Faithlife Sermons

Joy, Paitence, & Persistance

Flashback: Remembering the Work of the Cross   •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  32:36
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Intro

The Third week of a 6 part series looking at Romans 12 and what it means to follow Christ.
How that looks in our everyday lives.
In particular what the work of Christ on the cross tells us about how we are to live.
We are “flashing back” to times in Jesus’ life, in particular to the Passion, and seeing what the example of Jesus shows us about how we are to live.
First week we looked at the idea that we are to be a living sacrifice, specifically because of what jesus did for us.
“In view of the mercies of God”
Last week we saw that is it only by looking at and to the cross that we can understand what Love, true genuine Love, looks like.
And if we are called to love God and our neighbors, as we are, then we have to look to the Cross to see what genuine love looks like.
This week we move to verse 12 to see how it is that we are to respond to the trials, difficulties and and sufferings that come to us in life.
Romans 12:12 CSB
Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; be persistent in prayer.

Trials, difficulties, and suffering are a part of life.

These are all things that we experiance.
We don’t like them.
We have a low view of evil.
We forget that evil is real, underplay it, and then are surprised by it.
“A Christian never says, ‘isn’t life wonderful!’ - Martyn Lloyd-Jones
We should see through it!
Jesus taught us that in this life we’ll experiance trials and tribulations
John 16:33
John 16:33 CSB
I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.”
Just becuase we are God’s children we are not immune from hardships
This idea got started at some point, that Christians were to have it all together, that everything was to be perfect.
Lies!
Propserpity Gospel clap trap
We don’t have some magical force field that deflects hurts, disappointments, and pain from entering our lives.
We are still living in a broken and fallen world.
Jesus’ lifes ended on a Cross, suffering pain and shame.
Suffering servant
Is 53:11-12
Isaiah 53:11–12 CSB
After his anguish, he will see light and be satisfied. By his knowledge, my righteous servant will justify many, and he will carry their iniquities. Therefore I will give him the many as a portion, and he will receive the mighty as spoil, because he willingly submitted to death, and was counted among the rebels; yet he bore the sin of many and interceded for the rebels.
And yet, Jesus triumphed over sin and death!
As his followers, has adopted members of his family, we can live courageously.
Jesus has over come the world, and we will too.
1 john 5:5
1 John 5:5 CSB
Who is the one who conquers the world but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
In Romans 12:12, Paul provides us with three vital keys to responding to hardships: chose joy in hope, be patient, and always pray!

First, be joyful in hope!

1. As we flash back to Jesus, we discover how joy was a powerful weapon in his life to overcome his greatest trial.
Hebrews 12:2 testifies of Jesus that “for the joy set before him he endured the cross.”
Despite the physical, emotional, and mental torment of the cross, Jesus conquered the cross.
He was able to undergo the horror, shame, and pain of his present circumstances by realizing that joy awaited him after the cross: the joy of his Father, the joy of redeeming us, and the joy of conquering evil.
Likewise, when we encounter trials and hardship, we must choose joy.
That does not mean we have to be joyful about our circumstances themselves.
Jesus was not happy on the cross; he was suffering.
Joy is not based upon our circumstances.
Instead, joy is an inward state of living in peace and trust with God.
We choose joy in the hope that is before us. What is our hope?
It is not that God will quickly fix our circumstances, but a hope for the following reasons:
God will take the evil of this world and use it for good (Romans 8:28–29).
Romans 8:28–29 CSB
We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. For those he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, so that he would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.
In the end God will redeem and restore all things (Acts 3:19–21).
Acts 3:19–21 CSB
Therefore repent and turn back, so that your sins may be wiped out, that seasons of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send Jesus, who has been appointed for you as the Messiah. Heaven must receive him until the time of the restoration of all things, which God spoke about through his holy prophets from the beginning.
We belong to God, and he will never leave us nor forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:6).
Deuteronomy 31:6 CSB
Be strong and courageous; don’t be terrified or afraid of them. For the Lord your God is the one who will go with you; he will not leave you or abandon you.”
God’s grace is sufficient for us in our trials, and his power is made perfect when we are weak (2 Corinthians 12:9).
2 Corinthians 12:9 CSB
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is perfected in weakness.” Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me.

Secondly, when we encounter sufferings, we are to be patient in our afflictions

Again, in a flashback to Jesus, we witness his incredible patience in suffering.
Jesus could have ended his pain at any moment and asked his Father to intervene by sending twelve legions of angles (see Matthew 26:53).
Matthew 26:53 CSB
Or do you think that I cannot call on my Father, and he will provide me here and now with more than twelve legions of angels?
Instead, Jesus exercised tremendous patience by enduring the false trial, the beating and scourgings, the insults, and the cross to complete the work God had set before him.
In the same manner, God calls us to run the race he has marked out for us with perseverance (Hebrews 12:1).
Hebrews 12:1 CSB
Therefore, since we also have such a large cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us lay aside every hindrance and the sin that so easily ensnares us. Let us run with endurance the race that lies before us,
The Greek word for patience means “resist, stand firm by holding one’s ground, continue, endure despite opposition, persevere in spite of difficulty”
We prefer a quick rescue. We desperately hope that God will either change our circumstances or deliver us out of them. However, we are to stand firm and endure until the storm is over.
It is “through faith and patience” that the Bible says we inherit what is promised (Hebrews 6:12)
Again, just as with joy, our paitnece is rooted in our hope!

Prayer

Third, when we face difficult situations, Paul encourages us to remain faithful in prayer.
In a third flashback, we witness Jesus in the garden (Luke 22:39–46) and on the cross; in his greatest moment of agony and trial, Jesus turned to the Father in prayer.
Although we might be feeling disappointment, anger, or frustration toward others, ourselves, and even God, we need to remain faithful in turning to God.
The Scriptures invite us to “cast all your cares on him because he cares about you” (1 Peter 5:7).
When we remain faithful in seeking God and sharing our heart with him with thanksgiving, then God's peace will guard over our hearts and minds (see Philippians 4:6–7).
Philippians 4:6–7 CSB
Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Conclusion

When we encounter the storms of life, our joy, hope, patience, prayer, and worship can have a tremendous impact on others.
These are amazing times of witness and testimony
The following demonstrates how an ordinary group of people impacted John Wesley’s life:
Story of John Wesley’s voyage to GA and the Moravians praying on the ship.
We are going to face storms! that is a guarantee.
But as we sail through life’s storms, we can flash back to Jesus as our example to know how to respond with joy, patience, and prayer.
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