What does the Bible have to say about trials?
Oh vey! Ok, I'm not jewish by blood but I'll throw in an 'Oh vey' at times. But I am a Hebrew in the spirit as the root Hebrew word is 'eber' which means to 'cross over' so by the blood of Yeshua / Jesus I guess I am (Romans 2:29).
Challenges. We all have them. I won't go into too many details but I've personally been going through many trials since the beginning of 2020. But that's ok. I'm not complaining, I'm just stating.
But this raises a question - a few actually. Why do we have these trials? What is the purpose of these oppressions? Where do these challenges come from? Can we use them to our advantage?
As our country has allowed Yah / God to be 'kicked to the curb' (e.g. out of schools, gov't buildings, etc), the United States is now seeing more so the effects of those actions as our country seems to be falling apart - much like in the Torah how Israel behaved. It's easy many times to see other's faults but not our own. It's very easy to call one's self a 'Christian', 'Believer', etc. but what happens when times get tough?
2Co 13:5 Examine yourselves whether you are in the belief – prove yourselves. Or do you not know yourselves, that יהושע Messiah is in you, unless you are disapproved.
Now mind you it's taken me quite a number of years, decades even) to get to where I'm at of trying to grow myself spiritually. I understand we are all at different places due to different upbringings, relationships, environments, etcetera. But I just wanted to put this out there prayerfully that it may be able to help somebody learn faster than I did. As it may keep you from problems in the future.
So a good way to tackle life's questions to ask - what does the Bible say?
But obviously we shouldn't base our doctrines on just a single verse as the Bible is a cosmic puzzle in a sense. The better we know His Word and apply it (as that's where we'll learn even more about what is meant and His intended meaning & results), the more understanding we'll get.
So let us continue shall we? . . .
Should we be surprised that we have challenges?
1Pe 4:12 Beloved ones, do not be surprised at the fiery trial that is coming upon you, to try you, as though some unusual matter has befallen you,
1Pe 4:13 but as you share Messiah’s sufferings, rejoice, in order that you might rejoice exultingly at the revelation of His esteem.
1Pe 4:14 If you are reproached for the Name of Messiah, you are blessed, because the Spirit of esteem and of Elohim rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is praised.
Life is about challenges. The Bible has much to say in regards to us being 'Overcomers'. Here is one such verse . . .
1Jn 5:4 because everyone having been born of Elohim overcomes the world. And this is the overcoming that has overcome the world: our belief.
1Jn 5:5 Who is the one who overcomes the world but he who believes that יהושע is the Son of Elohim?
It was the intended purpose of the world to be blessed by the seed of Abraham.
Gen 22:18 “And in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”
But many times this is done through challenges in our life.
Mat 5:14 “You are the light of the world. It is impossible for a city to be hidden on a mountain.
Mat 5:15 “Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it shines to all those in the house.
Mat 5:16 “Let your light so shine before men, so that they see your good works and praise your Father who is in the heavens. The more that we are lead by the Ruach haKodesh / Holy Spirit, as opposed to our soul, the easier these challenges will be.
Rom 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of Elohim, these are sons of Elohim.
How should we handle these challenges?
So even if we are being led by the Spirit we will still have trials in our life. Just as Yeshua / Jesus did so will we.
Mat 10:24 A taught one is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master.
But there is a positive side to our griefs as Yeshua / Jesus is always trying to teach us . . . and we can learn as we go. IF we work with Him, we can make the most of our suffering. As I've heard it said about Patience (I think I heard Joyce Meyer say this): "We are all going to have to wait . . . having patience is just waiting with a positive attitude". The same applies here.
1Pe 2:19 For this is favor, if because of conscience toward Elohim anyone bears up under grief, suffering unrighteously.
1Pe 2:20 For what credit is there in enduring a beating when you sin? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure, this finds favor with Elohim.
1Pe 2:21 For to this you were called, because Messiah also suffered for us,h leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps
We can find in the Bible many of those that came before us that had to be shaped by their challenges, trials, and tribulations. The challenges that we have in life are either 1) going to pull us closer to Yeshua / Jesus or 2) push us away from Him. There are no other choices.
As we look at the US and the world today, many are handling their difficulties in negative ways as it is pushing them to act against how the Bible prescribes . . . against Yah / God Himself. There are many reasons for this so I'll not go into that here. If you want to be blessed then it's best to follow the B.I.B.L.E. (Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth).
But if . . . IF we choose to we can put our faith / trust in Him. But I'm not talking just as a mental exercise/belief but in Hebrew thinking 'hearing' means to hear and do/respond.
Jas 2:19 You believe that Elohim is one (Deu 6:4) You do well. The demons also believe – and shudder!
Jas 2:20 But do you wish to know, O foolish man, that the belief without the works is dead?
Can we use these trials for our benefit?
So this is something to focus on . . .
Rom 8:5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the matters of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the matters of the Spirit.
Rom 8:6 For the mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace.
Rom 8:7 Because the mind of the flesh is enmity towards Elohim, for it does not subject itself to the Torah of Elohim, neither indeed is it able,
Rom 8:8 and those who are in the flesh are unable to please Elohim.
Rom 8:9 But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of Elohim dwells in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Messiah, this one is not His.
Rom 8:10 And if Messiah is in you, the body is truly dead on account of sin, but the Spirit is life on account of righteousness.
I've heard it put this way. There are two that are trying to kill us - 1) Yah / God, and 2) satan. But it's much better IF we allow Yah / God to kill us (our fleshly desires that is). We have to understand that there is much more to life than what we experience while we are in the earthly / physical realm. Yah / God is more concerned with our spirit selves than our physical selves. He knows those that are His will be learning & living for eternity.
So while yes He does care for our physical well-being we have to understand our bodies are only a temporary 'tent'. He is more concerned that we learn His Truth and live by His Spirit. It's during these times of trials that He is trying to teach us something - regardless of the source of that trial.
3Jn 1:2 Beloved ones, I pray for you to do well in every way, and be in health, as your life is doing well.
3Jn 1:3 For I rejoiced greatly when brothers came and witnessed of the truth in you, as you walk in the truth.
3Jn 1:4 I have no greater joy than to hear of my children walking in truth.
As Joseph said . . .
Gen 50:20 “And you, you intended evil against me, but Elohim intended it for good
We can allow every trial we have to draw us closer to Him . . . to rely on Him moreso than ourselves . . . to look to Him for guidance, comfort, etcetera. In the Garden of Eden, He wanted a real relationship with His Creation . . . for them to look to Him to supply their every need. But Israel preferred not to have a personal relationship with Him.
Exo 20:18 And all the people saw the thunders, the lightning flashes, the voice of the shophar, and the mountain smoking. And the people saw it, and they trembled and stood at a distance,
Exo 20:19 and said to Mosheh, “You speak with us and we hear, but let not Elohim speak with us, lest we die.”
Exo 20:20 And Mosheh said to the people, “Do not fear, for Elohim has come to prove you, and in order that His fear be before you, so that you do not sin.”
Exo 20:21 So the people stood at a distance, but Mosheh drew near the thick darkness where Elohim was.
I guess that should come as no surprise because in Hebrew 'Israel' means 'One who contends / struggles with Yah / God'.
Gen 32:25 And when He saw that He did not overcome him, He touched the socket of his hip. And the socket of Ya‛aqoḇ’s / Jacob's hip was dislocated as He wrestled with him.
Gen 32:26 And He said, “Let Me go, for the day breaks.” But he said, “I am not letting You go until You have blessed me!”
Gen 32:27 So He asked him, “What is your name?” And he said, “Ya‛aqoḇ / Jacob.”
Gen 32:28 And He said, “Your name is no longer called Ya‛aqoḇ / Jacob, but Yisra’ěl,a because you have striven with Elohim and with men, and have overcome.”
Looking at the book of Revelation there is an interesting verse that states . . .
Rev 21:21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls – each one of the gates was a single pearl. And the street of the city was clean gold, like transparent glass.
Do you know what makes this verse so interesting? Do you know how pearls are created?
It is not proven that oysters can feel pain, but it is known that they react to irritants. When an irritating object becomes trapped within an oyster's shell, it deposits layers of calcium carbonate (CaCO3), slowly increasing in size and producing a pearl. This is purely a defense mechanism, to trap a potentially threatening irritant such as a parasite inside its shell, or an attack from outside, injuring the mantle tissue. The oyster creates a pearl sac to seal off the irritation.
Basically put, pearls are created by irritation. Or in other words, we enter the New Jerusalem by overcoming the irritations that we've experienced while on earth IF we allowed those trials to draw us closer to Him.
What is the source of our challenges?
Now this is a challenging question. As stated above, we know that Yah / God allows challenges in our life. But do our challenges come from 1) satan or 2) Yah / God? Well both to be honest.
Job 7:17 What is man, that You should make him great, that You should set Your heart on him,
Job 7:18 that You should visit him every morning, trying him every moment?
By reading the Bible we can see often times Yah / God gives us challenges to see what we are made of - do we truly look to Him?
Isa 29:13 And יהוה says, “Because this people has drawn near with its mouth, and with its lips they have esteemed Me, and it has kept its heart far from Me, and their fear of Me has become a command of men that is taught!
Again, it's easy to say we are a disciple but when the times get tough - when the rubber hits the proverbial road - we need to rely on Him. We are constantly being tested, daily . . . even in the small things of life.
Pro 17:3 A refining pot is for silver and a furnace for gold, But יהוה tries the hearts.
Mat 10:42 And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.
Many times our oppression is from satan. This is because the enemy will try to stop us from our destiny by whatever means they can - whether that's generational curses, soul-ties, covenants with the enemy made unknowingly while we are sleeping, etc.
This is where deliverance ministry comes into play. Sometimes demons do have legal rights to oppress us. Since Yah / God is a righteous Judge He has to honor His Word above all.
Scripture cannot be broken.
Joh 10:35 If He called them elohim, to whom the word of Elohim came – and it is impossible for the Scripture to be broken –
Yes the blood of Yeshua / Jesus covers all sins but it's sometimes it's about how we apply His blood. Generic renunciation prayers are good and needed but sometimes we have to get more specific in our spiritual warfare.
We have to do our part to close every 'door' to us that has been open for the enemy to oppress us - as their are many.
Hos 4:6 “My people have perished for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I reject you from being priest for Me. Since you have forgotten the Torah of your Elohim, I also forget your children.
It may seem unfair that our children have to pay the price for our sins OR that we have to pay the price for the sins of our generations past but keep in mind that He has already told us this in His Word so this shouldn't come as no surprise to us.
Amo 3:7 For the Master יהוה does no matter unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets.
If we truly care about our loved ones and those around us then we should seek deliverance as we learn how to apply His Word to our lives and about spiritual warfare - as opposed to just crying 'foul'.
In Hebrew, the word Yeshua means 'salvation' or 'deliverance' and we know that Yeshua is the Word made flesh (John 1:14). He is our model and He dealt with demons (Mark 16:17).
It may seem like foolishness to some but is our limited earthly knowledge higher than His?
1Co 1:25 For the foolishness of Elohim is wiser than men, and the weakness of Elohim is stronger than men.
If you still question His ways I suggest you re-read the book of Job . . .
Job 38:1 Then יהוה answered Iyoḇ / Job out of the whirlwind, and said,
Job 38:2 “Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge?
Job 38:3 Now gird up your loins like a man, and I ask you, and you answer Me.
and consider these verses . . .
Jas 4:6 But He gives greater favor. Because of this He says, “Elohim resists the proud, but gives favor to the humble.”
Jas 4:7 So then subject yourselves to Elohim. Resist the devil and he shall flee from you.
Jas 4:10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Master, and He shall lift you up.
Jas 4:11 Brothers, do not speak against one another. He that speaks against a brother and judges his brother, speaks against Torah and judges Torah. And if you judge Torah, you are not a doer of Torah but a judge.
Jas 4:12 There is one Lawgiver and Judge, who is able to save and to destroy. Who are you to judge another?
So whether our trials are from Yah / God or satan we can still use them to bring blessings upon us. IF we learn our lessons - which is how to apply the Bible to our lives so that we become a 'living bible' then He will help us during our times of trials.
Jer 31:33 “For this is the covenant I shall make with the house of Yisra’ěl after those days, declares יהוה: I shall put My Torah in their inward parts, and write it on their hearts. And I shall be their Elohim, and they shall be My people.
Isa 58:6 “Is this not the fast that I have chosen: to loosen the tight cords of wrongness, to undo the bands of the yoke, to exempt the oppressed, and to break off every yoke?
Isa 58:7 “Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and that you bring to your house the poor who are cast out; when you see the naked, and cover him, and not hide yourself from your own flesh?
Isa 58:8 “Then your light would break forth like the morning, your healing spring forth speedily. And your righteousness shall go before you, the esteem of יהוה would be your rear guard.
Isa 58:9 “Then, when you call, יהוה would answer; when you cry, He would say, ‘Here I am.’ “If you take away the yoke from your midst, the pointing of the finger, and the speaking of unrighteousness,
Isa 58:10 if you extend your being to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted being, then your light shall dawn in the darkness, and your darkness be as noon.
Isa 58:11 “Then יהוה would guide you continually, and satisfy your being in drought, and strengthen your bones. And you shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.
So here is the main point of this section. We can thwart many of the attacks of satan by deliverance but we have to allow Yah's trials to do their work in us.
Act 5:38 “And now I say to you, stay away from these men and leave them alone, because if this plan or this work is of men, it shall be overthrown,
Act 5:39 but if it is of Elohim, you are unable to overthrow it, lest you even be found to fight against Elohim.”
In some cases, we may never know the source but regardless our response will make the difference.
What is the point/purpose?
Jas 1:2 My brothers, count it all joy when you fall into various trials,
Jas 1:3 knowing that the proving of your belief works endurance.
Jas 1:4 And let endurance have a perfect work, so that you be perfect and complete, lacking in naught.
The point is for us to become more like Yeshua - to show the world . . . even if those are just people in our 'world' - that our Faith and Hope is in Him. We can use our trials to grow us to become more like Him.
Heb 5:8 though being a Son, He learned obedience by what He suffered.
The purpose is to glorify Him in all things - during the good times an the bad.
Joh 12:32 “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, shall draw all men unto Myself.”
The purpose is to point people to Yeshua / Jesus as He is the Savior / Deliverer.
What does the future hold?
While I haven't read the book 'A Tale of Two Cities' I reference / paraphrase the first line often: "It was the best of times and it was the worst of times".
Many believe that we are in the last days. Now whether that means 5, 10, 20+ years I don't know but I believe we are in the last days myself. We should find it as no surprise that the demons are trying to cause as much chaos as possible on earth as they truly believe they can overtake Yah's / God's Heavens.
Isa 14:12 “How you have fallen from the heavens, O Hělěl / Lucifer, son of the morning! You have been cut down to the ground, you who laid low the nations!
Isa 14:13 “For you have said in your heart, ‘Let me go up to the heavens, let me raise my throne above the stars of Ěl, and let me sit in the mount of appointment on the sides of the north;
Isa 14:14 let me go up above the heights of the clouds, let me be like the Most High.’
Isa 14:15 “But you are brought down to She’ol / Hell, to the sides of the pit.
Isa 14:16 “Those who see you stare at you, and ponder over you, saying, ‘Is this the man who made the earth tremble, who shook reigns,
Isa 14:17 who made the world as a wilderness and destroyed its cities, who would not open the house of his prisoners?’
But no worries as Yeshua knows how to divide His 'sheople' from the rams.
Mat 25:32 “And all the nations shall be gathered before Him, and He shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates his sheep from the goats.
Mat 25:33 “And He shall set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.
We should all aim to humble ourselves before Yah / God. Our trials should push us closer to Him with the goal of trying to understand the work of what He is trying to do in us.
Is He trying to teach us how to love one another?
Is He trying to teach us to carry another's burdens?
Is He trying to show us that if we don't make decisions guided by the Bible that there could be consequences?
Is He trying to show us that He is with us even in our trials?
Etc., etc., etctera
Jer 17:7 “Blessed is the man who trusts in יהוה, and whose trust is יהוה.
Jer 17:8 “For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, which spreads out its roots by the river, and does not see when heat comes. And his leaf shall be green, and in the year of drought he is not anxious, nor does he cease from yielding fruit.
Jer 17:9 “The heart is crooked above all, and desperately sick – who shall know it?
Jer 17:10 “I, יהוה, search the heart, I try the kidneys, and give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.
His ways our higher than our ways. Even if we don't see His hands in our lives during our trials we need to know and trust His heart.
In many cases, deliverance ministry can help remove the demons in our lives that cause oppression. In other trials, we'll have to weather the storm. The bad thing about being a living sacrifice is that we can crawl back off the altar at times . . . but He knows that we are just dust (Psalm 103:14).
He is merciful.
1Co 10:13 No trial has overtaken you except such as is common to man, and Elohim is trustworthy, who shall not allow you to be tried beyond what you are able, but with the trial shall also make the way of escape, enabling you to bear it.
But the enemy will try to cause us to not believe Yah's /God's Word (Genesis 3). But if we don't hold onto Yah's / God's word, His Truth, what else do we have to save us?
A Prayer & Blessing
Father, in the name of Yeshua / Jesus, I pray that you'd give those that need this the ears to hear and receive it. I know that Your Heart is broken as You see Your people, Your Creation, reject you.
Mat 23:37 “Yerushalayim, Yerushalayim, killing the prophets and stoning those who are sent to her! How often I wished to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chickens under her wings, but you would not!
Mat 23:38 “See! Your house is left to you laid waste,
Help us to draw close to You! to trust You! to give ourselves to Your ways!
Jas 4:8 Draw near to Elohim and He shall draw near to you. Cleanse hands, sinners. And cleanse the hearts, you double-minded!
Search us O Yah / God! Show us how to be more like Yeshua / Jesus so that it may go well with us and those around us!
Psa 139:23 Search me, O Ěl, and know my heart; Try me, and know my thoughts;
Psa 139:24 And see if an idolatrous way is in me, And lead me in the way everlasting.
We praise You! We worship You alone as there is no other! Thank You for loving us and letting us know of Your ways! Help us to be blessed so that we may be a blessing to others.
In Yeshua's / Jesus' name.