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Longsuffering: Bitter Is the Cup that Leads to Salvation

The act of enduring mental, physical or emotional discomfort or difficulty for a prolonged period of time with patience and spiritual integrity.
The endurance of insult, abuse or mistreatment without waver from the truth.
Not easily provoked.

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Longsuffering: Bitter Is the Cup that Leads to Salvation

  1. 1. 2-29-20 Longsuffering Bitter is the Cup that Leads to Salvation
  2. 2. INTRODUCTION ✤ “When the tempest rages I shall not be moved. When my cross is heavy I shall not be moved.” (I Shall Not be Moved) ✤ “Must Jesus bear the cross alone and all the world go free. No there’s a cross for everyone and there’s a cross for me” (Praise to the Father) ✤ “I’ll take now the cross of Christ and later the tree of life. ‘Cause I’m working hard for the Lord.” (I’m Working Hard for the Lord)
  3. 3. INTRODUCTION ✤ Sound familiar? These are just a few excerpts from songs we sing in church and they embody what it means to be longsuffering. ✤ Brothers and sisters we must possess the fruit of the spirit, longsuffering, as we endeavor to walk through the strait gate towards eternal life. ✤ Longsuffering is mentioned 17 times in the Bible and 4 times in the apocrypha so lets define it.
  4. 4. LONGSUFFERING DEFINED ✤ The act of enduring mental, physical or emotional discomfort or difficulty for a prolonged period of time with patience and spiritual integrity. ✤ The endurance of insult, abuse or mistreatment without waver from the truth. ✤ Not easily provoked.
  5. 5. CHRIS OUR EXAMPLE ✤ Christ is our living testament of what it means to be longsuffering. He walked in the flesh as we do. ✤ He experienced the same emotions as us (anger, sorrow and fear) as evident in these scriptures: (Matthew 21: 12-13, St. John 11: 32-35 and Luke 22: 40-44) ✤ He was subjected to trials, persecutions and temptations. ✤ Through it all, He endured until the end, without sin, gaining victory for us all.
  6. 6. OURTESTIMONY ✤ We too have a testimony, a cup that we must drink. ✤ It starts bitter. We must pick up our cross. ✤ As you continue to grow in the Lord, your faith is going to be tried. The devil will stop at nothing to cause you to fail. This is where perseverance and endurance comes in. You have to fight every single day. ✤ There will be times that you grow weary, and mourn for the trials you face in life but we can never throw our hands up and let go of the truth.
  7. 7. STRENGTHTHROUGH WEAKNESS ✤ Now you may wonder why me? Why am I going through this? Remember these words from Brother Paul in (2 Corinthians 12: 7-10)… ✤ “And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong. “
  8. 8. THORN IN OUR SIDE ✤ No one knows exactly what that thorn in the flesh was for Paul. He was not specific but we can still relate. Can we not? ✤ We all have thorns in our flesh, whether it be emotional, mental or physical. Nor may it be God’s will to remove this thorn from you while you remain on this earth. ✤ Through our ailments we learn to call on God and lean upon Him. If everything in life were easy, then we would take for granted the word of God and all that He does for us. ✤ The higher the mountain you climb, the stronger you become.
  9. 9. JOBWAS LONGSUFFERING ✤ Another good example of one that was longsuffering was Job. ✤ This was a perfect and upright man. Satan, however, wanted to challenge God and try to prove that Job would betray Him if he lost everything he had. ✤ We know the story. First Satan took away his children, servants and wealth. But Job did not waver instead he said, ✤ “Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD” (Job 1: 21)
  10. 10. JOBWAS LONGSUFFERING ✤ But there was more. Satan attacked his health. ✤ Even still, Job’s faith remained. Then said his wife unto him, ✤ “Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die. But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips,” (Job 2: 9-10) ✤ I find this to be amazing and something I want to work towards spiritually. ✤ I confess, I’m not there yet. But consider all that he went through. None of us have gone through all of these trials at once. A portion of them perhaps. ✤ If Christ did it…..if Job did it, so can we. We can keep going no matter what.
  11. 11. STRAIT GATE ✤ Recall the strait gate I mention earlier. The strait gate is pertinent to being longsuffering. Why? Lets see what it means ✤ Characterized as strict, rigid or exacting ✤ A state of difficulty or distress ✤ A Very narrow passageway
  12. 12. STRAIT GATE ✤ Now consider this scripture in Matthew 7:13-14, ✤ “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” ✤ When we choose God over Satan, we are amongst a small few, a mere remnant in this world. ✤ You see there is no wiggle room or variableness when it comes to the laws of God. We either obey Him as outlined in the 10 commandments and testimonies or we don’t, hence the words strict, rigid or exacting. Recall, “I am the Lord thy God, I change not,” (Malachi 3: 6)
  13. 13. BROADVS NARROW ✤ For people on the broad path, they accept all ways of life, religion and spirituality. There moto is “Whatever makes you happy,” or “Honor the god in you,” etc, etc. ✤ That is why it is so broad because it attracts all kinds of people and most will choose this path. ✤ However, with the strait path, imagine a very narrow passage in which people have to walk in a single file line. ✤ You have to look straight ahead, focusing on the light of Christ. There is no room to turn to the left or right; nor can you look behind. You have to keep walking forward no matter what.
  14. 14. THE STRUGGLE IS REAL ✤ As you continue to walk, Satan will try to send distractions your way. ✤ He will throw fiery darts at you. In fact, you may stumble, fall or become bruised. You know this to be true. ✤ Each of you consider your lives. We all have personal struggles. Sometimes we are overwhelmed and in great distress. ✤ That is indicative of walking through a strait. It will never be easy. It’s not supposed to be. That is why God teaches us to be longsuffering, otherwise, we wouldn’t make it. ✤ But we cannot despair. We must hold onto our hope and fight the good fight just as Christ did and all the other saints who came before us.
  15. 15. LONGSUFFERING TOWARDS OTHERS ✤ We not must also be longsuffering with our loved ones and strangers alike. ✤ Persecutions will come our way. Satan uses people as vessels to attack and hurt you and the natural reaction is to strike back. But this is the flesh talking. ✤ We must be spiritually minded and as so often said, turn the other cheek. ✤ Did not the scripture say we have to bear the infirmities of the weak.
  16. 16. LONGSUFFERING TOWARDS OTHERS ✤ All of us have different personalities, with various strengths and weakness. ✤ Take your children for example, you see their exemplary characteristics but you also see their flaws. ✤ You work hard to raise them in the truth and direct them towards the right path. ✤ But because of sin, they may be disobedient or act out but you still love them right? ✤ You don’t just toss them out of the house eveytime they make a mistake. You don’t throw your hands up and give up on them at a whim. No, of course not.
  17. 17. LONGSUFFERING TOWARDS OTHERS ✤ They are your babies and you love them and you want them to be successful. ✤ Not only your children, but your spouses, siblings, church members etc. ✤ We can’t just give up on each other. We must remain prayerful for each other so that we all overcome and show God’s goodness even if it is not reciprocated. ✤ And always remember that you have weaknesses too. You get on people’s nerves. Lol
  18. 18. GOD IS LONGSUFFERING ✤ More importantly, God is longsuffering towards us. ✤ How many sins have we committed? How many times have we stumbled? ✤ Yet God still sends us His Spirit. He gives us His goodness and mercy. He blesses us and give us everything we need, even when we are acting out. ✤ If the Lord destroyed us immediately after we sin, none of us would be here.
  19. 19. INTHE BEGINNING ✤ You see, the Father decreed from the beginning how many saints would be born in this earth and in which generation they would be (lambs book of life) (Romans 8: 29-30, ✤ No one can change that. ✤ Now when the serpent came into the garden to beguile Adam and Eve, it brought forth the root of sin and death. ✤ However, the Father’s decree still remained.
  20. 20. GOD IS LONGSUFFERING ✤ He loves His children so much, that He sent Christ down to die for our sins and to give us grace, a time period to repent and obey. ✤ Gods hates sin. And generation after generation, the earth becomes more and more corrupt. ✤ It grieves the Lord and He does render judgement upon this world in smaller measures.
  21. 21. GOD IS LONGSUFFERING ✤ However, He is longsuffering towards not just His saints but the wicked as well. ✤ What did it say in the scripture Matthew 5: 45…. ✤ “He maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.” ✤ He has determined that He will not lose one child. ✤ Therefore, He patiently waits and gives us a chance to repent and obey. He teaches us and warns us, giveng us the tools to overcome.
  22. 22. IN CONCLUSION ✤ Think of this earth as a womb. We are currently developing and growing to prepare for our birth into glory. ✤ Each of us our called at different times and mature at different rates. ✤ I am thankful that God has been longsuffering towards me. ✤ We all should be. Let us all learn to be longsuffering, standing firm on the truth no matter what trouble we face. ✤ And let us be longsuffering towards each other, for we are one family in Christ. Amen