VERSE OF THE DAY
Romans 5:3-4 (New Living Translation)
We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.
We can live blissfully and rejoice too knowing that when we run into obstacles and trouble we know trouble arises that helps us develop endurance and endurance gains power strength of character building confidence of hope and salvation
What Does Romans 5:3 Mean? ►
And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance;
As members of the Body of Christ, we have been blessed with every spiritual blessing. Indeed, a thorough study of New Testament Scripture shows that there are hundreds of verses that remind us of who we are in Christ and what God has done for the born-again believer.
We are set apart unto God and we have become kings and priests. We are called to holiness, and we are accepted in the Beloved. We are not of this world but have become a citizen of heaven – and we are sealed by the Spirit of life, Who has set us free from the law of sin and death.
There is not one, specific passage, which lists all the advantages we have received through salvation, but throughout the New Testament, our privileges and position in Christ sparkle like glistening jewels which have been randomly scattered throughout the Word of truth – for all who will take time to study.
Romans chapter 5 however, is one passage that provides a foundational understanding of who we are in Christ. We have been given peace with God by our Lord Jesus Christ and are no longer estranged from Him through sin… for we have been redeemed with a price… the precious blood of Jesus Christ.
It is through faith in Him we have access to God’s amazing grace which enables us to stand fast in this evil day… and causes us to rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Indeed, in Christ we are enabled to approach the throne of grace for mercy to find help in time of need.
In his enthusiasm to share the good news of the gospel of grace, Paul not only reminds us about justification by grace through faith and the hope that we have in Christ, but he adds, “and not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance.”
Paul is not saying that the downside of the Christian life is the fact we must go through difficulties and dangers. He is not suggesting that we simply have to grin and bear the trials and tribulations we go through, as best we can. Paul clearly teaches that we should exalt in our tribulations and rejoice in our sufferings.
Rejoicing in suffering may not seem the normal reaction to trials and tribulations. However, Paul insists they should never be a cause for complaint. He is teaching that suffering for the sake of Christ, is a badge of honour for the saint of God.
We are not called to rejoice because we are suffering. We are to rejoice IN our suffering. We are to maintain an attitude of thanksgiving and praise in the midst of our suffering. We are to rejoice in the Lord, no matter what problems we may be called upon to face.
Paul then explains that tribulation brings about perseverance – while perseverance develops a proven character – and godly character brings about hope.
And our hope in the Lord will never, ever be disappointed because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by means of the indwelling Holy Spirit, Who was given to us the moment we trusted Christ for salvation.
Let us take to heart this exhortation to rejoice in our suffering, for as members of the Body of Christ, we have been blessed with every spiritual blessing – not only in this world, but in the ages to come – praise His holy name.
What does Romans 5:3 mean?
Paul is describing some of the benefits for those who, by faith in Christ, have been justified and made right before God with our sins forgiven. These benefits are only available to believers—the “we” Paul uses here indicates saved Christians, not the entire human race. So far, Paul has shown that we live in a state of being at peace with God forever, no longer in danger of receiving His angry justice for our now-forgiven sin. Also, by faith, we have obtained access to God’s grace and are even now receiving it. Finally, we have joy that comes from having the absolutely sure hope of experiencing the glory of God for eternity.
In this verse, Paul points to a benefit of salvation we experience immediately. For those in Christ, our suffering matters. It counts for something. For those who die without Christ, suffering is merely suffering. It is pain and loss and frustration, resulting in no particular benefit, and coming to no resolution. For those in Christ, however, suffering has a point, since we’re destined for something higher. It accomplishes great good in us, in fact.
Of course, this teaching also implies that Christians still suffer on this side of eternity. Being in Christ does not end our personal, temporary suffering on earth. That suffering does, however, produce something Paul here calls “endurance,” which itself produces other powerful, positive characteristics in us. Endurance is the ability to keep going when we feel like stopping, as long distance runners train themselves to do. In this context, endurance is about our ability to trust God for longer stretches of time and through greater degrees of difficulty. Suffering, in other words, is an opportunity to trust God at a deeper level through harder stuff.
James introduced his letter with this exact idea when he said, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness” (James 1:2–3).
Paul and James both see this reality as reason for rejoicing. They understand “rejoicing” to be a choice we make to declare even our hardest circumstances as God’s good for us, in the sense that He is calling us closer, and to trust in Him more deeply.
Romans 5:1–11 describes the amazing benefits that come with being declared righteous before God by faith in Christ’s death for our sin. God has made peace with us. We stand in His grace, and we rejoice in the sure hope that we will share in His glory. Our suffering brings growth, which leads to even more potent hope. God has proven His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. We are saved from God’s wrath and reconciled to God in Christ.
Romans 5 begins by describing some of the benefits that come with being declared righteous by God because of our faith in Christ. We have peace with God, and we stand in His grace. We rejoice both in the hope of God’s glory and in our temporary suffering. We have hope that will not disappoint, because God has already proved His love for us. Paul then compares the work of Adam in bringing sin and death into the world with the work of Christ in dying for sin in order to offer God’s free gift of grace to all who believe
What Does Romans 5:4 Mean? ►
endurance produces character, and character produces hope.
Because we are already justified, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. And because we have peace with the Father we have gained access, by that faith, into the grace into which we have been established. What a privileged people we are! This enables us to grow in grace, mature in our Christian life, and rejoice in the established hope we have in Jesus.
Not only do the glories of our justification result in peace with God, a firm standing in God’s grace, and a rejoicing hope in Him, but we can allow His peace to reign in our hearts so that we can even exult in our tribulations, knowing the trials of life and the difficulties we endure bring about perseverance which develops strength of character and a solid hope in the Lord.
We have been given all we need for life and godliness, not only in the calm waters of life, but when the tempestuous storm is raging in our face and the mighty waves of doubt and fear are battering at the door.
Man’s natural desire in life is to live in ease and to avoid life’s problems and pain, but Scripture reminds us that only those who face the distresses of life, through His sufficient grace, develop the patient endurance and proven character that is so acceptable to the Lord – which in turn results in a mature faith and a hope that is firmly established in Him.
Throughout the Church age, there have been many Christian men and women who have lived in this way – believers who have rejoiced in their afflictions for the sake of Christ – martyrs who have lived and died as examples for us. The faith in which they stood, enabled them to glory in their tribulation and exult in their afflictions.
As we consider this truth and apply it in our lives, we know that the pressure, affliction, and hardship we may be called upon to face, will produce in us a patient and unswerving endurance, a proven character, and a hope that is rooted and grounded in our Saviour, Jesus Christ.
How we praise and glorify our Heavenly Father for the blessed hope we have in Christ which will never disappoint us, because God’s over-abounding love has been poured in our hearts through the gift of the indwelling Holy Spirit
What are you living to produce in your life? Wealth, fame, status, significance, a legacy? How about character! Isn’t having the character of God our real goal in life? So even in our worst of times, if we can be people of character, then nothing can steal from us our most desired goal, the character of God, given us in Jesus Christ.
Dear Father, please bless me so that I can be strong in difficult times and consistent in holy character. Please give me a heart of courage and compassion so that I can more clearly remind others, at least in some small way, what you are like and what you can do in their lives. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT SUFFERING?
PROBLEM OF EVIL, TODAY’S DIFFICULT PROBLEMS
Suffering is a universal human experience. We all experience it in various ways and to varying degrees, whether through emotional pain, disease, death, natural disaster, or difficult circumstances. What does the Bible say about suffering? Why does a good God allow us to experience such difficulties? Is suffering ever going to come to an end?
After God created everything, the Scriptures say God “saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good” (Genesis 1:31). God initially made a perfect world without pain and suffering. Then the floodgates opened with the first human sins (Genesis 3), and the rest of the pages of the Bible are full of suffering. This is the consistent teaching of Scripture: human sin has broken God’s good world and brought pain and suffering along with it. In fact, Saul of Tarsus (also known as the apostle Paul), a student of Rabbi Gamaliel, wrote that not just humanity suffers the consequences of that first sin, but all creation groans to be freed from the oppression we have brought down on it through our sin (Romans 8:18–22).
So why does God allow suffering? First, a good God allows suffering to remind us that our world is broken because of sin. If he removed all consequences of sin, he would also remove much of our need to seek him for the healing we, and the rest of creation, need. Tikkun Olam (the healing of the world) is something humans can bring about only in limited and incomplete ways; the full realization of Tikkun requires God’s direct action through the Messiah.
Like a good father, God allows us to suffer consequences from our sins so we learn to stop sinning and follow him. Also like a good father, he gives us grace and mercy to find forgiveness for sin, which he has provided through his Messiah (Isaiah 53:5–6). Yeshua has done the work of redemption by dying for our sin; we need to put our faith and trust in what he has done for us to enter into the healing he offers us. The first step toward healing the world is accepting the forgiveness and healing provided through Jesus.
When we put our faith in Jesus, will all our suffering disappear? Not yet. God still has a purpose in suffering to do the ongoing work of change in our hearts and lives to make us people fit for His kingdom. Jacob (James, the half-brother of Yeshua) wrote, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing” (James 1:2–4). God wants to continue to bring healing to our lives, and many times it takes time! He also wants us to be messengers of his desire to bring healing to the lives of others.
King David put it this way: “Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep Your word” (Ps. 119:67). In other words, God used the affliction that David was going through to draw him closer and to help him grow in obedience.
So when does the suffering end? We know much of the suffering will be minimized when Messiah returns and reigns from Jerusalem (Isa. 11:1–9), and ultimately God will remove all suffering and wipe all tears from our eyes (Isaiah 25:8; Revelation 21:3–4). Whether those days are near or far we cannot say. We know each day, it grows closer. Until that time, we need to trust God and draw near to him in the person of Yeshua so we can have the grace we need in the midst of suffering so we might learn the lessons He has for us.
BY JIM FOX
TAGS: ANGUISH, COMFORT, EVIL, GOD, PAIN, PATIENCE, SUFFERING