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Blessed in times of adversities

For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil. 1 Peter 3:17 CSB

Peter once again reiterates basic concept concerning suffering. He continues to extol the virtue of enduring during undeserved suffering. From verse 13, Peter posed the question, "Who then will harm you if you are devoted to what is good?" From the verse that followed from the past week, we saw that there may be times when Christians will be persecuted for their belief in the Lord Jesus to advance the gospel. This same message can be seen previously as well in 1 Peter 2:15, 19, “For it is God’s will that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good...For it brings favor if, because of a consciousness of God, someone endures grief from suffering unjustly.” In light of these passages, Christians should realize that throughout the suffering that we endure, God is in control of every situation. We may struggle to accept that the suffering one may be going through, due to the pursuit of what is right, is all by God's design. This is what Peter is emphasizing from the text: “For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.” This is very evident in the life of Job, who lost his wealth, his physical health, and his children. The trials he had been through were due to the adversary's challenge to God that Job would turn his back on Him. But we read in Job 1:22, that this was not the case: "In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing." The choice to do what is right, at times, may seem more difficult than doing what is against the commands of the Lord. Yet, we see in this verse, that it is "better to suffer for doing good." Christ suffered as well, and if you are a follower of Jesus, you too will suffer at times for your beliefs. We can see this written by Paul while in prison, in Philippians 1:29, "For it has been granted to you on Christ’s behalf not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him." Followers of Christ are called to be obedient to Him even in the midst of suffering. Colossians 3:17 should be the work attitude of all believers, knowing that suffering will come: "And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him." Though it may not appear immediately that there is a blessing we receive during times of difficulties, yet this is what God wants us to realize. “But even if you should suffer for righteousness, you are blessed” (1 Peter 3:14).


Isaac De Guzman


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