In the beginning mankind was offered a choice between life on the one hand and knowledge on the other. (Genesis 2: 16-17) Our first parents rejected the Tree of Life (which represented Jesus Christ) and chose Satan: the one who had the knowledge and personal experience of good and evil. Their decision plunged the whole world into troubles so great that they now threaten to engulf us. Our first parents wanted to know about good and evil - by personal experience. Mankind's present plight some 6000 years later is simply the result of their tragic decision to ‘see for themselves.’ Problems are the evil part; the part of which the whole human race now has full knowledge. Bear in mind that the root cause of all our problems is sin, the rejection of Yahweh’s directions and the violation of His commands. The sin may be in ourselves, in others, in society at large or may even go back several generations to our ancestors. But you can be sure that at the root of every problem is sin. Somebody, somewhere along the line has transgressed the law of the Most High and human suffering is the result.
Is there any salvation from this sad state of affairs, this roundabout of rebellion, this treadmill of trouble? We are happy to say, there is.
|1 Timothy 1:||15: “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.”|
Therefore no matter what the problem is, and it may not be your fault, for its root cause may go back a hundred years or more, Christ Jesus can help you. He is ‘God in human flesh’ and he can save you from problems of every kind. As Abraham Lincoln once said to a friend in great trouble: “Go to Him and pray, for He alone can save you.”
|Acts 16:||30: “And brought them out, and said, Sirs What must I do to be saved?|
31: And they said: Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” (Note: and thy house - Household)
|John 3:||16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.|
17: For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
18: He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”
|Job 1: 3||His enormous wealth: 10 children, 7000 sheep, 3000 camels, 500 yoke of oxen, 500 she asses and many servants.
|Chapters 1-37||His terrible troubles: Job lost practically everything, wealth, possessions, family, health and friends. Few men or women have suffered as Job did.
|Job 13:||15: “... Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him...”
|Job 19:||25: “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth:|
26: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:”
|Romans 5:||3: “And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;|
4: And patience experience, and experience hope.
5: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”
Read this incomparable passage to the audience.
|2 Corinthians 11:||23: “Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft.|
24: Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one.
25: Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;
26: In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren;
27: In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.
28: Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.
29: Who is weak, and I am not weak? who is offended, and I burn not?
30: If I must needs glory, I will glory of the things which concern mine infirmities.
31: The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is blessed for evermore, knoweth that I lie not.
32: In Damascus the governor under Aretas the king kept the city of the Damascenes with a garrison, desirous to apprehend me:
33: And through a window in a basket was I let down by the wall, and escaped his hands.”
|2 Corinthians 12:||1: “It is not expedient for me doubtless to glory. I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord.|
2: I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.
3: And I knew such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;)
4: How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.
5: Of such an one will I glory: yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities.
6: For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool; for I will say the truth: but now I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth me to be, or that he heareth of me.
7: And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
8: For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
9: And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
10: Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”
From it we learn certain facts: