Preaching, Teaching, and Notes

Trials of Faith

1 Peter 4:12-13 “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:

                            But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings;  that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.”

There are trials of faith which we just have to go through.  They are sent to help us to grow stronger in faith;  to learn joy in trouble;  to realize the power of peace—His peace in it all.

Thank goodness,  we do not go through any trial alone.  For Christ Jesus is with us,  guiding, strengthening, and encouraging us;  as we walk through them with Him.

There are also trials which come upon us which we have brought on ourselves.

Let’s face it,  we often “stick our foot in our mouths” and say things which are wrong.  

Either in anger (and have you ever noticed how much anger is around any more?),  or we blurt our our opinion,  when discretion  would have kept us silent.

Sometimes the Lord uses these trials to remind us of these things, so they can be confessed, and taken care of.

These, of course, are to be confessed to Christ,  and if any one was injured, to the person involved;  as you can. (How many blessings come from letting people know you, too, are human, and make mistakes?)

And then there are “fiery trials” which come upon us because we are Christians—we belong to Jesus Christ.

1 Peter 4:14, 16 “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 he is glorified.

                           Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed;  but let him glorify God on this behalf.”

Fiery trials?   Partakers of Christ’s sufferings?  

We do not like to think of such things. 

We like to think about what He has done for me.   Tell us about His Eternal Love for me,  His suffering in the garden of Gethsemane or on the Cross for me, or His agony of prayer for me.

All the things He did,  but I do not want to hear about what I am to do.

Doesn’t that make it a works salvation?

No,  we can never do anything for Christ to get our Salvation;  but we can work for Christ because we are saved.

And that is what He says:  Stand with me,  and go through these trials,  with Me at your side,  to show to the world that you trust Me.

That will glorify Me.

Do you remember when Jesus asked His disciples in the garden to watch with Him?  (Mark 14:33-34, 37-38)

And instead they fell asleep.

He came and asked, “Could you not stay with me one hour?”

He asks us the same thing:  Stand with me in a world that does not believe in Me,  and if that brings ridicule, or persecution;  still stand with Me, and I will stand with you, in peace, strength, and guidance.  

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