we can't - god won't
Before you read anything below, can you guess what it is that we cannot do and God will not do?
The answer is… (did you make your guess, or are you just reading ahead????)
Better to say, an answer is (because there may be more than one thing like this).
God does not force us to become the men and women He desires us to be.
Think about it in light of Scripture.
God wants all people to be saved.
2 Peter 3:9 NKJV The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
1 Timothy 2:3–4 NKJV 3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
We know everyone is not saved, because Jesus told us about a man who died and went to hell. So, if God WANTS everyone to be saved, why are some not saved?
John 3:16–18 NKJV 16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
Jesus said that (even though God wants everyone to be saved,) God will not save those who do not believe in the name of His Son.
The same thing is true concerning our growth in Christ. Growing to be like the Lord Jesus is called sanctification. This is God´s will for us.
1 Thessalonians 4:3 NKJV For this is the will of God, your sanctification: …
But God will not force us to grow. He gives us opportunity. He empowers our growth, but He will not do it if we refuse. He will not force it upon us.
A whole lot of Christians are walking through difficult days right now, but not everybody is growing in the Lord because of it. Some are enduring the pain, but profiting nothing!
We don´t want to be like that, do we? If we have to go through the difficulty, if we have to endure the pain, do we not want to be the better because of it? I believe we do. I do!
We have spent a couple of weeks looking at why the Lord allows these difficult times and what His goals for us in times of trouble could be, all according to the Scripture, revealing Heaven´s perspective.
Today we are going to begin to look at it from a more earthly perspective, from our perspective. We are going to look at difficulties in a very practical way and ask, “What do I do when trouble comes?”
In doing so, we are not going to forsake what the Word of God has taught us concerning God’s goals in our difficulty. So as we seek the answer to what to do, the question becomes How do we cooperate with God’s purposes? Let´s start our consideration (and end today´s blog) thinking about two Scriptures.
2 Corinthians 2:14-16 NKJV 14 Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. 15 For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. 16 To the one we are the aroma of death leading to death, and to the other the aroma of life leading to life. And who is sufficient for these things?
2 Corinthians 3:4-6 NKJV 4 And we have such trust through Christ toward God. 5 Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God, 6 who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
We pick up here tomorrow with step number one of What To Do When Trouble Comes.
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