Summary: We suffer and are sustained just as Christ
March 11, 2012
You can listen to this sermon here.
For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake (Phil. 1:29).
Christ Jesus lived a life of sorrow and grief while on this earth.
When Christ Jesus preached His gospel to his audiences, they more often than not hated Him, sought to stone Him, toss Him off of a cliff, and ultimately had Him put to death.
He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief (Is. 53:3).
But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause (Jn. 15:25).
And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath, And rose up, and thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill whereon their city was built, that they might cast him down headlong (Lk 4:28-29)
We can’t expect otherwise.
If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you (Jn. 15:18).
And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against [their] parents, and cause them to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all [men] for my name's sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved. But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another: for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come. The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord. It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household? (Matt. 10:21-25).
God the Father sustained Christ during His incarnation by His presence, promises, works, and words.
Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles (Is. 42:1).
And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him (Jn. 8:29).
Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works (Jn. 14:10).
We can expect the same.
Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee (Heb. 13:5).
Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ (Phil. 1:6).
Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world (I Jn. 4:17).
Christ’s joy was NOT earthly joy.
He groaned within Himself. He wept. He lived under stress. He had no certain dwelling place. He was angry. He felt all of the feelings that we feel except those arising out of our sinful nature.
Christ’s joy was His union with His Father and the knowledge of His Father’s faithfulness to Him in all things. Christ knew that he always did those things that pleased the Father. Christ’s bread was to do the will of Him Who sent Him. His joy was in the knowledge of the inheritance that He would gain through His death, burial and resurrection and share with His brethren.
Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God (Heb. 12:2).
Therefore, it was not this earth nor the things of this earth that brought joy to Jesus Christ, but the promise of His Father to reward Him throughout the ages to come.
The same is true for us.
Therefore seeing we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we faint not (II Cor. 4:2).
Though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day (II Cor. 4:16).
And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not (Gal 6:9).
Wherefore I desire that ye faint not at my tribulations for you, which is your glory (Eph. 3:13).
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 2Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. 4Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin. 5And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: 6For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. 7If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? 8But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. 9Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? 10For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness. 11Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. 12Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees; 13And make straight paths for your feet, lest that which is lame be turned out of the way; but let it rather be healed. 14Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: 15Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled; 16Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, as Esau, who for one morsel of meat sold his birthright. 17For ye know how that afterward, when he would have inherited the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, though he sought it carefully with tears. 18For ye are not come unto the mount that might be touched, and that burned with fire, nor unto blackness, and darkness, and tempest, 19And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words; which voice they that heard intreated that the word should not be spoken to them any more: 20(For they could not endure that which was commanded, And if so much as a beast touch the mountain, it shall be stoned, or thrust through with a dart: 21And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, I exceedingly fear and quake:) 22But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, 23To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, 24And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel. 25See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven: 26Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven. 27And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: 29For our God is a consuming fire Heb 12:1-29).