Who Suffers From Affliction?
Everyone does. We all experience trial and affliction no matter who we are or how lost we are. Everyone hurts. Often we see the ungodly man or woman in suffering: “Some became fools through their rebellious ways and suffered affliction because of their iniquities.” Ps. 107:17
However, it really isn’t as easy to understand the sufferings of the believers. We can try to explain it but we still end up with questions: “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the LORD delivers him out of them all.” Ps. 34:19.
I guess there is some comfort in knowing that other believers are also being tested and that it is part of God’s plan.
What Are Some Godly Examples of Testing?
- Job– “see thou mine affliction;” Job 10:15
- Moses– “Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season.” Hebrews 11:25
- David– “I am afflicted very much; revive me, O LORD, according to Your word.” Ps. 119:107
- The Prophets– “My brethren, take the prophets, who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience.” James 5:10
- Jesus Christ– “He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He opened not His mouth” Isa. 53:10
- Paul– “For out of much affliction and anguish of heart” I wrote to you, with many tears. “ 2 Cor. 2:4
But it is not enough to know the ‘realness’ of your affliction. We insist on knowing why. Why am I suffering in this way? Moses, probably the stellar personality in the Old Testament asked, “So Moses said to the LORD, “Why have You afflicted Your servant? And why have I not found favor in Your sight, that You have laid the burden of all these people on me?” Ex. 11:11
Afflictions Are For Our Good
Psalm 119:75 says, “I know, O LORD, that Your judgments are right, and that in faithfulness You have afflicted me.”
Why would David thank God in afflicting him? I think that David was able to see through the affliction. He then could realize that the intentions and purposes of God were good and edifying to him. He saw the divine purpose in God’s hands. He chose to trust that.
This pain is working out for our good
The Bible is quite clear on this subject. “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory” 2 Cor. 4:17. Exceeding and eternal! Words that need to impress us with their weight. Our afflictions are not our focus, it’s what they produce must be our focus.
We are explicitly told this, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose”, Romans 8:28.