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4 Reasons God Allows Prolonged Testing, Part 3

Sound of Faith / Sharon Hardy Knotts and R. G. Hardy
The Truth Network Radio
April 25, 2022 8:00 am

4 Reasons God Allows Prolonged Testing, Part 3

Sound of Faith / Sharon Hardy Knotts and R. G. Hardy

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April 25, 2022 8:00 am

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Greetings, friends and new listeners, and welcome to The Sound of Faith.

I'm Sharon Otz, thanking you for being with us today because we know faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. If you've ever been in a time of prolonged testing, today's message is perfect for you. For reasons God allows prolonged testing. God has promised that He is faithful and will not allow us to be tested above what we are able to endure.

Find out why He sometimes allows our test to become protracted in four reasons God allows prolonged testing. So all of these angels have seen this. They have seen that the plan of redemption has prevailed over the plot of Satan to derail it. We're told in Revelations 1 18, He took the keys. Keys mean authority.

Whenever you see keys in the Bible, it means authority. He took the keys of death and hell off of Satan. And He went and unlocked that door. He said, Come on, you're coming with me. Amen. He had already told the thief on the cross when he said, Lord, remember me when you come into your kingdom. Jesus said today, today you're going with me.

You're going to be in paradise. Amen. So that was number two.

Let's go to number three. Why God allows us to go sometimes to extended trials. We learned here it's to show both good and bad angels the plan of God.

Now three to reveal his plan of man's redemption to his good angels and to show them God's power to keep us. Let's turn to First Corinthians Chapter four. Let a man so account of us as of the ministers of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God.

Moreover, it is required in stewards that a man be found faithful. So we are ministers. I'm going to tell you about this Greek word and at first you're probably not going to like it very much. When we think of minister, we think of someone who has a title and a position. They might even have a particular way they dress to let everybody know I'm a minister, but I'm going to tell you what this Greek word here means.

Now in other places in your English Bible, you will see the word minister that is actually from the word Diakon, which we bring it over Deacon, but that's not the word here. The word here is Hoopo-rhetes. Hoopo-rhetes.

Two words. Hoopo means under, under. And ereso, which is what rhetes comes from, means to row. And I'm literally talking about you have oars on a boat and you're rowing, but not just anyone rowing on a boat. Don't think of a little canoe or something. Think of those ships back in that time in the Roman times that would have had a galley below the deck. There was a galley and they would have had up to a hundred men sitting on a little hard bench like this and on each side and they're rowing. And that is what kept the ship moving. And these guys were not treated always in the best way.

They were overworked, worked too long, and sometimes I hate to tell you this, they would let somebody row to the point of exhaustion and sometimes they would kill over dead. Now God doesn't do that cause he's not like the devil, but I want to show you that this particular word, what it meant, it was the lowest Greek word for servant, the lowest one. There's another one for doulos, which means servant. But this servant, even though he was not free to come and go, he was still treated a lot better by the master.

But this is the lowest of the low. And he says, that's what we are. We are the ministers of Christ. And he said, we're stewards of the mysteries of God. Now it seems like a dichotomy here because on the one hand we got this lowest form of servant and now we've got steward. And you know what a steward was? A manager, a superintendent, someone to whom the owner or the proprietor entrusted to manage and oversee his affairs, his house, even his finances.

We could say he was the master's deputy. So in other words, he did not own the house. He didn't own any of the treasures in the house.

He didn't own any of the money in the bank account. None of it was his, but yet he was given this trust. The master had so much trust in him. I can turn over to you the running of my house, the overseeing of my finances. I trust you that number one, you are competent and capable to do a good job so that you know it's not destroyed and I lose everything.

I can trust you that you are not going to be dishonest. See, that's what the word steward is. And Paul was saying that we were given the stewardship over God's mysteries. In other words, over the revelation of the gospel, the word of God, both the gospels of Jesus and then the epistles to the church. Paul said it was his main concern that he had to preserve, protect these revelations and dispense them. He had to get them out. He had to get the truth out that God had entrusted to him to do. And sometimes he was beaten for it, jailed for it. Many things that he suffered.

You can read the catalog of the things that he suffered, beaten with rod and many stripes. He said sometimes with many stripes, he was in shipwrecks. One time he spent a whole day and a half in the sea, but he says, God is entrusted me to get this truth out in this word of God out and whatever the cost is, I'm going to do it because he said the first requirement is that we be found faithful. Now keeping that in mind, keeping in mind that our first requirement, no matter if God's called you to sing, if he's called you to be a soloist, a choir director, a choir member, an instrumentalist, teach Sunday school, whatever God gives you to do, come and sit in this house of God, pay your tithes, whatever God's asked you to do. Number one, be faithful and dropping down to verse nine, you're going to see another good reason why. Because first of all, let me just interject that Jesus said one day he's going to say, well done, thou good and faithful servant.

You've been faithful in the least. Now I'll make you ruler over most. So that's self serving.

That's for your benefit and my benefit. But let's look at verse nine. For I think that God is set forth at us, the apostles last as it were appointed to death. And that's most all the apostles did die a martyr's death. For we are made a spectacle onto the world and to angels and to men.

So what is Paul saying? First of all, let me tell you the word spectacle. The Greek word is theatron. Theatron, we bring it into the English as theater. How many know what happens at the theater?

Especially don't think of now movies. Think of Broadway when you go to see a play in a theater. Amen. And the actors are on stage and they each have their role to play. They have individual roles to play, but all of those roles dovetail with the other actors in that play.

Amen. So Paul was saying, Hey, we're on stage. We're on this great stage that God has given us and we're being observed.

We're being studied to see how we're going to act out our roles in the scenes that were put in in our life. And in the body of Christ, we're being watched for our character, for our faithfulness and our obedience in this great play, if you will, of God's redemption plan. And we're being watched by three groups.

Number one, the world, the word cosmos refers to the universe and the global system. The governments of men are watching the church and watching Christians. Number two, angels.

And we've already been talking extensively about angels and number three, men or humans. You're being watched by your family, by your friends, by your coworkers and your neighbors. You're even being watched by others in the body of Christ. Amen.

But let me zoom in on what we're talking about. Angels are watching us. So when we are persecuted for our faith and we endure it for Christ, they observe the power of God to keep us. See, it's one thing for God to save you and cleanse you of your sins, but now he doesn't take you straight to heaven.

He leaves you down here and now you've got to continue. You've got to strive. Amen.

You've got to press your way. And we know that we come against much obstacles and persecutions. And so now the angels are watching us. Are we going to be faithful? Are we going to press our way?

Strive to enter in for many I say shall try and not be able. Amen. So they're watching us if we're going to endure when we remain faithful to our Lord in spite of the trials and the sufferings and the afflictions. And yes, that awful, awful demonic warfare that sometimes we have to face. The angels are seeing us stand and be true. And they see that even though we were born slaves under the mastery of Satan, we were redeemed by the blood of Jesus Christ. And now we can do something that those angels could not do. They were created perfect.

Amen. They were created perfect and they were in a perfect place of paradise. And they rebelled against God.

Pride came into Lucifer's heart and he rebelled. And then they see us fallen man. They observed when Adam and Eve stood at that tree and ate that forbidden fruit. They observed when they ran and hid and were afraid.

And when God came and said, what have you done? They knew all that went down with them and that serpent. And they knew that we were born fallen and slaves to sin. And then they watched somebody wrote a song and said the angels wept when Jesus hung on the cross. They saw Jesus pay that awful death to redeem us.

And don't you know how curious they are? Don't you know how invested they are to see it succeed? To see the plan of God succeed when they know the awful price that the word of God who became flesh had to pay? They want us to succeed. They want the plan of God to succeed.

Amen. They want us to make it. And they're watching us.

Paul said they're watching us. And when they see that we're faithful and we stand true, they cheer us on. They know that the plan of God is successful. And Satan is defeated. Amen. They see the power of that cross to not only save us, but to keep us. Peter said we are those who are kept by the power of God ready to be revealed in these last times. Amen. So it's extremely relevant too, because if you look at chapter six, verse three, Paul says, know you not that we shall judge angels?

How much more things to pertain to this life. So we're going to judge angels. The angels are watching us. Somebody said, you better watch out and you better not pout.

Sanders is coming to town. No, I'm telling you, the angels are watching us. And here's the good thing. Jude tells us in verses 14 and 15, the Lord is coming with 10,000 of his saints to execute judgment upon all that are ungodly. Now, I already told you about those angels that are down there in Tartar. And the scripture says they're in chains waiting for judgment. Now if you caught what I just read from Jude, then you caught the fact that we're going to have a part in judging them. I don't know about you, but I'm going to be amongst those 10,000 of saints.

When he comes back riding on white horse, I'm going to be. Amen. In that number. And so do you get it?

Wow. We're going to have a part in judging those wicked evil angels that rebelled against God. We're going to be a part of the judgment panel that's going to judge them. Amen. And I'm not talking about the good angels.

I'm talking about the bad angels. So Paul was saying, if we're going to have such an awesome responsibility, how much more should we be able to judge matters in this life and make the right decisions? Amen. Because the angels in heaven are observing our conduct and they see that God allows us to face difficult trials. He doesn't always snatch us out as soon as it gets hard. He doesn't always rescue us when things get tough. He lets us go through it because he's got so much confidence in us that he's going to give us the grace. And when it's too much, he's going to bring us out on time. Amen. So the angels are able, the good angels are able to observe the comparison between the redeemed church of God and the fallen angels that rebelled. How many got that point? I know it's a little different, but did you get it? All right, we're on our last point.

Quickly. The fourth reason why God allows us to go through extended trials is to teach us to never give up. Amen. Second Corinthians chapter four, my two favorite verses in the Bible.

Four, 17 and 18. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal. So he's talking about our light afflictions.

Now to me, that sounds like an oxymoron. Light afflictions. But this word light is only found one other place in your Greek New Testament. And that scripture is where Jesus said in Matthew 11th chapter, he said, come unto me all you that are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn of me for I am meek and lowly in heart and you shall find rest for your souls. Verse 30 for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

There you got it. The word light, same one we just read here. So he's saying that the things that he allows to come to us relatively speaking, which we'll see in one second, our light, the word affliction flips this is found 45 times in your Greek New Testament and every time it's hard. It means pressure, distress, tribulation. Jesus said, John in 1633 in this world, you shall have flips this.

You shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer for I've overcome the world. So we said our light affliction works for us. It's not worthy to be compared because it's working for us a more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. The word weight there actually means that it means something that weighs a lot, something that's very, very heavy. The five times it's in your Greek New Testament, it always means in every other place, very heavy.

Now let's take it. What Paul is saying here, he's saying that the glory that shall be revealed in us is heavy, extremely heavy. We may have once or twice in our Christian life been in a service where the glory of God was so heavy, you almost felt like you couldn't stand up.

I don't think we see it very much, unfortunately, but we know that when the temple of God that Solomon built, when it was dedicated and the priests were getting ready to go in there to offer up what happened, they couldn't even get in the door. The glory of God was so heavy and that's on earth. Now what do you think about the glory that shall be revealed? Amen. The glory that shall be revealed.

Here's how you got to look at it. Light affliction, heavy glory. See your affliction may not seem like to you, but when you compare it to the heavy glory, when you look at the heavy glory that's coming, that's eternal, then in that perspective, your affliction seems light.

Because remember he said they're not only light, but he said they're temporary. Somebody said trouble don't last always. Amen, they're temporary, but the glory that shall be revealed is heavy. And the companion verse to that is Romans 8 17. Paul said, for I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared to the glory that shall be revealed in us. So it's another way of saying these sufferings, they don't have the same weight as the glory that's coming. They don't have the same value as the glory that's coming. Different sufferings do not weigh as much as future glory.

Amen. We put it in that perspective and they're only temporary, but the glory that's coming is eternal. So when the saints go marching in, you know that song. Oh, when the saints go marching in. Well, when they go marching in, all the angels going to have to step on the sidelines.

It could be angels here and angels there. And they're going to say, get ready. The saints are come marching in. Hey, look at the saints.

I see them coming from every nation, every tribe, every tongue, every ethnicity. Here come the saints. Here come those that have been redeemed by the blood of the lamb. Hallelujah. And they are singing a song. Let's listen to the song. Whoa, that's a song we can't sing.

They're singing a song that angels can't sing. We've been redeemed. We've been redeemed by the blood of the lamb. Hallelujah. And they can say the plan of God has been well executed. The devil lost. Amen. And the saints of God have prevailed. So the song says, Oh, I want to be in that number when the saints go marching in. So I got a question for you. Will you be in that number?

Are you going to be in that number when the saints go marching in? Amen. What an insightful word of the Lord for reasons. God allows prolonged testing. God is on record that he is faithful and that he won't allow us to be tested above that which we are able. When we feel that we're at our breaking point, he will make a way of escape, an exit plan, or give us the commensurate grace to stand. I have found four reasons in scripture that explain why sometimes tests are harder and longer. To teach us spiritual warfare, to manifest to angels Satan's utter defeat, to reveal to the faithful angels his plan of redemption, and to teach us to never give up.

We will look back to the pre-creation account at the fall of Lucifer, to the coming of the Redeemer and his delegated victorious authority to his church, to the coming sequel of Satan's fall and the believer's eternal glory. Four reasons God allows prolonged testing can be ordered on CD for a love gift of $10 or more for the radio ministry. And please consider adding extra to help us with mounting postal costs. Request SK218, that's SK218, and send your love gift of $10 or more to Sound of Faith, PO Box 1744, Baltimore, Maryland 21203. Or you can order online at where MP3s are available.

But to order by mail, send your minimum love gift of $10, request SK218, to PO Box 1744, Baltimore, Maryland 21203. And we would appreciate your letting us know the call letters of this radio station. Until next time, this is Sharanat saying, Maranatha. We'll see you next time. We'll see you next time. We'll see you next time. We'll see you next time. We'll see you next time. We'll see you next time. We'll see you next time.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-27 20:05:53 / 2023-04-27 20:14:20 / 8

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