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April 5, 2017

Adding Patience

Jesus told the disciples to wait for the promise of the Holy Ghost. They didn’t wait a few days or a week but ten days.

Acts 1:4-5 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.

There were 120 disciples praying together and waiting like Jesus told them to. Jesus asks us to wait because he has a purpose. He wants to see what the motive of our heart is. If our motive is selfish, we won’t be willing to wait for God’s answer but we will give into what the flesh wants.

Acts 1:14-16 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren. And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,) Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.

Once upon a time, there was a race with three runners and the king had sent his servant to individually tell each of the runners to wait until the king gave the command to start running. The signal went off to start the race and the first runner started to run and then stopped. The second runner also started to run when he saw the first runner start and then he stopped. When the first runner saw the second runner start running, he began running again and finished the race with the second runner also running. The king asked the third runner why he didn’t run and he told the king he was waiting for his command to begin running. The king told the third runner that he was going to be his son and inherit the kingdom because he waited for the king’s command to run. The king told the other runners that he knew they could run but he wanted to see if they could wait.

Samuel gave specific instructions for Saul to go to Gilgal and then wait there until he came to make an offering. The priest was the only one that was supposed to make an offering. When Saul was leaving, God gave him another heart. When we get saved, God changes our heart and he wants us to obey him.

I Samuel 10:1 Then Samuel took a vial of oil, and poured it upon his head, and kissed him, and said, Is it not because the Lord hath anointed thee to be captain over his inheritance?

I Samuel 10:7 And let it be, when these signs are come…thou do as occasion serve thee; for God is with thee.

Patience is one of the virtues we need to add to our experience. When we’re sanctified there are many things we need to learn and we need to grow in grace. Saul’s army of 3,000 was greatly outnumbered by the Philistines, so Israel’s army was afraid and ran away.

I Samuel 13:1-5 Saul reigned one year; and when he had reigned two years over Israel, Saul chose him three thousand men of Israel; whereof two thousand were with Saul in Michmash and in mount Bethel, and a thousand were with Jonathan in Gibeah of Benjamin: and the rest of the people he sent every man to his tent. And Jonathan smote the garrison of the Philistines that was in Geba, and the Philistines heard of it. And Saul blew the trumpet throughout all the land, saying, Let the Hebrews hear. And all Israel heard say that Saul had smitten a garrison of the Philistines, and that Israel also was had in abomination with the Philistines. And the people were called together after Saul to Gilgal. And the Philistines gathered themselves together to fight with Israel, thirty thousand chariots, and six thousand horsemen, and people as the sand which is on the sea shore in multitude…

Saul didn’t wait for Samuel, but made the offering himself. As soon as he finished, Samuel arrived. Saul had done foolishly and God said he disobeyed by not keeping the commandment that was given to him. Saul got impatient. It wasn’t the whole time he waited that he got impatient, maybe only the last hour, but he disobeyed. God tests whether we will be obedient when he tells us to wait. The kingdom was taken from Saul because he wouldn’t wait and his whole family suffered because of his choice to not obey by waiting as he was told to do.

I Samuel 13:11-14 And Samuel said, What hast thou done? And Saul said, Because I saw that the people were scattered from me, and that thou camest not within the days appointed, and that the Philistines gathered themselves together at Michmash; Therefore said I, The Philistines will come down now upon me to Gilgal, and I have not made supplication unto the Lord: I forced myself therefore, and offered a burnt offering. And Samuel said to Saul, Thou hast done foolishly: thou hast not kept the commandment of the Lord thy God, which he commanded thee: for now would the Lord have established thy kingdom upon Israel for ever. But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the Lord hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the Lord hath commanded him to be captain over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the Lord commanded thee.

Patience is something we can control by choosing to be patient, even when we feel impatient. Our feelings need to be under our will so we choose not to act. When you’re praying for your loved ones to be saved, are you going to be patient? God doesn’t get any glory out of impatience. God gives us grace through the power of the Holy Spirit to rule over our flesh when we’re feeling impatient so we can act with patience.

Saul made excuse for acting out of God’s will. The devil doesn’t want us to wait so that God gets the glory. As we serve God, there will be situations that test whether we will wait on God or take control by the strength of our own flesh. We need to ask what our motive is, to ask God to search us and see if there’s any wicked way in us (Psalm 139:23-24). Part of waiting is to see if there’s something in us that needs to be purified.

It takes patience to work out conflicts. If a wife gets irritated and pushed out of shape if her husband snored the night before, how is her attitude going to be in the morning? She will be grumpy and have no patience or longsuffering. If we’re not willing to work out conflicts, there will be no longsuffering or patience – we will be thinking all about us. We need to keep our eyes focused on our goal. If we don’t have patience one toward another, there will be a grudge. When we’re patient, we’ll be willing to put up with things; to bear trials, infirmities, and calamity without complaint.

James 5:7-11 Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh. Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door. 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.

When we think of the patience of Job, we see that after so much happened he wished that he was dead.

Job 3:11-14 Why died I not from the womb? why did I not give up the ghost when I came out of the belly? Why did the knees prevent me? or why the breasts that I should suck? For now should I have lain still and been quiet, I should have slept: then had I been at rest, With kings and counsellors of the earth, which built desolate places for themselves;

He felt hopeless. His grief was so heavy that he couldn’t sleep.

Job 7:3-7 So am I made to possess months of vanity, and wearisome nights are appointed to me. When I lie down, I say, When shall I arise, and the night be gone? and I am full of tossings to and fro unto the dawning of the day. My flesh is clothed with worms and clods of dust; my skin is broken, and become loathsome. My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle, and are spent without hope. O remember that my life is wind: mine eye shall no more see good.

Job had faith in the word.

Job 13:15 Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him.

Job couldn’t see anything that encouraged him but he had confidence in God. We’re going to feel many ways through our life but we need to keep our confidence. We need to hold onto God’s way and his word no matter what. In the flesh Job was in misery and pain.

Job 23:8-12 Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him: On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him: But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold. My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined. Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.

His family and friends and servants all forsook him. His wife thought his breath was strange.

Job 19:13-19 He hath put my brethren far from me, and mine acquaintance are verily estranged from me. My kinsfolk have failed, and my familiar friends have forgotten me. They that dwell in mine house, and my maids, count me for a stranger: I am an alien in their sight. I called my servant, and he gave me no answer; I intreated him with my mouth. My breath is strange to my wife, though I intreated for the children’s sake of mine own body. Yea, young children despised me; I arose, and they spake against me. All my inward friends abhorred me: and they whom I loved are turned against me.

God told Job to wait. He felt forsaken by everyone but he still trusted God. Our feelings aren’t going to be what we go by if we make it to heaven. Wait on God and he will see you through.

Job 19:25-26 For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:

 

(Notes from the Mature Class Bible Study, teacher Edith Tolbert)