SUNDAY, 6 AUGUST 2017
What a big and glorious day when Jesus come again for the second time bringing up all His faithful people! God promised a true rest for us. ONLY God can do that and accomplish that. All faithful men deserve for real relief after all hard work and struggle we have in this long-haul process called journey of faith. Real relief is a true privilege for anyone be counted worthy of the Kingdom of God. Real relief is given to those who already suffer for the Kingdom of God.
5 which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer; 6 since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, 7 and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, 2Thessalonians 1:5-7 NKJV
PERSECUTIONS AND TRIBULATIONS
Being Jesus’ followers will always require a strong commitment as persecutions and tribulations may appear at anytime. When Paul wrote this letter, the faithful people at Thessalonians was facing lot of trouble. Early churches began to grow and they had not only the Jewish but also Roman empire who want to oppose that movement and destroy their faith!
3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other, 4 so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, 2Thessalonians 1:3-4 NKJV
No one will feel comfortable whenever the problem arises. However, believers need to get prepared as the Bible always warn and remind us about this issue! Jesus had explained in very simple way yet powerful why believers may face persecutions and tribulations. Jesus had already given His word for us and this is the main reason why the world will always hate us, because we are not of the world. We need to be fully aware that we are not of the world just as Jesus is not of the world Jn.17:14-17. If we are of the world, the world will love us as its own. But because we are not of the world therefore the world hates us Jn.15:19. Since the first time we declare our faith and submit our life to Jesus as our only Saviour, actually we already got our new citizenship which is in heaven.
For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. Philippians 3:20 NKJV
Jesus already known exactly that His peoples will face persecutions as the result of that new citizenship. Having said that, Jesus did not want to take us out of the world as soon as we have faith in Him. Jesus go back to the heaven and left us here for a while with a purpose. He wants us to learn something that only can be found in this world and will never exist in the heaven, which is suffering!
We may face persecutions and tribulations differently as we have a unique life and calling, but never be dismayed and don’t give up. Let’s believe together that all of that trouble happens for a reason! At least we can find 3 reasons that clearly mentioned in the Bible:
<<1>> Only problem could humble people Deut.8:2-3
God loves and always seek for a humble people. God allowed His people to hunger and fed them with manna for 40 years in the wilderness so they could learn what is humility! We need to be clothed with humility as God resists the proud people but gives grace to the humble 1Pet.5:5-6. Humble people is the one who always thankful and able to enjoy their low condition instead of getting upset and keep complaining. Humble people is just like Jesus and that’s exactly what God always looking for! God wants to spend the eternity with humble people and not with the proud one. There is not any place for sin of proud in the heaven. Lucifer was fallen away from God’s presence as he let his heart filled with pride and want to boast himself and defeat God Is.14:12-15! The Bible said that we need to arm ourselves with the mind of Christ’s suffering so we may cease from sin 1Pet.4:1.
<<2>> Various trials will prove the genuineness of our faith 1Pet.1:5-7
Heaven will only accept a pure faith and not the fake one. The genuineness of our faith is much more precious than anything. Apostle Peter encouraged all believers to be greatly rejoice though we have been grieved by various trials because that process will reveal the real quality of our faith so we may receive praise, honour, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Our faith must keep standup in any conditions. We must declare our faith not only in a good condition but also in the worst one. To be genuine means does not have any coating for decorative purposes. To be genuine means having integrity and always showing the same thing before all persons and in all conditions. Jesus warn the Pharisees who like to behave hypocrisy. Heaven is the place for the pure one. Blessed are the pure in heart for they will see God Mt.5:8.
<<3>> Tribulations produces perseverance, character, and hope Rom5:3-5
Apostle Paul encourage us to glory in every tribulation knowing that tribulations produce perseverance, and perseverance produces character, and then character will produce hope. No one able to say having perseverance unless the various tribulations already happen in their life. Perseverance means being constant and always having patience. Perseverance means a divine strength to always show a godly character in every trouble we may have. Tribulations will transform our weakness to strength. Tribulations works as an exercise to the muscle of our spirit so we can have a bigger and stronger muscle to face any problem.
It is important to learn from the Thessalonians’ people how all that persecutions and tribulations made their faith grows exceedingly and their love abound toward each other. They didn’t let all their problem sink them down as they set their eyes in the promise of God, that He will come again in the glorious day and set them free from all tribulations they ever had in their life.
THE GLORIOUS DAY, THE REAL RELIEF
Jesus ascended to the heaven and He promised us to come back again, bring us up together with Him for eternity Acts.1:11. His second coming could be a glorious day and also the day of terror! God will repay everlasting tribulation for those who previously troubled us, and God also give a real rest for us who are troubled. The flaming fire will be happened for those who don’t know God, for those who don’t obey the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, for those who choose to love this world rather than keep their faith. These one will be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power 2Thes.1:6-10.
Let’s choose for real relief rather then that everlasting destruction. Let’s understand that it is better to suffer in our flesh right now rather than having everlasting tribulation in the flaming fire. God already prepare the real relief for everyone who want to obey to His words. God wants us to have the real rest together with Him in the eternity.
This world would not accept our faith, but Jesus already prepared His house to receive us to Himself Jn.14:1-4. This world will make us cry, but God will wipe away every tear from our eyes Rev.21:4. This world want to make us mourn, but Jesus is there and ready to comfort us Mt.5:4. This world want to persecute our faith, but the time will come when we receive the great reward in heaven and have a real relief for all everlasting Mt.5:10-12.
There is a real relief in Kingdom of Heaven. Let’s set our eyes upon His promises and never be dismayed for all trouble we may have in this life. God is able to help and protect us against all that persecutions and tribulations. God numbers all our suffering and even He put our tears into His bottle, He records everything in His book. He is able to keep our feet from falling so we can walk before God in the light of the living for everlasting Ps.56:8-13.
Let’s pray together so God will count us worthy of this great calling and we are able to fulfil all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power, so His name may be glorified 2Thes.1:11-12. AMEN.