Christian Suffering

1Peter 4:12-14 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as you are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, you may be glad also with exceeding joy. If you be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are you; for the spirit of glory and of God rests upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified. 

‘Fiery’ [Greek: purosis] burning. ‘Trial’ the Greek word poorosis meaning ignition, that is, (specifically) smelting (figuratively conflagration, calamity as a test) – a burning, trial.

‘But rejoice, inasmuch as you are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, you may be glad also with exceeding joy’ this is the 6th and last New Testament prophecy in 1Peter that is unfulfilled. Ten rewards are mentioned in Scripture for Christian suffering: Eternal consolation (2Cor. 1:7; 4:17); making Jesus known (2Cor. 4:11); life to others (2Cor. 4:12); making grace manifest (2Cor. 4:15); greater glory in heaven (2Cor. 4:17); guarantee of judgment (2Thess. 1:5); reign with Christ (2Tim. 2:12); Spirit upon us (1Pet. 4:14); glory to God (1Pet. 4:16); great joy (1Pet. 4:13-14).

‘Partakers of Christ’s sufferings’ Eight facts about Christian suffering: Suffering is not strange or unusual for Christians (4:12; 2Tim. 3:12). We should rejoice when we are partakers of the sufferings of Christ (4:13; Matt. 5:10). The greater the suffering, the greater the joy and the glory (4:13; Rom. 8:17-18). Besides the greater glory to come the Christian has the Holy Spirit upon him now to enable him to endure (4:14; Rom. 8:26-27). Christian sufferings glorify God (4:14; Rom. 8:17-18). It is an honour, not a shame, to suffer as a Christian (4:16). Though sufferings begin with Christians, they end in an eternal weight of damnation to the ungodly (4:17-18). Sufferings should be borne by Christians, in patience as in the will of God, realizing that God is always faithful to His own in their sufferings (4:19; 1Cor. 10:13). Christian suffering consist of: Persecution for righteousness (Matt. 5:10; 13:21; Mark 10:30; John 15:20); reviling and slander (4:4; Matt. 5:11-12; 10:25; Acts 13:45); false accusations (Matt. 10:17-20); rejection by people (Matt. 10:14); scourging for Christ (Matt. 10:17); hatred by the world (Matt. 10:22; John 15:18-21); hatred by relatives (Matt. 10:21-36); martyrdoms (Matt. 10:28; Acts 7:58); temptations (Luke 8:13; Jas. 1:2-16); shame for His name (Acts 5:41); imprisonments (Acts 4:3; 5:18; 12:4); tribulations (Acts 14:22; 2Thess. 1:4); stoning (Acts 14:19; 2Cor. 11:25); beatings (Acts 16:23; 2Cor. 11:24-25); being a spectacle to people (1Cor. 4:9); misunderstanding, necessities, defamation, and despising (1Cor. 4:10-13); trouble, affliction, distresses, tumults, labours, watching, fasting, and evil reports (2Cor. 6:8-10; 11:26-28); reproaches (4:14; Heb. 13:13); trials (1:7; 4:12); satanic opposition (Eph. 4:27; 6:12); groaning and travailing because of the curse (Rom. 8:17-26).

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