Our next devotion will be based upon 1 Peter 5:10c…. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle [you].
“After ye have suffered a while” Here, we do not find a promise for the opposition to our service to be immediately taken from us. Nor do we find a promise that, if we only have enough faith, we will be guaranteed a life of service that is problem free. No, not at all… instead, we find an assurance that opposition will come and that we will have to live under that opposition for a period of time.
If this scripture is taken out of context, this might be one of the most discouraging phrases for the Christian who is in the midst of a struggle with Satanic opposition in his life. For this passage to be understood properly, context means everything.
In our previous lesson, we saw the love, grace and strength over evil on display as the Lord called us from darkness into His marvelous light. And now, we read this same gracious, kind, loving Lord will allow Satan to intervene in our lives for a limited period of time. How can this be? It is because in His wisdom and omniscience He knows that there is spiritual benefit in our struggles against the wicked one.
This truth is reaffirmed to us by Christ, Himself, as well as godly men in His Word… Christ in Matt 5:10-12…
10) Blessed [are] they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11) Blessed are ye, when [men] shall revile you, and persecute [you], and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12) Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great [is] your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
David in Psa 119:71… 71) [It is] good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes.
Paul in Rom 5:3-5… 3) And not only [so], but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; 4) And patience, experience; and experience, hope: 5) And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
James in James 1:3-4… 3) Knowing [this], that the trying of your faith worketh patience. 4) But let patience have [her] perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
This truth is also reaffirmed in the very passage we are looking at. If you notice the very next part of our text begins to list all of the resultant benefits that will come to us following our spiritual struggles against the powers of darkness… “make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle [you].” In our next lesson we will begin to look in detail at the benefits that await us as we remain faithful in our spiritual warfare for Christ.
Folks, as we are seeking to serve our Lord, are we currently struggling with opposition on every hand? Does it seem as if the Lord does not know, or care, about the war we are in? Keep in mind, our Lord loves us, He is concerned about us, and this is the very reason why He is allowing the struggles to continue. He knows that, if we remain faithful to Him, we will benefit from these struggles. He is preparing us for greater areas of service for Him!.. 1Pet 1:6-7 (KJV)
6) Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:
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:
May the Lord bless us as we “Think On These Things”.
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