Patience in Suffering - James 5:7-12
They can repent and believe in love you we pray for these things all in Jesus name. Amen.
I'm right. I want to hear that through the whole sermon. Well, I thought since we're going to talk about patients. This would be a perfect day to have the kids in for the whole service patience in suffering. We are not a culture that really loves patients. We are we are there is an impatient culture. We we are it we are in the midst of impatience in spring break. Why do restaurants have been on spring break and some of us went on road trips or other trips and it was an opportunity to speak about patience wasn't it? Right? Yeah. Do you love who loves riding in the car for a long time? No kids. Do you love that? She loved riding in the car? I know what's a question. We always ask when we're in the car going somewhere. Are we there yet? It was we were in China on one of our terms and our kids hadn't had much exposure to American culture. We were going somewhere and one of the kids said are we there yet? And I would like it's not it's just just just in Us in patients in our kids we're able to talk to them because they want what do you want to do during the whole your car trip over if you had the choice, what would you do during the whole time you're in the car? Play Xbox if there was an Xbox that you can put in your car and I don't have screen time, right you want to be watching something playing something and we ask your kids. How much screen time did they thought think we had when we traveled we were kids and we are able to tell them zero we did not have it at all that I said when I was a graduate from high school someone gave me their email address and I was like, what am I going to do with that? What is that? I'm serious. I remember thinking that my email address. I don't know how to email, you know screens and we were just had to do just read or do Bingo on a little card and all this kind of stuff but we become even more impatient screens on help us become more patient. They they not much during that time, but they cause us to be even more impatient and able to just handle things. James speaks of talks here about Patience and he's talking about it in context so of suffering and we also as we are not a very patient people in our suffering. We're not very patient and we often ask are we there yet? Is it over yet? And it's hard the missive suffering. I know that is me answering. This account was hopefully compassion is there are those who are walking through suffering through deep suffering a different level that we walked through suffering and we do ask are we there yet? Is it over yet? And it's hard to be patient in suffering in James. Remember the context even just of this passage that the few verses before I talked about those who were under suffering because of those who are wealthy most likely landowners and they work for them and they did not even getting the wages. They deserve are there under suffering. It also is James. He's riding to this Jewish church at scattered and they're scattered because Persecution and they're under suffering and he called them. As we need to hear that you needed to hear to be patient. See see that inverse one. We see first this just to call be patient Jesus. He's going to come he's returning he will return. Jesus is coming. Be patient. Be patient therefore Brothers until the coming of the Lord. This is be patient in your suffering and wait for Christ's return cries. He saying Christ is not dead, but he's risen he's ascended and he's coming back. This is reality so we can be patient knowing that Christ will return the suffering is not for eternity. Christ is coming. We should know what James doesn't say here in the midst of suffering. He doesn't say to them. He doesn't say loose heart. It doesn't say be anxious or despair. You also didn't say rise up against your oppressors, but it was he say be patient rescue is coming. Jesus will return Justice righteousness. Will rain in God's kingdom will call to be patient knowing that in his time that Christ will return or either that or we will at the end of our life be with him for all eternity.
take out of Peter who wrote in 2nd Peter at the end of that book of 2nd Peter, maybe you're familiar with it and chapter 3, he writes this he says do not Overlook the one this one fact beloved that with the Lord one day is as a thousand and a thousand years is one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but it's patient tour. You not wishing that any should perish but that all should reach repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief so summer asking price hasn't come yet. He said he is going to fulfill his promise. But God's timing is not like ours one day is like a thousand a thousand like one day and his patient cuz he wants us to come to repentance. I'm glad the Lord Has It I didn't return a hundred years ago. If he did then I wouldn't be part of his kingdom and I pray that he terrorizes is our children if they repent and believe in. Thankful for the patience of Our Lord. He says be patient until the coming of the Lord when Christ has returned. His kingdom is complete all will be made right? I'll send will be gone. All Justice will be given a wrongs will be riding depressed workers will find Victory broken will be healed. Revelation chapter 7 it gives us a picture of this in Reverse is 9 and 10 in in 15 to 17. After this, I looked and behold a great multitude that no one could number from every nation from every tribe and people and Nation standing Before the Throne in before the lamb clothed in white robes and palm branches in their hand and cried with a loud voice salvation Belongs To Our God who sits on the throne and to the lamb and verse 15 therefore. There Before the Throne of God and serve him day and night in his Temple sits on his throne with shelter at will said well and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence they shall hunger no no more neither thirst anymore the sun shall not strike them nor any scorching heat for the lamb in the midst of the throne will be their Shepherd and he will guide them to Springs of Living Water and God will wipe away every tear from their eye. Listen picture. These are coming realities in the kingdom of God and then eternity. And we saw at the inauguration of the kingdom when Christ came and did we say through the gospel of Mark to the Life of Christ. You continued what did you because you need to go to the broken continue to heal the blind continue to raise the daddy continue to forgive sin and he was showing that the curse of sin in this Fallen World is being undone and it will be completed in the Kingdom of Christ.
And then James gives us example. What does he say? He says see how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the Earth being patient about it until it receives the early and late rains and a class. If you ever been given one of those little cups A Little Dixie cup, that's what we call him. I don't know if we call him anymore, but that little cup and put a seed in it with dirt. What did he have to do for that? Have you done it? What do you have to do to get that plant to grow? What are some things you got to do you think Guetta You didn't do it by yourself. So I know you didn't do it. Okay, but yeah, I got to put somebody got to put some water right you need sun and these things happen the same the farmer would know that the farmers one who?
Weights and Palestine are two important rain falls in the fall rain in October or November and prepare the ground for the planting and then there was a second rain. I was really important to them and put in a spring that late rain in March and April at for the Harvest Time and I knew that God was a provider that rain. And in the Old Testament God we talked about bringing rain. It was a demonstration of his faithfulness to the people. This isn't Deuteronomy 11 it said end if you will indeed obey my commands, and I that I command you today to love the Lord your God to serve him with all your heart with all your soul. He will give you the rain for your land and It season in the early rain the late rain that you may Gather in your grain in your wine and your oil. Is the picture of God giving Rain the trusting in Him and in his faithfulness to I sent you think about a farmer and there's two key things to think about a farmer is planning is waiting for the rain in he's waiting for the Harvest. One thing is that the fruit of that Harvest it doesn't come immediately as soon as you plant there isn't all of a sudden a harvest but he has to wait for that Harvest to come you say be patient in suffering but it's also this farmer has to wait for the provision of God. It's by the strength and that the hand of God that he waits for this Harvest to come. Yes. He needs any shows and he waits these waiting on a train and that provision. of God
Siri says be patient. Christ is coming. And then again in verse 8, he says be patient, but this is a patient that it's not his passive patients, but it's actively being patient and all that just sounds crazy. But there is an active Miss to our patients in our suffering. It's not a passive. Waiting but was he says you also be patient. You needed to hear it again, establish your hearts or maybe says stand firm and reversed and your translation or strengthen your hearts for the coming of the Lord is at hand. Be patient when they needed here together, we needed we need to share it again. We again, we're just not a very patient people at all want everything right now?
If you know that after college has been a couple years it in Ecuador and that is a culture that is patient. And when I first went there, it was really difficult for me to be amongst a patient more patient people within a first few months. I was there. I was helping at a high school helping with the English teachers and they had an event in the evening and they like to do things late at night. And unfortunately, I'm just not too late at night person never have been and never will be the last time the critically changes event at the school when it started like at 8 and I show up right at 8 and then if there's nobody there they're like just setting up stuff and I'm like it was it was until 9 or 9:30 and started and it went way into the night and I left way before it was over but it's hard to be patient a little later and my two years there. I had some College students count some guys that came in they were with me for the summer and we went to another event was during the day or another school event was at this basketball arena and we got there and we sat and I'm like a half an hour went by and then another half an hour and buy a new guys are just going crazy. Like what Hearts were just so impatient. We're just not used to that. We want it right now with our our crew our ministry orchids lights and even in our suffering want to be over in a perfect right now, but he tells us and tells his going to be patient. Be patient.
Is establish your heart stand firm strengthen your heart. Send me this isn't a passive patients to be able to stand firm. It's intentional in standing firm. Recently my kids we have a trampoline and the new game on the trampoline is have a football and tackle each other or just even if you don't have a football tackle each other and try to stay but the ideas you stand firm, right? You don't want to be knocked down or do you want to meet up down you want to be not got well that doesn't help with my illustration at all. So but you won't be able to stand first time or maybe more like a sumo wrestler. Where what what side is the sooner the rather large guys typically and the object is to not get pushed out of a circle and they have to stand for the actively still a pursuit of standing from a battling for patience in suffering. So, how do we establish your heart will? James says establish your heart for the coming of the Lord is at hand. To recognize that we'd stand firm. It's not even in our own strength, but it's in a reality that Christ is returning. It's knowing that he will return to make all things. Right is it strengthened in the gospel that we have a king who suffered for us who died and then rose again Victorious and who will, and make all things right we go back again and again to the Gospel of Jesus Christ as one of our our core values one with the the tree there is to grow to know God deeply we need to continue to grow to know him and know the gospel learning experience is Grayson as we talked about the conduits of Grace we talked about at the beginning of the year of putting herself under that have any of his grace by going is word by going to Prayer by spending time together by going to the gospel by being a people who are generous. But unfortunately, we a lot of times and suffering instead of looking to the gospel unto our God. We what do we do? We we look to our self we we navel gaze. Right? We looked or belly button. We left to ourself. We look inward. But when we do that what happens when we just look at our self, we we despair we lose hope. And we live again in our culture and its social media. I think it feeds are navel gazing. It feeds our inward looking at self because we look and we compare we looking we compete we look at someone else's highlight reel and we're like man, I got to make mine measure up to their is it I despair when I suffer your suffering you're looking at their like they're they're surely not suffering but the picture you're showing are demonstrating that you're not suffering either Adele though, you're suffering and we just put these fake pictures and we look into ourselves. We despair even more for call the look for God and his return the gospel and his strength Romans. 16:25 says this now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel. And the preaching of Jesus Christ according to the revelation of the mystery that was Kept Secret from a long ago since he's able to strengthen us and then Peter and 1st Peter 5:10. And after you have suffered a little while the God of all Grace who has called you to his eternal glory Christ. He will himself restore confirm strengthen and establish you so we stand firm in the strength of our God we can also Establish and strengthen our hearts also through the body of Christ has given us his provision. We've talked about that and get one of our core values. Is that connecting? It's that puzzle piece that connecting with one another connecting and caring for one another authentic lean. We need to do that. We need one another to build one another up but at the same time waiting to be able to do that. We need to be open enough to connect with one another and seek out help it also seek out help of other people that we can love on them and one question that I wanted to ask her if it was not just what is your ministry, but who is your ministry? We can encourage one another and Paul Wright says he says as he writes this is in the beginning of the book of Romans and he's right into this Roman Church. He hasn't been there but he wants to go there and he wants to encourage him and he says I long to see you that I may impart to you some spiritual gifts to strengthen you that is that we may be mutually encouraged by each other's Faith both yours and mine cuz I want to be with you and be able to strengthen you and you strengthen me together. One final thing as we think about establishing our heart recently. I've been trying to memorize Ephesians 6 10 through 18. That's the passage that talks about putting on the full armor of God, and I'm slow I'm a slow memorizer, but I'm I'm working at it. I'm not like John Green is easy to segrate memorize there. Any challenges me? I'm but I'm working on that but talks about talks about putting on a helmet of salvation and talking about having that breastplate of righteousness in the belt of truth and the shoes of the Readiness of the the gospel of peace and have the shield of faith that actively thinking through these things out of the righteousness of Christ have faith and the gospel in the Salvation is received through Jesus and we strengthen our heart and the truth of these things. James continues verse 9 and he says do not Grumble against one another brothers so that you may not be judged behold. The judge is standing at the door. So be patient the patient and not mean to this says that Jesus is coming to judge or cents in. Terracotta change them in their suffering. How are they responding to their suffering? Is it squishy and a house in on those who are around them? And we need to be reminded that our suffering isn't a license. It isn't a license to tear people down to around us and yet if we're honest if I'm honest with myself off and was suffering comes when we're under trials have different kinds we Trend event or stress and anxiety and anger and her frustration and are discouragement upon those that we love the most and we Grumble and complain.
But it isn't a license or suffering doesn't justify. Are grumbling are our actions that are tearing down those around us? Has he been reminded of that this week was one morning. I was I was tired and grumpy and I decided I was just going to announce to everyone in the house. I'm grumpy this morning. So watch out. That's exactly what I said. I don't know exactly what I said, but that's essentially what I said, and I thought I was pretty justified in saying that I was tired and you know, whatever. Virginia saying they're suffering do not Grumble against one. Another said behold. The judge is standing at the door. And the Christ is coming all our actions will be laid before him and our hope our only hope is that Jesus Christ died for us and that when everything is revealed there be a verdict of innocent justified in the blood of Jesus Christ, and there is hope but we're still a call to take her since seriously. And our suffering doesn't justify sending against those around us.
numbers 10 he gives us he's going to give us these couple examples of suffering. Just be patient in the face of opposition first 10 example of suffering and patience Brothers take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. Tickets example of suffering and patience is patience suffering. Of the prophets and if you know any of the profits they were given this message mission to go and declare that the people of Israel there in sin and I needed to repair that they didn't don't repent that judge is going to come and even Isaiah's he's given this call to do this and it's also been told that the people as you as you get this message that yours are going to shut and hearts are going to be cold to you and pick up Jeremiah who was he was taken to use throwing thrown into a sister where there's mud and he's sinking down and he's rescued from that but he's persecute in there those prophets who are killed or murdered. And they continue the pressed on and I think it's James. Gives us this example. He's reminding us that following Christ and suffering as we follow God is nothing new or abnormal. Andrea Lee In America, we've got your. Of Christian history that's been unique to to the world and Christian history in general. The lack of really persecution that has come upon Christians, but I think we've already begun to see and they will continue to see that they'll be suffering that will, it'll be that bike of the profits If We Hold to the truth of the Bible as truth of the Bible as being rejected more and more. But we have brothers and sisters around the world to experience suffering. Sam allberry who's a Bible scholar and a preacher. He said that he said suffering is one kind of suffering of one kind or another is normal for the people of God is not the sign that things have gone wrong, but that they've gone normal. This week I read as looking at a magazine that I get from the voice of the martyrs that talks about Martyrs throughout the world and there's a story about a pastor his wife his son and several three or four members of his church in Iran who were put in prison in of course, they were told you cannot share the gospel. But what do they do? They continue to share the gospel and then they continue to put them in deeper and darker parts of the prison and then as they're there their they're thinking of all the verses that they memorize and and together they kind of they write down and I think of a person they compiled vs. Together, so they have portions of the Bible that they can encourage one another and used it to speak truth to those in prison and then some of them were released and they would come back to visit. Finally. There was some visiting visitation rights of those were still in prison and they would an English right portions of the Bible and the guards didn't know English so they couldn't read it and they give it to They would receive these English and someone in prison who knew English with translated to Farsi and they be able to describe distribute the Bible in the prison. Patience Nas position. Sometimes we think we have opposition. That's intense opposition, but they stood firm and faithful and steadfast. I think also is me think about the example of the prophets and James's he's encouraging them that they're not alone in their suffering. The prophets and their lies and stories and minerals ministries of suffering that they seen are reminded that there have been those who have gone before us and impressed hard before I cement stories like this or this these Christians in Iran, encourage me of their faithfulness to stand firm in difficult situations that I've never even come close to experiencing and yet they stood firm and they continue to spread the gospel. And the word of God, even though it's not legal to spread with spreading in this prison through these translations that they were handing out Page by Page.
Then another example James gives. verse 11 behold, we consider those blast to remain steadfast you've heard of the steadfastness of Jobe and you have seen the purpose of the Lord how the Lord is compassionate and merciful. With Joe we have this example of patience and for job was really an unexplained suffering. For him it was unexplained. He did never got never said this is why you are suffering a James he begins and he says, the whole we consider those blast Who Remain steadfast
I think we struggle to see how suffering often can ever be a blessing especially when they were in the midst of suffering we might ask the Lord. What is the fruit of the suffering? How can this be a blessing? And yet God often uses those sufferings to reveal our Center to Humble us our enable us to be prepared to be a comfort to others. But in the midst of it I've had friends say I can't even see fruit. What fruit can come from this But sometimes we were standing on the outside of the suffering if we can step in and off and we can lovingly see what God is doing and encourage.
Jesus said in Matthew 5 10 through 12 and said blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven blessed are you when people insult you persecute being falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me rejoice and be glad because great is your reward in heaven for the same way. They persecuted the prophets who were before you change the Echoes Words of Christ are suffering for our obedience to Christ is not without reward. the Lord uses our suffering
but again in the midst of our suffering this morning might come and you might just say it's just unthinkable. To see a blessing or see what the Lord is doing as soon as we just have to decide we're in the dark or in a fog and we just have to grass under these truths or ask others to pray that we can grasp onto these fruits that the Lord can use the sufferings has as blessings. I guess it's example of Joe. When I have time to go through the whole story of Joe, but if you remember Joe was one who who was a follower of God and God allowed Satan to to tempt him.
And his family he was a rich man, and he had seven kids and all of his wife is strip down and his kids all are killed and then the Lord even allows for physical sickness to come up on him and he he's at a place of just utter despair.
And here it says that Joba steadfast, I think that's an interesting word to use for a joke as soon as we reach your jaw. We might think well was he steadfast? Do you read a job when he wrestled and is suffering. It wasn't a perfect wrestling it a x e e question. ASA God. Give me an answer come down. I don't understand what's going on. Any question God, but at the same time we even in the midst of this he did it. He doesn't Curse God it doesn't abandon. The Lord, but he knew that is Redeemer Lives. As example of even when we live in our suffering God is gracious and we can still remain steadfast and our stuff in our suffering. And for a job he doesn't get it an explanation of this is why this is happening. But at the end got comes to him and reveals his sovereignty and its might in his power over all creation and over all things job recognizes that that God is God and he is not any humbles himself before God and God is compassionate to him and restores him. And then it is versus said the Lord is compassionate and merciful. We need the compassion in the mercy of our God. So not who we we don't Suffer Well, and we need the compassionate mercy and patience of our God. We need his Mercy that we might fully know his compassion in our suffering cuz it's not always easy. Lamentations 3 31 through 33 says this for the Lord will not reject us forever. Even if he causes suffering, he will show compassion according to His abundant faithful love. Free does not enjoy bringing Affliction or suffering on mankind. when God is compassionate Sometimes in the midst of suffering it's hard to see. and maybe This morning, you're not going through suffering and maybe you pray that the Lord of use you to be an agent and ambassador of his compassion and mercy, so that that that person who's in that dark cloud of depression or suffering that you can reach out a hand and anchor them to the truth of our God is compassionate and merciful the walk with them in the midst of suffering.
The final verse James says above all my brothers do not swear either by heaven or Earth or by any other oath to let your yes be yes and your no be no so that you may not fall under condemnation. Syniverse, that's a difficult verse and there's a lot of debate about how is James connecting? This is it connected to this passage of the passage after or is it just a standalone statement and it's one that we can wrestle too through together and you might come up and say I don't know that I agree with that amount and that's fine. You can wrestle through that's a hard one cuz we look at that as soon as I connect with this suffering in this inpatient hastio that are made in the midst of suffering. O-Cedar made upon the name of God to strengthen.
The oath that is made.
Demdaco is the words of Christ 2 and Matthew 5 who speaks a similar word about making us and there's a call a teaching here that Believers their word should be enough. There should be no need for a hasty. are lofty oath in the midst of trial and suffering and we know in context of James of all of it were called to be cautious in our words to guard our words and our tongue even though that we make
So we think about suffering this morning. It might be a morning where year? The other question are we there yet? When will this be over?
We don't always know the answer we most that we don't know the answer James causes to be patient. Stand firm knowing that rescue is coming. My God is in the midst of this.
Maybe you're not walking through suffering. Most likely that you will set time to prepare your heart. Hard to be compassionate with others who are walking through that suffering that you might be the compassion and mercy of our God to them. Are this morning? You might come and you recognize that you've never received even for the first time the mercy and compassion of our God. You recognize that you do not have a relationship with Jesus Christ. The one that we've been talking about who is going to come again? This morning is an opportunity to confess your sin to place your faith in Jesus Christ to his in one as we said he's not dead in the grave but died and rose again, and he's Victorious you will come again.
And he's one that makes sense in the suffering. He's one who took upon himself suffering. And died and it threw his death an ultimate Injustice life can be made life can come through his death and Resurrection. We know that God can use our suffering. Define hope. Let's pray this morning.
father God we We need you in now. There's some of us that come this morning rejoicing this morning those of us who come weeping.
Would help us to be at people who are patient in the midst of suffering. Let me not use it as a opportunity to send but to stand firm and steadfast. but I pray that you will help us as as a family has a body to love one another while to be compassionate to be armed of compassion and mercy of our God to those around us. But I pray that you help us to stand firm to send steadfast it continue to go back to your word and continue to to open our self up that we can share the suffering that were in the midst of that we might help from one another. But I pray also for any here who do not know you that. Have not experienced that compassion and mercy of Jesus Christ. They will experience that experience at this morning that they will see there soon. They will confess our sin to place your faith in Jesus Christ. Pray these things in Jesus name. Amen.
this morning of Even in our.