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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Peace In The Face Of Adversities: Rejection, Betrayal, Persecution, Sickness, Poverty, and Death

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Peace In The Face Of Adversities: Rejection, Betrayal, Persecution, Sickness, Poverty, and Death   by Greg DeHart

 I am not suggesting that there can be such a thing as a life without adversity. Frankly, I do not believe such a life exists, nor has ever existed since the first man Adam betrayed God and plunged mankind into sin with all of its negative outcomes. However, I am suggesting that through our Lord Jesus Christ one can find complete peace in, and through, the most extreme set of adverse circumstances. This is possible by the power of the Holy Spirit that is at work in the life of a Believer. The Apostle Paul witnessed that this peace is far beyond human ability or even comprehension, when he referred to it as"....peace that passeth all understanding....". (Philippians 4:7 KJV) However, the promise of God to the Christian for peace is not automatic, it requires that the Christian must truly believe, and to that faith add understanding, and then act accordingly. So you see, the peace of God is a cooperation between the Lord and the believing person.

On an occasion very near the time of Christ being separated from His disciples He told them that in the world they were to expect troubles, but in those troubles they were to be of good cheer. In this verse we can find four elements of understanding that when applied will lead to peace. These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. (john 16:33 KJV)

· These things I have spoken unto you..... It is completely unreasonable to expect to experience the peace of God without His word dwelling in you, and in fact, the more richly God's word dwells in us, the richer will be our experience of His peace. Therefore, if we are to know His peace we must put ourselves in a position to continually receive His word, and allow it to have its way in us. We must receive it, and surrender to it, or it can not work for us.

·  ...that in me ye might have peace...We must recognize by the operation of our faith that Jesus alone offers peace. That nothing, no experience, no possession, no human relationship, no anything can bring peace to the human heart expect Jesus. This understanding will cause us to quit looking in all of those places. For peace can be found in Jesus only.

·   In the world ye shall have tribulation... To be successful as a Christian you must understand that while you are in the world you will have troubles. Obviously there are troubles that are universal to everyone, both believing and unbelieving. Yet the Christian who lives godly will also experiences a wide spectrum of problems that are placed unto him/her because of the conviction they have to be salt and light in a dark world. Jesus Himself when on this earth suffered certain trials that are universal to all men, but beyond those trials He endure great contradiction of sinners against Himself, but overcame. So, arm yourself with this knowledge, so that when troubles come you are not surprised and thus overwhelmed, but understand that these trials can bring great gain in reference to the purifying your faith, and the perfecting of godliness in your life. (1 Peter 4:1-2, Hebrews 12:2-3)

·     ...be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. Being of good cheer is a decision based on your faith. You can fall into, or be drug into every sort of despondency, anger, bitterness, complaining, etc., or you can CHOOSE to exercise your faith in the full salvation that Jesus has provided for you, and in the confidence of that faith overcome and stand tall. But let me remind you again. This faith is impossible unless you are proactive in daily, and sometimes even moment by moment allowing God's word to reside richly in you.  You must dwell in Christ, and His word must dwell in you if you wish to experience His peace.

Particular Actions That Promote Peace As Found In Philippians 4:4-9
·         Verse 4: Learn to joy in God everyday, and in every situation.
· Verse 5: Live in a reasonable way, and have reasonable expectations...continually have in mind that this present life is only a prelude to the great life that is to come.
·         Verse 6: Purpose to not be anxious, to not fret. Rather, praise God in all situations. Pray to Him, submitting your petitions, and then wait on Him. Learn to give thanks for every good thing, for even in the worst situations there is always something to we can give thanks to God for if we by faith open our hearts and consider His goodness to us.
·         Verse 7: In this verse is given a promise of a peace that is so rich that it can not be comprehended. Yahweh means for all men to know this peace, but none the less, only those that are faithful to exercise themselves in the principles of faith and godliness that the Bible teaches will realize this peace.
·   Verse 8: These 9 types of thought and action will work to ensure peace:

1.What ever is true
2.What ever is honest
3.What ever is just
4.What ever is pure
5.What ever is lovely
6.What ever is of good report
7.What ever has virtue
8.What ever is praise worthy
9.Mimic what ever thought or action may be found in the lives of those that live successful godly lives. 

You will find examples of these though out the Bible and in the world around you if you will seek them out.

May you by the aide of the Eternal Spirit seek those things that become peace, and may the peace of God become a hallmark in your life. Amen

A Watchman 
Greg DeHart

About the Author  Gregory A. DeHart, the sponsor of http://AnAmericanWatchman.blogspot.com, which is dedicated to speaking of social issues, the preaching of righteousness, and the practical unveiling of how Christ and the Church are illustrated in the man woman relationship (expressly that of marriage) If you have been moved to consider playing apart in this ministry please feel free to contact us. 907-373-0355, or gregoryadehart@yahoo.com.




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