Rejoice if you can
TEMPTATION’S EFFECT UPON THE JOYFUL CHRISTIAN
1 Peter 1:6
Explanation of verse:
The true Believer in Christ greatly rejoices over the manifold blessings of God & the anticipation of their unfolding.
Yet, the Christian faith is not 24/7 joy.
We are pressed from every side!
We are burdened!
We are tempted and tested!
And yet, not every one of us to the same degree.
I. Joy is the result of faith in Christ.
A. Immediate at the moment of belief, and present in everyday life. Vs.5
B. It is the natural result of true knowledge and understanding.
C. It is one of the fruit of the Spirit. (Gal.5:22)
Here is the Christian’s joy, independent of circumstances, paradoxical to the world. This is why Paul and Silas could sing with lacerated backs. It should be emphasized that this joy is not simply an intellectual anticipation of future possessions but a present appropriation of God’s wealth through the Holy Spirit. Joy is one element in the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22). The Wycliffe Bible Commentary
II. Trials are what we face in this world.
A. They are to the glory of God.
B. They are put upon us for our benefit.
1. To equip us.
2. To Chasten us.
3. To test us.
Surely, this present life is a little while compared to eternity. And then a loving God sees to it that in the midst of the shadows and heartaches and trials, His children have their days of sunshine even in this life. The words “if need be” are hypothetical, not affirmative. That is, they do not state that there is always a need for the dark days, for testing times and difficulties. In some lives there seems to be more need of trials than in others. To those servants of God whom He purposes to use in a larger, greater way, many trials are allowed to come, for “we must be ground between the millstones of suffering before we can be bread for the multitude.” And then, in the case of a saint who is not living close to his Lord, it is necessary to send disciplinary trials to purge his life of sin and draw him into a closer walk with God. (Kenneth S. Wuest)
Conclusion: You should be filled with joy because of Christ and what God has done for you; But if you must suffer temptations, do it without complaining. And if you see a brother or sister going through a particularly difficult trial, comfort them.
Charles F. Pfeiffer and Everett Falconer Harrison, The Wycliffe Bible Commentary : New Testament (Chicago: Moody Press, 1962). 1 Pe 1:6.
Kenneth S. Wuest, Wuest's Word Studies from the Greek New Testament : For the English Reader (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1997, c1984). 1 Pe 1:6.