Hello everybody, and welcome in to episode 141 of the Bible 2021 podcast. We are reading Romans 5 today and our focus is on how we can possible rejoice in suffering. We are a daily 10 minute podcast, where we will dig in to the truth of the Word of God by reading one Bible chapter a day and discussing it. Welcome to new listeners in  Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Sao Paulo, Brazil, Parts Unknown, Russia, Nagaland, India, Salinas, California, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania and Lincoln, Nebraska Thanks for listening!  Our goal is to encourage DAILY Bible reading, so you can jump in at any time and join with us. We want to invite as many people as possible to join us in daily Bible reading, so help spread the word and share the podcast Don’t forget about our web-page, Bible2021.com – contact page, show notes, transcript and more– Click here for our Bible 2021 reading plan\

Romans 5 is a short chapter, but it is absolutely packed with gospelly-goodness. So many giant sized good news statements compressed down to one verse, such as:
  • For while we were still helpless, at the right time, Christ died for the ungodly.  Romans 5:6
  • But God proves his own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 This may be one of the five most important and dense verses in the entire Bible.
  • 12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, in this way death spread to all people, because all sinned. Not an encouraging passage, necessarily, but the Mariana trench in terms of theological depth. Romans 5:12
  • 18 So then, as through one trespass there is condemnation for everyone, so also through one righteous act there is justification leading to life for everyone.  Romans 5:18
  • For just as through one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so also through the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.  Romans 5:19
  • But where sin multiplied, grace multiplied even more  Romans 5:20b

and one more – two verses this time, but so wonderful that they deserve to be read twice: Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. We have also obtained access through him by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Romans 5:1-2


Declared righteous and spotless by faith (not by works), therefore Christians have peace with God – NO WRATH! through Jesus. Not only that, but we have obtained access to God through faith, so we can boldly bring our prayers and requests to Him because of His grace by which we stand. So good!
Let’s read the passage, and then we will talk about the one stupefying, mystifying truth we see in Romans 5 – see if you can spot it while we read.
Here it is: Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. (Romans 5:3-4)
Now, I’m going to be pretty honest with you. About 99.9 percent of the time, I struggle hard with what Paul is talking about here. I never, or almost never, rejoice in my sufferings. I always lament in my sufferings, struggle with my sufferings, and wish I wasn’t suffering. I think that is a genuine sign of some level of immaturity in me, because the Bible makes it pretty clear that suffering is for our good, and I should rejoice in good things! James, for instance, says something very similar:
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. James 1:2-3
as does Jesus:
11 “You are blessed when they insult you and persecute you and falsely say every kind of evil against you because of me. 12 Be glad and rejoice, because your reward is great in heaven. For that is how they persecuted the prophets who were before you. Matthew 5:11-12
I believe these truths…but I struggle to live these truths in that I don’t always rejoice or count it all joy when going through tribulation or persecution. Maybe you struggle with that too?  Since we’re both struggling, let’s get some insight from John Piper to better help us rejoice and glory in our sufferings:

It isn’t strange for people who have lived long enough to realize what Paul Brand, the missionary surgeon to India wrote in his book The Gift of Pain:

I have come to see that pain and pleasure come to us not as opposites but as Siamese twins, strangely joined and intertwined. Nearly all my memories of acute happiness, in fact, involve some element of pain or struggle. (Christianity Today)

I have never heard anyone say, “The deepest and rarest and most satisfying joys of my life have come in times of extended ease and earthly comfort.” Nobody says that. It isn’t true. What’s true is what Samuel Rutherford said when he was put in the cellars of affliction: “The Great King keeps his wine there” — not in the courtyard where the sun shines. What’s true is what Charles Spurgeon said: “They who dive in the sea of affliction bring up rare pearls.”…

Keep on rejoicing in suffering because then the Spirit of glory and of God rest upon you.

Verse 14: “If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.”

This means that in the hour of greatest trial there is a great consolation. In great suffering on earth there is great support from heaven. You may think now that you will not be able to bear it. But if you are Christ’s, you will be able to bear it, because he will come to you and rest upon you. As Rutherford said, the Great King keeps his finest wine in the cellar of affliction. He does not bring it out to serve with chips and on sunny afternoons. He keeps it for [extreme times.]

Source: https://www.desiringgod.org/messages/why-we-can-rejoice-in-suffering


Bible Memory verses for the month of May: Matthew 28:18-20 18 Jesus came near and said to them, “All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth.19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,20 teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”   

Happy by Mike Leite https://soundcloud.com/mikeleite
Creative Commons — Attribution 3.0 Unported — CC BY 3.0
Free Download / Stream: https://bit.ly/al_happy

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