Guide to Bible passages (Luke 22: 47; Acts 7: 54-60; 5: 17-18, 40; John 15: 18-20; and 16: 1-12)
Meaning of suffering
Suffering is a serious feeling of physical or mental pain. It is a state of mind in which we wish that the situation were different. Examples of people who suffer this way are people that are imprisoned, beaten or poor;
those that lack basic things of life such as house, food, and clothes, victims of accidents, and flood disasters.
Examples of people who suffered in the Bible
Jesus, the only begotten Son of God, came into the world, and suffered at his arrest, crucifixion, and death on the cross.
At his arrest, Jesus was arrested, kicked and beaten. He suffered too much pain. Also, at his trial, Jesus was beaten by Pilate’s soldiers and mocked by the Jews. The soldiers made a crown from thorns and put it on his head. He was mocked and called ‘The king of the Jews’.
Jesus was in great pain as he carried his cross to Golgotha. At Calvary, they nailed his feet and hands to the cross. He suffered great pain.
As Jesus was on the cross, the soldiers mocked him and said, ‘If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself’. He was given vinegar to drink. A soldier took a spear and pierced Jesus’ ribs. Blood and water flowed from his ribs. He died in great pain on the cross.
He was appointed as one of the apostles of Jesus Christ. He was accused of speaking against the temple and the law of Moses. He was stoned to death.
Other disciples of Jesus, Paul, Peter, John, etc were arrested and imprisoned several times because they preached the gospel.
Reasons for suffering
People suffer because of lack of love. Man’s wickedness also causes pain and sorrow for others. When people sin against God, they suffer as a result of such sin. If we do not obey God’s words and His laws we will
suffer for it. People also suffer for lack of basic necessities of life such as food, house/shelter, and clothes.
Need for a Christian to suffer as Christ suffered
Christians need to suffer because they are followers of Christ. As Christ suffered, Christians must prepare to suffer like Christ. Christians are not of the world, so they are not loved by the world. Christ suffered because the Jews hated him. Christians are to prepare to suffer for Christ so as to be able to gain eternal glory.
1 God wants us to be thankful to him for allowing Jesus to die for us.
2 We must be ready to suffer, and if necessary, die for the gospel.
3 We must show love and care for other Christians who are suffering.
4 We must not make others suffer.
5 Jesus prayed for those that caused him to suffer. We must pray for those that offend us.
1 Christ suffered for us because of the love he has for us. He suffered at his arrest, trial, crucifixion and death.
2 Christ’s disciples such as Stephen, Paul, Peter and John suffered and died for the sake of the gospel.
3 We must be ready to suffer for the church and for our community.