Bible Study on Suffering

Introduction - I Peter 4: 12 19

Why do Christians suffer?

1.      Divine discipline or correction. - Hebrews 12: 6; Revelation 3:19; Psalm 119: 67

2.   Because of the sin of others.

3.      To resolve angelic conflict between Satan and God. - Job 1

4.   To learn obedience to the divine plan. - Hebrews 5: 8

5.       Humbling, to keep pride down, to understand the grace of God. - II Corinthians 12: 9

6.      To develop perseverance and endurance. - James 1: 2 - 4; Acts 20:24

7.      To demonstrate the power and glory of God. - Psalm 50: 15; II Corinthians 12: 9; I Peter 1: 6 - 8

8.      To help others who suffer, comfort others. - II Corinthians 1: 3 5

9.      To witness for Christ - Philippians 1:12

10.  To teach us lessons in prayer. - Isaiah 26: 16

Promises to rely on:

Romans 8:18               Isaiah 41: 10        Romans 8: 28             Revelation 21: 4

Matthew 28: 20          II Timothy 2: 12    Isaiah 43: 2                I Peter 5: 10

Benefits of suffering

      1.   Happiness - Job 5: 17

2.   Patience - Romans 5: 3 - 5

3.  Purifies us - I Peter 1: 6 - 7

4.  Assures us of God's love - Hebrews 12: 6

       5.  Makes us more complete and brings us to maturity. - James 2: 2 - 4

What is the source of our joy and comfort in suffering and trials?

            The presence of Christ Matthew 28: 20; Isaiah 41:10; Isaiah 43:1 2

            Jesus Christ knows what we are going through Psalm 139: 1 3

Take comfort in what God is producing in and through us James 1: 3 4; I Peter 1: 6 7; James 1: 12

Tribulation has boundaries I Corinthians 10: 13; Revelation 2: 10

We (believers in Jesus Christ) have salvation and an inheritance in heaven Revelation 2: 10; Matthew 5: 11 12, Luke 10: 20; Psalm 13: 5 - 6

A Prayer of Meditation

            Lord, high and holy, meek and lowly

            Thou hast brought me to the valley of vision,

            where I live in the depths but see thee in the heights;

            hemmed in by mountains of sin I behold thy glory.

            Let me learn by paradox

            that the way down is the way up,

            that to be low is to be high,

            that the broken heart is the healed heart,

            that the contrite spirit is the rejoicing spirit,

            that the repenting soul is the victorious soul,

            that to have nothing is to possess all,

            that to bear the cross is to wear the crown,

            that to give is to receive,

            that the valley is the place of vision.

            Lord, in the daytime stars can be seen from the deepest wells,

            and the deeper the wells the brighter the stars shine;

            Let me find thy light in my darkness,

            thy life in my death,

            thy joy in my sorrow,

            thy grace in my sin,

            thy riches in my poverty,

            thy glory in my valley.

                    from The Valley of Vision, A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions, Arthur Bennett, Editor, 1975

Permission is granted to use this Bible Study outline for personal study and small groups only. 

Bob Krepps  1993, 2001 all rights reserved.  Study written by Bob Krepps.

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