Friday, March 2, 2012

To You It Has Been Granted...

"Have you considered my servant Job?"
This single divine inquiry set ablaze an inferno of tribulation for Job. The searing flames of righteous Job's trial were ignited to highlight the glory of the All-Sovereign God. Though a severe cost was paid by Job and his family, their flaming circumstances have since served throughout the mellennia to display the glory of the Sovereign God who reigns over and above all circumstances.

Joseph too suffered great pains. This also served the very same purpose, God's glory put on display for all to see. Such displays of the glory of the Lord are costly. Joseph's painful and trying ordeal set in place both the divine provision for his family, and ultimately also four hundred years of the enslavement of the nation of Israel in Egypt. Tremendous suffering was endured by generations of God's people until the time was right for the Lord to unleash a magnificent display of His glory in the mighty and multi-miraculous deliverance of Israel from Egypt.

So also all of humanity is bound to endure an enormously vast array of sufferings. Yet these painful situations and trying circumstances serve to display the glory of our God who reveals Himself in and through them. Our sufferings are not in vain. There is purpose in the midst of this pain. One day all sufferings will cease, but until then we have an opportunity to glorify the Lord on our painful path. This opportunity is unique to this side of heaven, for on the other side the Lord will no longer be glorified through our pain, as it is there that He will be glorified in the eternal removal of it.

For it has been granted to you
that for the sake of Christ
you should not only believe in Him
but also suffer for His sake
- Philippians 1:29

Not only do we among humanity bear the burden of suffering. The Lord Himself also stooped very low to bend beneath the unimaginable weight of divine suffering granting the greatest display of His glory. This side of heaven the most clear revelation of the glory of the Lord is seen in the person and work of Jesus Christ. Divinity became humanity to deliver mankind from bondage to the insanity of worshipping everything but Him.

For in Him
all the fullness of God
was pleased to dwell,and through Him
to reconcile to Himself all things,
whether on earth or in heaven,
making peace by the blood of His cross.- Colossians 1:19-20