THE TRIAL OF OUR FAITH

 

 

When Pastor asked me to share tonight I knew right away what the Lord wanted me to share on, since this was a subject that I’ve been wrestling with. Why are Christians under such attack in all areas of life; health, finances, marriage, children, depression, and trouble of all sorts?  And wondering why God is not delivering us (at least not on our time frame).  It seems as if we really are in a battle for our very faith. So when James says, “to count it all joy when we fall into various trials”.  As believers we need to find joy in the testing.  Knowing that God is creating in us the character of Christ and purging us of the sinful nature of the old man in order to bring us into His purpose which he created us for.  So the joy comes in knowing that God is able to bring us through anything that he has allowed us to go through. 

 

When we study the characters of the bible, God always prepared them for their purposes.  Abraham trusted God for the promise he had given him for 25 years, before seeing the birth of Isaac.  And then God tested His faith by asking Him to sacrifice Isaac.  Moses spent forty years thinking he missed the mark as Gods man of deliverance.  Joseph was sold by his brothers into slavery and falsely accused of attempted rape and thrown into prison for something he didn’t even do.  When the butler was released Joseph spent two more years in prison because the butler had forgotten the promise he made to Joseph.  But truth be told, God was not done with the testing and preparation of Joseph.  When Gods purpose for Joseph had come and Gods perfect timing was complete, Joseph was released right into his destiny as Governor, second in command of all of Egypt. 

 

Jesus even told Paul I will show you all the things you must suffer for my name sake.  Our greatest example is the Lord Jesus who suffered more than anyone else to do the will of His heavenly father.

 

Philippians 2:8-9

8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. 9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name.  NKJV

 

 

 

I believe that the tests are to prove what is in our heart.  I also believe that He allows tribulations, afflictions and troubles of all kinds to bring us to a place of total dependence on Him.  So we learn to trust Him, seek Him in prayer and patiently wait on Him while we continue to praise, worship, and serve Him in the midst of our suffering.  However, we can go the other way which is unbelief; not trusting, not seeking, not waiting, not praising and worshiping the Lord.  But the opportunity to be conformed into the image of Christ is in the furnace of affliction. This is where we are changed. 

 

 

Romans 8:17

17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

KJV

 

And so knowing, that God is faithful to his word, we can have joy in knowing that His purpose for us will be fulfilled through the trying of our faith, though it may mean suffering, discomfort, heartache and pain of all sorts.

 

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James 1:2-4

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. 4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing NKJV

 

 

·        temptations- test, experiment to prove good or evil, to try.

·        trying- testing, trustworthyness, trial

·        patience- endurance, consistency, continuance, waiting

·        perfect- complete, of full age.

·        entire- complete in every part, perfectly sound, whole

·        trial- testing

·        testing- an analysis of the ingredients

 

 

 

James 1:12

Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. NKJV

 

·        endure- to undergo, to bear, to persevere, to stay under

 

1 Peter 1:7

7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: KJV

 

·        tried- test, approve, examine

 

Isaiah 48:10

10 Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction. NKJV

 

·        refined- to fuse, melt, purge away

·        affliction- depression, misery, trouble

·        afflicted- looking down, brow beating, to depress. chasten, deal hardly, humble, hurt, ravish

 

Job 23:10

10 But He knows the way that I take; When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold. NKJV

 

2 Timothy 2:20-21

20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. 21 Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work. NKJV

 

 2 Corinthians 4:17

 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, NKJV

 

 

 

Isaiah 40:31

31 But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength;

They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint. NKJV

 

 

Psalm 9:9-10

9 The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, A refuge in times of trouble. 10 And those who know Your name will put their trust in You;

For You, LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You. NKJV

 

·        oppressed- crushed, injured, afflicted

 

 

Psalm 63:1-2

O God, You are my God; early will I seek You; My soul thirsts for You;

My flesh longs for You in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water.

2 So I have looked for You in the sanctuary, to see Your power and Your glory. NKJV

 

 

Romans 8:28

28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. NLT

 

 

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. NKJV

 

 

John 16:33

33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. KJV

 

·        tribulation- anguish, burden, persecution, pressure, trouble