“Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned… Take my brethren the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience. Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord, that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.” (James 5:9-11/KJV).
This is to be yet another post on endurance. In verse 11 we have the same Greek word for ‘endure’ as in 1 Corinthians 13:7: “Behold, we count them happy which endure.”
Enduring and sticking things through builds our character. Difficulties can help us learn many things.
- At times other Christians put us to the test also. James encourages us not to grudge against one another.
- The Old Testament prophets were sent by God to speak to the Israelites and to tell them when they were going wrong. Often their messages were not really appreciated. Many disliked this kind of correction. Many of the prophets had to suffer loneliness and affliction.
- Job is a proverbial example of suffering. He lost his children, his possessions and his health. Friends who had come to comfort him told him he must have sinned to experience such hardship. Job defended himself and told about his former life and his current situation. Finally God began to speak to Job. In the end Job was very happy because he had come to know God in a deeper way. He then also was healed physically; he could gain new possessions, and he got some more children.
“Behold, we count them happy which endure.” Steadfastness in the end can bring forth new happiness.
In these verses we find the words suffering, patience and steadfastness. Patience seems to be an aspect of steadfastness. Being patient also means you do not give up your hope.
“Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts; for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.” (James 5 :8/KJV).
A Christian may hope for the day when God himself will reveal his love, his power and his strength. In the end He will be victorious. He will reward those who have been faithfully on his side.