BY REV. PHILIP CRAIG
Greater Springfield Community Church
Scripture: Acts 16: 25-26
This scripture places Paul and Silas somewhere no one in their right mind would like to be: Jail!
Not only did they not commit a criminal act, but their freedom was taken away just by spreading good news.
Unfortunately, our society is saturated with individuals who do everything they can to destroy the mission of Christ.
When we examine the Bible, we find that many good people have suffered tribulations and trials for crimes of which they were not guilty.
It would seem that we choose to do the right thing, so that we can escape less-than-ideal consequences. However, when we take a good look at the word of God, we find that people are afflicted for two reasons. Some people go through affliction due to disobedience, during which they receive no justification or great reward at the end. Others are afflicted as a result of being righteous.
In the Bible, the book of Psalms, chapter 34, verse 19 instructs us that “many afflictions will come to the righteous, but I will see you through them all.” We see a person like Jonah who was disobedient and suffered because he chose to be disobedient. However, when we endure tribulations while doing what is right, we find God will give us a just reward.
The key to reaching triumph over tribulation is being consistent in your faith, your praise and your good works.
Although Paul and Silas were victims of injustice, you do not find them focusing on their situation by complaining, cursing or plotting for revenge. What you see in their actions is that they were focused on the solution. The Bible said that as they were worshiping and praising God in their situation during the darkest hour of the night, the Lord provided a miracle.
I believe that the reason why God encourages us not to be weary in well-doing is because He is looking to provide a miracle in your life during your darkest moment. It is when you least expect it that God tends to show up, deliver you from your situation and give you triumph over your enemies and any trial you may be enduring. When we examine the lives of believers in the Bible, we find many of God’s righteous have gone through tough times before reaching their ultimate triumph.
In the book of Daniel, chapter 6, Daniel was placed in a cave with a lion for praising God and God delivered him. The book of Genesis—beginning at chapter 37—illustrates that Joseph was sold into slavery and thrown in jail. But God delivers him. In the book of Daniel, chapter 3, Meshach, Shadrach and Abedego were thrown into a fiery furnace and God delivered them. The same triumph was given to others such as Job, Sampson and so many others.
What I am trying to tell you is that these individuals all faced great tribulations, trials and challenges in life, but they made a choice to not give up. Rather, they chose to move forward by praising and worshipping God. Like them, your continued belief will one day bring forth triumph. Your life is important to God. Many times, God has you go through afflictions to purge you, strengthen you and purify you. Sometimes we do not realize how good God is until He is all we got.
What I have observed is that when you are faithful to God, He will continue to be faithful to you. Man will hurt you, but God will heal you. People will humiliate you, but God will magnify you. Humans will judge you, but God will justify you. Claim your triumph now because your tribulation will not last for a life time. God bless!
177-06 129th Ave, Jamaica NY 11434
Email Pastor Craig at Phil.firstname.lastname@example.org