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Romans 5:3-4

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48 thoughts on “Romans 5:3-4

  1. I found myself asking that very thing. I’m not sure why. At first I thought it was to prove something to God. But now I think He’s trying to prove something to us. I know when I look back on some of the worst times of my life, I see how it all worked out. But before we get comfortable in one triumph over suffering, there’s always another disaster ready to knock us back down. 😦 I’m just hanging on to the idea that in the end, it’ll all make sense.

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  2. I’m going through the worst time of my life, and I can’t even imagine that things will ever get any better. I’ve heard a million times that it will, but when you’re going through something, that’s all what your reality becomes.

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  3. That’s exactly how it is. Especially if you’re depressed. Being prone to it myself, there’s literally nothing that can be said to cheer up a depressed person. If that’s what you’re experiencing now, my deepest sympathies! Moments like those, it does seem like it’ll never get better.

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  4. Our suffering doesn’t compare to the suffering of Jesus. He was judged, beaten, humiliated, marched through the city narrows, and made to carry his own cross through crowded streets. He suffered without mercy on the cross, so that we would have a chance at everlasting life. God’s gift to us was His only Son.

    Whenever I feel my circumstances are desperate or I’m full of anguish, I call on the Lord. He’s always there, dependable, and ready to answer. He loves us and heals us when we are in pain. He will never allow us to suffer beyond our ability to withstand.

    The Lord Jesus Christ, who was the only man in all history that was innocent and righteous; and He was also the only man who has suffered more than anyone else who ever lived.

    And this He did for us! “Christ died for our sins” (I Corinthians 15:3).

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  5. That’s true, but for some it’s not always easy to see that. Especially when you’re trapped in the jaws of depression. It forces people to believe a dark distorted reality that even the most faithful find hard.

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  6. You’re right. It’s never easy to live with pain and suffering; emotional, physical, spiritual, or otherwise. Job, a most faithful man, but full of pride, can teach us this lesson: “Be satisfied with the holy will of God and do not complain.”

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  7. AkoKristiyano says:

    @SeekingGod2 “It’s funny that we have to persevere in suffering before we have a chance of hope. Why does Christian life work that way?”

    There is always hope any time. God offers his salvation and a new life to anyone and at any time.

    This passage is for those who are already believers, who are undergoing trials in their lives. Their suffering produces in them Christlike qualities.

    Sanctification, this is called. Or simply, becoming like Jesus.

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  8. I do not mean to offend any person, but through my intimate relationship with the Lord, he has shown me that the root issue for suffering is self-centeredness. Firstly we do not want to accept this and secondly if we do then we do not want to change. When we go about our ways we will face suffering. But if we are willing to be humble and learn what the Lord is teaching us we can overcome all those things that bring suffering to us. Notice Romans 5:3 talks about character. This character brings hope, not our own will. The quicker we yield to the Holy Spirit the quicker we obtain this character.

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  9. I guess faith makes everything possible. When I don’t have faith, I ask Jesus to give me some and he… Alaways gives with abundance.

    He is my mighty rock on which I can always depend. But he keeps taking me to higher grounds and I keep failing him but he got amazing ability to tolerate an infidel like me.

    My faith is pathetic. I keep telling Jesus “I have no faith in you. You’ll get us beaten up by your father for our suspicious activities” but so far, he has managed to save us from his fearsome Father.

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  10. The tempering of suffering leads to perseverance, character, and hope. The kind of hope that lasts. Hope poured out of the crucible of pain. This hope endures and can even break the bonding of further suffering. And give us calm strength in responding to the suffering of others. Great verses to have selected for reflection and encouragement. Paul and you reinforce us. Thank you!

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  11. Suffering is sometimes a season of life where God works in us to purify us for His use.Only those who endure this period will graduate to the next level from glory to glory until a perfect day of Christ appearance. May God help us to see His handwriting in our suffering. He always works out everything for our good though we do not see it while we are in that low level.

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  12. St. Paul was a master of reframing the human experience in light of the Eternal.

    My Mother always told me if your life was easy and without resistance, you better take a closer look at your relationship with God, because Christians have always, and will always, encounter trials and/or resistance in the world whenever we seek to do God’s will. The Gospels are full of accounts of people infuriated with Christ as He carried out God’s work. We are not above experiencing the very same push back in the world.

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  13. Hello friend. If you are talking about suffering as a result of persecution then I am totally with you. In fact I will add that Jesus himself said that in this life you will receive persecution if you have left the world for Jesus (Mark 10:29-30) but he also goes on to say in John 16:33 take heart because I have overcome the world. However I was referring to suffering that arises in living our life in general (especially in today’s modern world). Here I am not talking about the price paid to follow Jesus.

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  14. I feel beat up just trying to have a simple conversation with other believers out here sometimes. I think I need some more field work spending time with people who don’t know who Jesus Christ is or what His Good News is all about. I need your prayers and encouragement. Amen and God Bless all you folks.

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  15. Don’t let it get you down. At the end of the day, the only person you can really get right with the Lord is yourself. Do that and He’ll handle the rest. God bless and good luck!

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  16. Delon, there is suffering that arises in life that is due to living IN the world surrounded by people OF the world. Just because we are forgiven of sin, doesn’t mean that we are no longer affected by the sin of others. To reduce all of human suffering to “holy” or “unholy” is shortsighted and not the Gospel truth…
    When we proclaim that “all things work together for the good of those that love God and are called according to His purpose” we are surrendering to the fact that at this moment in time, our suffering may not make sense, but God can redeem it anyway.

    Jesus set forth an example for all of us in how to respond to human suffering in the account of His raising Lazarus from the dead. When he arrived and saw those He loved mourning, HE WEPT (John 11:35). Moments before Jesus miraculously raised the man they were mourning for from the dead, He was moved with compassion by their suffering. And joined them in their pain.

    That is how we are to respond to suffering. Not to blame those that suffer, or to try to spiritualize it away, but to allow our compassion to connect is with each other.

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  17. I love your consistent compassion and understanding, TheUngodlyWoman, and I have to ask. How do you do it? I’m starting to get discouraged by some responses. I admit I had a naive view of Christianity but am I’m learning and reading how some people feel about compassion and doctrine- it’s like it’s an either or deal. Pretty depressing actually. I literally just had to put a disclaimer in one post because I said God wasn’t limited. Of all the things for Christians to be arguing over. Is semantics really one of them? 😦

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  18. Rae,
    I don’t do it, lol! It is Christ within me that leads me this way– into new perspectives on being human, and being blinded by the human condition, that help me to become more compassionate, more Christ-like. I still have so far to go… But when I see another Christian lacking His love and compassion in their words, I take pause. I can sense that, even when they are using Bible verses and theology-speak, it doesn’t add up to being in the Spirit of the Jesus I know so well.
    I am of the opinion that if our beliefs and our faith in Christ do not result in Christ’s compassion, then it’s not of Him. It’s of human origin.
    In Matthew 5:20-44, Jesus expounds upon the difference between the letter of the law and the spirit of the law. He was speaking to Jewish adherents of course, but in our day and age, I think it can be applied to Christian doctrine and theology. There is a change of heart, and a process of sanctification of our inner most parts, that is supposed to come about as we follow Christ. When it is lacking, and we try to guide others in our blindness, we threaten to lead others astray along with us.
    Human beings all struggle with what it means to worship God, who is Spirit, in Spirit and truth (John 4:24).
    In my own experience, you cannot come to truth outside of the Holy Spirit. This is why Christians are so divided, and even abusive towards one another. Those IN the Spirit find little commonality with those outside of the Spirit. We may worship the same God in name and read the same sacred texts, and try to do the same good works, but only one group is able to worship God as He requires and actually love their neighbor as themselves.
    When we are in One Spirit, the peripheral arguments on theology and doctrine are no longer as important as remaining One in Spirit with Christ by loving each other. Romans 13:10 tells us that love does no harm to a neighbor, therefore it is a fulfillment of the law.
    Whereas human beings like intellectual certainty and avoid the tension of the intellectual uncertainty that is part and parcel of being taught by God, we are called into that tension. We cannot worship God with “right” doctrine, but only with hearts turned towards Him in a desire to be made right in Him.
    It is human to justify ourselves, it is human to want to be ‘right’ vs. loving. And Christians seem to lose sight of the two commands given by Jesus in the Gospels– to love God with every part of ourselves, and then to allow that all-encompassing relationship with the Divine to allow us to love ourselves as human beings, and our neighbor as an outpouring of that same Divine love and compassion. We cannot learn what love is or what it looks like through doctrine alone– but only through our personal relationship with God through Christ.
    Many Christians haven’t made it to that point of authentic connection and relationship with God through Christ yet. They may have an idea of how other human beings think the process works, but that’s far from being the same as entering into it.
    (I’m sorry this is turning into a novel here…)
    I have often brought my frustrations with other Christians directly to God. And He ALWAYS comes back with something along the lines of having patience with them as He is patient with me. They aren’t there yet, but they are heading ever closer… So it becomes the task of those that have found the narrow gate, to live out what we know of Christ in relationship with others.
    It’s so very very hard. And impossible for mere human beings, but is possible in and through Christ (Lk 18:27).

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  19. Silly, Jesus IS the Father in the same way the Holy Spirit is God. Jesus Christ came to demonstrate the heart of God and reconcile His creation with Himself through coming to earth as God Incarnated. Human beings have a difficult time understanding this ‘mystery’ of a Trinitarian God, but there is so much in the natural world that reflects its deeper meaning. As a tree is not only its leaves, or trunk or roots– all are parts of one tree. It is human beings that separate the tree into parts based upon their functions. You have no more reason to fear (as in being afraid of) the Father if you know and are found in Christ– as it is Christ’s function to lead us all back to our place in God.

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  20. Yes! You’re absolutely right and that makes sense. I need to pray and get back to my Bible reading. When I get frustrated it’s usually because my pride is trying to call the shots. Thank you for your wisdom. Pray for me. I need to go study back up on patience and humility.

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  21. I think you get too hard on yourself… God loves you AS YOU ARE, and seeks to bring you closer to Him. As we allow ourselves to be brought closer, the patience and humility you seek are worked in us through Him. I know I want so badly to just be perfect as He is perfect, but if I’m still living life as a human being, there is more He is doing in me to bring that about. Sometimes I find He is telling me to be more patient with myself. He’s got this sanctification stuff, we can let go of our perfection and just cling to Him!

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  22. Dear friend, You are missing a very important event that has shaped your and my life.
    The Cross and the finished work of Jesus.Things have changed since the cross.
    What’s different now you ask? The Holy Spirit was not poured out on all flesh before the cross
    but after the resurrection of Christ, He promised us His Spirit according to the prophecy in the Old testament.
    Today if you and I are believers in Jesus as our Savior then the Holy Spirit is dwelling inside you in your spirit.
    God has joined himself to us. It’s when we have an intimate relationship with God that we begin to start experiencing this.
    Now we are not just ordinary humans but partakers of his divine nature (2 Peter 1:3-4).
    Which is why Paul said in 2 Corinthians 5:17 that we are a ‘new creation’. the new part is in your spirit.
    God has put his nature into us through his Holy Spirit dwelling inside of us.
    he has given us his ability to overcome suffering. As we focus on Jesus,
    whatever we call ‘suffering’ looks pale in front of what Jesus went through for our sakes.
    We are three parts “body”, “soul” and “spirit”. The spirit is the most important part of us.
    When we begin to understand who we are in the spirit that’s when we can live it out our in the flesh.
    When we have this perspective we are able to pray for others even if they are doing us wrong just as what
    Jesus did when he was hanging on the cross, he prayed for the people crucifying him.
    Dear friend, I have not blamed any person for their suffering nor am I trying to theologize things,
    I know this is true because I am living this out in my life and God is teaching me how to.
    You are welcome to read my blog posts where I share about these things.
    I wish to share and reach out to people have a hunger to learn about the Lord and his word.
    You are welcome to question me on whatever I say because I do not wish people should just take my word for it,
    I will point you to God’s word because that is how he is teaching me.

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  23. Friend– St. Paul also wrote about his sufferings. He reframed them as sharing in the sufferings of Christ in Philippians 3:8-11.
    St. Paul also wrote about the thorn in his side, and how God did not heal or remove it, because God’s Grace is enough to carry us through our human experience of suffering (2 Cor. 12).
    I’ve been a Christian for 30 years. I’ve seen a lot of suffering, and have spent much time in prayer regarding it. Suffering doesn’t have the last word, but it is still a part of the human experience in a fallen world. If even St. Paul, an Apostle, experienced human suffering, I think you may want to seek God’s wisdom here before you minimize the experience of others.

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  24. You speak so eloquently on the subject. I suspect you have traversed this path yourself:)

    It is such a paradox that hope and compassion and Grace can come out of the human experience of pain and suffering… But I am walking this path too. And it is undeniable how much stronger my faith has become after wrestling with grief and loss.

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  25. Dear friend, You return back to suffering due to persecution and I would warmly and humbly request you to re-read this conversation thread and see what I have said about that and also see that I am not minimizing anyone’s experience or belittling anyone. I have only shared an intimate conversation between God and me, you are not forced to accept this, I am fine if you don’t, but do not falsely accuse me of the things you have said. I pray that the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ may be upon you and prosper you.

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  26. Delon, when you say, as you did in your original post, that God told you “the root of all suffering is self-centeredness”, you are indeed minimizing the experience of others encountering suffering. You are in effect telling Rae here that if she wasn’t so self-centered, she would experience suffering.
    Whatever it is that God reveals to you? That’s great. That’s a truth for you. But to insist on its application to everyone else is… Egocentric. Show me in Scripture where it says this! Anything God reveals to us that lies outside of Scripture is not Truth. Sorry to break it to you:-/

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  27. Honestly, I’m trying to wrap my head around what you are saying, and I can’t. The ‘thorn in my side’ that Paul writes about is NOT persecution. Read up on what Biblical Scholars have to say on the subject. Read Diane Langberg and Dorothee Soelle for a Theologian’s perspective of Christian suffering. Or, better yet, volunteer in a cancer ward, a domestic violence shelter or a Prison for awhile and see if you can muster to admonish other suffering people about their ‘self-centeredness’.

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  28. Dear friend, I’m sorry if that is your interpretation, but I clearly indicated that I do not mean to offend anyone in my original comment. However my intention is to reveal something that can actually benefit us. When the Word of God says that all of man has sinned, we do not go about telling every one straight away “You’re a sinner”, but with the compassion of Christ we reach out in love and then gently lead them to Christ. In the same way when I say that the root cause of suffering is self-centredness, I am not saying You are in a sorry state because of your self-centredness – that is your interpretation. Instead I am saying it because there is something that I can do about it and not be helpless in future. Let me explain what I mean.
    When God created the world and mankind, everything he created was good and perfect. Was there any suffering for Adam & Eve in the garden of Eden? No. Then why do we have suffering today? Because of man’s disobedience (which we call sin). What if they never sinned.
    If that was the case, today you and I would be living in a perfect world alongside Adam & Eve. They would be alive, because death was not the original plan for mankind, neither was suffering. And they and we all would not have tasted death, suffering, corruption etc. If you look at Revelations you will find the promise of such a world again where there would be no tear, no pain, no suffering etc and God dwelling amongst mankind (Revelations 21:3-4). That’s God bringing us back to his original plan in spite of the sin of mankind. That’s God’s heart for us. The very best of abundant life.
    Now examine any sin whether it be adultery, murder, stealing, idolatry, dishonoring parents etc. All sin has its root in self-centredness. So Sin brings suffering and the root of sin is self-centredness. The one who brings this suffering is Satan, he is the one who comes to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10) so that you can be discouraged from following God. But it would be a crazy thing for the Word of God to tell us as in (Phillipians 4:4) to be rejoicing ALWAYS! Yes God wants us to rejoice always, how can we do that if we have suffering? We can do it because God has equipped us to rejoice always no matter what.
    So I am saying that the root of suffering (other than suffering due to persecution) is self-centredness. This is also in a way good-news because there is something we can do about it.
    God has given us the ability to overcome all kinds of suffering even that caused by persecution.
    This is because of the perfect and finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross. Only when we perceive the value of Jesus’ finished work do we understand what it means to us and
    how we apply it to life. So if there is suffering today it should not stop us and keep us in a prison, it should not demoralize us and shift our focus away from rejoicing to the extent that we would go lamenting, but instead God can use us in such situation, and we can allow these situations to build our character (to rid us of our self-centredness) and turn the tables on Satan (even if he is persecuting you) and thus glorify himself.
    We are uncomfortable when we hear the word “self-centred” because all of us are that and we all need God’s help to change. So let His word change us so that we are better quipped to face life and be rejoicing always.

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  29. Firstly there are lots of biblical scholars and theologies today. So I will not refer you to a list of them (Though I have plenty) But let me open the scriptures for you by directly quoting scripture. But before that let me make a mention that scripture should not be taken out of context and interpreted. So I would humbly request you to read 2 Corinthians Chapters 11 and 12 in its entirety
    and then let us closely examine 2 Corinthians 12:7 which says (NKJV) “And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan, to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure.” Notice who was doing the tormenting – a messenger of Satan. Notice why was he being tormented – Because of the abundance of revelations that Paul received from Jesus Christ (when he was caught up into Paradise). these revelations were setting people free and he was destroying the kingdom of Satan. Do you think Satan would keep quiet? Satan kept on continuously persecuting Paul through his messenger? Was God saying “No, I don’t want to help you?” Not at all, If you notice Paul had an abundance of revelations and was setting people free and yet in this matter he wasn’t applying it. What was God’s response? “My grace is sufficient for you” which means what I have done and provided for (through the completed work of Jesus) is sufficient for you to overcome this. “My power is made perfect in weakness” In other words here is Paul on his own weak and not able to deal with this issue by himself, But here’s God saying “Hold on, my power is in you and you will deal with this but not on your own but through my power working in your weakness”. And because you have said it, yes I have ministered to cancer patients, AIDS victims, people with broken bones, terminally ill people.
    I do not go to them and say, “Your self-centredness has brought you this” but I give them the love of Christ and if they are willing
    I lead them to Christ and by God’s grace I have seen amazing miracles of Cancer and AIDS vanishing, broken bones healed instantly and also people turning to the Lord and giving their lives to him”. I said earlier that I am living the life that I am talking about and its not theory or theology to me but simple practical living – the point is that there are some things that are meant for our education so that we learn and grow and do the work God wants us to do, not for accusations or condemnation – I do not condemn anyone because Jesus did not do that. So I pray for you dear friend the prayer of Paul to the Ephesians 1:17-21 that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe, according to the working of His mighty power which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come.

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  30. I’m just now catching up on some of the posts here about suffering and its relation to self-centeredness. When I first started spiraling down into a depression due to the circumstances of the past year, I wanted to believe it was because of something I did. That it was divine punishment for this or that. Because if I could simply attach a problem to the cause, then I could say, “Oh, because I sinned this happened and I deserved it.” That distorted view of cause and effect would make sense to me and in some part, make me feel like God was just keeping things in balance. But the truth of it is, suffering happens. To good people. To bad people. To Christians. To non-Christians. I’m starting to see just how little suffering has to do with our own actions. Because no one is born with reasons to be punished or suffer. Some infants are born to things and to people whose actions make you sick to your stomach. And believe me, I would love to be able to just reason it away with Bible verses, but that’s arrogant. No one has all the answers except God. And to point at a situation and try to reason it away based on personal inferences… well I think I get what you mean by self-centeredness in that regard lol

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  31. So….. Basically….you are changing your tune here, Dude.

    NOW the root of human suffering isn’t self-centeredness, as you originally stated in your comments here?
    Because that is what I took issue with. That particular belief (which is popular in some charismatic circles) stands in opposition to Christian orthodoxy. 2,000 years of religious tradition was grappled with understanding the experience of human suffering in light of Christ. Suffering as a means of education, as you most recently have stated here, is a perspective inherited from the Jewish tradition. It’s a very Isaiahic concept in that God wounds and God binds up. I think it’s an acceptable view of suffering in that it no longer casts the blame for suffering on those that suffer. But, unfortunately, to view suffering this way requires one answers the problem of Theodicy– can a good and sovereign God cause His children to suffer, and still be “good”?
    I have no desire to go down that road here. There are plenty of minds much more brilliant than mine that have grappled with Theodicy… I have a different perspective on all of it, as I’m a big fan of liberation theology. But that’s just one of many ideas that human beings have developed in trying to frame the Christian experience.

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  32. Dear friend, Sorry it’s your interpretation that’s misleading you again. I never said suffering is given to us for education. Please re-read my comment. I have said that there are some things we share that are meant for our education and not for accusation or condemnation.

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  33. Dear Rae, If ever through any of these comments I have made you feel that I am condemning you then I truly apologize. That is definitely not my intention right from the beginning. But I would like to say that I do not believe that God punishes us with suffering for our wrong doing. Why? Because of the finished work of Jesus on the cross, where he bore our sufferings and took our punishment. If Jesus took our punishment then it would be incorrect for a second punishment to happen for our wrongdoing. Instead I believe that God has equipped us with the ability to overcome whatever suffering is thrown at us by Satan. There is a connection between suffering and self-centredness but it’s not to do with punishment, it’s to do with its existence because of sin and our ability or inability to deal with it.

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  34. Dude…. This will be my last comment, because we must speak different languages.

    I would encourage you to read up on the difference between positional sanctification and progressive sanctification. There is an important distinction here, that you appear to be missing in your understanding.

    Peace.

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  35. Dear friend I have read about it. It seems you have a liking for theology I have nothing to say about it. As for me I prefer to believe in the truth that comes out of an intimate relationship with my creator which is based on the word of God and I live by it. God bless you abundantly in all you do.

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  36. controversialchristian1 says:

    It has to come from God, really, that any person ‘glories’ in suffering. That’s why Christians are weirdos to the world at large. I’m really suffering at the moment. Stress, illness and grief. No human should willingly take on suffering, or become a martyr to their own cause. Good Lord, there is enough suffering in this big wide world to go around without looking for it. It finds all of us soon enough. And enough tears have been shed since the dawn of time to fill a thousand Atlantic Oceans. No, God wills we suffer for building character, and perhaps for understanding that no matter how wretched or dreadful we feel that we have no right to take it out on others.

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  37. The True Light! says:

    Trials and Temptations
    “2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”

    ~James 1:2-4

    Steve

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  38. Dear Rae,
    I have read all of this discussion with interest because I have had to deal with what the medical world calls “Bi-polar Syndrome” for more than 50 years, and I have been a quasi-christian for more than 65 years. I agree with you, it is not easy, when you are in the depths of depression, to see the bright side of life…. or rejoice over anything. We cannot, though, blame our discomfort or tribulations directly on our current sins. Mostly because many of us don’t even recognize what we have or have not done as “sin.”
    I am also surprised that no one has mentioned the story of the Old Testament Job. When we read the book of Job we are given insight into the cause of his suffering BEFORE the suffering takes place. We are also made privy of God’s view of Job…”a perfect and upright man.”

    Believe me, he DID suffer! If you have ever had one boil you have a minuscule concept of what it may be like to be covered from head to toe with boils like Job!
    Add to that the grief of losing, not just one child but ALL of your children plus their wives and children.
    And financial ruin? He had that, too. Lost all his flocks and crops. He was penniless and felt on the edge of death with his wife and 3 closest advisors urging him to either curse God and die, or confess his sins and die.
    He had NO IDEA what he had done wrong.
    I believe that this story was included in the Bible for several reasons that are applicable today…to us.
    1. To show us that there IS a war of Good vs Evil going on in our universe
    2. God permits the Devil to harass us, sometimes just to prove to the universe that He has followers that will remain true to His calling no matter what happens to them
    3. Job’s experience is a short example of a person’s total life-experience. i.e. We decide to follow God. God blesses us. The rest of our life is spent doing battle with the sin that is in and around us. Meanwhile, we are subjected, by the devil, to suffering of all kinds. Yes, some of that suffering is a result of the poor choices that we make while under the momentary influence of the devil. We are rewarded, at the end of our life, for our willingness to “stick it out with God.”

    But, as you mentioned, in the throws of depression who thinks of all this? We just want the pain and/or anger to go away!
    I spent nearly 18 years on a path of self-destruction, denying that a God who loved me even existed. I have been unfaithful to my wife. I have beat my children. I have squandered money I didn’t have and eventually went bankrupt.
    At one of my lowest points I turned to Him, whom I didn’t believe in any more, and prayed, “I don’t know if you are there, or care, but I need relief! I don’t know what you want of me. I don’t know what you want me to do with what’s left of my worthless life, but here it is.”
    His answer was as audible as if He were standing behind me, “I’ve had your whole life. I want the rest of it, too. You have endured much and hurt many so that you can empathize with others and point them to Me.”

    I have embarked on that path and have been blessed far beyond what I deserved.
    Although God has promised to hear and answer our prayers, He has never put the answers on a timeline. Yes, some are answered immediately but the majority take time.
    I have two granddaughters currently going through the same Bi-polar problems that I had, and I pray for an early “release” for them.
    Depression is the devil’s best tool for pushing a wedge between us and God. Those who don’t find their way out with God self-destruct.
    As long as there is sin in this world there will be suffering. That is the common plight of mankind. In your text from Romans, Paul is letting us know that this negative can be turned to a positive with the help of God.
    Keep up your good work on your blog. I really enjoy your outlook on life.

    Liked by 1 person

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