We glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; and patience, experience; and experience, hope; and hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us—Rom. 5: 3-5.
We have need of patience, and that can only be gained by trials. We have need of faith, and that can only be developed by necessities. We have need of experience for our future work, which can be gained only by such experiences as permit us to be touched with a feeling of the infirmities and difficulties and trials of those about us, to whom we shall be ministers and representatives in God's Kingdom. For us, then, the lesson of present experiences is to resist evil, and not with evil, but with good.
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In themselves tribulations are not to be gloried in, but we may glory in them, when they work in us patience; and such perseverance in well-doing is rewarded by God's approval, which, when realized, fills the heart with hope for ultimate victory. Nor is this hope vain, because God delights in giving this victory to those whose hearts are filled with Divine love, a love that is the choice fruit of the holy Spirit given us by God in Christ Jesus.
Parallel passages: Matt. 5: 11; 1Pet. 3: 12-14; 2Cor. 4: 16-18; 7: 4; Heb. 12: 5-13; Jas. 1: 2-4, 12; Phil. 1: 20; 2Tim. 1: 12; 2Cor. 1: 22; Gal. 4: 6; Eph. 1: 13, 14.
Questions: What were this week's experiences along the line of this text? How did I receive them? What did they accomplish for me?
OUR BLESSED HOPE
WHAT though this earthly house of clay
Sink into ruin and decay,
Though health and vigor pass away,
Christ is my life.
What though fond dreams of youth be fled,
The light that shone upon my head
Extinguished and forever dead,
Christ is my light.
What though bright hopes now withered lie,
Like autumn leaves, all sere and dry,
Or meteors vanished from the sky,
Christ is my hope.
What though rude billows round me roll,
His voice the tempest can control;
They ruffle not my tranquil soul,
Christ is my peace.
What though dear friends I once caressed
Within the silent grave now rest,
The valley clods above them pressed,
Christ ever lives.
What though perplexing paths appear,
God's Word, a lamp, makes all things clear;
Onward I pass, nor evil fear,
Christ is my way.
What though the darkness deeper grows,
And foes more active to oppose,
God's truth provides a sweet repose,
Christ shall appear.
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