Giving up is an easy thing to do when you're under pressure. In fact, for many of us, we become convinced that it is God; convinced that it was the will of the Lord for us to give up and quit, especially after we have fought for a while. There are some immediate benefits that we gain by giving up: We get rid of the pressure; We don't have to deal with the test anymore; It feels like God has given us relief from our pain; It's just outright easier; There is a short-lived peace that you quickly obtain; You are free to put your energy into something that seems like it's better; and It gives the impression of moving forward.
However, we all need to understand that nothing happens to us unless God allows it. Scripture says. "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it" (1 Corinthians 10:13). Note that in scripture, escaping the temptation is not quitting (unless you're practicing sin), but it is bearing up under a burden. Why? Because this is one of the many ways that God has chosen to strengthen our faith. There are two ways to come out of a trial. The first one is to give up. The second one is to bear up. Both routes out end in the word up, and they both will seem like they are taken you in an upward motion. The truth is that one is deceptive; it's a lie and won't lead you up and out...it could just take you out.
It has been my experience that when I have chosen the first way out that I usually find myself right back in the midst of the same set of circumstances a little later on. But when God brings me out, it means that I have learned the lesson of faith that the Holy Spirit was teaching me and my faith is ready to move UP to the next level. Consider what I have said and may the Lord give you wisdom.
Why would God sow seeds of discord when he has declared that it is one of the 7 things that He really hates? When two opposing sides are at war with each other they both strive to not only create unity in their own camp, but to sow seeds of discord and confusion in the camp of the enemy. We see this strategy in spiritual warfare: the continuous battle between God and satan. The devil is not alone in employing the use of discord. God himself has made use of this tactic.
An obvious example of this would be the confusion of tongues at the Towel of Babel. Genesis 11 describes how these people tried to increase their unity; which would make them less vulnerable and less dependent on God. Satan was the instigator of this scheme, but to stop him God turned their unity into confusion. In the words God spoke at that time, I think that it is remarkable to see the strategic value God attaches to unity. In verse 6, "The Lord said, Behold the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do." He says, ..."let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech." We also find many other biblical instances of God bringing confusion among those who tried to frustrate His plans. His strategy has been to curtail His adversary's strength by sowing seeds of discord among people who are under satan's power.
Along with this tactic of confusion, we also see in the Bible how God seeks to unite His own people. In contrast to the incident at Babel, when people no longer understood each other and were dispersed in all directions, Pentecost (in Acts 2) was a day when people from many nations came closer to each other because the Holy Spirit enabled the Apostles to speak to them in their own language. In the New Testament, our unity as Christians is strongly linked to the Holy Spirit. In Ephesians 4:3, the Apostle Paul says that we must keep the unity of the Spirit, and reach unity in the faith (verse 13). Our unity in the Spirit is a fact to be kept while our unity in the Faith is a calling to be reached. If our unity in the Spirit is indeed a fact and He, Holy Spirit, works for our unity, why is there so much discord among believers especially in regard to our views about the Holy Spirit? There are plenty of people who are working together in unity, but they are not working together in the unity concerning the things of God. They are working together in unity to accomplish the things of satan.
Pastor Earl Goings shares his thoughts on everyday concerns.
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