Value of Trials

Value of Trials

 

1 Peter 4:12 (ESV) ~ Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.

 

Not until we as Christians understand the purpose and value of trials will we attain the life of an overcomer. Christians have always asked, “WHY?”

 

Why does God allow the believer to suffer persecution? This verse says that God allows it for one very basic reason: to test and try and prove us. This means at least four things.

  • Persecution measures how strong our faith is. Any person’s faith can be measured by how much he is willing to sacrifice and bear for it. Suffering persecution for Christ shows how strong or weak our faith really is.
  • Persecution proves our trust in God and teaches us to depend upon God more and more. The more we suffer for Christ, the more we draw near God and plead for His help and strength. This, of course, teaches us to trust and depend upon Him more and more.
  • Persecution proves and strengthens our patience and endurance. The more we are tried and persecuted, the more we endure; and the more we endure, the more we are taught to endure. Persecution strengthens our patience, endurance, perseverance, and stedfastness in Christ.
  • Persecution proves our faith and attracts others to Christ. When we suffer and are persecuted, others can see the strength of Christ in us. They see that our faith in Christ is a living reality and they are drawn to Christ, to His salvation and love and care and strength. When others see us suffer for the hope of salvation and eternal life, the Holy Spirit uses our suffering to speak to the hearts of the persecutors and observers. He convicts them, and some eventually turn to Christ. Our faith is proven to be true, and it bears fruit.

 

Source of Trials

  • One’s own faults and failures
    • 1 Peter 2:20 (ESV) ~ For what credit is it if, when you sin and are beaten for it, you endure? But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God.
  • From Satan by permissive will of God
    • Job 2:3-6 (ESV) ~ And the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil? He still holds fast his integrity, although you incited me against him to destroy him without reason.” Then Satan answered the LORD and said, “Skin for skin! All that a man has he will give for his life. But stretch out your hand and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse you to your face.” And the LORD said to Satan, “Behold, he is in your hand; only spare his life.”
  • Directly from God
    • Providential
      • Philippians 1:12-13 (ESV) ~ I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest that my imprisonment is for Christ.
    • Appointment of God
      • 1 Thessalonians 3:3 (ESV) ~ that no one be moved by these afflictions. For you yourselves know that we are destined for this.

 

Proper Attitude Toward Trials

  • God Knows
  • The Bible Pattern ~ Christ
    • 1 Peter 2:21 (ESV) ~ For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps.
  • Understanding God’s Purpose in Trials ~ His Grace
    • 2 Corinthians 12:9 (ESV) ~ But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

 

Reasons for Trials (Those whom God uses most are usually tried the most.)

  • To test our faith
    • 1 Peter 2:20 (ESV) ~ For what credit is it if, when you sin and are beaten for it, you endure? But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God.
  • To work patience
    • James 1:2-3 (ESV) ~ Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.
  • Partakers of His sufferings
    • 1 Peter 4:13 (ESV) ~ But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.
  • Disciplinary action
    • Hebrews 12:10 (ESV) ~ For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness.

 

Results of Trials

  • Brings us into conformity with Him
    • Hebrews 12:6 (ESV) ~ For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.
  • Yields fruit of righteousness
    • Hebrews 12:11 (ESV) ~ For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
  • Glorifies God
    • 1 Peter 4:16 (ESV) ~ Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name.
  • Produces praise, honor, glory
    • 1 Peter 1:7 (ESV) ~ so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

                        

 

2 Corinthians 4:17 (ESV) ~ For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison
 
Pastor Andy Lambert
{pastorandy@cvcog.church}

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