Thursday, November 17, 2005

Handling Adveristy - Examples for us: Jesus

Examples for us

Jesus is the ultimate example of handling adversity of every kind. It is noteworthy that the Old Testament is full of prophesies that a Savior would come and that he would suffer. We have old and familiar scriptures such as Isaiah 53 and Psalms 22 that speak of a man in pain and agony, ridiculed and rejected. Jesus himself in his own testimony after his resurrection told of the need for him to suffer (Luke 24:25-26). Jesus’ suffering becomes the center point of a life as a Christian as found in the writings of Paul and Peter (Acts 17:2-3, 1 Peter 3:18).

Recall again the events of John 11 and the death of Lazarus. Jesus pointed out several times that the events were going to take place in order to bring glory to God. Throughout the Bible God takes an event or circumstance that seems as though it will be utter failure, and turns it into complete and total victory. Jesus’ life follows this same pattern in order for it to be clear that the victory is the Lord’s. Jesus, the perfectly righteous man, conquers death and sin in the circumstances and event that would seem to the world to be complete failure: his death on the cross.

So, it is with this background that we consider Jesus and his life on this earth.


1. Read Genesis 3:14,15.
a. Who is the serpent?
b. What is the pronouncement by God on the serpent?
c. What is said will occur between the serpent and the Seed?
d. Who is the Seed?
e. When is this fulfilled and how?

2. Read Psalms 22. What is said of the man prophesied and his life?

3. Read Isaiah 53. What is said of the man prophesied and his life?

4. It is important to bear in mind that Jesus suffered many terrible things before the events of the cross. What did Jesus have to say about himself and the kind of life he had during his 3 year ministry leading up to the cross? Provide scripture.

5. Recalling the events of his temptation by Satan, what was Jesus’ response in each case?

6. What does Jesus’ suffering provide for us as Christians? Provide scripture.

7. What did his suffering qualify him for and to be? Why is this necessary?

8. What did his suffering accomplish in and of itself? Provide scripture.

9. Why did Jesus have to suffer and not just die?

10. Who caused Jesus, the perfectly righteous man, to suffer? Reflecting on the book of Job and what is revealed in chapters 1 and 2, what can be concluded about ultimate responsibility?

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Handling Adveristy - Examples for us: Job and Joseph

Examples for us
Job and Joseph

When simply surveying or reading through the Bible, there is an enormous amount of suffering and trouble that follow the various characters. You could simply mark it as random events if it was a few of them but virtually every one has some major event of suffering, trial, or problem that occurs. There are times when it is clear that the suffering is a result of sin but quite often the problems arise while they are trying to do what is right and follow God.

We now turn our attention to two notable characters in the Bible that dealt with extreme challenges in their lives: Job and Joseph. As we examine their actions, thoughts, and attitudes, keep in mind the past lessons regarding dealing with suffering, trials, and problems.


1. What kind of person is Job?

2. What is revealed in the first 2 chapters of Job as to why he is suffering?

3. What is the response of his wife and friends as to why he is suffering?

4. What is Job’s attitude during these events?

5. Finally, God speaks to Job as recorded at the end of the book. Summarize what God says and why.

6. The story of Joseph extends over many years. What are the various trials, temptations, and problems he had to face?

7. During his imprisonment he interprets a set of dreams and one of the men is released. What does Joseph ask of him? How long is it before there is a response?

8. Joseph meets his brothers again. What is his attitude towards them?

9. What is the initial response of his brothers when Joseph reveals himself? What does Joseph do in response?