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Trials and testings - again

There are certain subjects in the Bible no one like to talk about. Some preachers/churches do not talk about them at all. ..and yet, they are in the Bible for a reason.
This is one of those subjects.

Sometimes life is easy, but sometimes life is hard. It's what we do when life gets hard that matters the most.

James says...

Jas 1:2; Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials,
Jas 1:3; knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.
Jas 1:4; And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

God allows our faith to be tested. Even Jesus was tested.

Matt 4:1; Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.
Mark 1:12; Immediately the Spirit *impelled Him to go out into the wilderness.
Luke 4:1; Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led around by the Spirit in the wilderness

This wasn't just a random thing, it says Jesus was led by the Spirit to go be tempted.

1Pet 1:6; In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials,
1Pet 1:7; so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
1Pet 1:8; and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,
1Pet 1:9; obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.

Peter also says we go through "various trials" sometimes. So that the "proof of our faith" may be manifested. He says "obtaining as the outcome" of this testing... is the salvation of your souls.

Some people don't believe God tests us, or allows us to be tested... but a theme through the Bible is...

Exod 16:4; Then the LORD said to Moses, "Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a day's portion every day, that I may test them, whether or not they will walk in My instruction.
Exod 20:20; Moses said to the people, "Do not be afraid; for God has come in order to test you, and in order that the fear of Him may remain with you, so that you may not sin."
Deut 8:16; "In the wilderness He fed you manna which your fathers did not know, that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do good for you in the end.
Jdg 2:22; in order to test Israel by them, whether they will keep the way of the LORD to walk in it as their fathers did, or not."
Jdg 3:1; Now these are the nations which the LORD left, to test Israel by them (that is, all who had not experienced any of the wars of Canaan;

Jer 17:10; "I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds.
Jer 20:12; Yet, O LORD of hosts, You who test the righteous, Who see the mind and the heart; Let me see Your vengeance on them; For to You I have set forth my cause.
Gen 22:1 Now it came about after these things, that God tested Abraham, and said to him, "Abraham!" And he said, "Here I am."
Isa 48:10; "Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.
Heb 11:17; By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son;
Zech 13:9; "And I will bring the third part through the fire, Refine them as silver is refined, And test them as gold is tested. They will call on My name, And I will answer them; I will say, 'They are My people,' And they will say, 'The LORD is my God.'"

Of course God allowed Job to be tested.
Job 1:8; The LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil."
Job 1:9; Then Satan answered the LORD, "Does Job fear God for nothing?
Job 1:10; "Have You not made a hedge about him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.
Job 1:11; "But put forth Your hand now and touch all that he has; he will surely curse You to Your face."
Job 1:12; Then the LORD said to Satan, "Behold, all that he has is in your power, only do not put forth your hand on him." So Satan departed from the presence of the LORD.

..more than once...
Job 2:3; The LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man fearing God and turning away from evil. And he still holds fast his integrity, although you incited Me against him to ruin him without cause."
Job 2:4; Satan answered the LORD and said, "Skin for skin! Yes, all that a man has he will give for his life.
Job 2:5; "However, put forth Your hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh; he will curse You to Your face."
Job 2:6; So the LORD said to Satan, "Behold, he is in your power, only spare his life."

.. to be continued ...
Most of us know Simon Peter denied Jesus 3 times, but do we know he was being tested by Satan?

Luke 22:31; "Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded permission to sift you like wheat;
(BBE) Simon, Simon, Satan has made a request to have you, so that he may put you to the test as grain is tested:
(CEV) Jesus said, "Simon, listen to me! Satan has demanded the right to test each one of you, as a farmer does when he separates wheat from the husks.
(GNB) "Simon, Simon! Listen! Satan has received permission to test all of you, to separate the good from the bad, as a farmer separates the wheat from the chaff.
(TPT) “Peter, my dear friend, listen to what I’m about to tell you. Satan has demanded to come and sift you like wheat and test your faith.

Some of us have to suffer for God sometimes.

Acts 5:41; So they went on their way from the presence of the Council, rejoicing that they had been considered worthy to suffer shame for His name.
Acts 9:16; for I will show him how much he must suffer for My name's sake."

Jesus said Paul had to suffer for His "name's sake".
..and it seems he did...

2Co r11:23; Are they servants of Christ?—I speak as if insane—I more so; in far more labors, in far more imprisonments, beaten times without number, often in danger of death.
2Cor 11:24; Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes.
2Cor 11:25; Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep.
2Cor 11:26; I have been on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren;
2Cor 11:27; I have been in labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure.

2Cor 4:7; But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves;
2Cor 4:8; we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing;
2Cor 4:9; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;

So what did Paul say about going through all of this?

2Cor 4:17; For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison,
2Cor 4:18; while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

He said this was just a "momentary, light affliction".
I wonder how many of us would consider being beaten, whipped, imprisoned, and ship-wrecked a momentary, light affliction?

But Paul understood eternity. He compared this temporary .. light affliction... to an eternal weight. This life is temporary, whatever we go through here is just a light thing.
The next life is eternal. It will have the weight of the glory of God through eternity.

Most of us have no concept of eternity. I heard it explained like this once.
If a bird could pick up one grain of sand in his beak, and fly over to another galaxy.. it takes him 500 million years to get there, he drops off the sand, and flies back to earth, it takes another 500 million years to get back.
He picks up another grain of sand in his beak, and keeps doing this until all the sand is removed from the earth. How long would that take?
The answer is less than one nanao-second in eternity. Less than 1/1,000th of a second. Eternity literally has no end.

... to be continued ...

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