God's Truth In Love

Fruit or Vegetable Series ~ ~ Part Eleven – Longsuffering

In Agape Love, Apostasy, Bible, Biblical Principles, Chrisitan Lifestyle, Christian, Christian Living, Christianity, Devotional, Encouragement, End Times, Exhortation, Fruits of the Holy Spirit, God, God's Voice, Godliness, Holy Spirit, Jesus, Love, Persecution, Prophecy, Prophet, Prophetess, Remnant, Revival, Rhema Words, Spiritual Activism, Spiritual Activists, Spiritual Fruit, Spiritual Remnant, Truth, Uncategorized on January 30, 2014 at 5:18 pm

Thursday, January 30, 2014

In this segment, we will look at the virtue of “longsuffering” which is an aspect of the fruit of the Spirit. What we will examine is godly longsuffering not a worldly act of being a, or playing the, martyr.

Galatians 5:22–23 (NKJV)

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness [KJV – gentleness], goodness, faithfulness [KJV – faith], 23 gentleness [KJV – Meekness], self-control [KJV – temperance].

Taking abuse simply for the purpose of taking abuse is not godly longsuffering, it is more aptly described as being a doormat for others. If Christ is not glorified, if it is not a righteous persecution then it serves no point. Paul escaped persecution so he could continue to carry Christ’s message, the gospel, to yet, more of the lost and dying world. Many of the early Christians met in secret to protect themselves and their budding church from persecution and extinction at the hand of the religious community and government of their day. There is a time to endure longsuffering as a soldier of Christ and a time to stand up and say I am a doormat and head for the exit. It is under God’s guidance and counsel that these decisions must be made.

The definition in the Greek Language for the word “longsuffering” used in Galatians 5:22 is as follows.

3115. μακροθυμία makrŏthumia, mak-roth-oo-mee´-ah; from the same as 3116; longanimity, i.e. (obj.) forbearance or (subj.) fortitude:— longsuffering, patience.

3116. μακροθυμώς makrŏthumōs, mak-roth-oo-moce´; adv. of a compound of 3117 and 2372; with long (enduring) temper, i.e. leniently:— patiently.

Longanimity is a Latin word, here used in the Greek, that we might not recognize in the English language but it means “a disposition to bear injuries patiently” and to me that speak of a depth of longsuffering beyond patience and forbearance as we view longsuffering here in America. Forbearance is to tolerate patiently with self-control difficult circumstances or people. Fortitude involves having strength and courage during trying situations. Patience involves primarily a lack of complaint. Leniently is when we mercifully and compassionately tolerate the inappropriate behavior of others.

In 2 Timothy the great apostle Paul, a man who knew a vast amount about longsuffering, tells us not only to endure hardship with a longsuffering attitude but also tells us if we are to present the Word of God properly we should expect to endure persecution, not from the world but from the religious community. You cannot turn from or ‘no longer endure’ something you have never known. Therefore, those individuals spoken of in the verses listed below once knew or heard the Truth but gave it up in exchange for something more tolerable to them; thus, they sought out teachers who would tell them the things they wanted to hear.

2 Timothy 4:1–7 (NKJV)

I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom: 2 Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. 5 But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. 6 For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.

Paul understood and I as a minister understand what it is to ‘be poured out’ or pour yourself out to build up the faith and spiritual fortitude of another, only at times to have that end in heartbreaking disappointment and such is painful and honestly awful to endure. Yet, endure and reach out to the next individual who seeks our help is exactly what we must do, for that is longsuffering and only through that can we one day be able to say, as the great apostle said, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” having been faithful to our assignment.

Here are some examples of how we might express godly longsuffering toward God, self, and others as well as through service? We can express godly longsuffering toward God through extending our trust of God and thus limiting our constant accusing questioning of Him and why He has allowed this or that. As though the Creator need really answer to us and our demands to know why. When we continue day in and day out to get up and go forward in our service to God despite our failings and frailties we are expressing longsuffering toward ourselves in our endurance of our own humanness and shortcomings as God changes us from glory to glory, as He promised. It is pride to expect that we shall withhold our service until we are perfected, as though we will be on this earth. Each time we loving ignore the offensive words of another that have been spoken in immaturity and ignorance we are expressing the fruit of longsuffering. For every individual we pour ourselves out to in service, who has no clue or deep appreciation for what they are being given, we are showing the compassion and mercy of God through our longsuffering tolerance.

We learn godly boundaries in order to allow longsuffering to grow in us and limit worldly abuse. There is a difference between the two and the difference is found in the purpose being served. A book could be written on those two sentences, so I will just leave that there. If we do not allow God to expand longsuffering in us, life will break us. The trials and circumstances of everyday life will become so painful to endure without the expansion of the fruit of Spirit as manifest in the virtue of longsuffering that our minds, bodies, emotions, and spirits will succumb to the pressure. Many people suffer from any number of maladies because they refuse to allow longsuffering to expand their sprits and instead they fight, fight, fight…everything, everybody, every circumstance, even God.

 

 

Spiritual/Political Disclaimer:

This blog will not be for the faint of heart or the easily offended. It will not be in any way politically correct. It will make every effort to share the truth in love, [Ephesians 4:11-16], to a decaying and dying society and church. I share what I share not to hurt, harm, or offend any person[s] or group; I do it because Christ’s Standard and Truth is not being represented by enough of His Followers and I do it out of love. I love enough to tell His Truth.

Ephesians 4:11-16 NKJV

11And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, 13till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; 14that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, 15but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— 16from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.

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