Patient in Tribulation

by Scarlett Stough

For the Scripture References and related Bible Study Guide, go to Bible Study Guide: Patient Continuance.

You have troubles. Tribulation or affliction, as the NIV puts it, is a fact of this life. Everyone has some kind of trouble from the richest and most powerful to those considered the least in this world's pecking order. Whatever the religion or system of beliefs, one thing we all have in common is trouble. We Christians are not immune to trouble as much as we would like to be (John 16:33).

Along with Jesus' warning of trouble in this life, he also encouraged his followers to take joy in the fact of his having already defeated this world's system. We look around us and shake our heads. It doesn't look like victory, at least not yet. Our sons and daughters continue to fight, to be wounded and die in this world's wars. We lose our children to murderers. Those actually innocent are still unjustly sentenced; those actually guilty appear to get away with murder and other crimes. We still age; we still fall ill; we still suffer natural disasters and cruelty of man to man.

Where is that victory? Christians are still persecuted, imprisoned and killed for believing Jesus is the Son of God and for proclaiming Jesus is the only way to being delivered from the grave and the just penalty for their sins and rebellion against God.

In the face of all this trouble we are encouraged to continue:

Rejoicing in hope; patient* in tribulation**; continuing instant in prayer;
Romans 12:12 KJV

How do we understand these words of Jesus who said, "I have overcome*** the world" (John 16:33) and make them part of our own overcoming of the world?

  • "…everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God" (1 John 5:4-5.)
  • "They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death" (Revelation 12:11.)
  • 'Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good" (Romans 12:21.)
  • "But he that shall endure* [from the same word translated ‘patient’] unto the end, the same shall be saved" (Matthew 24:13 KJV.)

To summarize, we must believe, be born from above, continue in faith no matter what, practice good in opposition to evil, and stand firm, patient to the end of our life spans or Jesus' return, whichever comes first.

"He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus"
(Revelation 22:20 KJV.)

*5278, hupomeno, to stay under (behind), i.e. remain; fig. to undergo, i.e. bear (trials), have fortitude, persevere:--endure, take patiently, tarry behind, abide, patient, suffer. Hupomeno denotes "to abide under, to bear up courageously."

**2347, thlipsis, pressure (lit. or fig.):--tribulation, affliction, trouble, anguish, persecution, burdened. This word primarily means "a pressing, pressure", anything which burdens the spirit.

***3528 nikao, to subdue (lit. or fig.):--overcome, conquer, prevail, got the victory.

From: The New Strong's Expanded Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, copyright 2001 by Thomas Nelson Publishers

Volume 12 Issue 10 | Notes from Nancy | Women in Christ Commentary | Bible Study Guide | Abundance of the Heart | Exhortation

Current Issue | Archives
Custom Search