Taking Part in Christ’s Suffering

1 Peter 4:13  but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.”

One of the things that Jesus guaranteed before He left the earth was that we would have to go through tribulation (John 16:33). However Jesus didn’t stop at telling us that we would go through tribulation, He went on to say “but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world?” As believers we need not focus on the first part of John 16:33 because it is daily evident, our focus needs to be on the second part that talks about your victory. Jesus’ victory was imputed to your account, therefore your status as a believer is one of an overcommer.

Many seem to want to identify with suffering rather than victory and they cite1 Peter 4:13, but this Scripture tells us to rejoice as we participate in the sufferings of Christ that His glory may be revealed. Many misunderstand this Scripture and think that they must suffer in the same likeness of Christ in order to be counted worthy. This is wrong thinking! There are two kinds of suffering the Bible highlights. Suffering for the sake of righteousness (1 Pet.3:14, Matt.5:10) and suffering under the system of the world which is controlled by the devil (1 John 5:19). You are permitted to suffer for the sake of righteousness. This is the persecution you face because you take a stand for Christ.

You cannot suffer like Christ suffered. His sufferings were once and for all. You cannot pay the price for salvation of humanity, and you cannot pay the price for sickness and diseases, and poverty. All of these Christ suffered for but He triumphed over them so you would not have to suffer them. Because of this you shouldn’t have to suffer under the tribulation of the world. Your victory is in faith! 1 John 5:4 says that whatever is born of God is an overcommer. If you are born-again, then you were born of God, and that makes you an overcommer!

Your part in Christ’s suffering in the world is to maintain His victory in your life. Your part in His suffering for sin is to live a holy life despite the pressures and temptations of the world. Your part in His suffering for sickness and disease is to stay healed by faith despite the pressure to accept medical conditions as normal. Your part in His suffering for poverty is to stay wealthy by faith despite the talk economic recession. Recognize your part today as victory because of Christ’s suffering and continually engage your faith despite all odds to remain an overcommer!

Scriptures to Meditate: 1 John 5:4, John 16:33, 2 Cor.2:14, 1 Cor.15:57, Rom.8:18

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