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Seven Lessons for Suffering Saints (a study of Hebrews): Part 2

21 Dec

I recently preached the last message in our church’s series on the book of Hebrews.  If you wish, you can access that message here:

. Screenshot 2015-12-11 05.49.35My assignment was the question, “What do we learn about suffering from this book?”  In part 1, we saw Principle #1- The Lord Jesus suffered the worst life can bring — DEATH! (2:9).  We then asked the question, “How dare I ever feel that Jesus can’t understand my suffering?”

The second principle we glean from this study is taken from Hebrews 2:10 where we read, “In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through what he suffered.”  The lesson is: Principle #2 –  God used suffering to perfect the Pioneer of our salvation! (2:10).  We then asked, “How dare I resist His using suffering to perfect me?!”

In His humanity, the Second Person of the Trinity, the Lord Jesus, became fully human.  But the Father used suffering to “perfect” the Pioneer of our salvation!  There is a divine mystery here — but in some way Christ’s humanity needed the instrument of suffering to become complete or perfect.

Screenshot 2015-12-15 05.56.28I’m not perfect and — news flash! — neither are you, my friend.  We need suffering to become mature, complete, perfected.  We don’t chase down suffering or invite tribulations.  And we don’t have to.  But God can and wants to use suffering as a tool to mature us in Christ!

In the early church martyrdom became a goal which some Christians literally pursued.  Some Christians tried to provoke their persecutors to kill them, for it was considered glorious to lose one’s life for Christ.  This practice of seeking suffering in the form of martyrdom was forbidden in the early church.  Suffering is inevitable, given lovingly by an intentional and sovereign God.

We don’t need to pursue suffering.  But we do need to ask, “How can God use this situation in my life to make me more like the Pioneer of my salvation?”

Your thoughts?

 
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Posted by on December 21, 2015 in suffering

 

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