Scriptures

Joy in Trial, Part 2

Introduction

‘What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: ‘For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ Romans 8:31-39

‘Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.’ James 1:12.

The word blessed in this verse is used in the same sense as in Psalm 1 and it expresses the happy condition of the one who endures trials through trust in the Lord. The ability to persevere under trial comes from an unwavering resolution to follow the Saviour whatever life throws at us.

This helps us understand the part of Paul’s letter to the Roman Christians. This is not different from the exhortation of Paul to the Christians at Rome when he asked the questions in Romans 8:35, ‘Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?’

Simply put, shall trials through these various dimensions take us away from the Lord and His love? If we ‘count it all joy’ James 2:1, nothing shall separate us from Christ’s love.

Paul also provided an answer to these questions in later verses when he says: ‘No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ Romans 8:37-39.

Basically, by virtue of our steadfastness and perseverance, we can be joyful in Christ in spite of trials and we will stand firmly on the promises of Christ whatever life’s circumstances bring.

‘Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.’ James 1:12

Prayer

Dearest heavenly Father, thank You for your dependable promises. Please help us to trust in You at all times, always remembering that in You, we have a sure anchor that keeps the soul while the billows roll.

DAILY BIBLE VERSE

"For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline."

2 Timothy 1:7

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