with him, that we may also be glorified together.

Rom 8:18. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

2 Cor 4:17. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.

1 Pet 2:19. For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully.

1 Pet 2:20. For what glory is it if, when you are buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? But if, when you do well and suffer for it, ye shall take it patiently, this is acceptable with God.

1 Pet 2:21. For even hereunto were you called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that we should follow his steps.

1 Thes 1:6. And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Spirit.

2 Thes 1:4. So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations you endure.

2 Thes 1:5. This is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of god, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer,

2 Tim 2:8. Remember that Jesus Christ, of the seed of David, was raised from the dead according to my gospel (Paulís),

2 Tim 2:9. for which I suffer trouble, as an evildoer, even unto bonds: but the word of God is not bound.

2 Tim 2:10. Therefore, I endure all things for the electís sake (Our sake) that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.

2 Tim 2:11. It is a faithful saying: For if we be dead with him, we shall also live with him.

2 Tim 2:12. IF WE SUFFER, we shall also reign with him; if we deny him, he will also deny us. What will he deny us? Reading this and the previous verse, there seems to be a difference between living with Jesus which will be wonderful, but imagine the possibility of reigning with him as joint heirs. There lies in these verses a concept most Christians are completely ignorant of. If we do not allow Jesus to have his way in our lives even to suffering and we deny him free will to instruct, strengthen and make us ready to reign with him as joint heirs, He will then have to deny us of that reward or better part in the resurrection available to us as an heir of God. Do you notice anything similar between this and (Rom 8:17), where we have the opportunity of being joint heirs with Christ, IF indeed we suffer with him, that we may also be glorified together? According to (Rev 20:6), all in the first resurrection will reign in some manner, but what glory will they have?

1 Cor 15:35-42 asks: How are the dead raised up? There is one glory of the sun, and another of the moon, and different glories of the stars Ė so also is the resurrection of the dead. We have the possibility of being glorified together with Jesus and ruling conjointly with him.

1 Pet 1:7. That the trial of your faith, being more precious than that of gold that perisheth, though it be tried in the fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.

1 Pet 4:14. If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye, for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you; on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part Jesus is glorified.

1 Pet 5:10. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Jesus Christ, after ye have suffered awhile, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.

To Show Others Christ In Us
To Build Our & Otherís Faith

2 Cor 4:7. But we have this treasure (Jesus) in earthen vessels (Our fleshly bodies), that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

2 Cor 4:8. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;

2 Cor 4:9. Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down but not destroyed.

2 Cor 4:10. Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be manifest in our body.

2 Cor 4:11. For we who live are always delivered unto death for Jesusí sake, that the life also of Jesus might be manifest in our mortal flesh.

2 Cor 4:12. So then death worketh in us, but life in you. And this will be the pattern of suffering you will face as you really get serious about telling others about Jesus.

2 Cor 4:13. We, having the same spirit of faith according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak,

2 Cor 4:14. Knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you.

2 Cor 4:15. For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many overflow to the glory of God.

2 Cor 4:16. For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. This happens to us also as we daily read the word of God, but just as our mortality begins a process of deterioration without sustenance, our inward man or spirituality suffers the same consequence without spiritual food.

2 Cor 4:17. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.

2 Cor 4:18. While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal. Paul here is living the faith of (Heb 11:1) which says, Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Acts 20:24. But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.

2 Cor 1:8. For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life.

2 Cor 1:9. But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God, who raiseth the dead. It does not appear Paul believes God helps those that help themselves.

2 Cor 1:10. Who Delivered Us From So Great a Death. This happens to us when we first accept Jesus as our savior; back to the time our Father drew us to Jesus according to (John 6:44). It was then we accepted the gift of God which is eternal life through Jesus Christ, our Lord in (Rom 6:23). There are a group of people in (Rev 17:8) whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world. In (Eph 1:4), God hath chosen us in him (He chose us in the new creation; not me as an individual with no choice in the matter) before the foundation of the world and in (Rev 3:5) Jesus said, He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I WILL NOT blot his name out of the book of life, but I will confess him before my Father, and before His angels.

Now, how do we overcome? (1 John 5:1) says that whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God and (1 John 5:4-5) states; For whatever is born again overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?


< PART THREE TO BE CONTINUE ON SECOND REPLY >

larry2
Oct 13th 2008, 02:09 AM
CHRISTIAN SUFFERINGS

by larry2

Part Three

In (Rev 20:6) we are told: Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection, on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. This group who will be priests are certainly not those of (Rev 20:11-15) who will be judged by God at the great white throne when he opens the books and judges them out of the things which are written in the books according to their works, and concludes with: And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire (Which is the second death). As born again believers, we have part in the first resurrection because our names are written in the book of life. By accepting Jesus as our savior, we have been delivered from the penalty of sin, which is judgment at the great white throne, and being cast into the lake of fire.

And Doth Deliver: This is the experiencing part of our salvation that is going on in our lives right now as we learn to overcome practicing sin as our manner of life. Most Christians never enter into this very real warfare. Here we experience the growth in our lives as we allow God to have his way in our lives and we begin counting our old selves dead unto sin, but as alive unto Christ (Rom 6:11). Here we are being delivered from the power of sin.

In Whom We Trust That He Will Yet Deliver Us, This is the hope we have of that future time when Jesus comes for us and we shall be delivered from sickness and problems we face that are the result of a sinful world and we shall ever be with the Lord. It is at that future time when we will be delivered from the presence of sin.

Phil 3:21. Says, the Lord Jesus Christ shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body.

Other examples of suffering we might experience are any of the following trials as we take our place in Christ. God does not have to repeat another personís trials to our lives any more than He does not seem to make any two snowflakes alike, but can produce enough of them to cover the ground. He restoreth my soul, He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His nameís sake (Psalms 23:3).

1 Cor 4:9. For I think that God hath set forth us, the apostles, last as it were appointed to death; for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.

1 Cor 4:10. We are fools for Christís sake (Whose fool are you?), but ye are wise in Christ; but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised.

1 Cor 4:11. Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwelling place.

1 Cor 4:12. And labor, working with our own hands. Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we endure it.

1 Cor 4:13. Being defamed, we entreat; we are made the filth of the world, and are the offscouring (Outcasts) of all things unto this day.

2 Cor 1:3. Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort,

2 Cor 1:5. For the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation aboundeth by Christ.

2 Cor 11:23. Are they ministers of Christ? I speak as a fool; I am more; in labors more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, in deaths often.

2 Cor 11:24. Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes, save one.

2 Cor 11:25. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered a shipwreck, a night and a day have I been in the deep;

2 Cor 11:26. In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of mine own countrymen, in perils by the gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren.

2 Cor 11:27. In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.

2 Cor 11:28. Besides those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.

2 Cor 11:29. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is offended, and I am not indignant?

2 Cor 11:30. If I must needs glory, I will glory of the things which concern mine infirmities.

Phil 3:8. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus, my Lord; for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but refuse, THAT I MAY WIN CHRIST. Paul is saved and has Jesus living in his earthen body and knows without a doubt that he possesses eternal life. What does Paul mean by wanting to win Christ when he already has him? Paul said in (Phil 3:13-14), Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended; but this one thing I do, forgetting those things that are behind, and reaching forth unto those things that are before. I press toward the mark FOR THE PRIZE of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. The prize is winning Jesus as bridegroom and ruling with him as joint heirs.

Phil 3:9. And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith.

2 Tim 1:8. Be not though, therefore, ashamed of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner; but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God.

1 Tim 4:10. For, therefore, we both labor and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the savior of all men, specially of those that believe. Repeating (2 Cor 11:30) using the NIV > Paul says, if I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness - It seems the sufferings he endured were counted by him as prosperous to his soul and life. He considered himself to be prospering and healthy only in the context of how his life was prospering in things pertaining to winning Christ. Surely it has to be evident by now that Paul at this time did not possess material wealth or bodily health, which many preachers today profess will be the normal result of a life lived for Christ. Those same preachers will also ask you to send them money or seed faith as they are fond of calling it to insure the prosperity and health you are to experience. Wise up! If it worked the way they tell it, we could expect to live on and on and get richer and richer regardless of our walk with Christ. This type of malarkey really appeals to the worldly Christian who at all cost wants nothing to do with a cross to bear. If they really believed that principle, they could reinvest all the money they received as seed faith for themselves and if those preachers only received back double the seed faith they sowed, how long would it take to become wealthy enough that they no longer needed to solicit money from you while professing they operate their ministry based upon faith alone (Dependent upon the donations of their faithful listeners or congregation? ?). If that worked, they might be able to quit selling cassette tapes at four times their cost to produce. My past pastor, Brother D. E. Hill was told by another brother in Christ; you will need money to operate your ministry, but learn to go to God for it and not the people. If God doesnít make it go, do we really want to be a part of it? Is it possible Paul charged the churches for the epistles he wrote to them? No, Paul wrote in (2 Thes. 3:8), neither did we eat any manís bread for free, but wrought with labor and travail day and night, that we might not be chargeable to any of you. And in (2 Thes 3:9), not because we have not the right to, but to make ourselves an example to you to follow us. Brethren, we should find a faithful ministry to invest our tithes and offerings or will a man rob God (Mal 3:7-10) but beware of grievous wolves (In sheepís clothing) entering in among you, not sparing the flock (Acts 20:29).

In conclusion, do you remember Paul saying in (Phil. 3:11), If by any means I might ATTAIN unto the resurrection of the dead. Again in (Rom 8:17) that we can be joint heirs with Christ, IF indeed we suffer with him, that we may also be glorified together, and in (2 Tim 2:12), If we suffer, we shall also reign with Jesus.

In (Heb 11:35), women received their dead raised to life again, and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. If they already had a part in the first resurrection and they did according to (Rev 20:6). Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection, then what else in heaven are they willing to suffer for they are not already assured of?

Again, in (Phil 3:8) Paul wanted to win Christ. In (Phil 3:14) Paul pressed toward the mark FOR THE PRIZE of the high calling in Christ Jesus.

Dearest brothers and sisters in Christ, is it not yet plain to you that there is more to our salvation than merely getting to heaven? There are glories and rewards available if you want them. Some have decided to no longer run the race for fear of the trials associated with following Christ. Talk about jumping out of the frying pan into the fire.

Peter wrote of Paul in (2 Pet 3:15-16) that Paul wrote of things in which are some things hard to be understood.

In (1 Cor 3:2) Paul told the Corinthians he could not yet feed them the solid food of the bible because they were not yet able to bear it. Where do you stand? (2 Tim 2:15) says to study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

Remember that all things (Not just some) work together for good to them that love God (Rom 8:28a).

Eph 6:24 Grace be with all them that love our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity. Amen.

I pray you receive the same blessing in having read this material as I did in preparing it. This material may be copied and given out free of charge, for freely ye have received, freely give. May god bless you all in the precious name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ - larry2

crossnote
Oct 13th 2008, 05:16 AM
These extra long posts are sufferable enough.