Rabbi Schneider - How to Rejoice in Suffering
When we belong to HaShem, when we belong to Father God, we are so immersed in His love that when we go through something in life that breaks our heart or crushes us in spirit, a broken relationship, the death of a loved one, the loss of a job, rejection, whatever it might be, when we're broken hearted or feeling crushed in spirit. When we belong to HaShem, His love is going to minister to us in such a deep way that the brokenhearted experience will actually be bittersweet. What I mean by that is we're actually going to experience the love and the tenderness of HaShem, the tenderness of God for us in a way that is deeper and richer than we experienced Him, when things are going well.
The apostle Paul learned this in his own life. He was going through a season in his own life. We read in the book of Corinthians chapter 12, where he described that there was a tormentor of Satan that he was dealing with. We have no idea what this tormentor was. We know it was causing him great pain. And most of us know the story. He prayed three times to the Father to take it away. And after the third time, the Lord spoke to him and He said, "No, Paul, I'm not going to take this experience away from you, this experience that's wounding you and hurting you". So He says, "Paul, my power is going to be perfected in your life during this season. And my grace will be sufficient to get you through it".
And here's what Paul learned as a result of that experience. Paul said, "Therefore," in other words, "Because I learned when I asked Father to take this hard experience away from me, because I learned that He had a purpose in this hard experience, that He was going to perfect His power in me through this hard experience, that He was going to make me strong because I'm walking through this hard experience, relying on Him," he said, "Because of that," Paul said, "I'm going to glory in hard experiences". He said, "Therefore," Paul said, "I'm going to glory in persecutions, in insults, in testings and in trials because I know that in my weakness, His grace will be perfected in me. His power will be perfected in me and I will be made strong by walking hand-in-hand with HaShem through the difficulty".
Now, why am I stressing this to you right now, beloved one? It's because many of us, we're so afraid of going through hard times, but the truth is we have to go through hard times. Everybody goes through hard times. I don't care who they are. Everybody experiences hard times. Why? Because we're in this world. It's the nature of the reality that we're living in. And we should not be afraid of hard times because during those hard times that Father God, in a very unusual, deep, rich way, administers His grace, His compassion and His love to us. And so David says here, "The Lord is near to the brokenhearted". He comforts them in a very supernatural way. And the grace that we receive from Him during hard times, it's so rich that it almost makes us desire the hard times. That's what Paul said. He said, "Therefore," Paul said, "I'm going to glory in the insults, the rejections, the trials, the testings, and the persecutions".
I know in my own life, the times sometimes that I have felt closest to God, and I shared one episode of this on last week's broadcast, I'll share another one today, is when I've been going through a time of being rejected, when my heart was broken. I remember there was an article that was written about me one time. And because of this article that was written about me, there were some people, people are just people. They look for a reason. They're jealous sometimes, or for whatever reason they want to attack you. And I remember that there was this criticism that came at me from this article that had been written. And of course, whenever a journalist writes an article, they've got to make it sensational in order to get people to read it and that it's not the full truth. But I remember just experiencing some of that rejection from many different sides, but I felt so loved by God.
I remember driving to my studio this day when I had experienced this rejection because of the article. I felt so embraced by the love of the Father. I felt such fellowship with King Jesus that had also been rejected, misunderstood, and persecuted. It was like I wouldn't trade that fellowship for anything because it was so rich and so deep, so real and so beautiful. Listen, please. This is so important. This is why Paul said in the book of Philippians, Paul said that he had been a Hebrew of Hebrews. He said he was circumcised the eighth day. He's just talking about all his credentials as a Jew, circumcised the eighth day, born from the tribe of Benjamin. He was educated under the leading Jewish Sage of his day, Gamaliel. Paul said, "I was a Hebrew of Hebrews, a Pharisee, respected by the entire religious Jewish community". And in those days to be respected in the religious realm was to have the highest place in society because it was a religious society. So Paul had everything in society, but Paul said, "but I gave all that up. I gave all those credentials up in order that I could gain Christ. Being found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the law, but the righteousness that comes through Messiah Jesus".
And then Paul said this, he gave all that up, all that standing he had in the Hebrew community. He said he gave it all up and considered it as nothing in comparison to knowing Messiah Jesus, listen, and experiencing the power of His resurrection. And Paul said, this is what I want you to get, "and the fellowship of His sufferings". Paul said, "I gave it all up, everything I had in the traditional Jewish realm, I gave it all up and it isn't worthy to be compared with knowing Messiah, experiencing the power of His resurrection and the fellowship"... What's fellowship? Fellowship is intimacy. It's closeness. "And experiencing," Paul said, "the fellowship of His sufferings".
There's something to be gained intimately through going through the sufferings that Jesus went through and experiencing some of the broken heartedness that He experienced and that David experienced because of their walk with HaShem, because of their walk with God. All that desire to live godly in Christ Jesus shall be persecuted. And so once again, returning beloved ones, to our text, David said, "The Lord is near to the brokenhearted". Don't be afraid of going through hard times. Don't be afraid of being rejected for your faith because when you are, you're going to experience the closeness of God in a way that you can't experience, that you cannot experience any other way. He saves those who are crushed in spirit.
Let's go to the next verse, verse number 19. "Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all". We're going to go through difficult times. It's the way it is. We shouldn't be afraid. It's going to happen. We shouldn't be caught off guard when we go through hard times. We need to be prepared to go through hard times because when we realize it's reality that we can't escape from, it's going to be easier to go through hard times when we have to go through them. But the Lord delivers us out of them all. We're more than conquerors. The hard times will not define us.
Listen, you have been raised and are now seated in the heavens with Messiah Jesus, Ephesians chapter two. If you've been raised and are now seated with Messiah in heavenly places, that means that your calling, your destiny and who you are is bigger than any difficulty that you'll ever go through. You're going to outlive it. You're going to outgrow it. You're going to get over it and get on top of it. Baruch HaShem, praise the name of the Lord today. You are a victor and a conqueror forever in Christ Jesus. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers you. You, beloved one. Every single one of you that are His out of them all, you will have the last laugh and the last word.
Let's go to the next line. "He keeps all his bones. None of them has broken". Jesus said, "Don't fear the world. Don't fear man that can destroy your body, but fear the one that can destroy both soul and body in hell". At the end of the day, you will be completely preserved. People that have had afterlife experiences, life after death experiences, believers, they've been able to go to heaven for a minute or whatever, they see their loved ones there, those that knew the Lord. They're young and they're in perfect health. The spirit of God within you is forever young and you will be forever young because of Him in the deepest part of your nature. Not so with the wicked. Verse 21, "Evil shall slay the wicked. And those who hate the righteous will be condemned". They may have a laugh for a while, but they will not endure. And finally, verse number 22, "The Lord redeems the soul of His servants. And none of those who take refuge in Him will be condemned".
Every single one of us is going to pass away out of this world. The hospital says we're going to expire. If Jesus doesn't come first, which he might, we will expire. The things they say, "None of us can escape in the Western world are," what? "Death and taxes". We're going to die. But you know what? None of those that know Christ Jesus will be condemned. You see, when we come to the very end of the word of God, we read about the judgments. The books are opened and there's two sets of books. And the one book contains the names of those who are written in the Lamb's Book of Life. And we stand before Jesus, names written in the Lamb's Book of Life.
Our sins are forgiven. Why? Because He paid the price. Yeshua HaMashiach that knew no sin took our sin, you and I. He took our sin in His own body on the tree. And then He was put to death in our place. And because we've received God's free gift of life, because we've received Messiah Jesus, we've now been made the righteousness of God in Him. And when we expire and one day stand before the Lamb's Book of Life beloved, we will stand before Him, we will not be condemned. Why? Not because we've never sinned. No, we've all sinned, but because Jesus paid the price for us. We are written in the Lamb's Book of Life. Praise the name of the Lord. Let's give glory to God. Thank You, King Jesus. Blessed be name of the Lord all the days of our life through our last breath.
But there's another book. And the other book is open and it happens at the white throne judgment, where everyone who has ever lived, who is not recorded in the Lamb's Book of Life will stand before what's called the white throne of God. And they will pay the price for their sin because the soul that sins, it shall die. There will be a final reckoning. The creator of all things will bring every man and woman to give an account. We will stand before our Maker and there will be beloved a judgment, some to everlasting life, according to the book of Daniel, and others to everlasting contempt or death. But notice what David encourages the saints with here in his final verse in this Psalm, "The Lord redeems the soul of His servants and," get it, "none," that means you and I, "none of those who take refuge in Him will be condemned".
Father, we just want to thank you right now where we stand to be able to look into the future, thanking you for Messiah Jesus. Thank you, King Jesus, for coming. Thank You, Father God, for sending Your son. Thank You, Father, that You made the word flesh to die in our place and that because of Your great love for us, because, Messiah Jesus, of what You've done, we will not be condemned.
Baruch HaShem, blessed be the name of the Lord. As I close today, beloved with just a few minutes left in today's broadcast, I just want to highlight a few of the spectacular verses that we hit on over the course of the six messages that I preach from Psalm number 31 through seasons one and two. We started out with verse one. "I will bless the name of the Lord at all times. His praise shall continually be in my mouth". I just think this is such a life declaration. This is a choice to wake up in the morning and to be accountable to the Lord and to ourselves to live a life of praise. "I will bless the Lord at all times," we have to make a decision to bless Him. Sure, the devil wants to come and get us to start cursing. He wants us to start complaining. He wants us to get into the negative, but we can make a choice to say:
Father, I thank You. Thank You that You created me. Thank You that I've got a choice to praise You right now. Thank You Lord, for all the beautiful things that You've allowed me to experience, even such simple things as making food for me to eat that tastes good to my senses, for the beauty I see in creation, for being able to hear Your word, or to hear the beauty of music.
And of course there are so many different ways that God touches so many of us and some of us are not able to see anymore. Some of us may not be able to hear anymore, but there are ways that God's goodness and His grace and His beauty touches every single one of us. And we have to make a decision to live a life of praise to Him because in reality, his entire creation is praising Him. Jesus said, "If you don't praise Me, the rocks are going to cry out in your place". Let me ask you a question. Do you want to praise Him because He created you and gave you a life and He made you in His own image and you have a great future ahead of you in Messiah Jesus, if you'll put Him first? Do you want to choose to praise Him and give Him back the life that He's given you, thanking him for His beauty and His love? Or do you want to let a stone cry out in your place?
Jesus said, "If you don't praise Him, a rock's going to cry out in your place". How would you like to stand before God at the end of time with your mouth mute, stitched together and just not saying a word and having a rock next to you, praising God in your place, praising God on behalf of you, hear a rock crying out in your place because you wouldn't give Him praise? That's what Jesus said is going to happen. So David said, "I'm going to make a decision in my life. I know which way I'm going". "As for me and my house," David said, "I'm going to serve the Lord. I will bless the Lord at all times," Good times and bad times. Job said, "The Lord giveth. The Lord take away. Blessed, be the name of the Lord. I will bless the Lord at all times. And His praise shall continually be in my mouth".
You want to change the spiritual atmosphere? Beloved, live a life like that. Let everybody hear God's praise, God's hallelujah coming from your mouth. When people ask you how you're doing, say, "Praise God. I'm doing better than I deserve. Blessed, be the name of the Lord". Always be talking about God's love. Always be talking about Jesus. Always be talking about what God's done for you. "I will bless the Lord at all times. And His praise shall continually be in my mouth". Beloved, the world needs you to do that. The world is dying. They are desperate for answers. They are desperate for hope. And you've got the answer because Jesus is the answer. So let's live like David lived. Let's wake up every day saying:
Father, thank You for this day. Thank You for my life. Thank You for the opportunity that You've given me today to grow in grace and Father, I will bless You with my mouth and love You with my lips all the days of my life.