OVERCOMING SUFFERINGS
(week 19/17)
OLUBI JOHNSON

Colossians 1:24  Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church:

Philippians 3:10-11 AMP:  [For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in that same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection [which it exerts over believers], and that I may so share His sufferings as to be continually transformed [in spirit into His likeness even] to His death, [in the hope] (11)  That if possible I may attain to the [spiritual and moral] resurrection [that lifts me] out from among the dead [even while in the body].

Luke 9:23-24 KJV:  And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. (24)  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.

Here, the scripture tells us that we are to be partakers of Christ’s sufferings.

These sufferings are:

  1. Sufferings of Satanic attacks upon our souls: wills, minds and emotions; bodies and circumstances to give God a LEGAL basis to incarcerate and punish Satan and his cohorts in hell fire forever.

2Thessalonians 1:5-9 KJV:  Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer: (6)  Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; (7)  And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, (8)  In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: (9)  Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;

  1. Sufferings of self-denial of food, sleep, sex and other things and pleasures of this life (Mark 4.19) in order to give EXTRA time in prayer and the Word.

The sufferings of self-denial and so spending EXTRA time in prayer and the Word generate and release the power of Holy Spirit in SUFFICIENT (2 Corinthians 12.9) MEASURE to overcome the sufferings of satanic attack.

In fact, we can and should REDUCE to a MINIMUM the DURATION of Satanic attacks and the DAMAGE they cause.

This is exemplified by contrasting the effects of the attack of storms on Jonah, Paul and the Lord Jesus.

Jonah was OUT OF THE WILL OF GOD and was overcome by the storm and it was by God’s mercy he was not killed or consumed (Jonah 1-2). Jonah received MERCY NOT TO BE CONSUMED (Lamentation 3.22).

Paul was IN THE WILL OF GOD and he endured the storm for over 14 days and physical damage of the boat, but no loss of human life (Acts 27.13-44). Paul received MERCY TO BE FAITHFUL (1 Corinthians 7.25) IN FASTING AND PRAYER DURING THE STORM.

The Lord Jesus WAS THE WILL OF GOD and He overcame the storm within a very short time with NO DAMAGE OF THE BOAT or loss of human life. The Lord Jesus received MERCY TO TRIUMPH over the storm (James 2.13, 2 Corinthians 2.14).

So, by receiving INCREASING MEASURES of God’s mercy as we grow spiritually, we can REDUCE the DURATION of Satanic attacks and the DAMAGE they cause to the barest minimum like the Lord Jesus.

Furthermore, WHILE WE ARE GROWING to the fulness of Christ we can through honesty of heart and humility and so being FULLY submitted to perfect and mature spiritual leadership RECEIVE COVERING to shield us during Satanic attacks, so we experience MINIMUM DURATION (of the time the attack lasts) AND DAMAGE the attack causes.

We see this exemplified in the life of Daniel (Daniel 2.13, 19; 6.12-23), Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego (Daniel 3.12-30): the attacks on them did not last more than 24 hours and there was NO DAMAGE done to them during the attacks!

So after a while (the early years of practicing perfection principles like Joseph’s early years 17-39 (Genesis 37.2-41.6; 45.6)) of partaking in these sufferings of attack and self-denial, we should become SO ESTABLISHED in prayer and the Word that the duration and damage of the attacks should be practically NEGLIGIBLE so causing us to spend our days in pleasures and prosperity (Job 36.11) ENJOYING ALL THINGS RICHLY (1 Timothy 6.17): a HUNDREDFOLD RETURN (Mark 10.30) of everything we denied ourselves of in the early years of daily taking up our cross (Luke 9.23).

1Peter 5:10 KJV:  But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.

So, to DAILY overcome Satanic attacks we:

Put on the whole armour of God (Ephesians 6.11-13), who is love (1 John 4.8, 16) by praying into our souls and bodies the attributes of the love of God (Ephesians 6.14-17) as a daily habit using the blood (Hebrews 13.20-21), the Word (1 John 2.5, 2 Peter 1.4-10) and the power of the Holy Spirit (1 John 4.12-13) by praying in tongues (1 Corinthians 14.2, 18) and groanings (Romans 8.26).

The attributes of the love of God: joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness and temperance (Galatians 5.22-23, 1 Corinthians 13.4-8) are our DEFENSIVE weapons extinguishing ALL the fiery darts of the devil and so REDUCE the DAMAGE the satanic attacks were meant to cause.

The Word of God and praying in the Spirit and groanings (Ephesians 6.18) are our OFFENSIVE weapons by which we overcome the satanic attacks so REDUCING the DURATION of the satanic attacks by our counter attack in the spirit.

Hence the scripture:

Romans 12:12 NKJV:  rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer;

So, on a daily basis, pray the love of God from your spirit (Romans 5.5) into your soul: will, mind and emotions) using the Word and the power of the Holy Spirit. However, briefly (5-15mins on days you are rushed for time) TRUSTING GOD’S MERCY through honesty of heart and the covering of a mature leadership to make up the difference and shield you, determining to GRADUALLY improve and increase your daily time in prayer and the Word as God faithfully protects and preserves you.

Selah!

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