Man of Sorrows

Life is full of sorrows.  How many of us have had our dreams come true only to have this world of sin trip them up and the realized dream become a sorrow that breaks our hearts.  We have to remember that sorrow is a part of life.

Yet man is born to trouble, As the sparks fly upward.  Job 5:7

“Man who is born of woman is of few days and full of trouble.  Job 14:1

We know about the sorrows that wracked Job’s soul which came in the midst his prosperity.  His sorrows make ours seem like momentary and light afflictions.  James encourages us to consider Job when encountering and enduring afflictions of various kinds.

My brethren, take the prophets, who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience.  Indeed we count them blessed who endure.  You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord-that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful.   James 5:10-11

At the end of Job’s suffering the Lord poured out greater blessings upon Job than He had previously bestowed upon him.  As I was thinking about my sorrows and heartaches, the Lord graciously brought to my mind those things that He endured while doing the will of our Father in Heaven on our behalf.  As we remember those sorrows that He endured we will be encouraged knowing that Jesus Christ understands and can minister His grace to us in our hardships.

When we experience the sadness of loved ones not receiving the Lord Jesus Christ and at times mocking us for our faith, we can remember what our Lord Jesus Christ experienced.  His family thought He was crazy, and they mocked Him as He faithfully served His Father in Heaven.

But when His own people heard about this, they went out to lay hold of Him, for they said, “He is out of His mind.” Mark 3:21  

And a multitude was sitting around Him; and they said to Him, “Look, Your mother and Your brothers are outside seeking You.”  But He answered them, saying “Who is My mother and My brothers!  For whoever does the will of God is My brother and My sister and mother.”  Mark 3:32-35

And His brothers therefore said to Him, “Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing.  For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly.  If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.”  For even His brothers did not believe in Him.   John 7:3-5

We can know that Jesus understands our sadness because He experienced the same things, but He also gives us a solution to the sorrow of loved ones rejecting Him and us.  We can find solace and encouragement from other believers who are our brothers and sisters in the faith and therefore beloved.

When we experience the consternation of sinners against ourselves as we share the gospel, we can remember that our Lord Jesus Christ died on the cross because of the hostility of sinners.  

…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 has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.   Hebrews 12:2-3

As we endure the rejection that comes from sharing the gospel let us remember Jesus and the example that He set for us to follow.  We can remember that we will obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ as a result of our salvation.  We too can look forward to everlasting joy as we are faithful to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

But we are bound to give thanks to God always for you, brethren beloved by the Lord, because God from the beginning chose you for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth, to which He called you by our gospel, for the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.  2 Thessalonians 2:13-14

 Let us allow the example of Jesus Christ, His compassion towards us, His supply by the Holy Spirit and the joy that we will share with Him in eternity comfort us in our trials of being rejected by sinners.

When we experience the opposition and hatred of heretics as we stand for the truth, we can remember that our Lord Jesus Christ experienced that same hatred as He withstood false teachers and apostates while He stood for the truth

Pilate therefore said to Him, “Are you a king then?”  Jesus answered, “You say rightly that I am a king.  For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the word, that I should bear witness to the truth.  Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.”  Pilate said to Him, “What is truth?”  And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews, and said to them, “I find no fault in Him at all.  “But you have a custom that I should release someone to you at the Passover.  Do you therefore want me to release to you the King of the Jews?  Then they all cried again, saying, “Not this Man, but Barabbas!”  Now Barabbas was a robber.  John 18:37-40

We can remember that Jesus Christ patiently tried to bring the apostates and false teachers to the truth, to Himself.  He confronted them with their error and pointed them to the Scriptures so they could be saved.

“And the Father Himself, who sent Me has testified of Me.  You have neither heard His voice at any time, nor seen His form.  But you do not have His word abiding in you, because whom He sent, Him you do not believe.  You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.  But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.  I do not receive honor from men.  But I know you, that you do not have the love of God in you.  I have come in My Father’s name, and you do not receive Me; if another comes in his own name him you will receive.  How can you believe, who receive honor from one another, and do not seek the honor that comes from the only God?  Do not think that I shall accuse you to the Father; there is one who accuses you-Moses, in whom you trust.  For if you believed Moses, you would believe me; for he wrote about Me.  But if you do not believe his writing, how will you believe My words?”  John 5:37-47

When we are confronted with error we must refute it with the truth of the Scriptures and pray that the Lord Jesus Christ will open the eyes of the apostates and lead them to the truth.  We can be encouraged by His example and power to change even the hardest hearts, entrusting Him to do His marvelous work as we share the Scriptures with those who are bound in darkness and deluded by the devil.

As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, the greatest trial that we experience in this life is the trial of temptation and sin in our lives.  It is here that Jesus Christ gives us His wonderful all sufficient aid because of Who He is and what He has done for us, in this our greatest trial. 

Therefore, in all things He had to be made like his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.  For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.  Hebrews 2:17-18

For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.  Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.  Hebrews 4:15-16

Jesus Christ truly is our victory and sufficiency in all of life.  He is the One Who gives us aid no matter what trial or difficulty we face.  We can be encouraged and strengthened in our trials as we look to Him and receive the godly instruction for our difficulties that He has preserved for us in His Word the Bible.  In all of our sorrows let us trust the Man of sorrows who knows and understands all of our difficulties and succors us with His wonderful grace and love.  What a glorious Savior!

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