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Who is with me? How much do you love God?

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I was responding to a different thread, where a poster expressed a sort of disbelief I guess, that some beleivers want to somehow prove themselves to God, by going through the tribulation.

I felt my response, was worth posting as a topic on it's own, so here it is:

I would rather go through the tribulation than be raptured out ahead of time, but there is a condition to that desire: That it be according to God's will. Our savior is our example, submit to the will of God, even if it is unpleasant for a while.

1Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Oh to be able to do just that. I do not love pain of discomfort, in fact, I am a coward, but I also am not looking at this through fleshy eyes. I understand that nothing that can befall me in this life is worth worrying over:

16The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, 17and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him. 18For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

I do not see suffering for Jesus to be something to avoided at all costs, I consider it a privelege. Why would I think, that I should be excluded, even from suffering and or death, where so many prophets, apostles, and marthys in the last 2000 years up to this present day, have led the way, to the glory of God?

Those of us who hope to escape unscathed, are those who have their eyes fixed on comfort in this present age, instead of taking Jesus words to heart:

10“Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

11“Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. 12“Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Maybe we just want to refuse the extra blessings our Father wants to pour out on His children. I do not need to prove myself to God, He know what I am, and what I am not. I am however, willing to be spent for Him.

1Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.

Which is the greater act of worship? Singing a hymm in church, or presenting my body as living sacrifice. I can think of no greater act of worship, no greater act of love, than:

13“Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. 14“You are My friends if you do what I command you. 15“No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.

Those who are Jesus friends, are willing to die for Him, and we are called to that attitude.

24Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. 25“For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.

Over and over in the New Testament, we are told to expect trouble, and to persevere in trouble. Are those just words? Or do they actually mean something? Aslo we are told that perseverance in tribulation improves the church, why would I not welcome improvement in the church? What benefit is there in escapism? Nothing that I know of, that is not worldy, temporal.

So, speaking for myself, if God wants me to suffer, I volunteer. People in the tribulation will need help, will need the Gospel. I received that gift freely from God, with nothing on my part to deserve it. I can never pay God back for that, but I can offer to be there for those in the tribulation, that God loves just as much as He loves me.

I only wish that I would carry that conviction in everyday life. Every person I fail to tell the gospel to, is another person I have shown contempt for, by not thinking them worthy enough for me to disturb my personal comfort in the hope of saving them from an eternity of suffering. I too, amd fleshly, and I know that in me, I am not obedient enough to do well in the tribulation. I recall that when push came to shove, Peter was a bit of a coward. I also recall that Peter was later filled with the Spirit, to the result that he was anything but a coward. One of the most common phrases accompanying the phrase filled with the Spirit, is 'full of boldness'. I think if God can do that for Peter, he can also do so far any or even every one of us. If I were to find myself in the tribulation, I pray for God's grace to enable me to stand for what I beleive, to stand for Him.

Who is with me?

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I will stand with you Omegaman :)

I hear we may lose a physical battle here and there but the Spiritual battle is ours !

1Jn 5:4-5 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. (5) Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

Plus, I am a sucker for punishment. :D

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I'm ready to do His will, whatever that may be for me.

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I am so glad, I understand why people might not want to express what sounds like bravodo, or perhaps feel uncertain where they are in this topic. I think though, that those who are not willing to stand were we stand, might be those who would fall away, if they did find themselves in the tribulation. It might serve people well, to get an idea where they are in the parable of the sower: 18 “Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: 19 When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path. 20 The seed falling on rocky ground refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. 21 But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. 22 The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful. 23 But the seed falling on good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”

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I think like most people I am certain that in and by myself I would crumble and fail BUT I have been in too many really bad situations not to know that all we need to do is call aout and ask and God gives us the strength and the words at the right time ..we just need to ask , listen and be willing .Praise God that though I am weak HE is my strength in time of need and my comfort and joy at all other times

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I recall that when push came to shove, Peter was a bit of a coward. I also recall that Peter was later filled with the Spirit, to the result that he was anything but a coward. One of the most common phrases accompanying the phrase filled with the Spirit, is 'full of boldness'. I think if God can do that for Peter, he can also do so far any or even every one of us. If I were to find myself in the tribulation, I pray for God's grace to enable me to stand for what I beleive, to stand for Him.

Who is with me?

You hit the nail on the head my friend, we can only do it in God's Spirit, not in our flesh. I was posting about this somewhere else yesterday, I'm sure... Let me tell you, the enemy is going to do all he can to get us to forget to pray that prayer: 'Lord, fill me with your Holy Spirit today!' We need to pray this prayer every day because we just can't do it alone. I'm with you, Omegaman, in Him.

Lord, fill us with your Holy Spirit today, we pray, in Jesus' mighty Name! Amen!

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I'm from back in the day when all the preachers were teaching the Rapture comes first. But even if it doesn't, I'm not real worried about what I'll do because of what I went through last year. Where I am we lost contact with most of the rest of the world, and I thought there was a good chance this was it. So I started singing hymns to God in my head and aloud. And as Christmas drew near I was singing Christmas hymns. I mean alone now, and in the dark, except for candles. I can't remember the song I was singing the most, which means the Holy Spirit was singing it with me and through me.

What I'm trying to tell you is you don't need it to be the Great Tribulation to find out how you will react. There are plenty of other tribulations that will be coming our way to test us. If you have the Holy Spirit in you, you'll find it's quite natural to turn to Him for comfort, and He will give you the comfort you need.

But I also seem to remember Jesus said we should pray for strength to get through it, or that we will be considered worthy enough to not have to go through it.

I'll end with this. If things ever get so bad that you have to die for the name of Jesus, just hope it's a quick death. And if this should happen in America, in our lifetimes, I think we can rest assured that the Lord is nearby.

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I'm ready to do His will, whatever that may be for me.

Yes! :thumbsup:

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Persecution from the Christ-haters is our part, not going God's wrath and through the time of JACOB'S TROUBLE, the tribulation which is going to be localized in the Middle East.

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