September 14, 2014

Joy and Trials

Ron Lutz ~ I Peter 1:3-9   Sermon Quotes: I Peter 1:3-9 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, 9 obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls. “[Some people say that] no future bliss can make up” for a particular instance of suffering, “not knowing that Heaven, once attained, will work backwards and turn even that agony into a glory.” -C.S. Lewis, The Great Divorce “His purpose was to show that God does not thus try His people without reason, for if God afflicted us without a cause, it would be grievous to bear. Hence Peter has taken an argument for consolation from the design of God, not because the purpose always appears to us, but because we ought to be fully persuaded that it ought to be so, because it is God’s will.” -John Calvin “…part of the discovery is to see the suffering itself as one of God’s most precious gifts. To withhold the full story from Job, even after the test was over, keeps him walking by faith, not by sight. He does not say in the end, ‘Now I see it all.’ He never sees it all. He sees God (Job 42:5). Perhaps it is better if God never tells any of us the whole of our life-story.” -Francis Anderson “I can say with complete truthfulness that everything I have ever learned in my 75 years in this world, everything that has truly enhanced and enlightened my existence, has been through affliction and not through happiness, whether pursued or attained.” -Malcolm Muggeridge “God is God. If he is God, he is worthy of my worship and my service. I will find rest nowhere but in his will, and that will is infinitely, immeasurably, unspeakably beyond my largest notions of what he is up to… God is God. I dethrone him in my heart if I demand that he act in ways that satisfy my idea of justice.” -Elizabeth Elliott