This is a direct transcript of a teaching that was presented via video. Due to the fact that we often speak differently than we write, the written text may not flow and/or sound strange in some places. There may also be grammatical errors and unintended mistakes. It is encouraged that you to watch the video to complement this written transcript.
We are ready to begin our study portion for today’s broadcast, and the topic is TESTS, TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS. Often compared to fire in scripture. We all know what fire does, especially to metals; fire removes the impurities from the silver and gold. But we also know fire can destroy. And whether or not the fiery trials cause us to be destroyed or refined depends upon whether we are focusing on the temporal things of this world or the eternal things that we might be His jewels, His treasure, useful for His service in beautifying in glory.
Our very first text we’re going to look at in this topic is from First Peter and chapter 4 Verse 12: Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Messiah’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.
So, about the last thing most people think about during trials is to take a moment and what? – rejoice. Now, I’ve seen people rejoice whenever things are going good, when life is going great, shouting hallelujah, but when things are going not so great, and there’s difficult times happening, all of a sudden, the praise is no longer coming forth from their lips. All of a sudden, the focus is not on His goodness, and His blessing and all the things that He has done for us, and all the wondrous things that He is doing for us. Instead, it’s-Oh, we’re going through this, we’re going through that, we’re going through this, and this, and this, and this. We’re called even in these moments to rejoice. In fact, rejoice for what reason? – to the extent that you partake of Messiah’s sufferings.
Now, particularly reasons to rejoice is whenever someone is persecuting us or speaking ill and bad of us because we are choosing to follow our Savior and do what He asks us to do. Because then when His glory is revealed, we may also be glad with exceeding joy because we have this hope that dwells in us. You see, if we are suffering for our own mistakes, if we’re suffering for our own errors, our own sins, it’s not so much to go-Oh wow, I’ve got, you know-I’m just going through all this persecution right now. That’s not really what is happening-but what we need to think about is what are our priorities. What is getting our attention in life-what’s getting our attention?
Well, once a year, we see that Yahweh has commanded Israel to dwell in booths for seven days-seven days-dwell in booths. ‘That your generations may know that I made the children of Israel dwell in booths when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am Yahweh your Elohim.’”- or Mighty One, commonly translated God. So, Moses declared to the children of Israel the feasts of Yahweh. Okay, so He wanted the children of Israel-once a year to go and dwell in these temporary structures for seven days. Why is that? – so that they may know that Yahweh made the children of Israel dwell in booths when He brought them out of the land of Egypt.
Now, I want you to know something-we are all coming out of Egypt-spiritually. Spiritually speaking, we are all coming out of our own Egypt-out of the land of bondage and into-our journey going toward the promised land. And we need to remember that everything that’s around us is all temporary. Our houses are temporary, the trees around you; everything you see around you is all temporary.
In fact, the body that Yahweh gave you is temporary; it’s a temporary structure. And so, Yahweh had the children of Israel dwelling in these temporary structures for seven days-I think representing a 7000-year time period in which Yahweh would give man temporary structure, being his mortal flesh. And, well, we’re on this journey toward the promised land and, like the children of Israel, we need to see ourselves this way-that the life we have in this age now is not where we put our hope. It’s not where we’re putting our stock in what happens here and now. It is looking toward the future that is going to get us through the present.
Think about the time right after Yahweh delivered the children of Israel out of this Red Sea. And they were brought through and the sea parted, and they had a time of great rejoicing, right? And Miriam’s just singing to Yahweh-how He’s triumphed gloriously, He’s caused the horse and rider to be thrown into the sea, and then right after that, something happened-what was it?
Well, He brought Israel out from the Red Sea, and when they went into the Wilderness of Shur and they went three days in the wilderness and found no water. So, after all this time, He brought them through the sea and the cloud, and all this rejoicing, and all this good time, and all of a sudden, they get to the other side where they wanted to go to get away from the Egyptian army and they realized there isn’t any water here. And then they come to Marah, and I’m sure they probably saw the water, like YES, but then they found out the water’s bitter; couldn’t drink it-awful, awful water. They’re probably rejoicing-He’s provided us the water-HA, HA, HA, YES, YES, YES-come to find out the water’s bitter; you can’t drink it.
So, the people complained against Moshe, saying, “What shall we drink?” So, he cried out to Yahweh, and Yahweh showed him a tree. And when he cast it into the waters, the waters were made sweet. And He made a statute and an ordinance for them. And there He tested them, and said, “If you diligently heed the voice of Yahweh your Elohim-your Mighty One-and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am Yahweh who heals you.”-
So, the lesson here is always diligently heed His voice, keep His commandments, and He promises to be our healer. Then they came to Elim, where there were twelve wells of water and seventy palm trees; so, they camped there by the waters. So right after a time of rejoicing-and this is what I find in my own personal walk-right after a time of great rejoicing and victory-often times; not always, there comes a little test or maybe a major test-and Yahweh wants to know if we’re gonna be faithful to Him and obedient to Him, and you know, remain thankful in the midst of all the suffering or difficulty or trial or test or tribulations.
The apostle Paul actually pointed this out in 1 Corinthians, chapter 10, where he said:
Moreover, brethren, I do not want you to be unaware that our fathers were under the cloud, all passed through the sea, all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, all ate the same spiritual food, All drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Messiah. But with most of them Elohim was not well pleased, for their bodies were scattered in the wilderness. Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted.
And do not become idolaters as were some of them. As it is written, “The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.” Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell; nor let us test Messiah or tempt Messiah, as some them also tempted, and were destroyed by serpents, Nor complain-boy, there’s a big one-don’t even complain about your circumstances-, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer. Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. Therefore, let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.
So, these things are written for our admonition; for instruction for us so that we will not follow those examples. Sometimes we get tested right after our baptism-like they were baptized in the sea, and all of a sudden, tests, trials and tribulations. You know, it’s really when we’re most thankful, rejoicing, and shouting Hallelujah-and we’re so thankful for what our Heavenly Father’s doing in our life that we get tested-why? – Because that’s really when we’re really most able to withstand the test. It really maximizes our ability to say-okay-this test is coming but don’t ever lose thanksgiving for what He’s shown us and what He’s done for us and all the good things that we’ve received. – And these tests-they’re gonna be faithful-there’s gonna be a reason for them. He will make a way of escape, in fact-that we may be able to bear this.
In fact, scripture says: No temptation has overtaken you except that as is common to man; but Elohim is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry. So, whatever temptation we’re going through, whatever test we’re going through, He will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we are able to handle. He will make the way of escape-He will make the way of escape; we just need to look for it-we just need to find it. We need to ask Him to show us where is the way of escape-How do I escape this temptation, this difficulty, this test, this trial?
Deuteronomy Chapter 8, verse 2 says: You shall remember that Yahweh your Elohim led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. So, He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of Yahweh. Think about that for a minute. You do not live because of the food-the physical food that you ate this morning and you ate yesterday, and you ate the day before. You live by every word that proceeds from His mouth. Doesn’t that make His Word important? – Absolutely! It is through which we are able to survive spiritually-we need to have the Word-ongoing-daily-frequently-ongoing-we need the Word. It is our spiritual food.
How many of us could survive if we went-you know, even a week without any food-physical food? – Not very long, right? Well, what’s going to happen if you go a week without any spiritual food that enables you to live spiritually? See, we need that ongoing Word to feed us spiritually-in order for us to survive spiritually. So, don’t ever forget that. If you’re feeling weak, go back to the Word again-go back to praise again-that’s what you need-go back to thanksgiving again for the things He has done for us.
Exodus 16:4-6 says: Yahweh said to Moses, saying “Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you. And the people shall go out and gather a certain quota every day, that I may test them, whether they will walk in My law or not. And it shall be on the sixth day that they shall prepare what they bring in, and it shall be twice as much as they gather daily”. Then Moses and Aaron said to all the children of Israel, “At evening you shall know that Yahweh has brought you out of the land of Egypt.
Then he said to them, “This is what Yahweh has said: ‘Tomorrow is a Sabbath rest, a holy Sabbath to Yahweh. Bake what you will bake today, and boil what you will boil; and lay up for yourselves all that remains, to be kept until morning.’” So, they laid it up until morning, as Moshe commanded; and it did not stink, nor were there any worms in it. Then Moses said, “Eat that today, for today is a Sabbath to Yahweh; today you will not find it in the field.
“Six days you shall gather it, but on the seventh day, which is the Sabbath, there will be none.” Now it happened that some of the people went out on the seventh day to gather, but they found none. And Yahweh said to Moses, “How long do you refuse to keep My commandments and My laws?
“See! For Yahweh has given you the Sabbath; therefore, He gives you on the sixth day bread for two days. Let every man remain in his place; let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.” So, the people rested on the seventh day.
They had a hearing problem, didn’t they? Well, I’ll tell you, He’s still testing people on this fourth commandment today. The commandments haven’t gone away. The Ten Commandments are still there and the Sabbath made it, you know #4 on the top 10 list there. So, yes-He is testing us, and He wants to know whether we will keep the Ten Commandments or not. And, so He expects us to have a day of rest, and it’s a specific day of rest; not a day of rest we get to choose. He already chose that day of rest-in fact, when you look at this particular scripture, He caused manna to rain on six days, and on the specific seventh day-in the context of a seven-day week, He caused the manna to cease and expected them all to rest on the same days. He didn’t just say-well, tell you what-if you’re gonna keep the Sabbath on a particular day, then you don’t go out there and gather it. No, He says, I’ve sanctified the seventh day, and I made it holy-you will keep it holy-remember it to keep it holy. So, that’s why I observe the Sabbath on the specific day-the seventh day of the week-commonly called Saturday today. Yes, and the same day I observe is the same day our Savior Himself observed-the seven-day cycle has not been broken since the first century. Deuteronomy chapter 13.
Here’s another test I see a lot. “If there arises among you a prophet or a dreamer of dreams, and he gives you a sign or a wonder, “and the sign or wonder comes to pass, of which he spoke to you, saying ‘Let us go after other gods’—which you have not known—‘and let us serve them,’ “you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for Yahweh your Elohim is testing you to-see-to know whether you love Yahweh your Elohim with all your heart and with all your soul. Here is the most important commandment in the Bible, right here. To love Yahweh with all of your heart and with all of your soul. And Yahweh wants to know whether that’s really true-do you really love Him? By allowing a false prophet to come and say-Hey let’s go disobey the commands, and even give you a sign and a wonder to prove that they’re truly a prophet. He says you don’t listen to that man-I don’t care what signs and wonders he does. If he’s telling you to disobey the scriptures, you do not listen to him-because Yahweh wants to know-do you really love Him-do you really love Him with all your heart and with all your soul. You have to because He loves you that way. He loves you with everything-Yahushua-He poured out His life on the tree for us-He gave everything He had up to His own life; there was nothing more to give. Can’t we say-you know what-He loves me that way, and serving me, and blessing me, and giving me eternal life-I ought to love Him that way too-and give up my own life and say-you know what-Yahweh you’re first in my life. That’s what He wants to know.
You shall walk after Yahweh your Elohim and fear Him, and keep His commandments and obey His voice, and you shall serve Him and hold fast to Him. – that’s the evidence that you truly love Him. Lots of people say they love Him, but not everybody really obeys His voice or are even willing to, right? But that prophet or that dreamer of dreams shall be put to death, because he has spoken in order to turn you away from Yahweh your Elohim, who brought you out of the land of Egypt and redeemed you from the house of bondage, to entice you from the way in which Yahweh your Elohim commanded you to walk. So, you shall put away the evil from your midst.
So, there’s a big correlation in our own life today; there are lots of people who are telling you-oh, it’s okay-you can disobey that particular commandment over there-that’s from the old Israelite days, you know-don’t worry about that-we’re New Testament believers now, we do things different. I don’t think so. I don’t believe that we necessarily do everything different. I think He is the same yesterday, today and forever. Sin’s still transgression of the law; it’s still instruction on how to love. So, beware of those who may be coming along saying-well, you know-you don’t have to do that commandment anymore. Isn’t that the lie that Eve was told? – Oh, has Elohim really said that-you won’t die-you’ll be alright-don’t believe it.
You may be getting tested. Judges, chapter 3, verses 1-3: Now these are the nations which Yahweh left, that He might test Israel by them, that is, all who had not known any of the wars in Canaan (this was only so that the generations of the children of Israel might be taught to know war, at least those who had not formerly known it), namely, five lords of the Philistines, all the Canaanites, the Sidonians, and the Hivites who dwelt in Mount Lebanon, from Mount Baal Hermon to the entrance of Hamath. And they were left, that He might test Israel by them, to know whether they would obey the commandments of Yahweh, which He had command their fathers by the hand of Moses.
Once again, He wants to know-is your love really, really sincere-is it the real deal or are you just playing? He wants to know, and so sometimes He’ll allow tests in our life to see whether or not we’re going to cleave to following our Savior’s example and obey those commandments or whether we’re just gonna walk away from them. Job was a man who was tremendously tested-a very righteous man, but also very much tested. I mean listen to him.
He says: When I say, ‘My bed will comfort me, my couch will ease my complaint, then you scare me with dreams and terrify me with visions, so that my soul chooses strangling and death rather than my body. I loathe my life; I would not live forever. Let me alone, for my days are but a breath.
What is man, that You should exalt him, that You should set Your heart on him, that You should visit him every morning, and test him every moment? How long? Will You not look away from me, and let me alone till I swallow my saliva? Have I sinned? What have I done to You, O watcher of men? Why have You set me as Your target, so that I am a burden to myself?
Why do You not pardon my transgression, and take away my iniquity? For now, I will lie down in the dust, and You will seek me diligently, but I will no longer be. Many a man wanted to know the answer to one question-why?
And another question-how long? – and have I sinned? He didn’t understand why. Why is he going through this? As righteous as Job was, he was still tested. Job wanted to know why, but we have to realize Yahweh is on the throne and He knows all the reasons-none of which-some of which we can’t understand. Try to explain to an ant how a computer works.
I mean Yahweh’s intelligence is so far above ours-His Understanding-He knows the hearts of all men-He knows our hearts. He knows maybe we need this test or we’re gonna fall away. We’re gonna be so impressed by the world, we’re gonna fall away. And so, we can rejoice no matter what the test might be. And the truth is-if the only thing our Heavenly Father ever did for us was grant us eternal life in Messiah-can we say that’s enough for me? Can we say that? I hope we can-we need to-because we don’t deserve even that-the truth be told.
Yahweh is in His holy temple, Yahweh’s throne is in heaven; His eyes behold, His eyelids test the sons of men. Yahweh tests the righteous, but the wicked and the one who loves violence His soul hates.
The reason why we have tests is because it’s just a matter of fact-if you’re a righteous man-you’re gonna be tested-you’re gonna be tested.
Even the apostles. It says: when they had preached the good news, the gospel to that city and made many disciples, they returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch, strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of Elohim.
Testing is a part of our walk; it’s what we signed up for. How many people do you know- they’ll sign up for the military or to be an athlete and play professional sports? You want to talk about tests, trials, and tribulations. Or go through eight years of grueling work-blood, sweat and tears of college so they can have that “Dr.” name in front of their name. We have tremendous examples in this world of people saying-I’m gonna go through this difficult time, and they’ll sign up for the military-knowing they’re gonna go through boot camp-knowing they’re gonna go through some difficult trials, and tests and tribulations, so they can have their character refined-like okay-bring it on.
There was an ad in the paper- a guy was a military recruiter, and he said-We’re looking for just a few men who are willing to endure extreme cold up in the mountains-learn how to survive it-go through tremendous physical endurance-emotional testing-who’s willing to join us? And he got more response from that than he ever got from-Hey, come join the military. It was like the challenge now was set before men, and they’re like-okay-I wanna see if I can do this-okay? So, here we are-we’ve enlisted in the heavenly army, and yes-we’re gonna go through boot camp; our life is boot camp, and we’re gonna go through tests, and trials, and tribulations-and we’re gonna have to go fight wars, but Yahweh’s not looking for a few good men; He’s looking for men who are just willing to be used by Him. He’s looking for a few humble men who are willing to say-yes, I want to be refined-I want to be more and more like the savior I love-and the reward is far better than some little shiny gold badge you hang on your shirt pocket. This is heavenly rewards for having manifested the example of the Messiah Yahushua.
So, we must through many tribulations enter the kingdom. Now, Job’s friends did not do this; they did not come to strengthen him. They spent most of their time accusing him of some kind of sin, but the sin that, you know, they kept accusing him of were all false accusations. Here’s the reason why it happened.
Job, chapter 1 verse 8: Yahweh said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears Elohim and shuns evil?” So, Satan answered Yahweh and said, “Does Job fear Elohim for nothing?
“Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all the things that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!” Of course, we know the story. He tested him; it didn’t work out-Satan-what he prophesied did not take place.
So, then he came a second time: Yahweh said to Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, one who fears Elohim and shuns evil? And still he holds fast to his integrity, although you incited Me against him, to destroy him without cause. No reason, he didn’t do anything wrong, right? There was no cause for Yahweh to move against Job, but Yahweh did allow Job to undergo a test. It was discovered Job had just a little bit of self-righteousness and pride.
Then Yahweh answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said: “Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me. Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding.”
Who determined its measurements? Surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? To what were its foundations fastened? Or who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of Elohim shouted for joy? Yahweh did not provide a clear explanation as to why He did what He did-all He did was say this
Then Job answered and said: “I know that you can do everything, and that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You. You asked, ‘Who is this who hides counsel without knowledge?’ Therefore, I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.
Listen, please, and let me speak; You said, ‘I will question you and you shall answer Me.’ “I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You. Therefore, I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.” See, we don’t have to understand all the reasons why; there are some things beyond our abilities, our human brains to even comprehend. And for those who pointed the finger at the Most-High because of the things they went through-in the age to come when He explains all the things that happened, they’re gonna be like Job and say-I abhor myself. But for many, it’ll be too late-damage is done. So, what we need to do is to accept whatever circumstances we’re in.
We have to accept it and realize-I’m not owed an explanation. All I know is, whatever He is allowing in my life; there is a higher purpose. Now, even in the case of Job-I saw a higher purpose in it. It exposed his pride, he had a little bit of pride in his heart, some fear-because in one place he said-the things I greatly feared have come upon me, and so through that he became more refined. And that’s really the goal-I mean our life in this world is just so piddly; so small-such a small amount of time compared to eternity, right? It’s just a tiny sliver of time-a speck on the floor of time. And even our Savior Himself as righteous as He was, also had to endure tests, trials, and tribulations.
It says: though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him. He learned obedience-wasn’t He like obedient from the very beginning? Yes, He was obedient; He never sinned one time ever in His entire life, but when Yahushua was tested, there was no unrighteousness found in Him.
It’s one thing to be obedient in the context of everything going well with you and everything as being great; it’s another to be obedient when everything’s against you. When people are against you, when life seems like it’s against you-He wants to know if you’re going to be loyal to Him. Don’t let the impurity of pride come to the surface and say-well I don’t deserve this-yes you do-you deserve the Lake of Fire-just like everyone of us. And whatever’s going on now-Yahweh’s gonna turn it around for some benefit that you would either understand or not-maybe not even understand this. And there are great moments in Job’s testings I like when he said:
For I know that my Redeemer lives, and He shall stand at last on the earth; and after my skin is destroyed, this I know, that in my flesh I shall see Elohim.
And it was this hope he had that kept him going; he knew one day he would see his maker. He knew that his redeemer lives-because He lives, I can face tomorrow-because He lives all fear is gone-because He lives, I know He holds the future, and my life’s worth the living because He lives. Sang that song last night in our Bible study; has a lot of meaning. We have a reason for hope-we do.
So, it was with our Savior, Yahushua-He looked to the future. It says: Therefore, we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Yahushua, the author and finisher of our faith, who for-what? – the joy He was going through? – No, the joy that was set before Him-He looked to the future, and for that reason, He was able to endure the stauros-the stake, commonly translated cross-despising the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of Elohim. And so there He was-going through all these things-but because of this joy that was set before Him-if you cannot find joy in this present moment today, then look to the joy set before you in the age to come, and you’ll be able to endure it. You’ll realize-you know what? – it’s all temporary. Everything here is all temporary. I’m just in the wilderness right now, but I see the promised land ahead, and I can endure what I’m going through because I see the promised land ahead.
Just as the children of Israel were expected to endure the tests and trials and tribulations because they knew there was a promised land ahead. Consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin. Not one of us have had to die for our faith yet, so, this is nothing. Whatever we’re going through is nothing compared to that.
The truth is we forget-the exhortation-He speaks to us as sons-It says: “My son, do not despise the chastening of Yahweh, nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; for whom Yahweh loves He chastens, – it’s a sign of His love that you get the chastening and scourges every son whom He receives.” If you endure chastening, Elohim deals with you as sons; and daughters for what son is there whom a father does not chasten?
But if you are without chastening, – you’re doing wrong, and nothing happens, then you are illegitimate and not sons. Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live? For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may become partakers of His holiness. So, our promises are so much better.
Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward-what does it yield? – peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. So, the end result is a positive, a net positive in the end. Therefore, strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated, abut rather healed.
So, why do we go through trials? – Chastening-we may be experiencing Yahweh’s response to some kind of thing that we have done that offended Him, and so, I think it’s always best to consider this option first. And say, okay-this negative thing is going on right now-is there something that I have done that brought this about? I probably deserve it, and you know what? – I don’t wanna go through this again so I’m gonna stop doing that thing which wasn’t good.
Another reason – Oh, we’re gonna read a scripture first.
Yahweh is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. He will not always strive with us, nor will he keep his anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, nor punished us according to our iniquities. So, if the truth be told, He did, we’d all be burning in Hell right now. But as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward those who fear Him As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. As a father pities his children, so Yahweh pities those who fear Him. For He knows our frame; He Remembers-He remembers that we are dust. As for man, his days are like grass; as a flower of the field, so he flourishes. Oh, finish it up with-The mercy of Yahweh is from everlasting to everlasting.
So, our lives here are temporary. You know all these people-young people going around, you know, they look great, you know-handsome, beautiful young ladies-handsome young men. It won’t be very long-hair start thinning out, wrinkles start showing up, grayness starts showing, flowers of the field start to fade away. Where are we gonna put our hope? Don’t ever put your hope in the way you look; very bad place to put your hope and be accepted based on how you appear, how you look. Put your hope in Yahweh, and what He is doing your life, and the eternal things He offers you.
Another thing would be learning what’s in our hearts. He wants to see-we’re gonna go through a test to see whether or not we are willing to still cleave to Him; and with all its opposition, whether we’re gonna bow to the pressure that people put on us-family members, friends and listen to them; obey their voice-or if we’re going to obey Yahweh and His voice. And finally, we learn obedience through our sufferings. There are things that come to the surface, and we’re gonna prove that our obedience is true genuine obedience when we are willing to undergo whatever it might be, just as our Savior learned obedience-even though He was right-even though He wasn’t sinning, He learned obedience through suffering. Because, it’s one thing to obey Yahweh when all is well, but then some kind of discomfort is a different story.
Sometimes a lot of discomfort; internal agony we endure as a result of our tribulations are because we feel like somehow, we’ve wronged Yahweh, and He’s trying to get back at us or chasten us, but during those times we tend to-you know-be afraid to pray, but really that’s when we need Him the most; when we should really be praying to Him the most.
There are other times when we feel like we’ve done nothing wrong at all; we don’t understand why we’re going through this particular test, which you may misinterpret as being chastisement. Sometimes people go through trials and they get angry at our Heavenly Father. It doesn’t do any good; it’s only gonna make it worse.
I know of a believer who was-everything was going well, all of a sudden, he woke up and his wife died; his wife was dead-right there in the bed. He had a couple girls, and he got so angry; he said-the only way I can describe it is that Yahweh sinned against me. He had the gall to say that; he fell back into his former lifestyle and homosexuality, and I don’t know if he ever recovered from it. It was sad, very sad to see that happen.
But listen, Yahweh does not promise there will be no difficulties; what He promises is He will be with us. I recently observed a conversation between-it was actually a movie I watched and this unbeliever was saying-you know-why do you trust the Heavenly Father because look at the world the way it is-and all the evil that’s here-and all the difficulty-all the pain and suffering. How can you trust someone who allows that? And the young person answered and said-because I don’t trust the world-don’t trust the world-what do you mean? Well, the world is what brought sin into His otherwise perfect creation, and the reason why all these bad things are happening is because of sin, and I don’t trust the world. The unbeliever responded and said-but when you put your trust in your Heavenly Father, He doesn’t ever promise that these trials will end.
Well, He does, but not yet, and, it’s sort of like this-the way this was described was so golden-it’s like you attend a funeral, and you have a friend there that-you know comforts you-holds your hand-you know-comforts you and is there for you. Your friend cannot bring that person back alive again, but it sure helps to have someone to comfort you in your grief, and that’s what He does promise-is that whatever we’re going through His trials are faithful-He will bring something positive out of it-all things will work out for the good of those that love Him and are called according to His purpose. But sometimes He just wants to get our attention. Listen, this world’s not where it’s at-this is not where you’re gonna put your hope. Listen.
There were times where people who were believers went through tremendous things. Women received their dead raised to life again. And others were tortured, not accepting deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. Others had trial of mockings and scourings, yes, and of chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were tempted, were slain with the sword. The wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, tormented— of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth. And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, Elohim having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us.
So, our tests and trials and tribulations-it’s a part of the package. If you signed up for a nice cushy life as a believer, you’re in for a shock because you just entered the war on the side of the Most-High. And all the world is against Him-get used to it-get used to it. And learn how to rejoice even in tribulations.
And in this, we can greatly rejoice. though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Yahushua Messiah, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.
Beautiful, beautiful words-beautiful words.
For to this you were called, because Messiah also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: “Who committed no sin, nor was deceit found in His mouth.”
Listen- Every trial and tribulation presents an opportunity to do one of two things-to justify ourselves-say I don’t deserve this or to justify Him, and by justifying Him, we actually preach repentance because when we count it all joy, we preach repentance because if we’re willing to rejoice in the midst of suffering-every mention of the faithfulness of Yahweh-we preach repentance-every time we justify Him rather than ourselves, we preach repentance without having to break out a single Bible verse because what we’re saying is-I have hope in the midst of trials-I’m not gonna waiver and disobey when I receive opposition-because He’s real to me-because He is my life.
And so, we preach repentance by rejoicing in our trials and people say to us-why are you happy? – How can you be happy? – How can you find joy in that circumstance? – and you say-well because He’s given me peace even in the middle of the trials-He’s given me peace-because for Him I live-I’m willing to go through this-I’m willing to face opposition and I’m willing to endure tests and trials and tribulations-He did a whole lot more for me-can’t I do something for Him-isn’t he worth it? – Isn’t eternal life worth it? – yes, it is. And so, we preach repentance by counting it all joy in the midst of suffering. How many times we hear how unbelievers are bitter at the Most-High over all the evil and suffering that’s in the world. But we preach repentance-deliverance from the evil and suffering of this world though faith in Messiah Yahushua. That’s the only way we will ever experience a cessation and an ending to the suffering and pain is when we put our trust in our Heavenly Father and His faithfulness-turn away from unrighteousness-receive the Messiah Yahushua-then we will have eternal life abiding in us and we can declare-you know what? – once again, I don’t deserve anything more than the Lake of Fire, so whatever I’m going through right now-it doesn’t matter to me because I’ve got eternal life abiding in me. But-you know what? – if it is because I did something wrong, alright I deserve it-I can accept it-and we preach repentance. And they’ll wonder-where do you get your strength from? – we’ll say because there is an Elohim in Israel.
Our faith is supernatural, superhuman-nothing in the natural world can explain it. All I can tell you is-my brothers and sisters-my redeemer lives, and when my flesh is destroyed, I will see His face.
Our redeemer isn’t asking anything of us He didn’t do Himself. He suffered for us, though we did not deserve it. He did not waiver in His faith, although He faced the biggest challenge that any human being has ever faced and that’s bearing the sin of the entire world-can’t we say-you know what? – I’m willing to show my love for you too-I’m willing to go through difficulty and trial and test and tribulation to show my love for you because You’re worth it. It’s worth it. Can you say that? – Yes, He is worth it.
Oh, Heavenly Father-thank you for your love-thank you for your faithfulness-thank you for the peace that you give in the midst of tribulation. I pray for all those who are going through trials and difficulties-that you Father, will comfort them as only You can-that you will strengthen them as only You can. For truly Yours is the kingdom and power and glory and majesty-all praise honor and worship belongs to You-Yahweh our Mighty One forever and ever. In Yahushua’s great name we pray.